High prices are always a barrier to new technology adoption, and SSDs were no different. We're a long way from first-generation drives that suffered severe slowdowns, but solid-state drives are still a long way from replacing traditional storage, and this can easily be explained by comparing the cost per gigabyte.
Recently, there has been an increasing demand for drives that sacrifice space for speed and lower prices, and manufacturers have struggled to deliver just that. The cheapest offer in our last roundup over a year ago came from OCZ. At $ 270, the OCZ Agility 120GB cost almost double the $ 150 limit we put on the SSDs featured in this article.
With this price cap, we were able to integrate more than half a dozen drives with controllers like JMicron, Intel, Toshiba, SandForce and Indilinx. While the controllers used by these affordable SSDs come in a wide variety, as mentioned earlier, most of them also have something in common: limited storage capacity.
Most of the drives featured in this summary offer capacities from 32 GB to 40 GB, while some others reach 64 GB. As restrictive as a 32GB drive may seem, it can be extremely useful in improving a PC's performance when run as a startup drive. These smaller drives are also suitable for selected programs where the use of the application can be significantly accelerated, e.g. B. Adobe Photoshop.
Gamers will likely want at least a 64GB drive, considering that many titles weigh more than 8GB these days. Thankfully, we were able to find some great options that offer this type of storage for less than $ 150.
Today's round-up includes the following competitors: OCZ Agility 2 40GB ($ 135), OCZ Vertex 2 40GB ($ 124), OCZ Onyx 64GB ($ 130), OCZ Onyx 32GB ($ 85), ADATA S596 Turbo 32 GB ($ 83), Intel X25-V 40 GB ($ 100), and Kingston SNV425-S2 64 GB ($ 125). In addition to these affordable SSD offerings, we've added the Seagate Momentus XT ($ 135), a highly regarded hybrid drive that tries to deliver the best of both worlds by offering massive storage capacity at a reasonable price with additional performance offers an increase in the NAND flash memory for caching data.
We'll run a series of tests on each drive, including four synthetic benchmarks, as well as our own file copy and load time tests. However, before we dive into these results, let's take a closer look at each drive.