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OCZ Vertex 120GB Solid State Drive

OCZ Vertex 120GB Solid State Drive

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OCZ Vertex Solid State Drive (120GB) – The Unit

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The Vertex is housed inside an aluminum chassis which has a metallic bottom plate – OCZ themselves claims that the drive can withstand 1500G’s. There are only the standard SATA power and data cable connectors at the rear. There are reference screw holes at the sides and the bottom of the chassis, adhering to 2.5" drive standards, so this device is fully compatible with any device using 2.5" SATA HDDs. Much like all of the earlier OCZ SSD drives there is a sticker with some basic electrical specifications regarding the drive, as well as the following warning:

"Warning: Delicate product. Sensitive parts inside. Damage may occur if shocked. Touching the circuits may cause malfunction. Removal of the cover will void any and all warranties."

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The Vertex series drives use MLC chips and they feature an Indilinx Barefoot controller instead of the disappointing JMF602. The Barefoot is a second generation 90nm SSD controller which integrates an ARM processor, can address up to 512GB and has a 64MB ECC protected onboard cache which is considerably larger than that of the Intel MLC drives currently available. There is a catch though; in case of a sudden power loss, the data in the cache will most likely get lost before they find their way to the flash chips. This could potentially result in data corruption.

OCZ use the rather common and very reliable Samsung K9HCG08U1M-PCB0 MLC flash chips as the backbone of their Vertex series drives. An Elpida SDRAM 64MB chip serves as the controller’s onboard cache. Among all else, there is a bright blue LED light which you will probably never see as it is placed behind the metallic bottom plate. We can’t think of any purpose anybody would want a LED placed there as it simply increases the power consumption of the drive.

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Stuart Davidson

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