SATA + PCI Express = SATA Express

Brad Chacos

If you're talking music, mashups are so, like, 2005. To be honest, we never really got into mixing Disturbed with the Backstreet Boys to begin with. But when you start talking data transfer specification mashups our ears start to perk up. Our sonic receptors are standing at full attention today, after the Serial ATA International Organization announced the development of a new specification that combines the SATA infrastructure with the PCIe interface to form a Voltron-like super-spec.

The SATA Express specification (creative name, huh?) will offer 8Gbps and 16Gbps speeds and should be available by the end of the year. SAIO says the spec being developed targets SSDs and hybrid drives that are chafing at the edges of the 6Gbps SATA3 spec. Drives that don't need that kind of transfer speed – like flash memory-less HDDs – will continue to use the still-speedy SATA3 spec.

"The specification will define new device and motherboard connectors that will support both new SATA Express and current SATA devices," the group's press release (PDF) says.

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