Items tagged with PCIe

Memory cards for digital cameras and other devices are about to get a whole lot faster and more capacious at the same time. At the 2018 Mobile World Congress Shanghai (MWC Shang) that runs from today through June 29, the SD Association announced a new SD memory card standard called SD Express. The new standard taps into the PCIe bus with an NVMe interface to bring a maximum data transfer rate of 985 megabytes per second (MB/s). It also raises the capacity ceiling from 2TB with SDXC to 128TB with the new SD Ultra Capacity (SDUC) card format. "SD Express’ use of popular PCIe and NVMe interfaces to deliver faster transfer speeds is a savvy choice since both protocols are widely used in the... Read more...
Samsung has been at the forefront of NVMe-based solid state storage essentially since the standard’s inception. The Samsung SSD 960 Pro and 960 EVO that were released all the way back in 2016 have been among the best performing, most sought after M.2 NVMe-based gumsticks available. It’s kind of hard to believe the 960 Pro and 960 EVO have been riding high for so long in such a rapidly advancing space, but it’s true. Samsung, however, is finally ready to supplant its popular drives with the brand-new – you guessed it – SSD 970 Pro and 970 EVO series that we’re going to be showing you here today. The Samsung SSD 970 Pro and 970 EVO are the company’s latest... Read more...
Intel has released a dizzying array of solid state storage products over the last few weeks. We recently took a look at a pair of Intel Optane SSD 800P series drives for enthusiast desktop and mobile systems, and also tinkered with the impressive Intel SSD DC P4600 series enterprise-class NVMe drive. Today, we’ll stay in the enterprise space and inspect a pair of Intel’s recently-announced SSD DC P4510 series drives, which target cloud storage applications with impressive throughput and latency characteristics. The Intel SSD DC P4510 series is an evolution of the existing SSD DC P4500, but feature some newer technologies and highly-optimized and re-tooled firmware to boost performance... Read more...
Last year, Intel updated its line-up of NVMe, PCI Express-based solid state drives, for cloud and data center applications, with a couple of different models tuned for different workloads. The Intel SSD DC P4600 we will be showing you here was among those drives. It features a fourth-generation Intel controller and performance-optimized firmware, along with 3D TLC NAND flash memory (384Gb per die). If you remember, the DC P3700 we looked at a few years back had an 18-channel controller and MLC NAND, so the P4600 may sound like a downgrade in some respects, but as you’ll see a little later, performance is still strong with this newer drive relative to its predecessor. We’ve got the... Read more...
Intel is refreshing its mainstream NVMe-based solid state storage line-up with a brand new SSD targeting mobile and desktop platforms, that has much higher performance but lower power consumption than its predecessors. The Intel SSD 760P series of solid state drives being introduced today combine the latest Intel 3D NAND with a third-party controller, and some custom firmware, to increase performance versus previous-gen offerings but also bring NVMe SSD pricing closer to SATA. We’ve got a 512GB Intel SSD 760P series drive in house and have tested it alongside a wide range of NVMe PCIe-based SSDs, including the ultra-high-end Intel Optane 900P. That drive is in a completely different... Read more...
Micron announced its 9100 Series NVMe enterprise-class solid state drive back in April. The drives come in multiple flavors and form factors, with the Micron 9100 PRO series targeting read-centric environments, while the 9100 MAX targets mixed-use cases. Capacities for the drives in the Micron 9100 series range from 800GB on up to 3.2TB, though all of the drives are outfitted with similar controllers and NAND.Although news of the drives has been circulating for a couple of months now, it was just recently that we got our hands on one for some in-house testing. We’ve been experimenting with a Micron 9100 MAX 2.4TB HHHL NVMe drive for a couple of weeks and will detail its performance on the pages... Read more...
Major players in the solid state storage business continue to innovate at a breakneck pace, especially now that the market has begun a shift away from the lowly SATA interface towards higher performing alternatives like PCI Express. For a while, manufacturers were bolting multiple SATA controllers together on single devices, in RAID configurations, to boost performance beyond what a single SATA-based drive could do. But with the advent of NVMe, that’s no longer necessary for most applications. Though, pairing up multiple NVMe devices can also be a means to increase performance, of course.Just to give a quick refresher, NVM Express or NVMe, is a low-latency, scalable host controller interface... 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 the SATA bottleneck that holds many standard 2.5-inch SATA Solid State Drives down at around 550MB/sec... Read more...
