Frankly speaking, it is not easy to name the winner of this test session, but the second-generation Intel X25-M deserves this title more than anyone else. Intel has endowed its SSDs with new 34nm chips with considerably revised firmware. Being somewhat inferior to its predecessor at writing very small random-address data blocks, the new X25-M delivers excellent and very stable results under server loads. It is also good under most loads typical of home computers, which makes it a universal and very fast storage device. Still, we’d prefer to call it server-oriented just because it has no rivals in server applications.
However, it no time for resting on laurels as Intel’s products do meet some serious competition from SSDs based on the Indilinx controller. Their performance under most loads is but slightly lower than that of the X25-M but they have a much higher speed of linear writing. The performance of Indilinx-based models varies significantly depending on firmware, remember the excellent results of the OCZ Vertex Mac Edition in IOMeter: Database and at random writing. Therefore it is sad that the Vertex Turbo does not have new firmware. With the basic firmware this highly perspective SSD is not very interesting, unlike the OCZ Vertex and OCZ Vertex Mac Edition. The latter is quite a surprise to us, by the way. We didn’t expect the Mac version to be so different from the others.
People who do not need large storage capacities may be interested in the OCZ Agility. It is cheaper than the other SSDs while its performance is decent due to the full-featured Indilinx controller inside.
The OCZ Summit, based on Samsung’s platform, is expectedly similar to the Corsair P128 we tested earlier. It is the most power-efficient SSD and works well with large files, but loses to its opponents under server loads and at writing small data blocks. Still, it uses the latest generation controller, which makes it much faster than today’s HDDs.
Thus, we have already tested SSDs with three popular controllers in our labs. We only lack an SSD with JMicron’s controller for the picture to be complete.