OCZ RD400

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Do you NV Me ? What a great catch phrase.  You can expect greater IOPS and more MB/s with the RD400. This PCIe NVMe SSD is an enthusiasts dream. This SSd was designed for enthusiasts and hardcore gamers. Before SSD drives hit the market storage was always a bottleneck for system builders. Over the years storage has become increasingly cheaper, and SSDs are now more affordable than ever. SSD drives rely on the ACHI protocol, but NVMe has since replaced this standard.These drives can push the boundaries that normal SSDs can’t, and they can reach GB/s rather than MB/s. Lets see how fast this drive really can go, and push the boundaries of storage. I will be testing the 256Gb variant of the RD400.

The specifications are as follows:

Performance

  • Sequential Read Speed- Up to 2,600 MB/s
  • Sequential Write Speed- Up to 1,150 MB/s
  • Random Read (4 KiB)- Up to 210,000 IOPS
  • Random Write (4 KiB)- Up to 140,000 IOPS

Endurance

  • TBW (Total Bytes Written)- 148 TB
  • Daily Usage Guidelines- 81 GB/day

Physical

  • Usable Capacities- 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB, 1024 GB Form
  • Factor- M.2 2280, M.2 2280+AIC
  • Interface- PCI Express Base Specification Revision 3.1 (PCIe) Maximum Speed: 32 GT/s (PCIe Gen3x4L ) Command: NVM Express Revision 1.1b (NVMe)
  • NAND Flash Memory Type- MLC
  • Dimension (L x W x H)- 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB: 80 x 22 x 2.23 mm 1024 GB: 80 x 22 x 3.58 mm AIC: 157.64 x 105.51 x 17.2 mm
  • Drive Weight- 128 GB: 6.8 g (typ.) 256 GB, 512 GB: 7.2 g (typ.) 1024 GB: 8.6 g (typ.) AIC: 63 g (typ.)

Power Requirements

  • Supply Voltage- 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB, 1024 GB: 3.3 V +/- 5% AIC: 12 V +/- 5%
  • Power Consumption (Active)- 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB: 6.0 W (typ.) 1024 GB and AIC: 6.4 W (typ.)
  • Power Consumption (Power State 5)- 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB, 1024 GB and AIC: 6.0 mW (typ.)

Environmental

  • Operating Temperature- 0 °C to 70 °C
  • Storage Temperature -40 °C to 85 °C
  • Shock Resistance- 9.8 km/s2 {1000 G} (0.5 ms)
  • Vibration Operational- 21 m/s2 {2.17 Grms} (Peak, 7 to 800 Hz) Non-operational 30 m/s2 {3.13 Grms} (Peak, 5 to 800 Hz)
  • Certifications- UL/cUL, FCC, CE, RCM, KC, BSMI, VCCI, and ISED

Reliability

  • MTBF- 1.5 Mhours
  • Product Health Monitoring- Self-Monitoring, Analysis and Reporting Technology (SMART) Support

Compatibility

  • PCI Express- Compatible with PCI Express® Base Specification Revision 3.1
  • Operating System- Windows® 10, Windows® 8.1, Windows® 7; Linux® Fedora 21, Mint 17.1, ElementaryOS Freya, OpenSUSE 13.2, Ubuntu 14.04, Ubuntu 14.10
  • Connector Type- M.2: M.2 M key socket AIC: PCIe slot
  • Targeted Applications- Client desktops and laptops

Additional

  • Performance Optimization- TRIM, Idle Time Garbage Collection
  • Service & Support- 5-Year6 Advanced Warranty Program7 , Toll-Free Tech Support
  • Software- SSD management software: SSD Utility and Command Line Online Update Tool (CLOUT)

Shipping

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OCZ sent the Rd400 in a standard shipping box, and was well packaged. The unit arrived with no damage. The box on the back also lists useful specifications, and the features the RD400 provides.

IMG_0489

Inside you will find:

  • RD400 unit
  • Smaller bracket for ITX systems
  • Toshiba warranty booklet

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The RD400 consists of your PCIe card with built-in m.2 support. The actual drive is the m.2 card plugged into the PCIe card provided from OCZ as one unit. The m.2 card can be removed, and installed in any m.2 slot if available on your motherboard.

The RD400 doesn’t come with any additional installation manual, but you can download it if needed.

