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Intel 320 Series SSD 300 GB

W1zzard

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#1
Intel's 320 Series SSD has been on the market for a while now. Recently the drives were plagued by a series of failures which caused the drive to report as 8 MB. A recent Intel firmware update adresses this issue. The installed the new firmware and gave the drive a spin.

Show full review
 
Last edited:

kater

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#2
In only registered to say that I find it funny/creepy to see that you're bashing this drive (Intel 320) for its problems with losing data due to a bug (already fixed), yet you never even once mentioned the problems with SF-2281 drives (such as OCZ Vertex 3 etc.). It's quite obvious, looking at any forum, that SF-2281 have caused and still cause much more trouble (BSODs, freezes, disconnecting, etc.). There's still no final fix for this, and still a lot of people experience serious problems with SF-2281 drives. OTOH, I've read only of a few confirmed cases of this 320 bug so far - seems more of a potential than a real problem.

That's not a fair approach by any means.
 
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#3
Intel 320

Hmm, that's true, I've been looking through some forums, and it seems that especially OCZs drives are dying quite a lot.

But besides that, I would love reviewers to notice the legacy OS compatibility that the Intel drive has to offer. Using Intels SSD Toolbox you can TRIM any Intel SSD even in Windows XP and Windows XP Pro x64 Edition (which I am using), which was the reason why I bought my Intel 320. Performance-wise Intels own controllers are clearly no longer top notch, but compatibility and warranty-wise.. their offer is pretty good actually. The only thing that might harm its reputation is the 8MB / BAD_CTX 13x bug, but I am unaware of how may drives are actually affected by this. There seem to be no actual numbers on this.

However, it seems, legacy OS compatibility is not important for most users.. but I think official XP support is still noteworthy.
 
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#4
In only registered to say that I find it funny/creepy to see that you're bashing this drive (Intel 320) for its problems with losing data due to a bug (already fixed), yet you never even once mentioned the problems with SF-2281 drives (such as OCZ Vertex 3 etc.). It's quite obvious, looking at any forum, that SF-2281 have caused and still cause much more trouble (BSODs, freezes, disconnecting, etc.). There's still no final fix for this, and still a lot of people experience serious problems with SF-2281 drives. OTOH, I've read only of a few confirmed cases of this 320 bug so far - seems more of a potential than a real problem.

That's not a fair approach by any means.
I have been using my drives for awhile now and have no issues. Perhaps the issue isn't actually the drive as some users don't have it at all, and some have it frequently?

Research before purchasing something that costs this much is always advised, and I am glad that I bought the drives I did for the price I paid.
 
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#5
...comment re missing info
Yes, I agree that the review would have been a little better in terms of a comparative if it had also looked into the reliability and firmware issues of other SSDs given that the issue was mentioned for the 320. To offer the benefit of doubt, the reviewer is a GPU guru and not a SSD guru and hasn't tracked ownership and reliability issues across brands. This is a simple performance benchmark review.

But given that, I think w1zz could improve the benchmarking with a real-world or synthetic benchmark of multi-tasking scenario. All the benchmarks are very simple single-app large datafile transfer, load or save. I would have liked to see something that allows us to take a view on multitasking, multi IOP, since these are relevant for different usage scenarios. What should I get for my webserver? Horses for courses.

PS. The info about legacy TRIM via a utility is very important. I would have liked to know this before my recent purchase of a Crucial M4 128GB. Had I known about TRIM on legacy I would have bought the Intel. (The SSD is for this netbook with Win 5.2R2)