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OCZ goes for flash density with OCZ Intrepid 3700 line

Recently launched OCZ Intrepid 3700 SSDs come with 7% flash overprovisioning, supporting usable storage up to 2 TB.

Toshiba-owned OCZ Storage Solutions continued the overhaul of its enterprise storage portfolio this week, pumping out a high-capacity addition to its Intrepid 3000 family of SATA solid-state drives.

As with the read-optimized Saber 1000 SSD line released in November, the OCZ Intrepid 3700 Series that launched on Monday is designed with 7% flash overprovisioning to support up to 2 TB of usable storage. Standard enterprise SSDs typically overprovision about 28% of flash.

OCZ Intrepid 3700 is engineered with enterprise multilevel cell NAND flash and uses Toshiba's Advanced 19-nanometer process geometry to pack 128 GB of flash per die. OCZ was acquired by Toshiba in December 2013.

The 3700 replaces the read-intensive Intrepid 3600 and sits below the Intrepid 3800 for mixed workloads. The new drive is available in four capacities: 240 GB, 480 GB, 960 GB and 1,920 GB. OCZ rates the drives for sequential reads of 540 megabits per second (Mbps), sequential writes of 470 Mbps, 91,000 random read IOPS and 13,000 random write IOPS.

Doesn't over-do overprovisioning

OCZ Intrepid 3700 drives are designed for use in hyper-scale data centers and enterprises with read-intensive workloads that also need higher endurance. OCZ guarantees Intrepid 3700 cards for one full drive write per day for five years.

The lower overprovisioning enables OCZ to produce an SSD that blends capacity with endurance, director of product management Shawn Worsell said.

"As you go up our stack, we're enabling more and more writes to occur," he said. "We found that enterprise customers want additional drive capacity that is closer to the actual raw flash on the cards. Even if our drive is positioned as read-intensive, users still want the capacity to write data to it."

The drives combine Marvell Technology Group's Monet controller technology with OCZ firmware. Standard features include advanced error correction, in-flight data protection and internal SSD RAID redundancy.

Listed use cases include online archiving, streaming media, video on demand, virtual desktop infrastructure and Web browsing.

OCZ said Intrepid 3700 drives will be priced at 60 to 80 cents per GB, which equates to about $1,200 for a 2 TB SSD.

The rollout adds to a string of product launches that includes the Z-Drive 4500 PCIe card series, with the next-generation Z-Drive 6000 scheduled for release in June. OCZ in January also previewed its N.2 controller, branded as JetXpress, to support the nonvolatile memory express protocol.

Next Steps

Read-intensive Saber 1000 SSDs add ed to OCZ product line

OCZ demonstrates high-performance M.2 SSDs at CES

Dig Deeper on SSD array implementations

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Do falling flash prices outweigh endurance concerns on SSDs?
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Yes, they do. Solid State Drives have become considerably more stable over the last few years, and I believe they're now at a point where they're a viable option for businesses that want to reduce their loading times.

The efficiency of data backups mean that information loss is no longer a serious concern - and since time spent loading data is time not spent working, I think the cumulative benefits of SSDs are worth looking into.
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I expect it depends on the organization. Presumably people are doing a TCO analysis before making the decision. 
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