Spire is about to release an external 2.5-inch HDD/SSD enclosure that helps set itself apart from the mass already on the market with the inclusion of an RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) locking mechanism that keeps one's drive data safe as houses and can only be accessed together with the use of the included RFID key.
The EZvault RFID uses an aluminum alloy casing and installation of your 2.5-inch sized drive is easy as pie, being of a tool-free nature. The enclosure runs measurements of 145 x 81 x 18.5mm.
The unit also includes a One Touch Backup function and is said to arrive in early March at 22.99 USD.
TDK whom is a manufacturer of hard disk heads amongst many other things has just indicated that the 640GB platter for 3.5-inch sized drives is ready to start being used by as early as next month, which will result in all major HDD manufacturers adopting the platter in its next-gen models by November.
The 640GB platter will allow 3.5-inch HDD capacities to reach as high as 3TB (five platters) and most certainly 2.5TB (four platters). 375GB platters are also now ready for 2.5-inch sized drives, allowing for 2-platter 750GB models to hit the market by October.
SilverStone has come up with an interesting device that works differently to anything else we've seen on the market up until now. The newly release HDDBOOST is designed to give a 'best of both worlds' setup using a traditional mechanical HDD and an SSD.
The device itself resides in a 3.5" drive bay in which an SSD can be mounted inside it. Meanwhile, a mechanical HDD can also be connected to the device via a second SATA port which allow the HDD and SSD to talk together in a unique automated way.
Once setup and the system is turned on, the device will mirror the front-end data on the HDD to the SSD so that all of the most commonly used files will be read from the faster flash drive. Unlike simply running an SSD on its own for your operating system drive, this device puts less wear on the drive as any new writes performed will be done to the mechanical HDD.
In essence, this is like a hybrid storage setup where an SSD is assigned the task of being a giant cache for the mechanical hard disk. And while the setup might not be as fast as simply running an SSD as a system drive on its own, it's still going to give a significant performance increase whilst also having the benefit of a normal HDDs larger storage capacity.
Still, I don't see how it's a better arrangement over simply running an SSD as your system drive and having a second large capacity HDD connected to your system for storage. To each their own I guess.
Most computer companies and firms that make computer components are moving to green technology and construction processes. The green tech not only makes the products more energy efficient, it also uses less toxic material in the construction of the devices.
Samsung has unveiled a new green HDD for desktops today called the EcoGreen F3EG. The drive has a capacity of 2TB and reaches that capacity with four platters that have 500GB each. The 2TB capacity gives the drive enough storage space for 880 hours of DVD video or 500,000 songs.
Samsung uses EcoTriangle tech for low noise, low power use, and eco-friendly components. The drive has no BFRs or halogen compounds. It also uses 40% less power at idle and 10% less in use than competing drives. The HDD sells for $179.99.
Several months ago we reviewed the G.Skill Falcon II and learned about the Indilinx Barefoot "ECO" controller. The ECO variant of the popular Barefoot is able to use new low cost 3Xnm flash from Intel/Micron. This led us to believe that the drive, once on retail / e-tail shelves would cost considerably less than most other comparable solid state drives.
While researching pricing for another SSD I ran across one UK reseller that has stock available. Micro Direct (www.microdirect.co.uk) lists currently lists the 64GB Falcon II at 147.45 inc VAT and the 128GB model for 259.70 inc VAT. For comparison the same seller lists the OCZ Agility 30GB for 176.25 inc VAT and the 60GB Agility for 193.86 inc VAT.
If you are in the UK and would like to scoop up a solid state drive that performs well and costs less than comparable models act quickly as these are still difficult to come by.
OCZ is about to bring its first SandForce based SSD to market in the form of the Vertex LE (Limited Edition) series.
An ETA was found online for February 5th for these new 2.5-inch drives which come in both 100 and 200GB capacities and use a SATA 3.0 Gbps interface. The drives also support TRIM and have maximum read and write speeds of 270MB/sec and 250MB/sec respectively.
Both drives are backed by three year warranties and are to said to kick off with pricing of 339 and 733 Euro for the 100 and 200GB units.
When it comes to the security of your personal data, you may want to keep things like your photos and music safe with encryption. When it comes to the US government exchanging classified documents with other countries, they take security to a different level.
Kingston has announced a new ultra-secure flash drive called the DataTraveler 5000 that is approved by the US government and the DoD for classified and unclassified documents. The flash drive uses 256-bit AES encryption and has an XTS cipher mode with elliptic curve cryptography.
The drive is FIPS 140-2 Level 2 certified and Level 3 certification is pending. Kingston offers the drive in 2, 4, 8, and 16GB capacities with pricing ranging from $111 to $400.
