I told myself going into this review that I wouldn't spend a lot of time talking about Plextor's fabled past or ODD product line. After getting the images edited down and the charts pieced together, I made the mistake of pulling out my large box filled with around 40 CD and DVD optical drives. More than half of those drives were either labeled Plextor or known to be built by Plextor for companies like IBM. If you think spending 300 Dollars on a solid state drive is a feat, then try spending 300 Dollars on a Plextor 12/10/32A one week and then buying another one at 300 Dollars a week later to achieve the highest quality bit-for-bit copy imaginable. These drives, along with the SCSI models still sell on the used market for up to 100 Dollars each; not bad for an 11 year old optical drive. That should give you an idea of the quality products produced by Plextor at that time. Before we move on, here is a blast from the past that all of you old timers will get a chuckle over.
A lot has changed since those days for Plextor. Over the years the Plextor name has lost some of its polish. Optical drives are now commodity items pieced together to hit extremely low price points and innovative features have been sued out of R&D by the evil MPAA and RIAA litigation farms. Plextor still plays a leading role in the optical storage market, but not in the same ways as the glory days.
In order to survive and flex their innovative muscles, Plextor has turned to new avenues of creation. For a time it looked like the company would focus on video capture products, but that fizzled out after a couple of years. In 2011 Plextor has set their sights on two areas that I work heavily in; NAS appliances and solid state drives. It's fair to say that you will be seeing more Plextor products on TweakTown over the next couple of years, but these will mainly be products designed for the masses; Average Joe conservative parts.
Today we are looking at the Plextor PX-M2 256GB solid state drive that uses the Marvell 88SS9174-BKK2 controller. We first used this controller back in June 2010 when ADATA closed a section of their Computex booth to allow us to get a feel for the new controller. At the time we knew Plextor had a hand in the products beginnings since the drive was actually labeled as a LiteON (Plextor's parent company) drive.