Items tagged with Storage

Samsung has been a leader in the solid state storage market for a number of years. Whether you were looking for affordable SATA-based offerings or high-performance NVMe gumsticks, Samsung usually has an answer. And we’re not just talking about internal drives either; Samsung has also released a number of excellent external storage devices, like the T3 and last year’s T5, for example. What Samsung hasn’t had was an ultra-high speed external solid state device that shed the limitations of legacy interfaces – until today, that is. Samsung’s latest storage product, the X5 Thunderbolt Portable SSD, is a durable, attractive, external device packing an NVMe solid state... Read more...
Anyone who has been paying attention will have noticed that solid state drive prices have come down over the few months, and the year as a whole. It is now relatively affordable to buy a 512GB or even 1TB SSD, especially if you catch one on sale. Well, things may be getting even better for consumers. There is an oversupply of NAND flash memory that is expected pushes SSD prices down even further, this year and into 2019. How low are we talking about here? Jim Handy, an analyst with Objective Analysis, said he expects the market for NAND flash memory to correct itself, or even bottom out altogether, to actual cost of production of 64-layer 3D NAND flash, The Register reports. That would put the... Read more...
Intel has taken another step forward in its perpetual march towards high-capacity, lower-cost solid state drives. Today’s release of the new Intel SSD 660p series of drives marks the first in the company’s line-up to pack its brand-new 64-layer QLC (quad-level cell) 3D NAND Flash memory, which essentially doubles the capacities available within the same footprint of previous-gen technologies. The Intel SSD 660p series also leverages NVMe technology, the M.2 form factor, and it employs firmware that’s tuned specifically for mainstream, consumer class workloads. These drives are meant to finally put a nail in SATA’s coffin, thanks to their significantly better performance... Read more...
Your next solid state drive (SSD) upgrade might offer more storage for your dollar than any previous SSD purchase. DRAMeXchange, a division of TrendForce, forecasts that the average selling price of NAND flash memory chips will drop 10 percent sequentially in the third and fourth quarters of this year, despite Q3 traditionally being the peak season for consumer electronics. Growth in consumer electronic sales has been weaker than expected. Pile on top of that expanding an expanding supply of 3D NAND flash memory chips and you have the making of a near-perfect storm for lower prices. In theory, this should lead to cheaper SSDs. It could also lead to larger capacity drives in the marketplace. "The... Read more...
If you're a Dropbox customer paying for the service, you'll be glad to know that a free storage upgrade is coming your way. Dropbox has updated its Business Standard plan from 2TB of data to 3TB for the same $12.50 per user per month charge. Dropbox says that these storage updates will allow users to upload more UHD video files, offload images from their smartphones, and share large files with clients (a la CADs).  The Dropbox Professional plan for individuals is also seeing a storage increase, doubling in capacity from 1TB to 2TB for the same $16.58 per month. Dropbox Plus keeps its current $8.25 monthly rate and the same 1TB of storage space that money gets you. For teams needing all the... Read more...
Samsung has announced that it has begun mass production of a new type of Flash storage chip. The company's fifth-gen V-NAND has the fastest data transfer speed in the industry and is the first to use the Toggle DDR 4.0 NAND interface. That new interface improves the speed for transmitting data of the 256Gb V-NAND to over 1.4 Gbps. That is a 40% gain in performance for this new Samsung 90-layer NAND technology, compared to Samsung's 64-layer predecessor. Samsung says that the new V-NAND (Vertically stacked NAND) has energy efficiency comparable to the old 64-layer chip because the operating voltage for the fifth-gen part has been reduced from the 1.8 volts required for that old... Read more...
When Intel initially released its Optane Memory line-up, it was one of the most potent and effective storage acceleration products available, right out of the gate. Due to its 3D Xpoint memory technology, which enables consistent, low-latency, high-speed data transfers at low-queue depths, Intel’s Optane Memory is ideally suited for caching smaller chunks of data in consumer systems. Couple Optane Memory’s unique performance characteristics with Intel’s robust caching algorithms and it showcases the effectiveness of Intel’s solution with today’s PCs. Intel has since updated its Optane Memory line-up with a 64GB drive and some new software that enables acceleration... Read more...
The latest generation of NVMe-based solid state drives have significantly altered the value proposition for performance-conscious PC enthusiasts. Whereas the NVMe drives of “old” were significantly more expensive than SATA-based products, while offering somewhat higher performance, many of today’s drives are only slightly higher priced and may offer 5 – 6x the peak throughput. Case in point, the ADATA XPG SX8200 we will be showing you here today. This ADATA drive is a speedy, yet affordable solid state drive that offers peak read and write speeds of 3200/1700MB per second, with a good warranty and solid endurance rating. The ADATA XPG SX8200’s main features and specifications... Read more...
Although we first caught a glimpse of the SSD that would become the Toshiba OCZ RC100 back at the Consumer Electronics Show in January, they are now ready for public consumption and Toshiba has just begun shipping the drives. If you’re not hip to the OCZ RC100, it’s a new family of solid state drives that’s specifically designed to push the NVMe interface and smaller M.2 form factor further down into mainstream price points. Toshiba accomplishes this feat by using a single-package design that packs the NAND flash memory and controller into a single chip. The drive’s design is also DRAM-less to further reduce costs. The end result is a tiny, power-efficient product that... Read more...
