Storage Posts - Page 1
If you want some of the most insane storage you can cram into a PC, then you will want to check out ASRock's new Hyper Quad M.2 PCIe 4.0 Expansion Card.
ASRock's new Hyper Quad M.2 PCIe 4.0 Expansion Card if you couldn't already tell from its name, can handle 4 x NVMe M.2 SSDs and cram them into a single PCIe 4.0 x16 slot. It supports M Key type 2242/2260/2280/22110 M.2 PCI Express modules.
The 4 x onboard M.2 sockets are on a 45-degree angle inside of the card, a move by ASRock to keep the traces as short as possible -- meaning that the M.2 sockets have enough current, something that is imperative for the speeds that PCIe 4.0 SSDs can reach in the multiple GB/sec range.
CES 2020 - Phison is one of those brands that you may have heard uttered during the AMD Ryzen 3000 and X570 chipset launch as it was the primary driving force behind the first run of PCIe generation 4 NVMe SSD's or PCIe 4x4. Phison, however, was at CES showing their QLC enablement on various platforms from the newest and fastest Gen 4x4 to 3x4 and even SATA technology which, when mixed with proper QLC based NAND, they have been able to achieve some surprising densities.
Here we have both the M.2 variant and the 2.5" SATA models with capacities of 8TB and 16TB, respectively. The Phison PS5012-E12S controller powers the M.2 at 8TB while the 2.5" SATA variant is shown as working and capable os up to 16TB capacities using the Phison PS3112-S12 controller. Both of these drives are outfitted with Micron M28, 96-layer QLC NAND.
CES 2020 - Samsung was showing off its upcoming flagship consumer SSD at CES 2020, with the new 980 PRO M.2 NVMe SSD based on the new PCIe 4.0 standard.
Samsung's new 980 PRO M.2 NVMe SSD will be pushing some huge sequential read/write speeds, with the company promising up to 6.5GB/sec reads, and up to 5GB/sec writes. Samsung will be making its new 980 PRO M.2 NVMe SSD available in 250/500GB and 1TB capacities.
We're already seeing a ceiling being hit of around 5GB/sec on these new PCIe 4.0-based SSDs, but Samsung is pushing a new boundary here up at 6.5GB/sec. Later this year we'll see the next-gen Phison E18 NVMe SSD controller, which will unlock up to 7GB/sec on both read/write. Samsung said it will have more information on its new 980 PRO M.2 NVMe SSD in Q2 2020.
CES 2020 - KIOXIA America had a substantial showing of their new enterprise flash solutions during CES 2020 at their suite in the LINQ in Las Vegas, Nevada.
KIOXIA has new PCIe Gen 4 SSD's for enterprise and datacenter with their new CM & CD models. These units are not AIC's or M.2 interface but U.2 (formally SFF-8639) and are visually similar to the SATA Express connector.
CES 2020 - KIOXIA is not a name that everyone will be familiar with, but their previous namesake Toshiba may be more familiar to you. KIOXIA formally Toshiba showcased some of its newest storage products and technologies during CES 2020 at The LINQ in Las Vegas, Nevada.
First up is the BG4, which is an ultra-small form factor storage solution with capacities up to 1TB. The BG4 solutions utilize 96-layer BiCS flash and can be had as an M.2 2230, which is a flash module on an ultra-small M.2 module or as 1620 BGA package. The BG4 series of flash storage operate with an NVMe PCIe gen 3 x4 interface and can achieve performance up to 2,300MB/s sequential read, and 1,800MB/s write ( up to 390K IOPS read and 200K IOPS write).
The BG4 is designed for ultra-compact notebooks or other devices where a minimal storage footprint with a high-speed interface is needed.
CES 2020 - Seagate today revealed a new SSD duo that can supercharge gaming on-the-go.
Seagate just announced two new external SSDs optimized for gamers out and about: the Firecuda Gaming SSD, which packs a super-fast FireCuda NVMe 510 SSD for up to 2GB/sec speeds over USB 3.2 Gen 2x2, and the Barracuda Fast SSD that can hit rapid read/write speeds of up to 540 MB/s.
