OCZ's new RevoDrive 3 X2 Max IOPS solid state drive should come with a warning label that reads: Warning, may cause whiplash, extreme giddiness, and feelings of euphoria -- these feelings will not subside. No such warning exists on OCZ's latest RevoDrive line, but that's how we'd market a PCI Express SSD capable of the silly fast numbers OCZ plastered on the spec sheet.
In terms of bandwidth, PCI Express blows the doors off of both SATA 3Gb/s and SATA 6Gb/s interfaces, and OCZ appears hellbent on filling as much as the PCI-E pipeline as it can. Enter OCZ's new RevoDrive 3 and RevoDrive 3 X2 solid state drives. Armed with an advanced data management feature-set based on OCZ's proprietary Virtualized Controller Architecture (recently updated to version 2.0), these drives are trained not to break a sweat in multithreaded applications.
How can you improve on OCZ Technology’s original RevoDrive (reviewed November 2010), which binds two SandForce SF-1200 SSDs to a PCI-E card? You add another two SSDs for a quad-drive SSD. That’s what OCZ did for the RevoDrive X2.
The original RevoDrive topped out at 500MB/s in very specific tests, and hovered around half that speed for most day-to-day usage, which still put it at the very top end of current-gen solid-state devices. OCZ claims the RevoDrive X2 can hit speeds up to 750MMB/s—that’s marketing megabytes per second. Oh yeah, we’re testing that.
OCZ Technology is on a roll. While most consumer SSD manufacturers are content to just slap the latest controller and some NAND into a 2.5-inch enclosure and call it a day, OCZ has been pumping out innovative products, from top-of-the-heap SATA SSDs to the blistering-fast (and stylish) USB 3.0 Enyo drive. Now it has introduced the RevoDrive, a PCI-E SSD in capacities from 50GB to 480GB. Though it’s not the first PCI Express SSD (Fusion-io’s been making enterprise-level PCI-E SLC devices for years), it is the first bootable consumer PCI-E SSD. OCZ claims the RevoDrive can hit up to 540MB/s reads and 450MB/s writes, which sounds like nonsense. But is it?
OCZ is hoping its new RevoDrive will bring PCI-E based SSD storage to the masses, and given the price points, that's a real possibility.
The drive comes in both 120GB and 240GB capacities with MSRPs set at $390 and $700, respectively. Not exactly cheap, but in line with what other high-performance SSDs are going for. And unlike their SATA based brethren, the RevoDrive SSDs aren't bound by the same bottlenecks.
"The RevoDrive is the first PCIe SSD that delivers both performance and affordability and radically alters the SSD landscape," said Ryan Petersen, CEO of the OCZ Technology Group. "Up to this point PCIe SSDs have been reserved for enterprise applications and priced out of the range of many consumers, the bootable RevoDrive SSD changes the game by delivering a PCIe based solution that costs as low as $3 per gigabyte, exceptional small file write IOPS of over 80K, which is the most available in any low-cost solution."
The RevoDrive features a proprietary RAID 0 design that helps it ramp up transfer rates to up to 540MB/s read and up to 480MB/s write speeds, or nearly twice that of traditional SATA-based SSDs.
Not everything at Computex is geared towards home users, there's plenty of enterprise fodder as well. OCZ is among those spreading the love to the corporate world, starting with the RevoDrive, a bootable PCI-Express based SSD designed for workstations.
High-end gamers with deep pockets will also be interested in the RevoDrive, which boasts read and write speeds that will make your SATA-based SSD crawl in a corner and assume the fetal position. We're talking about 540MB/s read speeds and 530MB/s write speeds, or about double that of performance-oriented SATA-based drives.
"Computex is always a good opportunity to showcase our latest solutions to both our clients and trade press and this year we have a complete range of solid state drive solutions that further push the envelope," commented Ryan Petersen, CEO of the OCZ Technology Group. "At the show we will be demonstrating exciting new products, including a truly affordable PCIe SSD for consumer applications, ultra reliable enterprise drives and a first look at the HSDL (High Speed Data Link) interface that delivers far superior transfer rates over traditional SATA."
According to those on-hand at the convention, the RevoDrive comes equipped with two SandForce SF-1200 controllers. There's also a connection on the middle of the card for future expansion -- purchase one RevoDrive to start with, add a second one later.
OCZ has not yet determined pricing and availability.