The SSD world waited with bated breath on Tuesday as Intel announced the specs and pricing of its next-generation X25-M drives. The performance improved, sometimes heartily, but the pricing was the real story. Once these things get out there, Intel is expecting the 80GB drive to sell for $225 and the 160GB drive to sell for $440. If you'll remember back to last September, the X25-M first debuted at $595.

This meant trouble for 3rd party SSD makers like OCZ, whose cheapest high performance drives would now be more expensive than Intel's X25-M. As you'd expect, by forcing prices down, all 3rd party SSD vendors had to react. OCZ shared its new pricing structure with us that should start taking effect in the coming weeks:

Drive NAND Capacity Cost per GB Target MSRP
Intel X25-M (34nm) 80GB $2.81 $225
Intel X25-M (34nm) 160GB $2.75 $440
OCZ Vertex (Indilinx) 64GB $2.97 $190
OCZ Vertex (Indilinx) 128GB $2.27 $290
OCZ Vertex (Indilinx) 256GB $2.34 $600
OCZ Agility (Indilinx, non-Samsung Flash) 64GB $2.50 $160
OCZ Agility (Indilinx, non-Samsung Flash) 128GB $2.11 $270


Intel's new drives should settle down at around $2.80 per GB; with the new pricing structure OCZ's Indilinx MLC drives will average $2.43 per GB. The 32GB drives are now gone and the 128GB drives offer the best value. The Agility seems particularly budget friendly as it offers most of the performance of the Vertex but at a 10% lower cost per GB.

OCZ's 3.5" Colossus SSD is also going to boast very competitive pricing:

Drive NAND Capacity Cost per GB Target MSRP
Colossus 120 128GB $2.34 $300
Colossus 250 256GB $2.54 $650
Colossus 500 512GB $2.34 $1200
Colossus 1TB 1024GB $2.15 $2200


This is not just a Vertex in a 3.5" chassis, but rather multiple Vertex drives running in parallel but appearing as one large drive. OCZ is aiming square at the high end desktop user for this thing and it's priced well. The Colossus 120 provides a nice price point between Intel's 80GB and 160GB drives. The 1TB drive is pure insanity.

It's good to see OCZ responding so quickly to the price changes. I'd expect Corsair, G.Skill, Patriot and SuperTalent to all follow suit. The question now isn't how much, but rather when this will happen. I've been told a few weeks.

Update - OCZ contacted us with additional information on when the price cuts will take effect. First off, it will probably take a couple of weeks for prices to hit the suggested MSRP targets on certain product lines like the Agility due to current stock levels. However, depending on the seller, you could see prices near or at the listed MSRP shortly depending on promotion and rebate packages.

We did a quick price check at Newegg this afternoon and the 64GB Agility drive is selling for $177 and the 64GB Vertex is at $199 after a $30MIR. The 128GB Agility is still at $299 with the Vertex coming in at $339 after a $30MIR. The 256GB Vertex is still listed at $725 compared to a projected $599.99 MSRP target.



View All Comments

  • cliffa3 - Wednesday, August 19, 2009 - link

    Three articles on it within three days, no comment on here about intel stopping shipments, and no full performance review in nearly a month...what's going on? I finally browsed ars today and saw that Intel restarted shipments on the 12th. You hear anything from Intel on what Q4 holds?..just new models with more capacity or possible price cuts? Reply
  • araczynski - Tuesday, July 28, 2009 - link finally see a 1TB SSD, that's my entry point, now the only thing left is to wait until that 0 drops from the price and the disc version hard drives will go the way of the floppy.

    2 years?
  • KOOLTIME - Friday, July 24, 2009 - link

    OCZ doesnt make 128gb size as per newegg they only sell
    120GB sizes not 128GB as your article lists pricing for ??
    or is this some new model we havent seen yet due out soon >>??
  • rnjeezy - Friday, July 24, 2009 - link

    there any direct, cheapo controllers that can be used to surpass sata speed limits? Reply
  • philosofool - Friday, July 24, 2009 - link

    I have to say that 80GB is much closer to my target SSD size than 64GB. My current dream machine keeps system and program files on a SSD and has a conventional drive for my user data. 80GB feels a lot more comfortable than 64 for such a purpose. Vista chews about 14GB off the top, so it's basically the difference between 50 and 66GB, which is a lot.

    Anyway: go competition! Maybe by the time I have the money for a dream machine, I will be able to afford a 128GB SSD!
  • iwodo - Monday, July 27, 2009 - link

    It depends. I know many people like me, have trouble even filling up 30GB space.
    I have been using XP, Vista / Windows 7 on my 30GB partition and i had never ran out of space. Ofcoz once i start downloading things it fills up in seconds. But that is what External Drive and NAS are for.

    I expect if i install more Apps i will need 10GB more. That is still 20GB left even for a 64GB drive.

    That is why i always felt i rather have a much faster, but smaller SSD then a big SSD.
  • vol7ron - Friday, July 24, 2009 - link

    I feel the opposite.

    80GB is larger, but the 64GBs are cheaper. When you have that size you're going to set up in a RAID. So you're looking at 160GB vs 128GB. For me 128GB is more than enough space for a gaming and all-around setup and then you have the cost benefit.

    For some reason 160GB seems like more space than is needed (I had been making due with the 2-3 74GB Raptors). Though, if you're given space, you'll find a way to use it. --- Side Rant:

    That's something I don't like about efficient programming these days. Assembly/Binary programming used to be much more efficient compared to the high level languages today; now we see that we could benefit from those low level languages in our mobile devices, but we still don't capitalize on ultra-efficient "harder to program" code.
  • UNHchabo - Friday, July 24, 2009 - link

    "Assembly/Binary programming used to be much more efficient compared to the high level languages today; now we see that we could benefit from those low level languages in our mobile devices, but we still don't capitalize on ultra-efficient 'harder to program' code."

    Back in the day, assembly programming was more efficient than high-level languages because the compilers weren't very good. Nowadays, compilers optimize code well enough that writing assembly just isn't worth it in most cases; you're unlikely to optimize better than the compiler will.

    C is considered a "low level language" nowadays, with the common high-level languages being Java, the .NET languages, and Python.
  • Stas - Friday, July 24, 2009 - link

    My FF 3.5 looks weird as well, and not only AnAndTech. Opera 10b2 is displaying everything fine. Reply
  • Stas - Friday, July 24, 2009 - link

    Colossus 120 seems like the way to go for a desktop. $10 buys you at least 30% performance increase in tasks that matter the most (once I'm past 150mb/sec mark, i could care less about linear speeds). Can't wait for the prices to get to MSRP. Reply

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