Samsung PM1643 SSD stacks chips on chips for 30.72 TB of NAND

In the realm of the consumer-focused SSDs we normally cover around these parts, a capacity of 2 TB is generally considered to be pretty large. Spinny metal hard drive capacities top out in the mid-teens these days. Samsung's latest PM1643 12 Gbps SAS SSD, on the other hand, stores a whopping 30.72 TB spread out across 512 of the silicon maker's 64-layer, 512-Gb V-NAND flash chips. The company's previous capacity king was March 2016's 15.36 TB PM1633a.


The 512 flash chips are packed into 32 16-die packages. As long as we're talking about big numbers, the drive's 40 GB of DRAM cache is also worthy of attention. Samsung says the PM1643's enormous cache is the first to use DRAM chips stacked using through-silicon vias (TSVs). The drive's four 10 GB TSV packages are built from interconnected 8 Gb DDR4 chips. Samsung says the stacked DRAM lets it give over more of the drive's volume to NAND.

The manufacturer says that performance levels are nearly twice as fast as those of the PM1633a. The company claims random read speeds of up to 400,000 IOPS and random writes as fast as 50,000 IOPS. Sequential reads could hit a claimed 2100 MB/s, and sequential writes could run at up to 1700 MB/s. Both sequential figures are quite a bit higher than we're used to seeing from consumer-level SATA SSDs, which are limited by the 6 Gbps SATA interface. Samsung says the drive can endure one drive write per day for the duration of its five-year warranty—around 55 PB of total writes.

Samsung says it started manufacturing 30.72 TB PM1643 drives in January and will pad out the lineup with 15.36 TB, 3.84 TB, 1.92 TB, 960 GB and 800 GB models later this year. The drives are aimed at the data centers of large businesses, so don't expect to see them in Newegg's product listings any time soon. The company didn't provide pricing information, but for a sense of scale, the 15.36 TB PM1633a costs over $11,000 from channel sources.

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