We just received a package by way of Corsair that contained a brand new product we're certain many of you will be interested in checking out. Inside a non-descript, little, white box was a shiny Corsair-branded 256GB SSD (solid state drive), that the company will be releasing sometime in the not too distant future.
If you remember back to January, Corsair quietly launched a 128GB SSD. Like that drive, this new 256GB model features Samsung technology, but with a new controller and integrated cache that should offer significantly increased performance.
The drive we received is branded as a Corsair S256, but we've been told that when the drive hits store shelves the official product name will be P256--the "S" is changing to a "P". As we've already mentioned, and the product name implies, the drive features a 256GB total capacity, with SATA 3.0Gb/s connectivity, and a heavy-duty aluminum enclosure.
With the P256 disassembled, you can see the PCB and new Samsung S3C29RBB01-YK40 controller used in the drive as well as the 64MB of on-board cache memory. As you can probably guess, Samsung MLC flash memory is also used is the drive, and if you look close, you can see that the memory chips are double-stacked.
We haven't put the Corsair P256 through an entire battery of tests just yet, but thought you'd like to see some preliminary benchmark data to get your geek on. According to HD Tach, the Corsair P256 offers average read speeds just over the 200MB/s mark, with average write speeds of 169.1MB/s, .1ms random access, and a 248.2MB/s burst speed. Those are pretty impressive scores that compare very favorably with Intel's excellent X25, which falls victim to the Corsair drive in average write and burst speeds.
Expected pricing for the Corsair P256 is $749. We'll have a full evaluation of the drive posted soon, complete with all pertinent technical details, so stay tuned.
Update: Corsair sent word that drives will be shipping out to distributors this week and consumers should be able to purchase then by early next week.