by Robert Tanner on March 5, 2012 in Storage
SSDs are expensive and often don’t offer enough capacity to meet user needs. The recent SSD caching craze attempts to alleviate both these issues, but OCZ has done one better. Combining a RevoDrive 3 with a 1TB HDD the RevoDrive Hybrid offers a self-contained SSD caching solution that is guaranteed to work.
For the boot test we perform a cold boot, with the stopwatch starting the moment the power button is pressed until the last systray icon has finished loading. A large number of factors can change how fast a computer starts, from the motherboard to the BIOS/EFI configuration, so these times should not be used as an expectation of how fast the SSD will boot in your respective system. Thanks to motherboards replacing the BIOS with UEFI boot times have dropped significantly in many cases.
As discussed more in-depth on the previous page, the surprising boot time results for the Hybrid have more to do with something no graph can show. Likely for data security and verification reasons the Hybrid spends 20 seconds initializing before it hands control over to the system to POST. We certainly understand the need for additional data protection in a complex hybrid device such as, well, the Hybrid, but it does serve to hamper the drive in this particular aspect.
Game Level Loading
Last but certainly not least of our benchmarks are the game level-load times. SSDs are great at decreasing load intervals, and having an SSD can appreciably improve game immersion by minimizing load delays. It may not seem like much, but after a few levels, having the load times decrease by even a third compared to a hard drive adds up fast.
For our new regimen we chose Portal 2 and Civilization V. Portal 2 is already a very well optimized game and isn’t particularly demanding, and Civilization V is anything but either of those. For Portal 2 we chose to load the larger sp_a3_03 chapter, while with Civ V we loaded a save game file from late in a large game.
Ending on a mixed note OCZ’s unique drive slides a bit further back in the pack in both game load tests, although it still turns in better times than a standalone, full-speed 2TB hard disk. We noted performance was still improving by the third run before it began to level off on the fourth and fifth runs, so again with sufficient usage the Dataplex software will be able to offer better performance after the initial use as it learns what to cache.