This afternoon Micron exercised its right to call in Intel's interest in the joint IMFT venture. Micron has more than hinted the company would go in this direction and stated clearly it was on the table in October.
Intel has up to one year to vacate its half of the joint venture that centers mainly on the Lehi, Utah HQ of IMFT. Which is where the two companies have co-developed several generations of memory technology. The two companies will spend the remaining time shipping 96-layer TLC memory and 3D XPoint. Both companies began developing next-generation flash products post IMFT, with each choosing to focus on separate technology paths to better suit focused markets.
Second generation 3D XPoint memory development will continue. The only fab manufacturing first generation 3D XPoint is the Lehi, Utah facility.
Intel is not phased from Micron's actions. The company has fabs already manufacturing NAND flash and is ample more capable of manufacturing 3D XPoint technology.
At CES 2019, Seagate announced the world's first SMB/SME SSD designed solely for use in a NAS. The new Ironwolf 110 features many of the features of the company's Ironwolf HDD product line, like advanced health monitoring, just with solid state media rather than rotating disks.
We've urged companies for years to build a NAS-optimized SSD with high endurance and increased monitoring features but Seagate is the first out of the gate with all of the right pieces together. The material released this week show the new drives feature Durawrite technology, a carryover from the SandForce/LSI IP acquisition.
Seagate tells us the new Ironwolf SSD fills two roles for system administrators. The drives can operate in a system as a high-speed cache or run as the primary storage media in an all-flash array.
The capacities range from 256GB (240GB with overprovisioning) to 4TB (3.84TB) with an average power consumption of just 8 watts. Seagate lists random write performance in steady-state with around 20,000 IOPS. Sequential performance reaches 560 MB/s reads and 535 MB/s writes.
CES 2019 - Phison lifted the veil on the company's next-generation high-performance NVMe SSD controller at CES. The upcoming PS5016-E16 controller is the first to take advantage of PCI Express 4.0 bandwidth that we hope will come to market around the March timeframe.
The E16 is the logical successor to Phison's PS5012-E12 currently shipping in products like the MyDigitalSSD BPX Pro and Corsair Force MP510. The new controller doubles the interface bandwidth by using four lanes, but with faster 4th generation PCIe technology. The controller also ushers in 4th generation low-density parity check error correction from Phison.
Phison claims 4,000 MB/s sequential reads and 4,100 MB/s sequential write speeds. Phison's CES demo already shows speeds in excess of those advertised. We may see even higher performance with retail products and some minor specification changes. At the time of writing Phison states the E12 supports flash speeds of up to 800 MT/s but next generation memory from Toshiba sports a faster bus interface speed. The faster memory would lead to higher throughput performance and lower latencies.
CES 2019 - We've seen a 1TB SD card teased before by SanDisk a few years ago now, but Lexar has stepped up to the plate and unleashed a new 1TB SD card.
Lexar's Professional 633x family of SDHC and SDXC UHS-I cards are now available from 16GB through to 1TB, where until now it was 16GB to 512GB. The new 1TB version has claimed read speeds of 95MB/sec while write speeds are 70MB/sec. The card itself is rated at V30/U3 which is good for 30MB/sec of sustained write performance.
Right now the 1TB SD card will cost $499.99 but B&H has it on special for $399 right now, a savings of $100. Remember that two 512GB SD cards will cost less than $150, so you're paying a serious premium for 1TB of storage on a single SD card. For professionals where money isn't a problem I can see this being popular, but someone has to do it first - it's not like Lexar will sell tens of millions of units, and before it does we'll see 2TB and then 4TB SD cards become a reality.
CES 2019 - Toshiba announces its new MG08 series hard drives with a whopping 16TB of storage space.
Touted as the "industry's largest capacity 16 TB Conventional Magnetic Recording (CMR) HDD," the MG08 uses helium instead of air to pack in 9 ultra-thin disks for greater density and storage capacity. The 3.5-inch MG08 drive runs at 7,200 RPM and has a 2.5 million hour MTTF, 512MB cache, and comes in SATA 6 Gb/s or SAS 12 Gb/s interfaces.
Toshiba is aiming the MG08 at the enterprise sector's higher workloads and cloud-scale operations.
"Toshiba's new 16 TB MG08 Series delivers new levels of storage capacity and density while delivering improved power efficiency for our cloud-scale and storage solutions customers. Only high-density HDD technology can achieve our customers' critical TCO objectives at a cost of pennies per GB," says Shuji Takaoka, General Manager of Storage Products Sales & Marketing Division at Toshiba Electronic Devices & Storage Corporation.
