The OWC Extreme Pro 6G, is just an amazing performing drive, and at 240GB the drive size is perfect for a gamer running a nice performance setup with a few space-hungry games installed, and still leaves room left over for a number of other large applications, like Office and Photoshop… and still leaves a nice amount of empty space for future needs (video editing, for instance, benefits especially keenly from fast drive speeds). SSD drives come in an array of sizes, and the biggest problem with 40-60GB drives is they are so small you have to pay attention to what you are doing or you’ll run up against their capacity very quickly. Unlike mechanical/magnetic drives, if you overload an SSD’s capacity, you can harm it.
With that in mind, and after the “full drive” tests, when performance pretty much IMPROVED, what can we say negative about this product?
Ed note: other than “OUCH, MY WALLET”
Although it is by far the fastest drive we’ve reviewed at TechREACTION to date, a few irregularities in the design must be pointed out. It was hard to come up with issues with this product, but there are a few. One of which is really just picking nits.
The packaging of the product, while not the much-reviled blister pack, is pretty close to being that bad. It uses the same clamshell plastic container that houses most RAM sticks, without any type of packaging around it. The product would hang on a shelf pretty neatly in a store, but OWC is not in any retail store at the moment. Most other companies use this type of container, and put that into some sort of packaging. On a positive note, minimal packaging might mean a lower cost for the end user.
More importantly, the product comes with NOTHING else. there is no difference between an OEM drive and a retail package of this product. No screws, no SATA cable, nothing. While cables are generally not included on retail packages of SSDs, mounting screws usually are. The drive was placed in an empty 3.5” bay and left to be held there by the SATA power plug and SATA3 data cable that was included with the motherboard, and this is why: no screws are included, no 3.5” bracket was included.
So, unless your PC case comes with one, or you are using this in a laptop, (SATA3 laptop? SWEET!), your choice will be to use your own drive mounting hardware, or you’re going to need to go shopping. They do sell special 2.5” adapters for Apple machines, and even include them with another drive in a ODD bay.
The last negative is more of a question mark: OWC, as a manufacturer, is fairly unknown to many PC users. Many PC enthusiasts have simply not heard of Other World Computing. They may have been around for many years, but even their web site belies their true market group www.macsales.com. Since Apple went x86, more and more products are interchangeable. (Storage devices, of course, have always been interoperable). But, being an unknown to the PC community, we’re not able to draw on previous experience to say how their reputation and customer service stack up to better-known players like OCZ or Corsair.
The only serious complaint about this product is having no knowledge of the company; the product itself is amazing. Record numbers for any single drive category and blowing out SandForce SATA2 RAID0 array in the PCMark and Bootracer fields is incredible. These tests measure the real world effect running an uber fast drive will have on your system.
For readers that know what I-Ram is, this product will nearly cleave it, with none of the down side associated with volatile storage. The unbelievably fast SandForce 2200 controller mixed with 240GB of NAND flash equals a nearly epic storage component that actually surpasses advertised specifications.
If you are looking to upgrade your PC, and are thinking about a new CPU/mobo combo or a new GPU… unless you fold or play games religiously, this device will be the biggest performance increase in your system in a long time.
One other factor to be mindful of: the retail price of $549. For users that have yet to make the move to an SSD this might seem like an insane amount of money to spend on a storage device, it certainly will give many pause. There are considerations however, the 240 GB SATA2 version of the hard drive is $449 and runs at just over half the speed of this drive. The other thing to consider is how much is a desktop worth? For users that want every last bit of performance, purchasing a $1000 CPU, $400 motherboard and maybe more than one $600 video card, $550 for the most tangible bit of performance you can buy will not need a second thought. For the more casual user, upgrading to a SATA2 version or even a smaller data size drive, like a 120GB SATA2, can save you money and still make a marked improvement over mechanical drives.
This product earns TechREACTION’s Gold Silicon award! At the time of this writing, you can find this drive for sale only at www.macsales.com. We’re hoping other retailers and e-tailers will offer it soon.
This product earns TechREACTION’s Gold Silicon award!
At the time of this writing, you can find this drive for sale only at www.macsales.com. We’re hoping other retailers and e-tailers will offer it soon.