What is sure to be one of the most sought after solid state drives in early 2010 will be shipping to reviewers in the next two week (we hear). At Storage Visions, a storage technology showing that takes place in Las Vegas two days before CES we were able to see the C300 in action but didn't get to run our own suite of benchmarks like we were able to on the SandForce 1500/MLC powered RunCore Pro V5.
The Crucial C300 uses a new Marvell solid state controller that is the first to fully support SATA 6G. I am looking forward to finally being able to break the 250~280 MB/s speed limits of SATA 3G.
Keep an eye out on TweakTown as we will be the first to have a sample in the labs and a review published. We look forward to finally being able to test the limits of current motherboards that use a Marvell SATA 6G with the Crucial C300 too! Hopefully we can get a second unit in for RAID testing on the Gigabyte P55A and X58A boards as well. Keep your fingers crossed!
A joint announcement from Seagate and LSI today lets us know the two companies are working together to bring a Seagate branded lineup of PCIe based solid state drives to market.
The first generation versions are expected to be similar by design to existing PCIe based SSDs on the market from the likes of Fusion-io and OCZ and will be aimed directly at the enterprise crowd for data center and cloud computing use.
While we have no details on pricing as yet, it's been mentioned that there will be product samples available for OEM customers in the second quarter of this year.
To read the full announcement, head over to our press area here.
In our most recent poll, we asked our readers who makes the best Solid State Disk and we just closed the poll to open up another. Over 2,500 people voted on the poll.
Without too much surprise, Intel came in number one with 41% of the votes with OCZ coming in second with 20% of the votes.
Third went to Corsair with Kingston being a fairly close forth. The rest of the results were all relatively close.
For the actual numbers, go here.
In our latest poll, we want to know who is your favorite RAM memory module maker? Let us know! Please go here to vote!
You may have heard by now that the encryption that was being used on some secured flash drives was found to be not as secure as expected. Some drives could have the security bypassed making the data stored on the drive susceptible to theft.
Kingston produces several secure flash drives that were affected by the issue and the company has announced that it will be replacing the affected drives with new products. The affected Kingston drives include the DataTraveler BlackBox (DTBB), DataTraveler Secure - Privacy Edition (DTSP) and DataTraveler Elite - Privacy Edition (DTEP).
The DTBB will be replaced with a FIPS-certified replacement. The DTSP and the DTEP will be replaced with the DataTraveler Vault - Privacy Edition. Kingston says that it was notified of the issue with its secure drives in mid-December.
Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 500GB SATA Hard Drive plus Rosewill SATA Dock for $54.99 with FREE Shipping
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CES 2010 - Although the event is actually over this does not mean we are finished telling you about what we saw out there. Something that is of interesting to those of you looking for the fasted SSD (SATA II style) that you can find is the new Patriot Inferno drive. According to Patriot this drive is capable of up to 245MB/s sequential read speeds and up to 152MB/s Sequential writes. Of course random reads and writes are not going to be as fast but they are still up there with speeds reaching 198 MB/s read and 91MB/s write for 512k files.
The mockup of the drive was also impressive looking, but we were told that Patriot was not sure if they would keep the red casing or not.
As it is Patriot's 25th anniversary we were also shown some RAM samples that were branded with the 25 year logo. These were cool in a very understated way which is nice as many companies go overboard when they pass an important milestone like 25 years.
Other products on display at the Patriot suite included their line of Flash memory cards and their Box Office media player. We did not have a ton of time to go over everything, but did find out that Patriot has some new and interesting things in store for the Box Office in an upcoming firmware. Unfortunately they were unable to tell me when we might see this update, but it is certainly something to look forward to.
SSDs are faster, more robust, and use less power than comparable HDDs found in most notebooks and desktops. The main reason that the SSD isn't more widely used today is that the price is still too high for most consumers to bite.
Kingston has unveiled a new version of its SSDNow V series drive that comes in at 30GB capacity. The drive will sell for under $80 after rebates, which makes it one of the cheapest SSDs on the market. At the 30GB size, it will be mostly of use for a boot drive only with bulk storage to a different drive. Kingston will however also be offering the drive as part of a an upgrade bundle and also in a two-pack for those looking to RAID right from the get go.
The SSD has Windows 7 TRIM functionality and promises read speed of 180MB/sec and a write speed of 50MB/sec.
Memory cards are used in all sorts of devices that geeks know and love from portable gaming systems to digital cameras and netbooks. The typical type of storage used in these devices is SD cards or microSD cards. These storage cards are getting more capacity all the time.
Samsung has announced a new 30nm class of NAND for mobile devices. The smaller build process allows the company to increase the capacity and still stay in the same tiny package we are used to seeing for microSD cards. The new solutions include the 64GB moviNAND and the 32GB microSD memory card.
