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SanDisk today announced the company's first consumer SSD with 3-bits per cell (TLC) flash technology. The new Ultra II is the successor to the award winning Ultra Plus SSD we first tested in January of 2013.
SanDisk calls the comapany's special flavor of TLC flash X3 NAND Flash Technology. The Ultra II also progresses SanDisk's nCache technology, now up to version 2.0 after the original nCache found on the Ultra Plus and nCache Pro found on the Extreme PRO.
SanDisk's Dashboard tool for SSDs is progressing nicely. The software will feature anti-virus, cloning and even theft recovery by the time the Ultra II comes to market.
The SanDisk Ultra II SSD comes with a 3-year warranty and will be available online and through SanDisk's worldwide network of authorized distributors and resellers in September. It will be offered in capacities of 120GB (MSRP $79.99), 240GB (MSRP $114.99), 480GB (MSRP $219.99), and 960GB (MSRP $429.99).
When PC enthusiasts think of AMD Radeon branding the thing that comes to mind is probably going to be video cards. The Radeon line has a new product category that has just gone official- SSDs. AMD has unveiled the Radeon R7 SSD series and the drives are made by OCZ.
There are three SSDs in the line including 120GB, 240GB, and 480GB drives. Performance is promised to be 545MB/s read and up to 530MB/s write. The drives are also tipped to have 100,000 read IOPS and 90,000 write IOPS.
Under the hood, the R7 SSD series uses the Barefoot 3 controller and Toshiba A19 NAND. Power consumption for the drives is 0.6W-2.7W. The smallest 120GB capacity drive will sell for $100 and includes a four-year warranty.
Flash Memory Summit 2014 - Newisys displayed two data center storage systems at the show this year, both with a focus on density. The new NDS-2600 and NDS-4600 allow data centers to add large volumes of storage with as little rack space as possible.
Here is a face you've seen on the pages of TweakTown a few times. It's Michael Schuette, formally of OCZ fame. Michael has taken his wealth of knowledge to Sanmina, owners of the Newisys brand.
Michael is no stranger to the cutting edge. Here we see one side of the new Newisys NDS-2600, a 2U server that features 30 2.5" drive bays on each side of the system. As you can see in this image, the system is still on rails so it slides in and out of the server rack for service easily.
Flash Memory Summit 2014 - We sat down with Josh and Matt from iXsystems while at the show. Matt and Josh unloaded a lot of information about FreeNAS and where the project is headed. It sounds like the big push for the second half of this year revolves around making the product more user friendly. A new wizard system should tame the complicated but powerful storage specific operating system.
The FreeNAS developers also also pitched us TrueNAS, not that it was difficult to make us listen. iXsystems will soon offer TrueNAS in an all flash array, something we're excited about. The current builds of TrueNAS use hybrid storage pools with flash acceleration.
If you missed our review of the iXsystem's FreeNAS Mini be sure to take a look. The system cost less than $1000 and outperforms many systems costing several times more.
Flash Memory Summit 2014 - Micheal Wu from Phison stopped by to talk about their newest SSD controller. The quad-core PS3110 controller. The new controller features end-to-end data protection and supports DEVSLP. Chris Ramseyer took a look at the new controller in this article. The PS3110 supports TLC memory and up to 2TB of storage.
The PS3110 can be used in a multitude of applications from consumer, enthusiast, and even entry-level enterprise deployments. Phison is also working with M.2 designs for future implementations as well. The PCIe 3.0 x4 is due in Q1 for launch, and we should see working samples in Q4 of this year. All of the other competitors in this space are using PCIe 2.0, so 3.0 will be a big advantage for the Phison SSD.
Flash Memory Summit 2014 - Since Computex 2014 last June the SSD market has been buzzing about Plextor's upcoming M6 Pro SSD. The drive is Plextor's long awaited SATA III flagship product, replacing the M5 Pro Xtreme, a product that launched in January 2013.
Plextor has always billed the brand as a premium product with deep ties to Japan, where the company was founded. Some of that foundation made it's way into the M6 Pro. The drive design uses champagne tinted aluminum. This particular color is a big hit in Japan and has been for more than a decade. The color is so popular in fact that several home audio receiver and component makers use the finish for products sold only in Japan. Being Japanese only products, they demand big money in the US from collectors and those of us that like rare pieces.
The Plextor M6 Pro also carries another rare feature. Plextor developed a special cache software that duplicates the SSDs hot data in the systems DRAM. The data is kept on both the SSD and system DRAM so users don't have to worry about data loss. The software can also cache data writes but the data is quickly flushed to the SSD. At FMS 2014 we shot a quick video of PlexTurbo in action.
Flash Memory Summit 2014 - Today we sat down with Kevin Conley at FMS 2014. Kevin is just back from a trip but still made time to swing by to chat about new client and enterprise solutions coming from SanDisk. We've all ready about the new Extreme Pro SSDs available now in 256GB, 480GB and 960GB capacity sizes.
[Editors Note: TweakTown and SanDisk will give away an Extreme Pro 960GB SSD]
Flash Memory Summit 2014 - Kent Smith from LSI's Accelerated Solutions Division sits down with TweakTown to cover a wide range of topics.
Kent touched on a number of topics in the video including TweakTown's flash testing methods, the Seagate acquisition, extracting more data out of flash and SF3700.
FMS 2014 - Flash Memory Summit 2014 is underway, with LSI teasing its SandForce 3700 controller and its mixed 80/20 (read/write) workload performance, at up to a huge 1.3GB/sec on a native PCIe interface.
This achievement was made possible using the integrated SHIELD error correction with hard and soft LDPC and DSP technology, which works together to provide the associated endurance requirements. The SF3700 controller is built for, and optimized for bi-directional PCIe traffic, which drives the performance up much higher than competing flash controllers. This makes the SF3700 a great choice for enterprise storage.
LSI's Vice President of Marketing, Flash Components Division, Thad Omura, explains: "Flash storage solutions used for client computing, big data, and hyperscale enterprises are continuing to grow at unprecedented levels, driving the need for more advanced flash controllers to manage these data-intensive environments. The SF3700 is the ideal-building block for next-generation storage solutions with its full-duplex architecture. Both enterprise and client applications will benefit from our proprietary LDPC engine which enables customers to significantly extend NAND flash life by dynamically balancing performance and reliability with minimal latency".
Flash Memory Summit 2014 - Chris Geiser, Senor Product Manager at Samsung sat down with TweakTown today to talk about the next iteration of V-NAND technology, 3-bit per cell V-NAND. Also known as TLC NAND, 3-bit per cell is a method used to increase the density of NAND flash memory by allowing the flash cell to use 8 charge states. V-NAND, also commonly referred to as 3D NAND, orders cells vertically rather than horizontally. Samsung's new 32nm 32-layer V-NAND should reduce the cost of V-NAND significantly while also ushering in higher capacity sizes.
Before the FMS 2014 show floors even open we're hearing a lot about 2TB capacity sizes coming before the end of the year. 3-bit per cell V-NAND could potentially get us there.
Chris Geiser also spoke with us about future interface technology such as NVMe.