AMD's new Zen 2 processors have opened up a totally new era for PC hardware, with companies tripping over themselves with new PCIe 4.0 capable SSDs. The latest company to jump into the crazy-amounts-of-bandwidth bandwagon is GALAX with its new HOF Pro SSD.
GALAX's new HOF Pro SSD utilizes the bandwidth of PCIe 4.0 for insane speeds of up to 5GB/sec versus 3.5GB/sec on PCIe 3.0, while write speeds can hit 4.4GB/sec which is up from 2.5GB/sec on PCIe 3.0. Meanwhile, 4K random read IOPS burst to 750K compared to 500K IOPS on PCIe 3.0 while 4K random writes hit 700K IOPS versus 480K IOPS on PCIe 3.0.
The day for PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSDs is here, with our recent look at the Sabrent Rocket PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD offering 1TB for $230 and now the GIGABYTE-made AORUS PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD is being rolled out after its debut during Computex 2019.
I have one of the new AORUS PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSDs here with me in the 2TB flavor and it is glorious, with GIGABYTE offering up to a huge 5GB/sec in reads and up to 4.4GB/sec writes. The 1TB version will cost $260 while the larger 2TB drive will cost $480. GIGABYTE will be shipping out its new AORUS PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSDs on July 8, the day after AMD unleashes its new Zen 2 processors and PCIe 4.0-capable X570 chipset on July 7.
We are mere days away from AMD's new X570 platform launching alongside the next-gen Ryzen 3000 series CPUs which are based on the new Zen 2 CPU architecture, so PCIe 4.0-enabled SSDs that pump up to 5GB/sec are now a reality. Sabrent is one of the first to market with its new Rocket NVMe PCIe 4.0 SSD.
Sabrent's new Rocket NVMe PCIe 4.0 SSD is on Amazon right now and comes in two sizes: 1TB and 2TB which will cost you $230 and $430, respectively. It is powered by the Phison PS5016-E16 SSD controller that has power management support for APST/ASPM/L1, as well as SMART and TRIM commands, advanced wear leveling, bad block management, error correction code, and over-provision.
Sabrent is using Toshiba's BiCS4 96L TLC (triple-level cell) NAND flash memory that provides the Rocket NVMe PCIe 4.0 SSD to truly act like a rocket with transfer speeds of up to 5GB/sec reads and 4.4GB/sec writes. Yeah, considering normal 2.5-inch SSDs max out at around 500MB/sec having 10x the speed on tap thanks to PCIe 4.0 is hugely impressive.
Buy the new Sabrent Rocket NVMe PCIe 4.0 SSD in both 1TB and 2TB from Amazon now.
Toshiba and Western Digital were hit with a 13-minute power outage on June 15, and we're now looking at somewhere between 6-15 exabytes of NAND flash being affected. The companies are expecting to swing into standard manufacturing rates sometime in mid-July, a couple of weeks from now.
First off we have Toshiba with a reported 6-9 exabytes in NAND flash gone, while WD announced it lost nearly 6 exabytes of NAND flash during the power outage. The big problem is that 35% of the world's NAND flash production is made in the joint manufacturing facilities of Toshiba and WD in Yokkaichi, Japan. So this small 13-minute power outage will have huge flow on effects for global markets, and will surely change SSD pricing going forward.
Q3 and Q4 orders have been settled and paid for, so we could expect small price increases in the meantime before larger prices are seen in 2020.
Seagate just announced three to models to the popular Guardian Series. The Exos, IronWolf, and IronWolf Pro lines now scale to 16TB with the help of Helium and a new 9-platter design.
On paper, the new 16TB variants show identical performance to the 14TB and 12TB models previously released. We expect to see some performance variation in testing . That should start as early as this week with reviews to follow soon after.
The biggest change, besides capacity, comes to the IronWolf Pro product line. With previous models, Seagate recommended the IronWolf Pro for systems with up to 16 HDDs. With the new 16TB model, Seagate now recommends the series for systems with up to 24 drives. Seagate still recommends the IronWolf for systems with up to 8 drive bays.
