It was nearly five years ago that we tested the first Corsair Flash Voyager that offered just 512MB of memory, but at the time it was quite a modest amount of storage for a USB 2.0 flash drive. The Flash Voyager was unique though from the other flash drives on the market in the respect that it was waterproof and far more durable than any other flash drive. As time has passed, more manufacturers have adopted designs similar to that of the Flash Voyager. The capacity of flash drives has also increased and we have tested out the 4GB, 8GB, and 16GB versions of the Flash Voyager and their newer and faster Flash Voyager GT series too. We have also reviewed other innovative Corsair flash memory products like their Flash PadLock and we happened to be the first publication to deliver a review of the Corsair Flash Survivor GT. Now though we are back with the Corsair Flash Survivor GT as we test out one of their newer versions with a 32GB capacity.
In past articles we have delivered plenty of file-system benchmarks from testing out EXT4 to Btrfs to NILFS2. We have also delivered benchmarks from traditional hard drives to solid-state drives. One area though where we have not published any file-system benchmarks is for USB flash drives. Most users end up staying with the default FAT32 file-system for flash drives, but are there any performance advantages to using EXT3, EXT4, XFS, Btrfs, or ReiserFS? We have the benchmarks today to share atop the latest Linux 2.6.32 kernel build.
Back in August we reviewed the OCZ Agility SATA 2.0 SSD, which we found to be a reputable solid-state drive that offered nice performance under Linux. However, a step up from the Agility series is the Agility EX line. The OCZ Agility EX is designed to offer maximum performance with its SLC NAND-based storage and Indilinx controller. How though does the performance of this $400 SSD for just 60GB of storage compare to their other MLC-based SSDs under Linux? We have the benchmarks.
Back in May we reviewed the OCZ Vertex SSD, which performed well against a Super Talent SSD and two different rotating mobile HDDs. This OCZ SSD was not exactly cheap but it was not too expensive either and it ended up receiving our Editor's Choice award. Since then, OCZ Technology has introduced the Agility SATA 2.0 Solid-State Drives. The Agility is designed to fill OCZ's mainstream SSD offerings with models up to 120GB in size, MLC flash memory, 64MB cache, and slightly better prices. In this review we are testing out the OCZ Agility 120GB Serial ATA 2.0 SSD, under Ubuntu Linux, of course.
Years ago we looked at Super Talent DDR2 memory at Phoronix and with what was tested we ran into problems when overclocking, motherboard compatibility issues, and some very sticky heatsinks. The experience was not the best, but the memory did work as intended. Nearly three years have passed and today we have moved on to look at the Super Talent MasterDrive OX Serial ATA 2.0 Solid State Drive. These Super Talent SSDs are MLC NAND Flash based and come in sizes down to 16GB, which leads to prices lower than many other SSDs on the market, but how do they perform?
Besides offering an impressive selection of USB flash drives and DDR2/DDR3 memory products, OCZ Technology has been quick to expand their selection of solid state drives. OCZ manufacturers SSD products in their value, mainstream, performance, and enterprise series with some of these series containing multiple product families. Earlier this year we provided Linux SSD benchmarks using an OCZ Core Series V2 SSD, but introduced just recently has been the OCZ Vertex SSD series, which we happen to be reviewing today. The OCZ Vertex SSDs go up to 256GB in size and offers 64MB of onboard cache, RAID support, and is rated for 1.5 million hours MTBF.
Late last month we looked at the Intel X25-E Extreme SSD on Linux. We ran this high-performance solid-state drive within a System76 Serval Notebook and compared its performance to a Seagate Momentus 7200.2 SATA HDD. During that testing we were just using the default EXT3 file-system, but now we have taken the Intel X25-E SSD for another spin as we looked at its performance when using the ReiserFS, JFS, XFS, EXT3, and EXT4 file-systems.
In early January we had delivered Linux Solid-State Drive Benchmarks of an OCZ Core Series V2 SSD, which was a low-cost low-capacity single-cell drive. The increased performance and decreased power consumption compared to a 5400RPM Serial ATA 2.0 hard drive was nice for a netbook, but how are the higher-end solid-state drives performing? In this article, we have a high-performance Intel X25-E Extreme SSD on a System76 notebook running Ubuntu Linux.
In late 2005 we looked at the ATP ToughDrive 1GB flash drive and in 2006 looked at ATP's ProMax 150x CF card, but since then we haven't heard much from this company. However, they have recently released two new products, which we are looking at today. There is the ATP 8GB EarthDrive, which is advertised as the world's first recyclable USB drive, and secondly there is the ATP 8GB ToughDrive. The EarthDrive is made of a biodegradable material that is derived from corn.
With the number of netbooks on the market continuing to increase each month and more of these mobile devices switching to solid-state drives for their reliability, extended battery life, and faster performance, SSDs are becoming quite common and finding themselves meeting many Linux hosts. How though does the real-world performance differ between hard disk drives and solid-state drives on Linux? We have run several tests atop Ubuntu on a Samsung netbook with a HDD and SSD. In addition, we have also looked at the encryption performance using both types of drives.
