OCZ Technology has announced the launch of a brand-new Vertex 3 – or rather, Vertex 3.20. The original Vertex 3 utilized 25nm IMFT NAND, but as you might have surmised already, the Vertex 3.20 will be using 20nm IMFT NAND in its place. There are not a lot changes otherwise, as it is still the same Vertex 3 featuring the SF-2281 controller and synchronous MLC flash, with only a slight reduction in random 4KB IOPS performance between them.
This move is a welcome change from when OCZ switched to a smaller lithography with the Vertex 2 series, where enthusiasts couldn’t be sure which version of the Vertex 2 they would be ordering. Thankfully, the Vertex 3.20 designation should leave no question about it. The drive will retain the same 3-year warranty as its predecessor.
With the move to more cost-efficient 20nm NAND, it makes sense that OCZ will be positioning the Vertex 3.20 as more of a low-cost SSD option. In accordance with this and OCZ’s past announcement about greatly simplifying its portfolio of existing SSD models, the company indicated that it has plans to gradually phase out both the Agility 3 and Agility 4 models with this announcement. This will leave OCZ with mainly the Vertex Plus, Vertex 3.20, and Vector SSD families, in that order of performance. Let’s just say OCZ lucked out when it came to the Vertex 4 – we suspect the 4.20 name would not have gone over quite so well with its marketing department.