Both of these SSDs are meant to sit alongside Seagate's innovative Firecuda Gaming Dock, a massive 4TB storage nexus that hooks up to your PC and other devices via Thunderbolt 3 to deliver high-end storage speeds. It even has an expandable M.2 NVMe drive just in case you need more lightning-fast speeds.
Lexar is planning for a massive year in 2020 with rumors pegging the company to launch a new PCIe 4.0-based NVMe SSD which is capable of 7GB/sec reads... exceeding the 5GB/sec we're seeing on the market now.
Lexar has been teasing a new prototype SSD t hat pushes 7GB/sec in IOMeter, and pushes 6442MB/sec in sequential reads in CrystalDiskMark, while pushing 4246MB/sec in sequential writes. Lexar itself has said the final retail version of this SSD will have close to the same speeds as it does in its current prototype form.
Right now, the fastest SSD in Lexar's product stack is the Lexar NM610 -- which comes in 250GB, 500GB, and 1TB capacities. Lexar's current flagship NM610 SSD reaches just 2.1GB/sec reads and 1.6GB/sec writes, so this new SSD is over 3x faster in reads alone which is a gigantic upgrade. 7GB/sec is no joke.
SK Hynix will show off refreshed SSDs outfitted with its new 128-layer 4D NAND flash memory at CES 2020.
Although chip-maker SK Hynix just re-entered the consumer storage market (check out our SK Hynix Gold S31 1TB SSD Review for perf info), the company is already making big moves in the space with its new 128-layer 4D NAND SSDs.
SK Hynix plans to reveal two new 1TB NVMe PCIe SSDs at CES 2020, the Gold P31 and Platinum P31, both of which are outfitted with proprietary TLC flash and DRAM in a solution that SK Hynix calls 4D NAND.
It seems Nintendo is in some hot water over a Switch user installing a SanDisk microSD card into his Nintendo Switch, which then promptly melted and destroyed his portable gaming machine.
Nintendo Switch owner 'NefariousZhen' said on the Nintendo Switch subreddit that he installed a brand new SanDisk Extreme PLUS 1GB microSD into his Switch, which then burned a hole in it. He said: "I thought that I was getting a good deal on Black Friday when I bought a 1TB micro sdxc card. Apparently not! It melted the switch the first time I turned it on after installing (it was off as required). Switch is at version 9.1.0".
The microSD card that he used wasn't a cheap one either, with the SanDisk - Extreme PLUS 1TB microSDXC UHS-I costing $400, more than the Nintendo Switch on its own. The Nintendo Switch was out of warranty, but good guy Nintendo has stepped up and said they will replace the burned-out Switch.
For those who do not know, QLC NAND or Quad Level Cell NAND has been the bridge to bringing a truly value option to high-speed storage. QLC has been introduced in everything from Samsung QVO to Intel's 660P offerings, among various others. QLC allows for more bits per cell, therefore, increasing overall density for a NAND package. This did, however, come with some caveats such as reduced endurance.
I don't want to dive into everything that has to do with QLC and how it works as that's a deep-dive topic and not what we are talking about today, but I will try to cover it in the following few sentences briefly. So, with that said, SLC or single-level cell was the first NAND tech that was released with the introduction of SSDs.
These SLC parts stored a single bit of information, which in turn allowed for two states, one and zero. Next up was MLC, which doubled the available capacity per cell with four states possible but at the cost of potential performance. Next after that was TLC, which once again doubled up things for up to 8 states with three bits per cell.
And now, we have what is in front of us today, which is QLC, and it offers 16 states with four bits per cell. This, as I said, is a much more involved topic, but its a high-level explanation of the difference as NAND technology has come along. One thing worth noting is that as the charts above from Micron show is that each iterative generation of NAND has also incurred a reduced endurance rating. This is due to storing so much more data per cell and the associated P/E cycles reduction, which is the number of times a cell can be written before its no longer reliable or usable.