Today is a big day in the world of solid state drives. As you know (or are just now learning), SSD performance primarily hinges on the controller, which is one of the reasons why SSDs went through such growing pains early on. Stuttering, or lag, was a common problem that plagued early generation SSDs, and SandForce was one of the first to figure out how to avoid it. When scoping out a high performance SSD, there's a good chance it's sporting a SandForce controller. Well, baby, you ain't seen nothing yet. SandForce just announced its second generation SF-2200 and SF-2100 SSD processors, and boy do they pack a punch.
It didn't take long for memory makers to employ SandForce's brand-spanking-new SF-2000 series controller on the next generation of SSDs. First out of the gate is Mushkin, which just announced new SSDs based on the enterprise-class SF-2500 and SF-2600 processors.
SandForce's updated controllers take advantage of the SATA 6Gb/s interface, and as such, the new Mushkin drives offer up to 500MB/s read and write sequential transfers, and up to 60,000 sustained read and write IOPS. Other enterprisey features include advanced ECC with up to 55 bits correctable per 512-byte sector, and power/performance throttling..
SandForce changed the SSD game by kicking out high-end controllers without the stuttering problem that plagued early drives. Now the company is taking things to another level by announcing the availability of the SF-2000 controller with a native 6Gbps SATA host interface.
The new controller is capable of 60,000 sustained random read/write IOPS and sequential read and write speeds up to 500MB/s, all without any DRAM cache.
"Eighteen months ago, SandForce transformed the data storage industry by being the first company to demonstrate ground-breaking SSD Processor technology that enables MLC flash to be used reliably in enterprise-class SSD applications with world-class performance," said Michael Raam, President and CEO for SandForce. "We are building on the success of our first generation product now in production with multiple Enterprise OEMs by introducing the SF-2000 family that offers significant feature and performance enhancements for our rapidly expanding customer base of trusted SandForce Driven Enterprise and Industrial SSD manufacturers."
On the engineering side, the SF-2000 features support for advanced 30nm and 20nm class Flash with Asynch/ONFi2/Toggle interfaces with data rates up to 166MT/s, enhanced dual-ported SAS bridge support, TCG Enterprise security with selectable multi-banded 256/128-bit AES encryption, an advanced ECC engine, and power and performance throttling options.
It all adds up to a worthy upgrade to previous SandForce controllers, which are found on many of today's faster performing SSDs.
If you thought your 2-year-old solid-state-drive (SSD) was fast, you may want to bury your head in the sand. The alternative is to take a peek at the ridiculous read and write speeds current-gen SSDs are hitting, such as Super Talent's new TeraDrive CT SSD series, and get hit with the upgrade bug.
Built around the SandForce 1222 controller, the TeraDrive CT series comes rated at up to 285MB/s read and up to 275MB/s write speeds, which is only half of the story. In addition to raw performance, these drives come in capacities up to 480GB (60GB, 120GB, and 240GB also available), giving you nearly 1TB of blazing fast storage should you deck out your desktop or notebook with two of Super Talent's flagship models in a RAID 0 array.
Built-in Garbage Collection and TRIM support are part of the package, as are other technologies for enhanced reliability (RAISE) and improved endurance (DuraWrite).
The new drives are available now priced at $199 (60GB), $349 (120GB), and $669 (240GB). And the 480GB? Super Talent didn't say, though we'd suspect it's around the $1,300 mark.
Corsair won the race to release the first SSD built around the Sandforce SF-1200 controller, and with that victory under their belt, they can now concentrate on releasing additional models. That's what they've done -- three of them, to be exact -- adding the F60 (60GB), F120 (120GB), and F240 (240GB) to the Force Series.
"We have had excellent feedback on our Force Series F100 and F200 from both reviewers and customers, and we are excited about expanding our Sandforce-based offerings," stated Jim Carlton, VP of Marketing at Corsair. "These solid-state drives are an excellent option for any enthusiast looking to build their system using the best storage system performance that is currently available."
Use of the Sandforce SF-1200 controller has paid big dividends in performance, with the new drives serving up to 258MB/s read and 275MB/s write speeds, while 4K random writes clock in at 180MB/s. All Force Series drives also support the TRIM command, and according to Corsair, even ECC data protection is improved.
In another nod towards the increasingly popular SandForce controller, Corsair today announced its Force Series SSDs built around SandForce.
"The Force Series are the fastest SSDs that Corsair has launched to date," stated Kevin Conley, Vice President of Engineering at Corsair. “We have been very impressed with the SandForce SSD Processor innovations in the months that we have been working with them, and we can’t wait to get these extraordinarily fast SSDs into the hands of our most demanding customers."
And fast they are, at least on paper. By combining the SandForce SF-1200 SSD processor with MLC flash memory, Corsair claims its new SSD line can race along at 285MB/s read and 275MB/s write speeds.
These will be available in 100GB and 200GB capacities and come with TRIM support in Windows 7. No word yet on price or availability.