OCZ Rally2 32Gb USB Stick Review

Storage/Other by jmke @ 2008-07-09

We are testing the largest USB drive in such a compact form today. Packing 32Gb this OCZ Rally2 promises high performance and high capacity. It comes in classy black with fancy activity LED and carrying strap..

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Test Setup and Comparison Material

USB stick tested on the same platform so far:
  • Kingston DataTraveler 2.0 4gb
  • Sandisk Cruzer Mini 512Mb
  • Kingston DataTraveler HyperX 4GB
  • Sandisk U3 Contour 4Gb
  • Sandisk U3 Cruzer Micro 4Gb
  • Corsair Voyager 4Gb
  • Super*Talent PICO 8Gb
  • Corsair Voyager GT 16Gb
  • OCZ Rally2 32Gb
The following test setup was used with Windows XP SP2 installed; we used ATTO HDD Benchmark v2.34 and HDTach 3.0 to measure performance:

Intel Test Setup
CPU Intel Core 2 E6400 @ 2.8Ghz (from CSMSA)
Cooling Coolermaster Hyper TX
Mainboard Intel 975X Bad Axe (Modded by Piotke)
Memory 2 * 1Gb PC6400 OCZ
  • XFX Geforce 8800 GTX
  • Coolermaster Real Power M520 520W PSU
  • 2x Western Digital 74Gb Raptor SATA HDD

  • Performance

    Let’s start with the HDTach’s random access time test:

    Madshrimps (c)

    The Rally2 scores highly here, random access speed over the whole 32Gb is very speedy.

    Madshrimps (c)

    The HDTach read speed confirms OCZ claims of their 30~35Mb/s read speeds as the Rally2 is at 30.7Mb/s (32.8Mb/s burst). It will take a little less than 18 minutes to transfer 32Gb of data from the drive.

    ATTO HDD Benchmark allows you to test the performance of a storage media by measuring the time it takes to read or write a file of 256Mb; the difference with other HDD benchmark is that ATTO will read/write that data file in different size chunks, going from 0.5Kb to 8192Kb. In our test we used 4kb to 8912Kbsetting.

    The smaller transfer sizes are applicable for overall Windows operation like Page File actions (~4kb) and small file transfers (.inf , .ini, .dll files). Larger 100Mb+ files are transferred in much larger chunks. Normally you can expect that hard drives do rather well with small chunks, better than SSD in any case, once the file transfer size increases performance will go up for SSD/HDD and USB sticks.

    If you want to run an applications straight of your USB stick, high performance at small transfer size is important. If you plan to use it primarily to transfer large files, file transfer speed at chunks of 512Kb are more important.

    Let’s see how these USB sticks did in the READ test:

    Madshrimps (c)

    The ATTO Read test agrees with the HDTach result, the Rally2 scores ~30.8x Mb/s at file chunks of 64kb and above. At smaller file sizes read speed is lower but remains competitive with the others.

    Madshrimps (c)

    OCZ puts the write speed of the Rally2 between 8~15Mb/s. In our tests the drive lands in the middle of the pack, it’s neither slow nor speedy. At ~12Mb/s it will take a while though to completely fill the 32Gb… almost 45 minutes.
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