SK-Hynix Enters 2.5” Solid-State Drive Market
In the SSD market, there is a small 'elite group' of companies that produce almost every part of their drives, from the controller chips to the flash memory itself. Then there are the smaller firms who buy components from other companies to produce their drives. Samsung, Micron/Crucial and Intel belong to the former group, but it seems another industry giant is interested in joining that special circle. SK-Hynix, a large Korean manufacturer known for its RAM modules, is entering the fray with a pair of drives decked out in high-class packaging alongside fiery performance and shiny-new flash memory technology – developed in-house, of course.
The drives, which lack any sort of unique product name for a change, contain 256GB of 128GB-worth of ONFI synchronous NAND flash memory manufactured on a 26nm process. Hynix is currently the only company to offer 26nm flash – the rest are currently using 28nm, although that's sure to change very soon. The pearly-white Hynix SSDs are capable of almost fully saturating their SATA III 6Gbps interfaces with read speeds of up to 510MB/s and write speeds of up to 470MB/s – obviously four or five times faster than your average hard drive, and competitive with most of today's other solid-state drives. Hynix also boasts random I/O rates of 55,000 and 85,000 IOPS for reads and writes, respectively, alongside the prerequisite TRIM support, 7mm physical drive height, and internal 128-bit AES encryption for data security.
Despite the fact that Hynix took over Link-A-Media Devices, a memory controller manufacturer, not too long ago, under the hood of the company's new drives are LSI SandForce SF-2281 controllers. This is sure to change in the future, though, as Hynix will soon have its own controllers to do battle against Samsung and the others' designs.
In the meantime, you'll have to wait a little bit longer for pricing information. The new Hynix SSDs are currently on sale in Japan, with the company actively looking into toting them over to the US of A and its home country of South Korea. (Via The Tech Report)