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Sunny, summery Intel slips out six flashy 3D NAND SSDs

Doing Internet of Things stuff? There's one for you, too

Intel has introduced six new SSDs using 3D NAND technology, with two client products, two data centre drives and two embedded Internet of Things drives.

Chipzilla says these are the first of many utilising 3D NAND technology and we expect some of the existing 2D (planar) NAND drives to fall out of favour and be retired. The new product list is:

  • Client PCIe NVMe
    • 600p Series for the consumer client market
    • Pro 6000p Series for the business client market
  • Data Centre
    • DC P3520 Series for read-intensive applications in cloud computing environments
    • DC S3520 Series balances cost and performance for the data centre, and good the initial transition to SATA SSDs from HDDs.
  • Internet of Things
    • E 6000p Series in M.2 form factor applications such as point-of-sale devices and digital signage
    • E 5420s Series provides additional data protection

Into the detail and starting with the client drives: Intel's 600p joins its current personal client SSD products, the 540s, 750, 730, 535 and 530 series. Both use a 3rd party controller. It has 128GB, 256GB, 512GB and 1TB capacity levels, and is made from TLC (3 bits/cell) 3D NAND.

  • Random read IOPS range from 35,000 at 128GB to 155,000 at 1TB
  • Random write IOPS range from 91,000 at 128GB to 128,000 at 1TB
  • Sequential reads range from 770 MB/s at 128GB to 1.8 GB/s at 1TB
  • Sequential writes range from 450 MB/s at 128GB to 560 MB/s at 1TB

The device comes in M.2 format with a PCIe Gen 3x4 NVMe interface. I has a 1.6 million hours MTBF rating but no drive writes per day (DWPD) figure is supplied and nor is its latency. The 600p has a five year warranty and AES 256-bit encryption.

The Pro 6000p appears to top out the existing business client SSD range, the Pro 5400s, Pro 2500, Pro 1500 and 750 Series. The only spec-list difference we spotted between the 600P and Pro 6000p is that the latter is a 600p with added support for remote secure erase by Intel's Active Management Technology. Its performance appears to be the same as the 600p's.

Data centre SSDs

Intel has a mass of data centre SSDs: D3700, D3600, S3100, P3608, P3700, P3600, P3500.S3710, S3700 and S3610. The P3520 and S3520 add to this multifarious mix.

The P3520 comes in U.2 and an HHHL PCIe Gen 3 x4 format. It has three capacity levels – 450GB, 1.2TB and 1.6TB – and is made from MLC 3D NAND, the two bits/cell stuff.

  • Random read IOPSs are up to 145,000, 320,000 and 375,000 as capacity rises
  • Random write IOPS are up to 19,000, 26,000 and 26,000 as capacity rises
  • Sequential reads are 1.2, 1.7 and 1.71 GB/sec as capacity rises
  • Sequential writes are 600 MB/sec, 1.3 and 1.35 GB/sec as capacity rises

The S3520 is a more complicated beast, coming in 2.5-inch and M.2 6Gbit/s SATA formats. Intel says it's made from MLC 3D NAND wiith 16nm geometry, which is a surprisingly low cell size for 3D NAND. (see page 2 of this datasheet, PDF)

  • 2.5-inch S3520
    • Random read IOPS are up to 67,500
    • Random write IOPS are up to 17,000
    • Sequential reads are up to 450 MB/sec
    • Sequential writes are up to 380 MB/sec
  • M.2 S3520
    • Random read IOPSs are up to 53,000
    • Random write IOPSs are up to 14,400
    • Sequential reads are up to 410 MB/sec
    • Sequential writes are up to 320 MB/sec

Intel provides latency numbers for this drive; read/write 46μs/50μs.

Compared to the S3510 the S3520 needs 15 per cent lower idle power, 30 per cent lower active write power and has 35 per cent more performance/watt. Its endurance has been increased to one DWPD from the S3510's 0.3DWPD. We guess the S3510 just got replaced.

Embedded SSDs

Chipzilla has made SSDs for embedded system use for some time, including the E 5400s and E5410s. Now we have the E 5420s and Intel is calling this its IoT range of SSDs, with digital signage, point-of-sale terminals and ATMs in mind.

The E6000p is an M.2 PCIe Gen 3 x 4 device in 128GB and 256GB capacities. It uses TLC 3D NAND with, we understand, a 348Gb die.

  • Random read IOPSs are up to 35,000 at 128GB and 71,000 at 256GB
  • Random write IOPSs are up to 91,500 at 128GB and 112,000 at 256GB
  • Sequential reads are up to 770 MB/s at 128GB and 1.57 GB/sec at 256GB
  • Sequential writes are up to 450 MB/s at 128GB and 540 MB/sec at 256GB

It has a 10mW idle power rating and a five year warranty.

The E5420s is built from MLC 3D NAND, not TLC, and comes in 150GB M.2 format or 240GB 2.5-inch guise; both with a 6Gbit/s SATA interface.

  • Random read IOPSs are up to 35,000 at 128GB and 71,000 at 240GB
  • Random write IOPSs are up to 91,500 at 128GB and 112,000 at 240GB
  • Sequential reads are up to 770 MB/s at 128GB and 1.57 GB/sec at 240GB
  • Sequential writes are up to 450 MB/s at 128GB and 540 MB/sec at 240GB

This drive has AES 256-bit encryption, a two million hours MTBF rating and endurance of one DWPD.

For brochure and spec information on these new SSDs hit this URL. The 600p is available now; think 256GB $130 and 1TB $460. The others will be along later. And if you have read this far, you deserve a cup of refreshing coffee and a biscuit. ®

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