SSD RAID: Do You Want A Cheap Array Or One Larger Drive?

SandForce SSD: Zalman N-Series

This is the new kid on the block: Zalman’s N-series SSD. Given the 64 and 128 GB capacity points, you can tell that Zalman is targeting the mainstream SSD market (256 GB is still fairly expensive for average users). We believe that 120 or 128 GB currently provides the best bang for the buck. Therefore, we decided to use Zalman’s new 128 GB N-series drives to oppose the budget-oriented SSD RAID array presented by the Kingston drives, described on the previous page.

There is also an S-series by Zalman, which is powered by a JMicron controller. Our N-series test sample, however, employs SandForce’s SF-1220 controller. This cache-less architecture currently provides great performance, delivering maximum I/O performance and constantly high throughput. Only Crucial’s RealSSD C300 provides significantly more throughput, and Samsung’s 470-series is better at maintaing maximum performance. Apart from that, you can’t go wrong with a SandForce-based SSD these days.