After months of waiting I finally received my invitation to join the Google Glass Explorer program. An email arrived today with the special link and code to dive into one of the most exciting tech projects of my generation.
Monday Night Football might be over but my picture of the week continues on. This week we have the Comay Bladedrive G24, a product you can read a full review of in a few days.
With four LSI SandForce SF-2281 controllers and 512GB of Toshiba 19nm flash, the Bladedrive takes 'All in One' RAID to a new level. Unlike other products in category, Corerise didn't use a Marvell or LSI controller. What RAID controller did they use, well you'll just have to wait and see in the full review.
We will give you a taste of the performance though before signing off.
Monday seems like a good day to start a Picture of the Week tradition. Several package always arrive on Mondays and I have some time over the weekend to think about what to show.
Our first Picture of the Week arrived just moments ago. This is the new ASRock Fatal1ty 990FX Killer, an AMD platform that just so happens to have the world's first m.2 PCIe 2x lane port on a desktop motherboard.
Last June at Computex we posted about the ASUS ROG Series products with M.2 onboard and later followed up the news with some tests with the board in a few reviews. The ROG M.2 implementation uses a single PCIe lane so M.2 PCIe drives are limited to 500 MB/s.
The ASRock Fatality 990FX Killer uses two lanes so the throughput increases to roughly 10Gbps. This is enough bandwidth to fully utilize a SanDisk A110 and Plextor M6 m.2, both with native PCIe 2.0 2x lanes. One thing that we really like about this board is the form factors we can use. m.2 has several form factors and the length of the cards are can reach up to 110mm. The ASUS Maximus VI EXTREME that we have can only scale to form factor 2260, or 60mm length cards. The ASRock Fatal1ty doesn't have this limitation. Some of the other ASUS ROG boards don't have this limit but the Extreme has a heatsink that gets in the way, limiting us to just 60mm length cards.
With the holidays quickly approaching, most don't realize this is one of the busiest times of the year for the tech industry. CES is right around the corner and everyone is scrambling to get make a big splash. That can come in several different forms.
TweakTown has a booth at this year's Storage Visions show prior to CES. The plan is to publish video interviews like we did at Flash Memory Summit. Paul, Charles and I will have the cameras rolling while talking with industry insiders and we'll even show you a few new products. The show will be great, as always. If you're in Las Vegas a day or two before CES, come by and say hello.
What kind of preview would this be without pictures? Here are some shots from the Secret Bunker of item's I'm working on at this very moment.
Click the title above for more.
You wouldn't believe how busy we are in the lab. Normally American's slow down close to the holiday season but that's not true for technology buffs. Everyone I know is scrambling to get ready for CES. Since I don't have a lot of time, this isn't going to be a long post. The following images are part of an upcoming article that will hit the site as soon as I can finish it. This is, The SATA Express Tease.
As you can imagine we have many questions for Toshiba right now. Considering the holiday shopping season is less than 24 hours away, one of the first questions has to do with existing SSD support and warranties. Since OCZ is filing for bankruptcy protection, the bank has taken control of the checking accounts and Toshiba has the assets (and we assume the current inventory), what does that leave consumers with? This was an issue we brought up in a recent review of the OCZ Vector 150 120GB, a topic only TweakTown discussed in the reviews.
I haven't heard anything from OCZ about that review or the comments I injected about possible issues with the warranties. Usually OCZ would fire off an email with direct answers if anything negative tipped up in a review but not this time. We also didn't receive any guidance from OCZ when we posted RumorTT story after RumorTT story so we knew our sources were correct.
What is to become of the other assets? PC Power & Cooling, once considered the maker of the highest caliber of computer power supplies was acquired by OCZ on May 25, 2007. Founded by Doug Dobson, PCP&C brought us the first consumer 1kW PSU and with it, opened the door for 3 and 4-way SLI. Since handing the keys to OCZ, PCP&C has slowed innovation and the brand name has only a fraction of what it once was. Will Toshiba let the brand live on, maybe they will sell the company to Doug.
For Toshiba, they picked up a SATA controller, IP and enterprise software at what we can only imagine was a fire sale price. We're not sure what Indilinx engineers were working on yesterday. Given that OCZ has laid off workers steadily for the past six months or longer, we're not even sure if there were engineers left at the company.
What we do know is in the last earning call, OCZ CEO, Ralph Schmitt stated that SSD production was moved from OCZ to a third party but would not go into details on which third party. I've been told that Toshiba has a helluva SSD manufacturing facility and makes SSDs for many other companies. I've personally tested drives from Toshiba, MyDigitalSSD and Kingston that were manufactured by Toshiba and the quality was fantastic. Assuming Vector 150 came from the same plant, it can go on the list as well.
The OCZ name will most likely not move to Toshiba. This polarizing brand, love them or hate them, has touched all of us one way or another. From humble beginnings in northern Indiana to the company determined to kill the HDD with a superstar SSD. OCZ now rests at the bottom of NASDAQ with a share price of just 16 cents.
New flash spotted at LSI's AIS event in San Jose, California this past week promises to reduce the cost of flash and thus the price you pay for a new SSD. Both IMFT and Flash Forward worked to find an alternative to low endurance Triple-Level Cell (TLC) flash.
AIS buzzed about Micron's L85A flash and word is Micron has two version of L85. The first version is L85A, the economical driven model and L85C, the performance model.
At this time we believe L85A is an asynchronous version of Micron's second generation 20nm flash but are still waiting on the final details to arrive. The difference may also be in the page sizes, 8K vs. 16K. IMFT's first round of 20nm flash had a few yield issues causing a shortage of flash once 25nm supplies depleted. Looking at the flash on the Intel 530 Series SSD we have in house, we believe second generation 20nm flash from IMFT is a reality and already shipping. A full review will hit the web shortly after we get all of the details from Intel.