Enterprise SSD Reviews
by Kevin OBrien

OCZ Talos 2 R Enterprise SSD Review

The OCZ Talos 2 R is a 2.5" form factor enterprise-class SSD that ranges in raw capacity up to nearly 1TB and features a SAS interface with dual-port support as well as cost-effective MLC NAND. The Talos 2 R also features OCZ's Virtualized Controller Architecture (VCA) 2.0 that ties together a pair of SandForce flash controllers to deliver performance and capacity enhancements. This much makes the Talos 2 R similar to its sibling OCZ Talos 2 C that we recently reviewed. However, the Talos 2 R differentiates itself from the Talos 2 C by tacking on power fail protection to protect in-flight data from unexpected power loss, an upgraded controller and additional over-provisioning at 28% versus 7% on the Talos 2 C.

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by Kevin OBrien

Seagate 600 Pro Enterprise SSD Review

The Seagate 600 Pro SSD is a 2.5-inch MLC NAND enterprise-class SSD in a 7mm form factor with a capacity up to 480GB that is designed for read-intensive applications. Due to its size, the 600 Pro easily fits almost any platform, maximizing capacity while minimizing its footprint. Seagate's primary focus during the engineering of this drive though was to build a drive to meet the growing demand within the enterprise for SSDs that offer enterprise-class endurance and adequate performance at a reasonable price-point. Organizations that need these types of drives include centers, cloud system builders, cloud service providers or virtualized enterprises. In these applications, the enterprise requires more endurance than they could get with a client SSD; it wants a drive upon which it can depend to be reliable over time, thus keeping data secure.

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by Kevin OBrien

SMART Storage CloudSpeed 500 Enterprise SSD Review

The SMART Storage Systems CloudSpeed 500 is an entry enterprise SSD  with SATA interface designed to meet the needs read-intensive scenarios such as boot drive, workstations and certain embedded applications. The CloudSpeed 500 uses a SandForce controller paired with 24nm MLC NAND to deliver not just high throughput, but also high endurance. It can be difficult to differentiate with SandForce-based SSDs, as the build and firmware are rarely novel. With that in mind, Smart's hook with the CloudSpeed 500 is the endurance. Smart touts 15,000 PE cycles, which is more than some other SandForce-based offerings, and it does this all while preserving capacity with just 7% over-provisioning. The drive also offers power-fail protection to ensure in-flight data makes it to its destination during a power loss event.

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by Kevin OBrien

OCZ Deneva 2 Enterprise SSD Review

The OCZ Deneva 2 is an enterprise-class SSD that interfaces over SATA 6GB/s and has several different models utilizing an array of NAND. Our test model incorporates eMLC NAND to offer users more write cycles than standard MLC, and simultaneously it provides economics closer to MLC than the more expensive SLC. The Deneva 2 also comes in two different series to provides users flexibility in their choices. The R series includes a similar feature set to the C series but with a couple of additional features including power loss data protection and over-provisioning. The over-provisioning is geared more toward heavier write scenarios and is noticeable when users check capacity differences between the C and R models. Our test model is the OCZ Deneva 2 R eMLC NAND 200GB capacity drive. One more design note is that architecturally, the Deneva 2 comes in a 2.5" form factor, but OCZ can tailor it per application.

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by Josh Shaman

Micron M500 Enterprise SSD Review

The Micron M500 is part of the new SSD family created by Micron and Crucial geared toward personal storage applications with the Micron M500 slotted as an enterprise-class SSD that ranges in capacities up to a robust 960GB, uses 20nm MLC NAND, a Marvell controller, interfaces over SATA 6Gb/s, and features a slim 7mm drive height. The Micron-branded M500 is also targeted at Cloud and Web 2.0 segment. As we mention in our review of the near-identical consumer-oriented Crucial M500, the Micron brand is established and is known for its long-term reliability and its compatibility. Adding to that is the robust capacity and value offered by Micron. On that note, while Crucial's M500 offers top capacity in the consumer-market, there are existing enterprise SSDs that meet and exceed 1TB. Yet, what Micron brings to the table is affordability. While other drives might range up to $4,000, the Micron M500 960GB comes in low at less than a quarter of the price.

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by Kevin OBrien

Samsung SM843 Enterprise SSD Review

The Samsung SM843 takes over from the PM830 as the entry and mainstream enterprise-class SSD designed for use in situations that tend to be read-intensive like compute server boot drives, higher-end client workstation needs, and certain embedded applications. The drive utilizes a SATA interface, offers a slim 7mm drive height, and leverages an in-house Samsung 20nm MLC NAND as well as a Samsung controller and firmware stack. To allay concerns, the SM843 offers write endurance of 1PB (1000TB). Design-wise, the SM843 looks much like its client-focused cousin, the 840 Pro, however the core differences are added over-provisioning in the SM843 to show higher endurance and a firmware that's tuned for workloads that are more read-heavy.

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by Kevin OBrien

Micron P400m Enterprise SSD Review

The Micron P400m is an enterprise SSD engineered for use in servers, appliances and storage platforms. The P400m uses a mainstream 7mm 2.5" form factor, SATA interface and Micron's 25nm MLC NAND. Like the P300 this drive replaces, the P400m uses a Marvell drive controller with customized Micron firmware on top that has been tuned for performance under even read and write usage scenarios. From a performance perspective, the P400m delivers 64KB sequential reads and writes of 380MB/s and 310MB/s respectively, with 4KB random read and write IOPS of up to 60,000 and 26,000.

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by Kevin OBrien

OCZ Talos 2 Enterprise SSD Review

The OCZ Talos 2 is an enterprise SSD that uses a SAS interface, MLC NAND and 2.5" form factor. The Talos 2 comes in two variations, an R model that includes powerfail protection and more over provisioning and a C model that does not, giving enterprises flexibility based on their needs. Architecturally, the Talos 2 is somewhat unique in the marketplace in that it uses dual controllers in a 2.5" form factor. OCZ leverages their Virtualized Controller Architecture (VCA) 2.0 to tie together a pair of SandForce flash controllers, which provides both performance and capacity benefits.

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by Kevin OBrien

Intel SSD DC S3700 Series Enterprise SSD Review

The Intel SSD DC S3700 uses a 6Gb/s SATA interface paired with MLC NAND, in-house controller and is offered in both 2.5" and 1.8" form factors. The S3700 is designed for the mainstream and high-performance enterprise market segments and carries an aggressive pricing scheme (40% lower MSRP than prior model), making the drive consumable by just about any server compute or flash array need. The easy to deploy message, along with Intel's heritage of offering SSDs with leading endurance and performance makes the S3700 compelling to a wide range of use cases.

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by Kevin OBrien

STEC s840 Enterprise SSD Review

The STEC s840 is a 6Gb/s SAS SSD targeted toward the high performance enterprise market segment. The s840 features a completely designed and developed in-house controller and firmware stack paired with MLC NAND in a 15mm, 2.5" form factor. It comes in 200GB, 400GB and 800GB capacities and offers sustained read throughput of up to 529MB/s, write throughput of 453MB/s and maximum read IOPS of 118,000. As with most enterprise SSDs, STEC is about more than just raw performance though; STEC has a robust portfolio of intellectual property that gives them certain advantages in SSD design, along with a heritage that goes back to 1994.

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