At the start of the year when SandForce was just rolling out their SF-2200 Series SATA III product, I proclaimed that the SF-1200 controller wasn't just going to dry up and go away. There was a brief time when I was starting to worry my prediction wasn't going to hold true, but SanDisk came along to fulfill my prophecy.
SanDisk, creator of many things consumer has produced a very consumer friendly SSD based on mature technology from yesteryear. By giving the SF-1200 controller time to mature, SanDisk and their customers will forego all of the little issues we had on the very first SandForce controlled products. This strategy should be very good for a company whose primary market is your mainstream computing mom and dad, not the 'cost is no object - speed is all that matters' crowd that gathers here.
Just because the new SanDisk Ultra isn't an enthusiast part, it doesn't get a pass on going through our ringer. We're actually very excited to see what SanDisk bring to the table because this drive isn't a cookie cutter Team SandForce product by any means. SanDisk, also a NAND flash producer has chosen their own 3Xnm flash to pair with the SF-1200, a combination we've yet to see to date. The old flash die size means the Ultra has the same user capacity as the first SF-1200 drives we reviewed from the Team SandForce makers and also, at least on paper, the same snappy performance that made SandForce what it is today.
As much as we like to talk about SandForce, this review is all about SanDisk and their ability to turn last year's expensive mainstream product into this year's mainstream darling.