Over the years SilverStone has designed some astonishing ATX computer cases such as the Temjin TJ10 and the Sugo, but they haven't stopped with cases. SilverStone has introduced high-performance power supplies such as the Decathlon 800W and they have also been making disk drive enclosures such as the MS05, which is an eSATA-based enclosure. SilverStone though has introduced a new 2.5" disk enclosure that combines a normal USB to SATA adapter with RFID encryption technologies. If the included RFID sensor keys aren't close enough to this enclosure, the user cannot access any data off the disk as it's all encrypted. However, does the SilverStone Treasure TS01 work under Linux? We'll tell you today.
Over the past few years we have looked at several Tagan power supplies such as the TurboJet 1100W and BZ 900W. However, their product selection is no longer limited to power supplies and they now produce several different desktop cases as well as a growing selection of storage devices. These storage products are part of their Icy Box family, which consists of 2.5" and 3.5" hard drive enclosures as well as NAS (Network Attached Storage) devices. One of these products is the Tagan Icy Box IB-NAS4220-B, which is a two-drive SATA NAS with support for RAID 0/1/JBOD. What makes this device more interesting to us is that it runs Linux and Tagan is more than happy to let its customers modify the unit and write their own software.
Have you been searching for a Secure Digital card that is able to accommodate all of the pictures you take on your next vacation or looking for more storage on your Internet tablet? If so, you have likely come across the latest Secure Digital High Capacity cards that overcome the earlier 2GB capacity limitation of traditional Secure Digital cards. However, there are just so many SDHC cards on the market and they are all priced similarly from different manufacturers, so what should you choose? At hand today in this weekend review are two 4GB SDHC cards from OCZ and Crucial.
For years now Corsair has been on the forefront of leading flash drive innovations, which started with their Flash Voyager series but quickly expanded into their Flash Voyager GT, Flash Survivor GT, and Flash PadLock series. We've reviewed them all and Corsair has certainly had some talented engineers working on these products from the Flash Survivor GT that withstood being submerged into the bottom of a pool, being boiled in a pot of water, and beaten by a hammer to the Flash PadLock, which has a physical lock that will present the flash drive from being mounted unless the appropriate key sequence is entered. While they continue to face new competition -- primarily from OCZ Technology, which has many different innovative flash drives as well such as the Rally 2 Turbo, ATV Turbo, and Mega-Kart -- Corsair Memory continues to excel and release new flash products. Corsair's latest additions to their Flash Voyager GT family are 16GB and 32GB editions. At hand today we are looking at the Corsair Flash Voyager 16GB USB 2.0 flash drive.
OCZ Technology has certainly had an impressive array of USB flash drives over the past few years, but they haven't stopped there. OCZ is continuing to revise their flash drive series and their most recently example of that is the Rally 2 Turbo. We found the original OCZ Rally to be fast, but the Rally 2 Turbo claims to take data transferring to incredible new heights with its latest dual-channel technology offering up to 35MB/s reads and 30MB/s writes. Like the original Rally, the Rally 2 Turbo is encased inside an aluminum chassis and comes with a lifetime warranty.
The last time we had looked at a SilverStone drive enclosure at Phoronix was in early 2006 when reviewing the SilverStone Storage MS02. This 2.5" IDE hard drive enclosure with a USB 2.0 interface met the SilverStone standards we have come to expect both when it comes to the build quality as well as its looks and performance. With the changing times and increased adoption of Serial ATA, SilverStone recently introduced their MS05, which supports 2.5" SATA drives while this aluminum enclosure has both a eSATA and USB 2.0 interface along with having a 3.5" docking station.
Back in May we looked at the Corsair Flash Survivor GT 8GB. This was Corsair's newest flash series at the time and instead of continuing with the memory speed race, the Flash Survivor GT focused upon being very durable. In our review of the Flash Survivor GT, we had thrown it to the bottom of a pool, severely beat it with a hammer, and boiled it in water, but at the end of the day, it performed like new with barely any signs of damage. Less than a month later at Computex Taipei 2007, at the OCZ private suite we came across their ATV Turbo series. We finally have this new OCZ flash drive in our labs and have tested it out in this review.
Last month we looked at the Vitesta DDR2-800 Extreme memory from A-DATA Technology. In that review we found that this DDR2 system memory worked very well and we were pleased with the results. However, in addition to their DRAM module selection they also have a growing selection of flash memory products. A-DATA has separate flash drive series geared for mobility, sport, classic, and themes. At hand today we have the A-DATA Classic PD18 to see if their flash products are as good as their system memory selection.
