It’s pretty much standard now to see the 120 GB drives with 111 GB of user accessible space on the SandForce drives. It seems manufacturers have settled on a happy medium of enough overprovisioning to maintain a healthy drive over the long haul without taking too much away from the user. The Corsair Force 3 GT is no different as we determined by the capacity reported in Windows.
As we mentioned at the opening of the article, we hadn’t had the opportunity to test out the non-GT version so direct comparisons are not available to us at this time. As such, we’ll rely on the comparisons to other drives in its class. Corsair lists the Force 3 GT 120 GB specifications as 555MB/s and 515MB/s maximum reads and writes which is slightly behind some of the fastest SATA III drives we’ve tested. In the sequential benchmark featuring compressible data, the GT hit these maximum speeds no problem. On the incompressible data, speeds were noticeably less but that’s typical of SandForce drives which relies on real-time compression to maximize performance.
Put up against other drives of its ilk, the Force 3 GT performed well overall but was measurably slower on sequential writes with incompressible data. The random reads/writes were as good or better than the other drives which are the types of transactions most often encountered with normal computing activities. So, the one performance fault I can find with the drive isn’t one that will cause any noticeable difference to the user. In fact, our real world tests showed it to perform very well. Overall, we’d have to say that this is one of the better drives on the market but with SF-2200 drives coming out seemingly daily, the competition gets progressively tougher.
Current pricing of the 120 GB GT drive stands at retailing for $250 USD which comes out to roughly $2.25 per usable GB. That’s a little on the high side as compared to some of the other drives we’ve been seeing but it just recently hit the market so it’s probably carrying that new product premium whereas several competitor drives as well as the non-GT Force 3 drives have been available for a while. As part of the package, it does come with a 2.5″ to 3.5″ adapter plate and Corsair covers their workmanship with a three year warranty.
Legit Bottom Line: Corsair tweaked their successful Force 3 drives in the creation of the GT version to eke out a bit more performance. The question is, does the red and black color scheme and minor speed improvements justify the extra $75?