SanDisk has announced the release of third-generation Fusion ioDrive PCIe and Mezzanine flash cards, in doing so marking the first integration of SanDisk NAND flash and Virtual Storage Layer (VSL) software into the ioMemory product line since the company acquired Fusion-io in June 2014 for $1.1 billion. Flash technology has moved significantly forward since the SanDisk's acquisition of Fusion, with smaller geometries and denser dies, all of which mean more flash capacity can now be placed on a PCIe flash card with performance raised and/or prices cut. Which explains why SanDisk is saying that their new products — built with SanDisk NAND — will offer a four times price performance improvement,... 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 Express. The latest high-end solid state drives connect to a system using the PCI Express interface,... Read more...
When solid-state drives are unencumbered by the SATA interface, beautiful things can happen. Look no further than the Intel SSD 750 Series, which we reviewed two weeks ago, to see what kind of performance is achievable with an NVMe PCI Express interface. If you can actually believe it, HGST, a Western Digital company, has actually announced a new NVMe PCI Express SSD that is rated faster than even Intel’s new barnstormer. But to be fair, the Intel SSD 750 Series is aimed at the consumer/prosumer market whereas the new HGST Ultrastar SN100 is aimed squarely at the enterprise market. The HGST Ultrastar SN100 Series will be offered in both HH-HL and SFF 2.5-inch form-factors in capacities up to... Read more...
In this latest episode of HotHardware’s Two and a Half Geeks, Dave and Marco welcome Austin Evans into the mix and discuss AMD’s FreeSync technology and the LG 34UM67 widescreen display, NVIDIA’s powerful new GeForce GTX Titan X, the just-released Intel SSD 750 NVMe drive, the OCZ Vector 180 SSD, the sleek Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon (2015) and a whole lot more... Show Notes: 01:34 - AMD FreeSync And LG 34UM67 Widescreen Monitor Review 09:30 - Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon (2015) Review: Back To Basics With Broadwell 20:09 - NVIDIA GeForce GTX Titan X Review: Efficient, Powerful 28:59 - Intel SSD 750 Series NVMe PCI Express Solid State Drive Review 40:41 - OCZ Vector 180 Solid State Drive Review: Barefoot... 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 revision of the M6e, dubbed the Black Edition. The upcoming Plextor M6e Black Edition is similar to... Read more...
One of the disadvantages to buying an Apple system is that it generally means less upgradeability and flexibility than a system from a traditional PC OEM. Over the last few years, Apple has introduced features and adopted standards that made upgrading or using third-party hardware progressively more difficult. Now, with OS X 10.10 Yosemite, the company has taken another step down the path towards total vendor lock-in and effectively disabled support for third-party SSDs. We say "effectively" because while third-party SSDs will still work, they'll no longer perform the TRIM garbage collection command. Being able to perform TRIM and clean the SSD when its sitting idle is vital to keeping the drive... Read more...
Intel is rolling out a new line of enterprise-class SSDs with PCIe interfaces that are designed to meet “the increasing needs for high-performance, consistent and reliable storage solutions in the data center while helping to lower total cost of ownership.” The drives include Intel SSD DC P3700 (for more write-intensive applications), P3600 (for mixed workloads), and P3500 (for read-heavy applications). The drives are designed to avoid performance bottlenecks an NVMe-architected PCIe interface controller that has an interface latency some six times faster than 6Gbps SATA SSDs, and they promise increased processor utilization with scalable capacity and performance. The drives feature... Read more...
Seagate announced that it has acquired LSI’s Accelerated Solutions Division (ASD) and Flash Components Division (FCD) from parent Avago for $450 million in cash. What Seagate is getting is a nice big pile of enterprise PCIe-based flash and SSD controller technologies that will allow it to push harder into the enterprise storage space. “Seagate is committed to providing our customers with a complete range of storage solutions, and this acquisition will significantly enhance our flash storage offerings to supplement our existing portfolio,” said Steve Luczo, Seagate chairman and CEO in a press release, touting LSI’s broad PCIe flash portfolio and “best-in-class”... Read more...
