7-Way SSD Round-Up: Sandforce vs. JMicron

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Corsair F100 and OWC Mercury

As its name implies, the Corsair Force F100 is also a 100GB solid state drive, similar to the OCZ offerings shown on the previous page. The F100 is also based on the SandForce 1200 controller as well. We should also note that the newer 120GB model tested as part of an update to this article is physically identical to the 100GB version--they only differ in their firmware configurations...


Corsair Force Series F100 - SandForce 1200
Specifications & Features

Maximum sequential read speed 285MB/second
Maximum sequential write speed 275 MB/second
Random 4K write performance of 15,000 IOPS
Latest generation Sandforce controller and MLC NAND flash for fast performance
Internal SATA II connectivity
TRIM support (O/S support required)
No moving parts for increased durability and reliability and quieter operations over standard hard disk drives
Decreased power usage for increased notebook or netbook battery life
2.5" form factor for your portable computer needs
Included 2.5" to 3.5" bracket
Three year warranty

While the Corsair Force Series F100's specifications suggest it uses firmware similar to the OCZ Agility 2, based on its Random 4K IOPS performance rating of 15K, the F100's firmware in its current form does not impose the performance limitation mentioned earlier. In fact, throughout our testing, the Corsair Force F100 performed very similarly to the OCZ Vertex 2. Other differences between the Corsair Force F100 and the other drives are it's physical branding (of course) and it's warranty. Corsair offers only a 2 year warranty on the Force series--which is the shortest warranty of the bunch.


OWC Mercury Extreme Pro RE 100GB - SandForce 1200
Specifications & Features
Controller: SandForce SF1200
SMART attributes: Standard
Capacity: 100GB useable capacity
Total Flash Memory Components - 128GB
Sustained Sequential Read: up to 285MB/s
Sustained Sequential Write: up to 275MB/s
IRandom 4KB Writes: Up to 30,000 IOPS, 10,000 IOPS
Random 4KB Reads: Up to 30,000 IOPS
NAND Flash Components: Tier 1/Grade A Multi-Level Cell (MLC) NAND Flash Memory
Read Latency: less than 0.1ms
Write Latency: less than 0.1ms
Reliability: 10,000,000 hours (MTTF)
Interface: SATA 1.5 Gb/s and 3.0 Gb/s
TRIM Support: Advanced TRIM Support in Windows 7
Operating Env. Temp: 0°C to +70°C
Non-Operating Env. Temp: -55°C to +95°C
Power Consumption: Active: 550mW (.5W)Typical, Idle (DIPM): 50mW (.05W) Typical
Protection: ECC Recovery: Up to 24 bytes correctable per 512-byte sector
Unrecoverable Read Errors: Less than 1 sector per 1017 bits read
Chip Based Data Encryption: 128-bit AES-compliant
RoHS Compliant: Yes
Dimensions: 100.12mm x 70.06mm x 9.45mm

The OWC Mercury Extreme Pro RE 100GB SSD is definitely the most distinctive looking drive in this round-up. Its metallic blue enclosure certainly stood out from the pack. Internally, however, the Mercury Extreme Pro RE 100GB is another SandForce 1200 based offering, with specifications that are most similar to the OCZ Agility 2. We should note, OWC offers the best warranty of the bunch at 5 years.

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