HD Tune is my favorite program for benchmarking drives, and here we show the results from both USB and SATA connectivity. Unlike a conventional hard drive, where the throughput depends on what area of the platter the armature is reading from, the bandwidth graph of the OCZ SSD is relatively flat. The average speed for the USB connection is right around 33MB/s which is pretty typical for a standard USB flash drive. However the average throughput when connected via SATA is nearly 130MB/s, much higher than any single conventional drive score I've ever seen. That rivals even most RAID0 hard drive stripe arrays!
For comparison I tested another 2½" SATA drive, a Toshiba 80GB 5400rpm MK8032GSX drive, which averaged only 26MB/s! I also included a prior test result from a Seagate 100GB 7200rpm ST910021AS drive, which again averaged only just under 40MB/s. If the OCZ drive can maintain that speed difference on writes as well just imagine how much that will affect your laptop's performance!
For the next test I'm using Sisoft Sandra's Hard Drive benchmark read test, and as you can see the OCZ Solid Series simply trounces it's closest conventional competitor, the Western Digital Velociraptor 300GB WD3000GLFS. The two graphs shown above represent the same test, the first lists drive models and the second shows test values. With over 50% more measured read speed and access latencies under 1ms, the OCZ Solid Series shows just how good an SSD can be. And with 145MB/s reported by Sandra we can see that OCZ isn't too far off the mark when they claim up to 155MB/s read speeds.
The follow up to the Sisoft read test is of course the write test, and for some reason Sandra defaults to a different series of comparison drive models here. Rather than the Velociraptor compared in the read test, the next closest competitor shown here looks to be just your average SATA hard drive. Anyway, the Solid Series scores a very respectable 80MB/s write speed but suffers horribly on access times, a full 26ms compared to the single digit latencies of the conventional drives.
In addition to the synthetic benchmarks, I like to perform a real world test by copying some files to and from the drive. In this test I first used a single file of around 600MB and moved it to and from the drive, followed by a group of approximately 300 files totaling the same 600MB. Typically where a flash memory drive would suffer is on the many small writes, and the results show that this is indeed the SSD's weakest performance. However 14 seconds to write those files is not bad compared to the 9 seconds it took to write the single file. On flash memory drives I've seen the small file writes take 10 times as long or longer! Now let's try installing an OS on the OCZ Solid SSD and see how it performs.