Corsair is known for their high-performance system memory and for the past two years or so, we have seen very innovative flash products from this memory leader. The Corsair Flash Voyager marked the era of waterproof flash drives only to be succeeded by the Flash Voyager GT. Both of these USB flash drive series not only performed great and handled all of our durability tests, but it was also backed by a ten-year warranty and official support for Linux. Earlier this year, however, Corsair redefined durable flash drives by unleashing the Flash Survivor GT. In our premiere review of the Corsair Flash Survivor GT 8GB, the flash drive was not only fast but had withstood our harsh torture treatment, which consisted of letting the Flash Survivor GT rest at the bottom of an 8 foot deep pool, smashing it with a hammer, and even boiled it in a pot of water. At the end of the day, the Corsair Flash Survivor GT continued to operate like it was brand new with its leading performance edge. Today at Phoronix we are testing out Corsair's latest flash memory product, which claims to offer affordable security for your data via a hardware-based lock. This product at hand is the Corsair Flash PadLock and in this review we go as far as taking apart the entire flash drive to look at its locking mechanism.
Last month we had reviewed the Corsair Survivor GT and found it to be one amazing flash drive. This flash drive offered an 8GB capacity backed by blazing speeds, but if that wasn't enough, the drive was indestructible. We had tossed the Survivor GT into a pool, whacked it with a hammer, and even boiled it in a pot of water, but none of these actions had killed or even damaged the drive. Today we are back with another flash drive review from Corsair but this time around, it's the Flash Voyager GT, or the step-up from the Corsair Flash Voyager.
We threw it into an eight-foot deep chlorinated pool, boiled it in water for several minutes, and even beat it with a hammer, but was the Corsair Flash Survivor GT able to cope with all of these torturous events?
While you may be asking yourself why we bothered to look at a 256MB flash drive, we decided to examine the Corsair Flash Voyager 256MB as it appeals to a variety of different users from those wanting to run a mini Linux LiveUSB distribution or to using this storage device for other purposes where a large storage capacity drive really isn't needed. The Flash Voyager 256MB also sells for less than $10 USD, which could make this an ideal stocking stuffer for almost any computer user. With that said, we decided to take a quick look at the CMFUSB2.0-256 today on Phoronix.
Whether you're a professional photographer or just a digital camera enthusiast, the last thing you want to run into when traveling or just away from home is forgetting or losing your memory card reader, but with OCZ's latest product you no longer need to worry. The OCZ Trifecta is a memory card that complies with Secure Digital specifications but can be inserted into any USB 2.0 port. If a Secure Digital memory card that can be inserted into a normal USB port is not enough, the OCZ Trifecta is also a microSD card! In this review we will explore the OCZ Trifecta Secure Digital 1GB as we look at how it works and seeing how it can function as a normal memory card.
Last January we had reviewed the Corsair Secure Digital 133x 512MB card, which was great for its time but with more and more people now using SD cards in a variety of gadgets and needing greater storage capabilities, we couldn't help but to try out some of Corsair's larger offerings. At hand today we will be looking at the Corsair 133x 1GB SD card as well as the Corsair 60x 2GB SD card. Do Corsair's flash offerings still reign supreme?
To this point many external SATA enclosures haven't catch our attention; there have been quite a few mediocre enclosures we have laid our eyes on, but nothing that we felt was a godsend. However, recently the Vantec NexStar 3 managed to peak our interest so we decided to look at this enclosure, which supports 3.5" SATA 2.0 hard drives and an external interface of either eSATA or USB 2.0. Will the Vantec NexStar 3 be the drive enclosure we have been looking for?
While SilverStone Technology is primarily known for their high-end selection of PC chassis enclosures and power supplies, last year SilverStone had introduced the Mobile Storage series. At that time we had reviewed the SilverStone Mobile MS02, which was a 2.5" mobile hard drive enclosure with a USB 2.0 interface. We had found this external 2.5" HDD enclosure to offer a great deal of features, while being encased inside a stylish aluminum housing. The latest series among SilverStone's storage products is the NAS series. SilverStone has introduced its first Network Attached Storage (NAS) device! The SilverStone NS311 supports both LAN and USB 2.0 connections and supports a single 3.5" IDE hard drive.
Last week we had examined the OCZ Mega-Kart 8GB flash drive, and now this week we have the privilege of covering Corsair's new CMFUSB2.0-8GB Flash Voyager. This USB flash drive offers a storage capacity of 8GB while promising 33MB/sec reads and 16MB/sec writes. Nevertheless, will this 8GB flash drive be able to continue in the legendary success we had previously seen by the Corsair Flash Voyager series?
OCZ Technology is at it again attempting to push the envelope for flash media. When they had introduced the Rally it was a smoking fast flash drive that had finally stolen the performance crown from Corsair's Flash Voyager. After that OCZ pushed the physical envelope for flash drives with the incredibly small Mini-Kart. Now OCZ Technology is at it again, but this time around they are attempting to push the storage capacity for computer users. The OCZ Mega-Kart offers an 8GB storage capacity while retaining a small footprint, and best of all an economically-minded price.
The Icy Dock MB122 and MB452 are quite interesting products. They are sold separately, but the MB122 and MB452 can function together to make it a truly unique and excellent combination. These drive enclosures are unlike anything we have seen in the past.
The last time we had an ATP product in our testing labs was late last year when trying out their ToughDrive. However, ATP Electronics is again with us today as we give their ProMAX 150x Compact Flash a beating through our testing arsenal.
105 storage articles published on Phoronix.