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OCZ Agility 3 240GB Review

The OCZ Agility 3 fills the mid-range gap of OCZ’s SSD lineup; but don’t let “mid-range” or “mainstream” fool you. The Agility 3 uses a SATA 6Gb/s interface and the SandForce SF-2281 processor to drive 525MB/s read speeds, 500MB/s writes and 45,000 4KB random write IOPS – those are just a hair under the Vertex 3 specs. OCZ offers the Agility 3 in three capacity points, 60GB, 120GB and 240GB – all leveraging Intel/Micron 25nm NAND.

The big question is – how is the Agility 3 different from the scorching hot and very similar Vertex 3, and to a lesser extent, the Vertex 3 Max IOPS. Both use the same SandForce processor, SATA 6Gb/s interface, firmware and very similar 25nm Intel/Micron NAND. The key difference is revealed in the NAND flash part numbers used in each model. While the Vertex 3 uses synchronous NAND, the Agility 3 uses more affordable asynchronous NAND. In terms of performance, this essentially means that the Agility 3 will hang with the Vertex 3 in tests that use incompressible data, but will fall behind when it comes to handling compressible data. We’ll dive into the tradeoffs of the NAND as we examine the benchmark scores of both drives in this review.

OCZ Agility 3 Specs (240GB)

  • Formatted Capacity – 223.57GB
  • SATA 6Gb/s interface
  • SandForce SF-2281 Controller
  • Max Sequential Speeds: up to 525MB/s Read and up to 500MB/s Write
  • Random Write 4KB (Aligned): 45,000 IOPS
  • 25nm Intel/Micron asynchronous MLC NAND
  • Power Consumption: 2.7W Active, 1.5W Idle
  • MTBF: 2 million hours
  • 3-Year Warranty

Pros

  • Great performance for a mainstream targeted audience
  • Aggressive pricing compared to Vertex 3
  • Lower power consumption than Vertex 3 or V3 MAX IOPS

Cons

  • Max sequential speeds cut in half with fully random data

Conclusion

By mixing the same great SandForce SF-2281 processor with a SATA 6Gb/s interface and lower-cost asynchronous NAND, OCZ was able to straddle the cost/performance fence quite well with the Agility 3. The OCZ Agility 3 will find plenty of traction with buyers wanting near top-end performance without the top-end price.

Read the full review at storagereview.com

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