Intel details new 34nm solid-state drives

— 11:51 AM on July 21, 2009

Intel's next-gen solid-state drives have been rumored for some time, and now they're official. Rather awkwardly dubbed the X25-M on 34nm, the new SSDs predictably make use of flash memory chips built using 34nm process technology. Existing X25-M SSDs use 50nm flash.

The move to a finer fabrication process will allow Intel to offer these new drives at lower prices than existing models. The 80GB unit, for example, will cost just $225 in bulk quantities—much less than current derivative's $345 street price. A 160GB model is slated to cost $440, again much cheaper than an equivalent 50nm X25-M, which sells for over $600. Rumors had suggested that Intel would also add a 320GB model to its new SSD line, but there's no word on that capacity point in the press release.

In addition to lower prices, these next-gen SSDs also promise better performance than their predecessors. Intel claims the new drives have just 65 microseconds of read latency—20 microseconds less than the current X25-M. Random write performance has apparently doubled, as well. Somewhat surprisingly, though, an article over at AnandTech suggests that sustained transfer ratings haven't budged from the original X25-M's 250MB/s reads and 70MB/s writes. Anand also reports that these new models will gain TRIM support via a firmware update when Windows 7 is released. However, it appears that TRIM support won't be added to 50nm X25-Ms.

Intel's 1.8" X18-M family is also moving to 32nm. Those drives won't start shipping until later in the quarter, though. The new X25-Ms are apparently shipping now. Expect a full review just as soon as we can get our hands on one for testing.

Like what we're doing? Pay what you want to support TR and get nifty extra features.
Top contributors
1. BIF - $340 2. chasp_0 - $251 3. mbutrovich - $250
4. Ryu Connor - $250 5. YetAnotherGeek2 - $200 6. aeassa - $175
7. dashbarron - $150 8. Captain Ned - $100 9. Anonymous Gerbil - $100
10. Bill Door - $100
Tip: You can use the A/Z keys to walk threads.
View options

This discussion is now closed.