Specifications, Availability and Pricing
You may notice right from the start that the new ECO based drive has lower read / write specs than the Falcon we looked at a few months ago. This is because the latest firmware from Indilinx, the 1819 is slower than the 1571. 1819 does allow the Falcon II to work in conjunction with Windows 7's TRIM command right out of the box. Falcon 1 owners will generally want to update the firmware of their drives if running Windows 7 and this will also lower the performance, but in the long run firmware 1819 will be more beneficial to the end user since it will restore most of the performance lost due to multi-level cell NAND flash's shortcomings.
Our 64GB Falcon II also has another shortcoming when compared to 128 and 256GB drives. The larger capacity drives offer faster write speeds. In the case of the Falcon II you gain around 40MB/s write speed going with the 128 and 256GB drives. This is common with SSDs and not something that G.Skill has control over, so no fault to G.Skill on this but it is something that we feel the consumer should be aware of when purchasing a solid state drive.
Like the Falcon, we are having trouble finding the Falcon II on e-tail sites. But to be fair, the drive was just announced thirteen days ago. We did manage to find both the Falcon and Falcon II in 64GB from the same online shop, NCIX.com. NICX is Canada's answer to Newegg and they show the Falcon II as being in stock, selling for 209.99 CAD. For comparison, the Falcon 64GB is also available, but for 239.99 CAD, so even though the Falcon II is newer and uses smaller NAND flash that runs cooler, we already see a 30 CAD price difference.
When comparing other Indilinx Barefoot drives at NICX.com we found that they have the Corsair Performance Series drive in 64GB for 209.99 CAD as well, which was quite surprising since we really expected to see the Falcon II already dominating the price per gigabyte category. Since the Falcon II has only been available at NCIX for a few days, we will have to wait and see what happens once the prices level out since most e-tailers tend to raise the costs a percentage for the first few weeks of their arrival.