OCZ Vertex 2 50GB Solid State Drive
Author: Shawn Knight
Editor: Zahn Funk
Date: 07-12-2010
Provided by: OCZ Technology
First Look

We find the drive tucked away safely inside an anti-static bag surrounded by a foam cushion. In addition to the drive is a set of screws, installation guide and warranty information, an OCZ sticker and the source of the extra bulge inside the package - a 2.5" to 3.5" desktop adapter. Such an adapter has been absent from every other OCZ SSD we have looked at and something we have pointed out in previous reviews, so it's nice to see OCZ is now including these for their desktop customers.

Regarding the bulging package, we were told that OCZ is redesigning the packaging for a better fit.

The drive itself is typical OCZ. The top and sides are black in color with a brushed aluminum look on the bottom cover. There are mounting screw holes on the sides as well as the bottom of the drive. The back of the drive features the SATA port and data connectors. Unlike previous Indilinx drives, a jumper is not required to upgrade the firmware so the two jumper pins are not present here.

Four screws on the bottom of the drive hold the cover in place. Removing this cover will void your warranty, so we have done the dirty deed for you.

Inside is a green PCB that features a slightly different layout than previous Indilinx drives. The SandForce controller sits in the middle of the PCB with memory chips arranged around it. The controller is labeled SF-1222TA3-SBH which is a typical SF-1200 series chip. You may notice that there isn't a dedicated cache chip on the PCB. This is because the SandForce controller has cache integrated within, although we don't know how much.

There are sixteen Intel NAND chips is labeled 29F32G08AAMDB. Each chip has a capacity of 4GB for a total of 64GB, although the drive is labeled at only 50GB. This 22% of inaccessible space (actually 28% once the drive is formatted) is known as OP (Over Provisioning) and is used by the controller for maintenance. 28% is a bit more than we have seen from previous drives. OCZ now offers the same drives in "Extended Capacities" that cut back on the amount of OP space from 28% to 13%. For more information on exactly how and why this is, again check out this article over at Anandtech.

Let's move ahead and check out the testing procedure and see how the Vertex 2 performs.

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