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Review: Corsair 120GB Force Series 3 SSD

by Parm Mann on 29 June 2011, 13:00 4.0

Tags: Corsair

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Final thoughts and rating

Corsair's 120GB Force Series 3 is one of the quickest SSDs available for under £170. Armed with a cutting-edge SandForce SF-2281 processor, it delivers excellent real-world performance when hooked up to a SATA 6Gbps interface, while keeping pricing in line with its previous-generation predecessor, the Force F120.

But competition at this price point is fierce, and users working largely with incompressible data - such as photos, music and video - may find that the similarly-priced-and-fractionally-larger 128GB Crucial m4 offers well-rounded performance better suited to their needs.

And third-party competition isn't the only threat to the Force Series 3's livelihood. Corsair will soon usurp the drive's position at the top of its ladder with the introduction of the Force GT, and only time will tell how big the price and performance discrepancy will be.

The Force Series 3's strong credentials make it a compelling choice for a high-end system, but a combination of the drive's initial firmware issues and the imminent arrival of the Force GT intimate that now might be a good time to sit on the fence a little while longer.

The Good

Blistering sequential throughput
Competitive pricing for a second-gen SandForce drive
Makes good use of a high-speed SATA 6Gbps interface

The Bad

Suffers a performance hit when working with incompressible data
Quicker Force GT is just around the corner

HEXUS Rating

Corsair Force Series 3 (120GB)

HEXUS Awards

Corsair Force Series 3 (120GB)

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HEXUS Forums :: 6 Comments

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At the time of writing, the 120GB Force Series 3 drive carries an asking price of £170 - identical to that of Corsair's previous-generation Force F120.

£170 you say? Grumble, moan, I spent £180 on this drive from Scan so that i could get it as soon as it was released, only to have to send it off to Corsair.

I'm sure they'll give it back someday…

Also, it's still up at £180 on Scan - what's going on?
Prices need to drop a bit more IMHO.The 120GB and 128GB SSDs should be under £140. This around the size that you can actually install a few games on as 60GB to 96GB is a bit too small TBH.

I would have preferred that the current SSDs were cheaper instead of faster.

This SSD still looks to be the cheapest per GB and nearest to £1/GB:
For desktops you can get away with smaller sizes but for laptops it's trickier. For me I'd have to say 160GB is an absolute minimum - once it's formatted you're down 10GB, another 40GB for OS with programs/games/Dropbox, another 25GB for music; 35GB for docs; and some working space for occasional large files. That's what I've got on my portable laptop anyway.. fortunately my bigger one had space for two HDDs but its replacement is due in a couple of days and only has one though :( Just a shame it costs so much for a decent size.
Nice that for the comparative performance prices are coming down. A last generation a 120-28GB SSD was getting you about 1.6 mb/sec for every pound spend. With this latest generation its closer to 3mb/sec for every pound. At lest thing are moving forward and there is more competition for SSDs now. Can only mean good things!

I await 1TB, 1gb/sec SSD's for £100!? :rolleyes::rockon:
That's an.. unusual.. method of comparing SSDs which I hadn't considered.

Largely pointless, though, I feel, since as this review demonstrates - straight line speed =/ overall performance.