At this point you are wondering why in the world I would write an editorial that sounds like a marketing document. So far this has pretty much been a marketing document... the editorial starts now.
When asked if Indilinx (OCZ) would be sharing their new Everest 2 platform with previous purchasers of Indilinx products, we were told that they weren't saying yet. There are a couple of reasons why I think this is important.
The first has to do with LSI purchasing SandForce. Just a couple of days ago LSI announced three new products that include SandForce technology. None of them featured new Flash Processor Units and none of them are for the consumer market. LSI wants to accelerate their products and not aid in accelerating potential competition. To the public LSI is saying that nothing is going to change and that SandForce will be the same SandForce we already know. LSI doesn't have a contract with the public though that says we will see future SandForce controllers in consumer products. LSI does sell mechanical drive controllers to Seagate, Western Digital, Hitachi and so on, but in those markets your company name and reputation isn't so closely linked with the end product like it is in the consumer market.
When we get in a drive and call it a Team SandForce you know what we are talking about, the preliminary specifications and just about everything there is to know already. If I say a 7K4000 you have no idea what the heck I'm talking about or what components are inside. It's time to face the facts; LSI could pull SF from the consumer market and not look back.
With that said, a very wide hole might open up for Indilinx to fill. This time, the customer base is much larger than when Indilinx dominated the volume market with Barefoot. More people know about SSDs, they are now cheaper, more reliable in most cases and several steps closer to mainstream adaption.
Then there is the other path. OCZ could keep Everest 2 and any following revisions to themselves. That leaves Samsung, Toshiba, Intel, Marvell, Phison and JMicron left assuming that LSI pulls SF. Look at those names, some very powerful and wealthy companies in that group. OCZ would love to put OCZ/Indilinx in there and it is starting to happen now. The only real question is what products will we find on the store shelves? Will Corsair, G.Skill, Patriot or others have drives with Everest 2 at Newegg?
If they do we can point you right back to this article to show the full specifications of the Everest 2 platform. Don't forget to read our full review of the OCZ Vertex 4 as it shows our own tested performance data on the new Everest 2 controller.