OCZ Serves Up Slew of New SSDs, Origin PC Sneaks Out at CES 2010

This year's Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas was a little dry in spots, partly because so many companies decided to pre-announce there latest and greatest products weeks before the show.  That said, there are a select few manufacturers that like to keep some of the good stuff bottled up until showtime, so that there's at least a little extra mojo that makes the trip out west worth while.  One of those manufacturers that likes to hold a little something back for the show is OCZ.  This year for OCZ looks to be a bit more focused on their core memory business, though it's not of the DRAM variety so much as NAND Flash.  In fact, though we're sure there must have been a DDR3 memory display kit kicking around somewhere in there posh suite in the absolutely stunning new Las Vegas Aria hotel, we didn't see it.  By the way, ask HotHardware Editor Mat Miranda about the front desk staff there.  They were several times more spacey and fluffy than the architecture in this place and decidedly more useless.  Enough with the digression, on with the goods...

SSDs O-Plenty and an entry into the USB 3 arena

Some folks have actually criticized OCZ for their breadth of product in their SSD family but that doesn't make sense to us.  Especially with the myriad of component level NAND Flash and Flash Controllers on the market, one size or flavor certainly doesn't fit all.  The highlight in the SATA family this trip is OCZ's new Vertex 2 Pro SSD, based on a Sandforce controller. We'll be taking a look at this drive shortly but OCZ was a little puffed up that they've got an "Intel killer" on their hands.  Them's fightin' words and we like fightin' words; well at least competitively speaking.  The USB 3-based SSD you see above here was pushing in excess of 180MB/sec for reads, which is pretty competitive as well.

OCZ's Next Gen Z-Drive - New design, faster, goodness...

The star of OCZ's show for us, however, was the new Z-Drive.  Executive VP and CMO, Alex Mei hand models the new Z for us here (you're no Vanna White, Alex but you're OK with us), and you can see that it's a fairly radical departure versus the first generation product.  The other, fairly significant departure for this iteration of the Z-Drive comes in the speed department.  The card is built on an array of 32GB Flash NAND cards, a quartet of Indilinx controllers and an LSI RAID controller.  The model you're seeing here is a 512GB variant with no less than 16 mezzanine-style, SODIMM-like Flash cards populated on it.  We're told the product is capable of pushing upwards of 1.3GB/sec for reads and 1.2Gb/sec for write throughput.  CrystalMark was showing a well used installation of the drive pushing more like 580/778 though ATTO shows its standard wrap-around bug that actually show it scaling past the 1.3GB mark in spots.  We have a new version of ATTO on hand that will show the true values when we get a drive in for testing.   In the mean time, we'd say things are looking pretty promising for this family of products from OCZ.

PC Power and Cooling gets an OCZ look, same hefty feel

Not to be forgotten and looking every bit as high-quality as previous generation PSUs from PC Power and Cooling, OCZ was showing off a couple of higher-end PSUs that confirm their commitment to their acquisition of not long ago.  The 950W silencer looks like just the thing for that dual Radeon HD 5870 setup you've been jonesing for.

Origin Systems sneaked in for a little lime-light too...

Finally, we sat down in the conference room for a bit of lunch time sustenance when what did we spy to our surprise? Why it was hot off the press new products from none other than Origin PC (yes, get in to win).  Left is the Origin EON18 notebook, an 18" monster machine that is decked out with illuminated touch panel controls and some serious horsepower under the hood.  A GeForce GTX 280m in SLI ought to dish up the frame rate enough, though we're hopeful they'll move from the Core 2 Quad and Duo architectures currently being offered, to Intel's new Core i7 or Core i5 line-up.  Finally, stage right is a hot looking (literally) Origin desktop gaming rig.  We didn't get a chance to kick the tires on it but that time will come soon, so we're told.

More CES wrap-up still to come, if you can handle it, so stay tuned!