Storage

Prices for solid state drives have fallen precipitously over the past year. This is especially true when shopping 2.5-inch form factor SATA SSDs, which is where some of the best values in solid state storage are currently found. That's certainly true of Micron's Crucial brand MX200 line, two of which we have in for review here. First announced at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas earlier this year, the MX200 series debuted in three capacities -- 250GB, 500GB, and 1TB, each priced at under 50 cents per gigabyte. Crucial set the MSRPs at $140 for the 250GB model, $250 for the 500GB... Read more...
If you’re still rocking a 1TB or even 2TB hard drive on your PC, you’re probably starting to feel squeezed by that capacity ceiling sneaking closer and closer. Game download sizes are swelling with the addition of ever-increasing detail and 4K textures (Star Citizen is rumored to exceed 100GB) and content producers can never have enough space to store and edit their digital creations. If you’re looking for a seriously roomy new hard drive or three, Western Digital has you covered with today’s launch of the WD Black 6TB HDD and the NAS-friendly WD Red Pro 6TB. They're also launching 5TB versions... Read more...
"This is something many people thought was impossible," exclaimed Intel Senior Vice President Rob Crooke. During an invite-only press conference, Crooke along with Micron CEO Mark Durcan revealed a radically new class of storage and memory architecture called 3D XPoint (pronounced "Cross Point"). To say this is a game-changer would be the understatement of the year. Tangible products based on the technology will debut in 2016, but today's event was focused on the development partnership between Intel and Micron. Frankly, what they've accomplished is astounding. Even though we’re finally on the... Read more...
OCZ is launching a brand new series of solid state drives today, dubbed the Trion 100. Early prototypes of the drives were shown off at CES a few months back, but the drives are now ready for primetime. We should note that the Trion 100 series breaks some new ground for OCZ. Not only are they the first drives from the company to use TLC NAND, but they’re also the first to use all in-house Toshiba technology with the drive's Flash memory and controller both designed and built by Toshiba.The OCZ Trion 100 series is targeted at budget conscious consumers and users still contemplating the upgrade from... Read more...
Anyone who follows the NAS game will likely recognize the name Synology, but we’d wager most home users aren't quite as familiar with them. That’s simply because Synology storage devices have typically targeted a more advanced crowd, such as readers of this website. If you had ever met someone who was running a Synology NAS at home, you knew right away they were an enthusiast, advanced user, neckbeard, etc. Newbies use more mainstream products, but hardcore guys and gals use Synology--or something like that. Well, times are changing, and Synology is trying to get in on the “cloud storage” game... Read more...
The WD My Cloud EX2100 is a new prosumer-oriented NAS drive from WD that continues the company's adventures in the realm of "personal cloud" storage. These drives are aimed directly at people who use Cloud storage such as Dropbox, Google Drive, Box.com, and others. The marketing speak from WD is that those services require a monthly payment for a small amount of storage, and you have to store your data on someone else's cloud. For example Dropbox charges $10 a month for 1TB of storage, and Google charges the same. WD's pitch is you can get multiple terabytes of storage with one of its drives, and... Read more...
Solid State Drives continue to be one of the more sought after (and effective) upgrades for both desktop and mobile systems. But as drives have matured, and newer generations have been released, the bandwidth limitations of the legacy SATA interface have become increasingly more apparent. Even relatively affordable, mainstream solid state drives are bumping into the SATA bandwidth limit right alongside more expensive flagship drives, which makes it difficult to differentiate between them based on performance alone.The answer to eliminating the bandwidth limitations of the SATA interface is PCI... Read more...
Today, Intel is taking the wraps off new NVMe PCI Express Solid State Drives, which are the first products with these high speed interfaces that the company has launched specifically for the enthusiast computing and workstation crowds. Historically, Intel's PCI Express-based offerings, like the SSD DC P3700 Series, have been squarely targeted for datacenter or enterprise applications, with price tags to match. However, today Intel is throwing performance enthusiasts another bone with the launch of the Intel SSD 750 series. We've historically been big on PCI Express SSDs here, because they get around... Read more...
Samsung is introducing a number of new members to their SSD 850 EVO line-up of Solid State Drives, based on different form factors than the standard 2.5” drives we showed you here. The brand new mSATA and M.2 Samsung SSD 850 EVO drives being announced today, however, leverage all of the same technology. The last few generations of Samsung’s 2.5” Solid State Drive utilized PCBs that barley filled up half of their encloses, and a large portion of those PCBs were dedicated to the standard SATA power and data cable connectors, so it’s no shock to see these new, smaller variants arrive with mSATA and... Read more...
OCZ Technology is at the ready with yet another new Solid State Drive, built around the company’s tried-and-true Barefoot 3 controller. The Vector 180 series drive we’ll be showing you here today is packing some of Toshiba’s latest A19nm MLC NAND flash memory and has some welcomed features and additions normally reserved for more expensive, enterprise-class drives.And the Vector 180 isn’t the only thing OCZ has in store today. Launching alongside this new SSD is a brand new utility, dubbed OCZ Guru, geared for easy management and tuning of OCZ’s enthusiast-class drives. The OCZ Guru utility will... Read more...
When they first came out, solid state drives were cost prohibitive for many people and they remained that way until NAND flash memory prices came crashing down like the careers of every actor on "The Celebrity Apprentice." Now not only are SSDs affordable, they're comparatively capacious and much faster than many of the older models, and as a result they've barged into the mainstream market -- that laptop your Aunt Ethel bought from Best Buy could be rocking an SSD. Save for when massive amounts of cheap storage space is needed, SSDs have effectively (and finally) begun to replace HDDs, which is... Read more...
The Western Digital Passport Wireless is a member of a new class of storage devices that combine run-of-the-mill USB storage with wireless hotspot and media center functionality. These devices essentially marry what used to be two separate drives - an external USB device and a media device that can stream data wirelessly to connected devices. They also help address the relatively small amount of storage that is included with today's mobile devices, as they let you store and access terabytes of data on your smartphone or tablet without having to store it locally. It's an interesting combination,... Read more...
Last year, Plextor introduced its M6e family of solid state drives. The drives are / were offered in M.2 and PCI Express flavors, though technically the PCIe-based models were the same M.2 drives parked in a PCIe-to-M.2 adapter card. Regardless of the technicalities involved, the Plextor M6e’s specifications and performance were relatively strong, with peak read speeds topping the 770MB/s mark.The original Plextor M6e, however, wasn’t much to look at. It featured a basic, green PCB and the M.2 SSD sat right in the middle for all to see. Plextor decided to kick things up a few notches with a new... Read more...
The hard drive market has become a lot less sexy in the past few years thanks to SSDs. What we used to consider "fast" for a hard drive is relatively slow compared to even the cheapest of today's solid state drives. But there are two areas where hard drives still rule the roost, and that's in terms of overall capacity and cost per gigabyte. Right now you can buy a 4TB hard drive for the same cost as a 256GB SSD, so the two are in separate universes in that regard. We love SSDs and think just about everyone should run their OS on one, but most aren't large enough to hold all user data over a long... Read more...
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