Reports of 6Gbps SATA SSDs’ death have been greatly exaggerated. If Mark Twain could’ve been a power user, we like to think he would’ve admonished his fellow enthusiasts (ourselves included) over the countless prematurely penned obituaries for solid-state drives that use the 6Gbps SATA bus. After all, SATA is old but not extinct. In fact, we’d say that the arrival of PCIe SSDs has been a benefit for 6Gbps SATA drives, too. Now, SATA SSDs are extremely affordable; you can buy a hilarious amount of solid-state storage with only a little scratch. And guess what? It turns out 6Gbps SATA SSDs are still pretty fast.
One terrific example is Toshiba’s OCZ VX500 family of SSDs. They take the baton from OCZ’s Vector 180 line; right away we noticed that the VX500 drives have received an external makeover. The metal housing looks terrific and has a slight shine to it; if aesthetics matter to you, don’t be afraid to put the VX500 on display. The drive’s slim 7mm height makes it a solid choice for notebooks, as well.
“The drive performed exactly as advertised, galloping through sequential workloads and delivering solid random read/write performance, particularly at high queue depths..”
Toshiba continues OCZ’s practice of relying on in-house components for its SSDs. The VX500 relies on Toshiba’s TC358790 storage controller, which has previously appeared in the company’s Q Series Pro and HG6 SSDs. We’re more excited about the presence of Toshiba MLC NAND. With so many manufacturers turning to TLC NAND as a means of cutting costs, it’s nice to see OCZ stick with MLC in the VX500. As a result, all of the VX500 drives boast impressive endurance ratings. The 1TB VX500 leads the way, promising 592TB TBW. The 512GB VX500 we tested has, expectedly, a TBW rating of 296TB. It’s no wonder OCZ offers a five-year warranty on these SSDs.
To test the 512GB VX500, we turned it loose on CrystalDiskMark and AS-SSD. The drive performed exactly as advertised, galloping through sequential workloads and delivering solid random read/write performance, particularly at high queue depths. The VX500 proved to us that 6Gbps SATA SSDs aren’t going away anytime soon.
by Vince Cogley
Specs: Interface: 6Gbps SATA; Controller: Toshiba TC358790; Maximum sequential read/write: 50MBps/515MBps; Random 4KiB read/write: 92,000 l0PS/65,00010PS; Form factor: 2.5-inch; Warranty: 5 years
Test system specs: Processor: Intel Core ¡7-7700K; Motherboard: A0RUS Z270X Gaming 5; GPU: GIGABYTE GeForce GTX1080 Xtreme Gaming; Memory: Corsair Vengeance LEO 32GB DDR4-3200; Storage: 480GB Patriot Hellfire; OS: Windows 10 Enterprise