Toshiba Unveils XG5 High-Performance NVMe SSD Featuring 64-Layer BiCS 3D Flash Memory

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We gave you a glimpse of an unnamed Toshiba NVMe SSD at Dell EMC World a few weeks back, featuring 64-layer BiCS 3D flash memory. We couldn’t reveal much about the drive then, but Toshiba is lifting the veil on it today, and is announcing a new family of drives dubbed the XG5, which offer a combination of high performance and high density, at what should be competitive price points.

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Toshiba’s BiCS flash memory employs a three-dimensional (3D) stacked cell structure that is designed for high density applications, but the technology also offers higher endurance than typical 3D NAND flash memory. Because triple pages can be programmed simultaneously, BiCS 3D flash memory is capable of higher performance as well, and the unique structure of the 64-layer BiCS 3D flash memory allows Toshiba to offer XG5 drives in capacities of up to 1TB, using a single package.

Model XG5
Form Factor M.2 2280 (Single Sided Module)
Memory 64-Layer BiCS FLASH
Capacity Up to 1TB
Sequential Read Up to 3GB/s (2.9GiB/s)
Sequential Write Up to 2.1GB/s (2GiB/s)
Physical PCIe Base Spec. Revision 3.1a
Maximum Speed 32 GT/s (Gen 3x4 Lane)
Command Set NVMe Rev. 1.2.1
Active Power: Read < 4.6W typ.
Active Power: Write <3.5 W typ.
L1.2 (non-operation mode) <3mW typ.
Dimensions 22mm x 80mm x 2.23mm
MTTF 1.5M Hours

The NVMe XG5 series' specifications are rather impressive. The drives will conform to the M.2 2280 "gumstick" form factor and offer sequential read and write performance of 2.9GB/s and 2.1GB/s, respectively. Typical read power is under 4.6W, while low-power L1.2 mode comes in at under 3mW, typically.

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Toshiba XG5 solid state drives will initially be available in capacities up to 1TB and will target a variety of systems, from mainstream PCs, to thin and light notebooks, and enthusiast-class desktops and laptops. The Toshiba XG5, however, will not be sold at retail – they are destined for OEMs and system builders at this time, but consumer drives featuring similar technology are in the works.