The cards are both based on NAND using the Samsung 32Gb flash chips with the 64GB card being 1.4mm in height and having 16 30nm 32Gb MLC NAND chips inside. The 32GB microSD card is sampling now and the 64GB moviNAND has been in mass production since December 2009.
CES 2010 - We had high hopes of being able to test an SSD based on the Marvell SATA 6G controller at CES but everyone chose to keep a tight grip on their SSDs. To add insult to injury everyone also chose to keep their lips sealed as to when we would actually see this drive in our labs. The best we can tell you at this point is we will see the Crucial RealSSD C300 some time in Q1.
This seems to be on the same track as the SandForce controller based products for the retail sector but the difference is that we have two SandForce drives in our hands now. It should be said that the two SandForce powered RunCore Pro 5's do have serial numbers 5 and 10 and were hand delivered from an engineer from the APAC region.
At this point it is too early to tell which controller is going to be the best for server and consumer applications. SSDs are better at every task over traditional platter based drives but some do better than others at specific tasks and workloads.
2010 will be the year of the SSD and huge gains in market share will be had in the consumer market. Stay tuned to TweakTown for all of the latest solid state drive coverage.
As important as my computer is to my work, I would like to have a second hard drive ready to go on a whim if my current drive failed. To do this can be a big pain and require lots of work if you don't have the right gear.
Aleratec has announced a new HDD duplicator called the 1:1 HDD Copy Cruiser Mini that can make an exact copy of your HDD down to the boot sector and partitions. The dock has two slots and works with SATA I and II HDDS.
Both 2.5-inch and 3.5-inch HDDS are supported and the duplication process happens at 72MB/sec. The duplicator sells for $169.99 and is available for purchase now.
Old school storage mob Verbatim has just announced a refreshment to its product lineup with multiple series of new portable HDDs.
The most interesting series is the Titan XS which are said to be the "world's smallest" 2.5-inch portable drives available with the outer enclosure being a high-grade durable rubber material that tightly wraps around the drive and provides shock protection while on the go.
Capacities in the Titan XS range are 320GB, 500GB and 640GB with pricing at around $100, $130 and $160 respectively. All Titan XS drives are bundled with backup software and should become available in early Feb.
For more info on the Titan XS series and also some other new portable HDD series' Verbatim have ready for release, check out the full press release at the source link folks.
CES 2010 - Details of Intel's plans for its SSD lineup through 2010 were revealed at CES last week in which they indicated their main point of focus is more so toward mainstream adoption rather than pushing the performance envelope.
No doubt for many enthusiasts, you'll scrunch up your face when you hear that Intel doesn't plan to introduce the new 6Gbps SATA standard to its drives until 2011 when they will bring supporting core-logic chipsets to market.
Intel said that they feel they first need to concentrate on improving sequential write drives to better saturate the existing 3Gbps pipe; a sure weak point of existing X25 series SSDs. What's on the menu for this year are SSDs with higher capacities and lower pricing thanks to die-shrunk flash memory built on a 2x-nano process.
CES 2010 - QNAP didn't take a very long to make use of Intel's new Pinetrail Atom processors. At CES the company displayed four new NAS products that are part of the new 59 Series. Here we see the TS-259 Pro and TS-459 Pro, the two and four drive models.
The six and eight bay models are the TS-659 Pro and TS-859 Pro. QNAP stated to us that in multiuser environments the performance increases are very significant over the previous Atom powered NAS products.
The flagship TS-809 Pro is Core2Duo powered. We reviewed this unit several months ago and I use it daily for my storage needs. The TS-809 Pro provides unmatched performance and features and is the NAS server in which all others are judged.
QNAP also let us know that all new models will ship with a new drive caddy that can accept both 3.5 and 2.5 inch form factor HDDs.
For the surveillance market QNAP has the VioStar line of products. We saw the VS-5020 in action with several IP cameras attached.
CES 2010 - RunCore hit the ground running here in Vegas allowing us to test the new Pro V powered by the SandForce 1500 controller and consumer MLC memory. The TweakTown Storage Produce Test Workstation is now residing in their booth so everyone can come and test the drive first hand.
Also at the RunCore booth the company is showing just how resilient their solid state products are. Here we see two Pro IV model SSDs attached to a paint shaker. RunCore then powers the drives and attaches then to the workstation. The modified paint shaker is then activated and the drives are abused in unnatural ways.
RunCore also had a surprise for everyone, here we see a SSD fully submerged in water yet still powered on and churning data.
The core business for RunCore is their line of Solid State Drives designed for the popular netbook market.
I can't say that I am a fan of netbooks (due to my above average hand size) but this HP model uses a full size or near full size keyboard. This is one of the nicest netbooks I have played with so far.
In this image you can also see the new Pro V model that we tested just a few days ago. The retail packaging arrived after we ran our review.