ONFI 3.0 flash spec boasts 400MB/s NAND interface

Yesterday, the Open NAND Flash Interface (ONFI) Working Group (wow, that’s a mouthful) released a new 3.0 standard for its NAND interface. The updated standard offers higher speeds in addition to features that should allow SSD makers to build drives more cheaply. By far the biggest improvement is the use of a new non-volatile DDR2 interface that allows individual NAND chips to push data at up to 400MB/s. This doubles the previous ONFI specification’s maximum transfer rate of 200MB/s.

Thanks to the faster interface, SSDs should be able to maintain current performance levels while using fewer channels. This should lead to cheaper drives that contain fewer chips. The ONFI 3.0 spec also reduces the number of chip-enable and controller pins required for those chips. Lowering the pin counts makes associated circuit boards less complex, a move that should further reduce costs.

Future versions of the ONFI standard will support ECC Zero (EZ-NAND), which moves error correction from the SSD controller to the NAND chips. There’s no word on when this useful feature will be added, though. We do know that the first drives using ONFI 3.0 NAND aren’t expected to show up until next year. SandForce has pledged to deliver solutions using the interface in 2012.

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    • Machupo
    • 9 years ago

    So, I guess the new Core Store drives from Supertalent are using ONFI 2.0? They were getting ~350MB/sec in the release video — still waiting on independent reviews though 😉

    [edit]ahh, nevermind — I see that speed refers to [b<]individual chips[/b<] not the drive as a whole. Can't wait to see what controller manufs. do with this[/edit]

    • Shambles
    • 9 years ago

    Bah, don’t they know that I am planning a build in November? Perhaps I’ll wait a few months to stick a SSD in there although re-installing the OS is not much fun.

      • leor
      • 9 years ago

      drive imaging tools such as Acronis are your friend.

        • A_Pickle
        • 9 years ago

        …even if you make significant hardware changes…?

    • bcronce
    • 9 years ago

    Well, I guess I’m waiting until late 2012 before buying a bunch of SSDs

      • UberGerbil
      • 9 years ago

      Why not just wait for memristors and holographic storage?

        • indeego
        • 9 years ago

        Perpetually 3-5 years away.

        • bcronce
        • 9 years ago

        Something right-around-the-corner is a bit different than “in the future, everything will use nano-tubes”. Also, I said a “bunch of” meaning a large investment. A boot drive is not the same as dumping money into a NFS that uses SSDs.

        I use a realistic view when making upgrade decisions. I try to avoid purchasing items that are still being standardized, so long as a “standard” version is in the near(~2years) future.

        eg. GPUs are stable right now, but over the next two years, they will have an extremely rapid increase in power. While CPUs have just started to hit a point of diminishing returns for the next 5 years.

        I just purchased an ATI 6950 to last me over these next two years while GPUs gain a 16x increase in power, and I plan on purchasing an 8core IB chip next year. Unless there’s a huge change in video games, an 8core IB should be quiet powerful(relative to software, not to hardware) for 3-5 years.

        I try to rotate my upgrades, while trying to choose what will not be as easily replaced in 2 years.

        For me, “easily replaced” is about a 4x difference in computing power.

          • derFunkenstein
          • 9 years ago

          18-20 months is hardly “right around the corner”

            • bcronce
            • 9 years ago

            I’m use to hearing things projected 5-10 years in the future. 1-2 years seems “around the corner” for me.

            Go to work, head home, play games, see friends. 20 months is just a blink of the eye.

        • ew
        • 9 years ago

        I’m still holding out for bubble memory!

      • Scrotos
      • 9 years ago

      I kinda feel you on that. I’d like to go to SSD but want it to be cheaper. Maybe get a setup like this:

      [url<]http://thessdreview.com/our-reviews/lsi-megaraid-9260-8i-review-benchmark-protocol/[/url<] The drive cages are pretty cool! I bet you could get 2.5" drives and plunk them in there, too, if you didn't go the SSD route. The whole shrinking nodes to get more capacity was neat until I found out it also reduced the life of the devices. DOH. Maybe it's concern about nothing but still makes me want to see consumer SSDs mature a bit more before jumping in. I did a striped RAID for fun and my goodness the increase in speed was noticable! I can only imagine what an SSD or a RAID of 'em would do!

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