The premium Exos X16 hyperscale HDD handles larger deployments with increased endurance and unlimited rack density. The new Exos X16 provides 33% more petabytes per rack compared to the 12TB model (the Exos X14 was a limited release).
Exos X16 ships in five separate product SKUs. The two SATA models feature the standard FastFormat (512e/4Kn) and the second features SED encryption. The same two products exist in the SAS line but Seagate also adds a SED-FIPS encryption model.
The two IronWolf 16TB drive already appear on Amazon. The base IronWolf 16TB sells for $579.99 and the advanced IronWolf Pro 16TB sells for $629.99.
As the world moves away from physical storage, HDD makers are selling less and less and according to Japanese motor manufacturer Nidec, HDD shipments will only continue to drop this year and more so in 2020 and beyond.
Nidec has been supplying spindle motors for HDDs for a very, very long time and now the company is predicting HDD sales will drop as much as 50% this year, and more so in 2020. Nidec adds that their spindle motors are found inside of around 85% of products on the market, so their predictions hold some merit and talk about growth in other areas like home appliances, automotive, and 5G technologies.
Nidec's own data shows that HDD sales dropped from 650 million to 375 million between 2010 and 2018, a big drop of 43% but sales will continue to drop this year with revised shipment forecasts for 2018 down to 309 million. 2020 is even worse according to Nidec's shipment forecasts, with just 290 million HDDs expected to be shipped.
We spoke with a Samsung representative this morning about the rumored 2TB 970 PRO. Two online stores - one in Germany and the other in China - listed the 970 PRO in a 2TB capacity. Another site even has a datasheet with the model number but all have been taken down.
"[I] wanted to share that Samsung has not released a 2TB version of the [PRO] drive and there are currently no plans" says Samsung. That doesn't mean we will never see a 2TB 970 PRO. Samsung did release a 2TB 960 PRO, 970 EVO and announced a 2TB 970 EVO Plus that has yet to ship.
This isn't the first time a PRO model with 2-bit per cell flash was teased in some form but never made it to market. In January, 2017 the Samsung 850 PRO 4TB won a CES Best of Show award prior to the CES show floor even opening. The drive never made it to the show and never shipped in the channel.
Well, it looks like Samsung is done with the entire Blu-ray market in the US with the company spokesperson confirming the news with both Forbes and CNET.
Samsung is stopping production on its 1080p and 4K Blu-ray players, with a Samsung spokesperson telling CNET: "Samsung will no longer introduce new Blu-ray or 4K Blu-ray player models in the US market". We could expect new models to be introduced in the future in other markets, but for the most part Samsung is absolutely done with the Blu-ray player market in the US, and I'm sure eventually, globally.
It's a bad turn of events for both the physical Blu-ray market and Samsung, as the South Korean electronics giant was the first to market with a Blu-ray player in 2016. It shouldn't be surprising that Samsung is shifting away from making Blu-ray players as the physical media market has been dying for years now, and according to research company Nielsen, this has been a downwards trend for a while now.
Samsung has just announced its new 1TB storage chip, coming in with a tiny flagship embedded universal flash storage (or eUFS) that boasts twice the amount of storage than the previous flagship 512GB eUFS chip.
The new 1TB chip has the same UFS 2.1 staandard that will offer even higher transfer speeds than the previous 256GB and 512GB chips, with up to 1GB/sec reads and 260MB/sec writes. There's also 58,000 IOPS in random read speeds while 50,000 IOPS for 50,000 random writes that is up from 42K and 40K IOPS, respectively, from the 512GB eUFS 2.1 chips. The smaller 256GB chip has reads of up to 850MB/sec and writes of up to 260MB/sec, the larger 512GB chip reads at up to 860MB/sec and slightly slower 255MB/sec writes.
The new 1TB chip is the same thickness as the 256GB and 512GB chips, so we should see super-thin new smartphones like Samsung's upcoming Galaxy S10 and Galaxy Note 10 with 1TB storage models in the very near future. This isn't the bleeding edge though, as we have UFS 3.0 chips right around the corner that will promise close to twice the transfer rates, lower power consumption, but there has been no word on capacity just yet.
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.