Specifications, Pricing and Availability
A new era indeed! OCZ's Octane starts out at 128GB and ends with a massive 1TB capacity size. The biggest omission is the 64GB capacity size and hopefully we won't end up with half sizes in the future. For now everything is nice and simple, 128GB is the new 64GB!
Looking at the chart, we see that wide variations to performance profiles are back. The reference to 128GB being the new 64GB is based on the information provided by OCZ. The 128GB drive has very good read performance, 535MB/s, the same as most of the other drives. On the other hand, the 128GB model can only write data at a rate of 170MB/s, the performance envelope is weighted heavily to one side. Things get better for the 256GB model, but the performance is less than ideal. 512GB is the new 256GB as far as reaching best in class performance. With the same read speed, the 512GB is just as capable as the lower capacity in that area, but the write speed jumps significantly; a full 400MB/s. The massive 1TB model gets an extra 5MB/s read, but loses 15MB/s write speed. Obviously this isn't a big issue since you're gaining MASSIVE capacity, enough to overlook the slight write speed difference.
Today we are focusing on the large 512GB Octane, the best performer of the group. While the 512GB offers SandForce like transfer speeds, it lacks SandForce like IOPS performance. We'll have to see how that affects real world performance in the client environment as we work through the benchmarks.
Also unlike SandForce drives, Everest uses a traditional SSD design with a DRAM cache for page mapping and user data. This adds to the final cost, but also gives Octane the ability to perform background garbage collection. The cache of Octane is like just about every other part of the drive, supersized. Octane uses a massive 512MB cache buffer, the largest we've seen and only matched in size by the Western Digital Silicon Edge Blue from last year.
At the time of writing OCZ had announced their MSRP pricing, but Newegg, Tiger and other e-tailers were still being held back by the NDA. The MSRPs list as follows; 128GB (199.99), 256GB (369.99) and the 512GB (879.99). No price has been officially set for the 1TB at the time of writing, but we'll update this article when we have some indication; if you need to sever an arm, leg or kidney.
Obviously the MSRP prices aren't looking that great right now considering what we're seeing from Team SandForce manufacturers over the last few weeks. 120GB Vertex 3's are now selling for around 165 Dollars after a quick mail-in rebate, but I think Octane will be on par with that price pretty quick. I could be wrong, but usually I'm right.
Backing me up with my thoughts on pricing is the OCZ bundle accessories. Simply put, there aren't any other than the sticker and paper manual. The Octane ships without a desktop adapter bracket and uses a new, economy focused package. You still get the standard OCZ 3 year warranty that includes access to support forums and a fast response ticket support.
After writing this review, OCZ also released an updated Toolbox software that allows for easy firmware updating and secure erase commands.