Security researchers from the University of Michigan and Zhejiang University in China have published a paper on an acoustic attack vector that could crash a mechanical hard drive, leading to damage for both the hardware and software. The attack does not require fancy equipment, either—an attacker could use regular, built-in speakers or nearby emitters to cause persistent errors on the target system. "Our experiments show that audible sound causes the head stack assembly to vibrate outside of operational bounds; ultrasonic sound causes false positives in the shock sensor, which is designed to prevent a head crash. The problem poses a challenge for legacy magnetic disks that remain stubbornly... Read more...
Intel and Micron have just jointly announced shipment of the first quad-level cell (QLC) NAND-based SSD in the industry: the Micron 5210 ION, which is aimed directly at read-intensive cloud workloads. Intel-Micron say that the new QLC NAND has 33 percent greater bit density than TLC NAND, which gives it the ability to address opportunities in the market that used to be serviced only by lower cost, higher density Hard Disk Drives (HDD). QLC technology allows the SSD to reach 1-terabit densities using a 64-layer 3D NAND structure. However, the Intel-Micron team also notes 96-layer QLC NAND is also en-route. Regardless, the first products are optimized to meet demands of high performance data... Read more...
Western Digital recently launched a new family of NVMe-based solid state drives targeting gamers and enthusiasts. The simply-branded WD Black NVMe SSD family has a similar naming convention to some previous-generation solid state drives built by the company, but these latest offerings are packing some new technology and offer performance much higher than any of the earlier WD-made storage product offerings that came before it. The WD Black NVMe SSD family features a new controller, 64-layer BiCS3 3D TLC NAND flash memory, an intelligently laid-out PCB that optimizes thermal characteristics, and firmware tuned for enthusiast desktop applications. The drive’s main features and specifications... 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...
Western Digital (WD) has pulled the wraps off a new high capacity storage drive that is aimed directly at cloud and enterprise data centers. The new Ultrastar DC HC530 has 14TB of storage capacity, which WD says is the highest capacity conventional magnetic recording hard drive on the market today. The HC530 uses fifth-generation HelioSeal technology and is meant to be perfect for environments where storage density, watt/TB and $/TB are critical. The drive will allow enterprise users to build petabyte-scale infrastructures. WD says that the new HC530 is a follow-on to the 14TB shielded magnetic recording drive, the Ultrastar Hs14.  Brendan Collins, vice president of marketing, Devices, Western... Read more...
Kingston Digital has announced a new storage device aiming at people wanting high performance at an entry-level price. The storage device is called the A1000 PCIe NVMe SSD. The M.2 is the first entry-level consumer-grade SSD of its type and Kingston claims that it will deliver twice the performance of SATA but will retail at “near SATA” pricing. The A1000 is said to be 20 times faster than a normal hard drive. The A1000 is a single-sided M.2 2280 form factor that will work in notebooks and other systems with limited space. A1000 drives use a Gen 3.0 x2 interface, have a 4-channel Phison 5008 controller and 3D NAND flash. Read speeds are up to 1500 MB/s and write speeds are... 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...
Intel is launching its latest Optane-branded family of solid state drives today, the Intel Optane SSD 800P. Unlike the Intel Optane Memory devices, which accelerate hybrid storage configurations through intelligent data caching, or the Optane SSD 900P that’s aimed squarely at hardcore enthusiasts with big budgets, the Intel Optane 800P targets the meat of the mobile and desktops markets, with higher capacities than Optane Memory, but much more affordable pricing than the 900P. The Intel Optane SSD 800P can technically be used as a data caching accelerator like Optane Memory, but these drives are designed to be used as boot volumes to boost performance of mainstream systems. When you... Read more...
Intel has rolled out new SSD storage solutions that are specifically aimed at the data center market. The new SSDs fall into the Intel SSD DC P4510 Series and use 64-layer TLC 3D NAND. The construction of the SSDs allows end users to do more per server, support broader workloads and deliver more space-efficient capacity. Intel wrote, “The P4510 Series enables up to four times more terabytes per server and delivers up to 10 times better random read latency at 99.99 percent quality of service than previous generations. The drive can also deliver up to double the input-output operations per second (IOPS) per terabyte. The 1 and 2TB capacities have been shipping to cloud service providers (CSPs)... Read more...
Samsung recently launched its latest SATA-based solid state drives, the SSD 860 Pro and SSD 860 EVO, featuring 2-bit (MLC) or 3-bit (TLC) versions of the company’s 64-layer 3D V-NAND flash memory. We’ve put up a review of a 2.5” Samsung SSD 860 Pro 2TB drive a couple of weeks back, but have something a bit different in store for you today. On tap here is an evaluation of a 2TB Samsung SSD 860 EVO, but of the M.2 variety. This drive is still packing a SATA interface, but is designed for the sleeker, more modern M.2 2280 form factor. In the current PC landscape, which is chock full of relatively affordable NVMe-based M.2 solid state drives, a SATA-based M.2 offering may seem kind... Read more...
In April 2013, cloud storage provider Backblaze kicked off what would immediately become a tradition. Each year, the company analyzes an incredible amount of data collected over the course of the year to give the rest of us an impression on which hard drive vendors come out ahead, and which fall behind. In other words, it's a polite way of analyzing which vendor "is more likely to lose your data". In Q4 of last year, Backblaze had 91,243 hard drives in operation, a number which excludes boot drives and a few others that couldn't meet the company's criteria of having at least 45 drives of one model in use during the period monitored (to give more accuracy to the results). As seen in the table... 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...
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