The available downloaded manuals are:

Design

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A new breed of enthusiast s storage was born with NVMe. The RD400 was designed to take high-end computing to the next realm of possibilities. The RD400 Gen3 outperforms SATA SSDs by over 4.5 times in sequential read (up to 2600 MB/s), and over 3 times in sequential write performance (up to 1600 MB/s) so your system will have plenty of bandwidth for your workloads. The RD400s next generation NVMe interface provides a more responsive PC experience and shorter storage latency than traditional hard disks and SSDs.

The best features of the RD400:

  • NVMe compliant- Faster than legacy storage buses
  • M.2 2280 compliant- Latest SSD form factor
  • PCIe performance- Surpasses SATA bottlenecks
  • Low power mode- Requires less power in standby
  • Custom drivers- utilizes high performance drivers

 

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Toshiba’s new OCZ RD400 drive has over 200,000 IOPS of performance @4 Kib of random read speeds. The PCI Express lane gives the cards interface more bandwidth that leaves every other drive in the dust. By utilizing NVMe technology the RD400 reduces latency for your systems I/O path between the drive and your CPU. The m.2 2280 form factor delivers performance up to 1024GB of storage, and allows plenty of flexibility for the future.

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The card provided is the HHHL (Half-height / Half-length) adapter. It supports the m.2 drive and proudly displays the OCZ logo. There is also a thermal pad to help with heat from the controller.

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The RD400 uses Toshiba’s proprietary NVMe controller.There are  two 128G-bit 15nm MLC NAND chips, and also a DRAM buffer on the drive to utilize the Samsung LPDDR3 DRAM package.

Testing

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Testing can differ slightly across system to system. I am going to test the RD400 using the OCZ software benchmark, and AS SSD benchmark. I will also be testing the RD400 vs a standard OCZ Vertex 4 SSD. By doing this, hopefully you will see the major differences in speed that NVMe provides.

The test bench used for testing is as follows:

  • Motherboard- Z87x-UD3H
  • CPU: Intel Core I7 4790K
  • Network Card- netgear AC 1200 USB
  • Cooler- H100i GTX V2
  • Memory- Anarchy X 16GB DDR3 2800MHz
  • Video Card: EVGA NVidia Geforce GTX 970
  • Storage- OCZ vertex 4 256 GB vs RD400 256GB NVMe
  • Power Supply- CoolerMaster v700 series modular PSU
  • OS: Windows 10 x64 Pro
  • Headphones- Sound Blaster X H7

I did not use this drive as a boot drive, but if you are going to test this for a windows boot drive you have to make sure your bios supports NVMe booting. Check with your motherboard manufacturer, but as long as you have a UEFI bios with a modern build, you may have a good chance of using this as your primary boot device.

Utility.PNG

The OCZ SSD utility is critical for monitoring your drives health. The utility offers all the data you need for testing, monitoring, and updating your drive. I will be using this software to show the results from my OCZ vertex 4 and the RD400s benchmark tests.

OCZ

You can definitely see here the true power of NVMe. It just blows a standard SSD out of the water, but this is with OCZs test utility. Was it high because it’s the drives own software ? Lets take a look at using the AS SSD benchmark utility.

AS SSD

Again the Rd400 destroys the traditional SSD drives. This had by far been the fastest drive I have ever tested. I apologize as I can’t fit the writes here, and those blank space are for writes.

IOPS.png

The IOPS test truly shows the ability of the RD400. The amount of operation you can perform a second compared to a normal SSD is just outstanding. I can see why NVMe is the way of the future compared to ACHI.

as-copy-bench NVMe TOSHIBA-RD4 7.7.2016 9-37-22 AM

I wanted to test loading times for games, and also test the AS SSD copy benchmark for a performance overview of the RD400.  This is the fastest speeds I have ever seen during this benchmark test.

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I loaded DOOM onto the RD400 and the loading times were cut in half. Instead of about 20 to 30 seconds of a wait time from the vertex 4, it was more like 10-15 seconds.

Conclusion

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The only downside to this product is going to be price. The higher you go the more expensive it gets. You may get lucky with special pricing to drive competition. I can say though that the performance is there, and definitely an enthusiasts dream. However most people will look for affordability. SSDs are at an all time low, and still deliver outstanding performance per dollar. If you are seeking the best, then definitely get the RD400 NVMe drive. You will not be disappointed in your investment. The best part of the RD400 is the performance it delivers over standard SSDs and hard disks. Expect to surpass SATA bottlenecks, and require less power doing it. You can buy the OCZ RD 400 NVMe drive right now on Amazon for $195.00.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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OCZ RD400

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