CES 2019 - SanDisk has just teased a new prototype flash drive at CES 2019, something the company is proudly touting is the world's highest capacity USB drive on the market with 4TB of storage.
The new 4TB flash drive has a USB-C connector for super-fast transfers, with no details on speeds, specs, or pricing. Right now a huge 2TB flash drive costs $1000 or more, we can only expect the 4TB drive to at least cost $2000, and could easily go for $2500 and beyond given its premium.
We'll update you with more details on the prototype SanDisk 4TB USB-C flash drive when they arrive.
Newegg started shipping Intel's Optane SSD 905P in the M.2 form factor today but we had a few questions about some information on the product page. We reached out to Intel for answers and learned a bit more about the new 380GB M.2 SSD that features a 22110 form factor and gut busting random performance.
The Newegg listing states "Additional thermal solution required" near the top of the page but doesn't give us any recommendations or details beyond that statement. We've seen images of the 905P M.2 covered with an EK passive cooler but most images provided by Intel show just the bare drive. The 905P M.2 drives on display at Computex this last June were also free of a heat sink so most motherboard manufactures with them on display used a custom add-in card like the ASUS Hyper M.2.
We reached out to Intel for answers. This is what we learned in two statements about the vague wording on the Newegg listing.
"Intel is working with EK to ensure a thermal solution is available "free of charge" for customers who purchase the M.2 905P. The trick here is we have to ensure retailers have it in stock so it can be packaged/bundled with the M.2 the point of sale."
Our representative went on to say:
"Also, of the hundreds of motherboards that will support the 22 X 110 M.2 905P, there is a subset of boards that will ship with their own thermal solution intended for the SSD. This thermal solution will be included in the motherboard box for those who wish to use it."
It's not clear if Newegg plans to ship the 905P M.2 with the 110mm long EK cooler to early adapters. The company carries the 80mm EK SSD cooler but we couldn't find a 110mm version on the site. We are waiting on Newegg to comment and will report back when we get an answer.
Sony's new Blu-rays hold a whopping 128GB of data on a single disc.
The industry's first quad-layer Blu-ray discs are here, and could help push both consumer and professional-grade storage to new heights. Sony's latest quad-layer BDXL discs can store up to 128GB of content, are write-once media, and require specific Blu-ray drives to write the data. Before this development, Blu-rays were capped at triple-layer capacities of about 100GB. Sony notes the new discs are also four times as fast at recording data as regular Blu-rays.
Sony's new BDXL Blu-rays could eventually help usher in a new age of convenience for consumers, especially gamers. Today's games are getting bigger and bigger--Red Dead Redemption 2 shipped on two dual-layer Blu-rays, for example--and often require expansive download patches along with 50GB+ disc installs. We probably won't see quad-layer Blu-ray drives in video game consoles any time soon due to pricing of both the media and the drives, however.
We recently tested the new MyDigtalSSD BPX Pro in 960GB, 480GB, and 240GB sizes but started we would need to wait for the massive 2TB model. The wait is over according to MydigitalSSD's social media page.
The new 2TB BPX Pro comes with 1920GB of user available storage that offers impressive performance that breaks the 3,400 MB/s sequential read barrier.
There is very little competition in the 2TB NVMe space with most high-capacity shoppers choosing the Samsung 970 EVO 2TB ($577.99) as the default go to product for this category. The new BPX Pro gives the 970 EVO competition with a superior price and potentially superior performance. Our sample for review should arrive in the coming days. When it arrives we'll be able to say which is the fastest 2TB class NVMe SSD.
The long awaited M.2 version of Intel's Optane SSD 905P tipped up on Newegg last night.
The M. 22110 (the long one) drive will initially ship with 380GB. Newegg opened up a preorder for the drive last night. You can find it with the model number SSDPEL1D380GAX1 or just follow our link.
This is the first time we glanced at the final design of the drive and it does come with a surprise. The all black heat sink shown at Computex, the same used on the enterprise version, was replaced with a dark gray heat sink from EK. We wonder if EK will release a liquid cooled heat sink at some point as an aftermarket upgrade. There is a credible rumor from a leaked slide showing a 765GB M.2 905P but Newegg doesn't show that size as an option. We may see such a drive for the first time at CES in January 2019.