Looking to buy a SSD and PCI-E SATA-III expansion card


Jun 20, 2012
I was considering buying this OCZ Vertex 3 120GB SSD because it's on sale for $70 (with rebate), but I'm being put off by all the reviews about having BSOD issues due to the SandForce 2281 chip it uses. I can't seem to figure out if this has been fixed by firmware updates, or made worse, or if it's specific to only Intel boards or something.

I have a MSI 770-C45 motherboard, and it lacks SATA-III ports, so I'm also looking for a PCI-E expansion card. I have one available PCI-E 1x port, would that be able to achieve the same speeds that on-board SATA-III ports do, or should I be looking into getting a whole new motherboard? If I don't need a new motherboard to get full speeds, I was

My budget for the SSD and the expansion card are about $150. Any suggestions? I don't need anything more than 128GB for the SSD, and could probably easily do with 60GB or so. I keep all my games and music on a separate drive already.
You won’t get the advertised Read/Write speeds of a SATA III SSD from a PCIe x1 card, you would need a PCIe x4 or x8 card, which your motherboard doesn’t support.
If you get the card expect speeds from 350MB/s to 450MB/s.

If you buy the Vertex 3 make sure that the firmware is on version 2.22 before you install your O/S on it. You should also make sure your motherboard BIOS is on version 1.F.

Having your motherboard and SSD updated should prevent BSOD issues.


May 30, 2012
Don't waste your time/money on the PCI card. I have one and cannot tell a difference with my Crucial M4 and Samsung 830 connected via SATA 2 on the mobo and SATA 3 on the PCI bus(Never ran benchmarks myself, others have with the difference being negligible) Windows boot time was the exact same from post to first use and programs loaded just as fast.
A add-in sata card may not be bootable.

I would not worry about sata3. It makes a difference mostly in synthetic sequential benchmarks, not in actual usage. The OS does mostly small random reads and writes, and sata speeds are not relevant to that.

I would stick with Intel or Samsung for peace of mind. The Intel 330 series 120gb is currently at a discount, $104 after rebate