OCZ releases first 1TB laptop SSD with 'instant on' boot up

First OCZ SSD to use NAND flash controller technology gained with Indilinx buy

OCZ today released the industry's first 2.5-in solid-state drive (SSD) with up to 1TB of capacity. The drive, based on the new Indilinx Everest controller, includes an "instant on" feature, that reduces boot times over previous OCZ SSDs by 50%.

The new Octane SSD also is priced from $1.10 to $1.30 per gigabyte, meaning a 128GB model would sell for around $166.

The new Octane SSD line includes two models: one with a SATA 3.0 (6Gbps) interface and the other with a SATA 2.0 (3Gbps) interface.

The SSD is .27-in (7mm) in height.

The Octane SSD delivers up to 560MB/sec throughput and 45,000 I/Os per second (IOPS) of performance. The drive comes with up to 512MB of DRAM cache, and models have capacities of 128GB, 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB.

OCZ Octane
OCZ's Octane SATA 6Gbps SSD

OCZ said the drive is optimized for a full spectrum of file types and sizes because of a proprietary page mapping algorithm that allows for steady mixed-workload performance, mirroring real world conditions across a wide range of applications.

"OCZ has reached an important milestone in the development of its own controller technology," said James E. Bagley, a senior analyst with Storage Strategies NOW, in a statement. "The high sustained performance, even with compressed files, the rapid boot feature and high access speeds using SATA 3.0 protocol puts their controller technology in the major league."

In March, OCZ agreed to purchase South Korea-based NAND flash controller maker Indilinx for $32 million. The Octane is OCZ's first SSD to use the newly acquired company's latest controller technology, which was announced in July.

Earlier this month, LG also announced it would be offering OCZ SSDs with the Everest controller in its ultra-thin netbook line. "Until now SSDs have been tailored for specific applications, forcing users into a product which maximizes performance for a narrow band of applications, but is significantly lacking in others," said Ryan Petersen, CEO of OCZ Technology. "The Octane Series solves this problem by providing the highest level of performance across varied workloads including mixed file sizes and mixed compressible and uncompressible data, all while nearly doubling NAND flash endurance." The Octane series includes a number of advanced features through the Indilinx Everest controller, including what OCZ calls "latency reduction technology," enabling both read and write access times as low as .06 milliseconds (ms) and .09ms respectively.

The Octane (SATA 3.0) SSD has a maximum sequential read and write rate of 560MB/sec and 400MB/sec, respectively, and it can generate up to 45,000 read IOPS using 4K blocks.

By comparison, Intel's SSD 510 laptop drive with a SATA 3.0 interface has a sequential read and write rate of 500MB/sec and 315MB/sec, respectively, and can generate up to 20,000 random read IOPS.

The Octane-S2 (SATA 2.0) has a read and write rate of 275MB/sec and 265MB/sec, respectively, and it can generate up to 30,000 random read IOPS using 4K blocks.

OCZ's Octane-S2 SATA 3Gbps SSD

The Octane SATA 3.0 model is aimed at performance computing in high-end notebooks, gaming systems and enthusiast desktops and workstations. The Octane-S2 is aimed more toward the home laptop and desktop user.

Octane SSDs come equipped with Indilinx's NDurance technology, which OCZ said doubles the number of program/erase cycles of NAND flash memory - meaning it doubles the overall endurance of the drive from 3,000 to 5,000 program/erase cycles over its lifetime to 6,000 to 10,000.

The Octane series SSDs also support AES encryption to secure data.

Lucas Mearian covers storage, disaster recovery and business continuity, financial services infrastructure and health care IT for Computerworld. Follow Lucas on Twitter at @lucasmearian, or subscribe to Lucas's RSS feed . His e-mail address is lmearian@computerworld.com.

Copyright © 2011 IDG Communications, Inc.

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