OCZ's RevoDrive series has been a popular enthusiast and workstation-class storage product family for years now.  The last time we looked at an OCZ RevoDrive, the RevoDrive 3 X2 offered smoking-fast performance and bandwidth of up to 1.5GB/sec for reads and 1.25GB/sec for writes, thanks to its PCI Express-based design, which basically comprises four Sandforce-based SSDs on a single card...  Since then, OCZ was acquired by Toshiba and has been going through its product stack, revamping their SSD portfolio with fresh re-designs based on Toshiba NAND Flash memory... Blinding Speed - OCZ's RevoDrive 350 PCIe SSD Reviewed OCZ has now replaced the RevoDrive 3 series with an almost completely... Read more...
OCZ's RevoDrive series has been a popular enthusiast and workstation-class storage product family for years now. The last time we looked at an OCZ RevoDrive, the RevoDrive 3 X2 offered smoking-fast performance and bandwidth of up to 1.5GB/sec for reads and 1.25GB/sec for writes thanks to its PCI Express-based design, which basically comprises four Sandforce-based SSDs on a single card, alleviating the 6Gbps SATA bottleneck.  Since then, OCZ was acquired by Toshiba and has been going through its product stack, revamping its SSD portfolio with fresh re-designs based on Toshiba NAND Flash memory for not only increased performance but better cost structure as well. OCZ has now replaced the RevoDrive... Read more...
Hot on the heels of OCZ’s Z-Drive 4500 PCIe SSD series launch comes another spate of PCIe drives from the Toshiba-owned company. OCZ’s new RevoDrive 350 PCIe SSDs are built for workstations and high-performance gaming, boasting triple the performance of SATA SSDs. OCZ says that the RevoDrive 350s offer up to 1.8GBps sequential speeds with up to 140,000 4K random write IOPS on a PCIe Gen 2 x8 interface. The drives features up to four LSI SF-2282 processors and features Toshiba flash. “The new RevoDrive 350 is built using proven technology with the added benefit of utilizing in-house premium Toshiba flash and OCZ’s proprietary Virtualized Controller Architecture (VCA) 2.0... Read more...
In November last year, we gave you a first look at LSI's forthcoming SandForce SF3700 PCI Express SSD Flash controller. It's an impressive silicon integration of both a native PCI Express x4 interface and SandForce's excellent SSD controller technologies, along with some refinements and advancements baked in.  At the time, LSI mentioned a few OEM partners they were aligning with for manufacturing of their various reference designs and form-factors and Kingston, as well as ADATA and AVANT were on that short list.  At CES 2014 last week, however, it was Kingston that stepped out with the first incarnation of a PCI Express SSD card based on the technology and targeted at the enthusiast... Read more...
After initially seeding the Samsung XP941 PCIe SSD to notebook manufacturers earlier this year, Samsung announced that the drives are now in mass production and will show up in products on store shelves later this year. The XP941 family of PCIe SSDs consists of 128GB, 256GB, and 512GB capacities and offers sequential reads of 1400MBps over a PCIe 2.0 interface. The drives will feature the 10nm-class (between 10nm and 20nm) technology and the M.2 form factor, which is 80mm x 22mm and weighing in at 6 grams. Obviously, the XP941 SSDs are much faster and also much smaller than current 2.5-inch SSDs, which are bottlenecked performance-wise by interfaced such as SATA 6Gbps. Samsung says that the XP941... Read more...
We’ve been critical of Apple recently for being frustratingly stagnant in terms of innovation (at least with handsets), and while it’s still debatable whether the iOS 7 and Mac OS X Maverick updates are worth getting excited about, Apple’s forthcoming Mac Pro certainly piques our collective interest; it portends some of that industrial design meets superb engineering, meets high-end features flair that we haven’t seen from Apple much lately. There’s of course the obvious fact that the Mac Pro is built as a cylinder with all the components facing inward as opposed to the big rectangular box style of most computer chassis. Presumably, this facilitates heat dissipation... Read more...
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