Leaked Intel roadmap’ promises… er, gear that could die after 7 months [Chris Mellor for theregister.com]

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Chris Mellor – The Register http://www.theregister.co.uk/2013/12/09/intel_ssd_roadmappery/


Chris does a quick write-up of a leaked SSD roadmap from Intel. Seems like we’re now in a performance plateau on the consumer/business end of the scale for SATA based SSD drives. I haven’t seen an uptick in Read/Write performance in a long time. Back in the heady days of OCZ/Crucial/SanDisk releasing new drives with new memory controllers on a roughly 6 month schedule, speeds slowly marched up the scale until we were seeing 200MB-Read/150MB-Write (equalling some of the fastest magnetic hard drives at the time). Then yowza, we blew right past that performance figure to 250MB/sec-275MB/sec-and higher. Intel vs. Samsung for the top speed champions at this point. SandForce was helping people enter the market at acceptable performance levels (250/200). Prices were not really edging downward, but speeds kept going up, up, up.


Now we’re in the PCIe era, with everyone building their own custom design for a particular platform, make and model. Apple’s using their own design PCIe SSDs for their laptops and soon for the Mac Pro desktop workstations. One or two other manufacturers are adpating m2 sized Memory devices as PCIe add-in cards for different ultra-lightweight designs. But there’s no wave of the equivalent aftermarket, 3rd party SSDs we saw when SATA drives were king. So now we’re left with a very respectable, and still somewhat under-utilized SATA SSD market with speeds in the 500/Less than 500 Read/Write speed range. Until PCIe starts to converge, consolidate and come up with a common form factor (card size, pin out, edge connector) we’ll be seeing a long slow commoditization of SATA SSD drives with the lucky few spinning their own PCIe products. Hopefully there will be an upset and someone will form up a group to support PCIe SSD mezzanine or expansion slot EVERYWHERE. When that time comes, we’ll get the second wave of SSD performance I think we all are looking for.




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