SOLID STATE DRIVES or SSDs are one of the hottest topics and add-ons that you can get for your PC now, although there’s still a lot of confusion going on with regards to what to get, as there are vast differences between the various models and the cost per GB is fairly high.
We’ve seen various budget models already, but OCZ is the first company to announce an SSD with a MSRP of less than $100 with its new Onyx series. You can of course already pick up various SSD’s for sub $100, but these are generally older models that lack the latest features, such as Trim support. If you’re buying an SSD today, you’ll want some kind of a “garbage collection” feature and the OCZ Onyx features Trim which should allow it to perform better over time than other low cost SSDs.
The Trim support comes courtesy of the Indilinx Amigos SSD controller that has been specifically developed for the low cost SSD segment. The Amigos controller is limited to 64GB of MLC NAND flash memory, so we might get to see a 64GB version coming from OCZ in the future, but for the time being, the Onyx series is limited to 32GB. You’ll also find 64MB of cache memory which compares favourably to competing solutions.
The performance of the Onyx series is unlikely to leave anyone impressed as the write speed is a lowly 70MB/s with read speeds at an even more unimpressive 125MB/s. Well, that’s unimpressive compared to modern SSDs and even compared to OCZ’s Solid 2 series of entry level SSDs, but bung one of these drives into a netbook or a notebook that’s stuck with a 5,400rpm hard drive and you’re all of a sudden seeing some serious performance gains.
The OCZ Onyx series is obviously not for the enthusiast or performance SSD market, but there’s still very much a market space for an affordable SSD. OCZ also throws in a three year warranty as standard. We’d expect online prices to be far lower than $100 though, especially as you can already find OCZ’s current range of faster SSD’s for far less with the help of various rebate schemes.S|A
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