Intel DC S3700 800GB Enterprise SSD Review (Page 3)

| Feb 11, 2013 at 7:48 am CST
Rating: 92%Manufacturer: Intel

Intel DC S3700 Internals

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The Intel DC S3700 SSD comes in a 7.5 mm Z-height metal alloy casing with the relevant branding information on the front. This 7.5mm form factor lends itself well to installation into slim applications, and for those applications which demand even slimmer installations Intel offers 1.8" DC S3700's.

Intel DC S3700 800GB Enterprise SSD Review 06 | TweakTown.com

The rear of the SSD is unpolished, but we can observe the SATA 6Gb/s connection. SATA does not feature some of the advanced features of SAS, but Intel's partnership with HGST will likely bring about a SAS SSD with this same controller technology.

Intel DC S3700 800GB Enterprise SSD Review 07 | TweakTown.com

Once dissembled, we can observe that the case has plastic spacers that help to keep the PCB snug in the case. One readily noticeable characteristic is that Intel has gone to BGA mounting for all components on the PCB.

Intel DC S3700 800GB Enterprise SSD Review 08 | TweakTown.com

The proprietary PC29AS21CA controller is a departure from Intel's previous enterprise-class SSDs, with an 8-channel architecture as opposed to the old 10-channel design.

Intel DC S3700 800GB Enterprise SSD Review 09 | TweakTown.com

The controller is flanked by two Micron DDR3-1333 DRAM packages. These are used for caching of the indirection table and not user data. The large amount of cache (1GB for 800GB model) provides ample room for the 1:1 mapping scheme employed by Intel with this new generation of SSDs.

Intel DC S3700 800GB Enterprise SSD Review 10 | TweakTown.com

The 25nm lithography 29F64B08PCMEI HET-MLC consists of 8 packages for each side of the PCB. With 8 x 8GB dice in each package, there is a total of 64 GB per package. This brings us to 1024GB of raw NAND, of which 800GB is user addressable.

Intel DC S3700 800GB Enterprise SSD Review 11 | TweakTown.com

The two capacitors occupy a cutout on the side of the PCB. This is a unique deployment of capacitors, with previous applications featuring capacitors mounted to the PCB itself. The 37V/47uF capacitors are rated for temperatures up to 105C, and will flush data to the NAND in the event of a power loss issue.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR -

The quest for benchmark world records led Paul further and further down the overclocking rabbit hole. SSDs and RAID controllers were a big part of that equation, allowing him to push performance to the bleeding edge. Finding the fastest and most extreme storage solutions led to experience with a myriad of high-end enterprise devices. Soon testing SSDs and Enterprise RAID controllers at the limits of their performance became Paul's real passion, one that is carried out through writing articles and reviews.

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