In the end, it turns out that the Corsair P256 Solid State Drive is nothing more than a re-badged Samsung PB22-J 256GB SSD. There is nothing wrong with this, though, as numerous companies re-label products and call them what they wish. I am actually glad that Corsair is selling this drive under their name as the Samsung PB22-J 256GB SSD is only available to OEMs as Samsung doesn’t sell its SSDs directly to the consumer. This means that Corsair is the first company to bring this product to the consumer market and it will be a big deal as you can see that performance is amazing on this SSD.
When it comes to price, the Corsair P256 SSD has an MSRP of $749, which might give sticker shock to some. As I mentioned in the introduction, if the full MSRP is paid it means that you are paying $2.93 per Gigabyte for the Corsair P256. This is significantly higher than a typical 2.5-inch hard drive as something like the Seagate Momentus 7200.3 320GB will run you $0.27 per Gigabyte and offers roughly half the performance as you saw in many of the benchmarks. When you compare the Corsair P256 SSD to other leading SSDs like the Intel X-25M 80GB the price versus Gigabyte equation works out to be $4.56 per Gigabyte (at $364.99), which makes the Corsair P256 SSD look like a value. Sure, there are cheaper SSDs on the market like the Super Talent MasterDrive OX that we benchmarked the Corsair P256 SSD against, but they are not a performance threat and you clearly get what you pay for. If you want stutters, performance glitches and to blow some money buy a cheap SSD! If you want solid performance with a few if any glitches take a look at the higher end SSDs, but be sure to open your wallet.
The Corsair P256 SSD should be available on the market starting April 13th, 2009 and is clearly one of the few Solid State Drives that is worth a closer look. If you are curious why I didn’t benchmark the Corsair P256 against the Intel X25-M SSD, I do have a valid reason. It appears that Intel will be releasing a little something for it next week and rather than ignoring that fact I’ll be posting a follow up article on that next week. I’ll be sure to include the Corsair P256 SSD with those results, so you can see how they perform against each other. Without spoiling the article for next week I’ll just say Intel has their hands full with this drive.
Legit Bottom Line: When Corsair entered the SSD market in January 2009 they didn’t even send out review samples as the drives were nothing special; those days are long gone with the P256 as it is clearly one of the fastest MLC drives on the market today.