When we reviewed Toshiba's XG5 NVMe SSD, it was one of the fastest drives we'd tested. Although that was the first drive we fondled that came equipped with Toshiba's 64-layer BiCS 3D flash memory, at the time Toshiba had already announced that it had 96-layer chips in development. That's been a year ago now, and the XG5's successor is here. Meet the Toshiba XG6 NVMe SSD. As you've no doubt already assumed, this drive uses fourth-generation TLC BiCS flash, stacking 96 layers of NAND cells in each chip.
If you're like us, when you hear “96-layer flash memory” you probably begin to think of extremely high-density SSDs. These drives aren't bad on that front, packing up to 1 TB of storage onto a single-sided 80-mm M.2 card. The real story here is the XG6's speed, though. Toshiba says these drives can perform sequential reads at up to 3180 MB/s and writes at “nearly” 3000 MB/s. Random performance is no less impressive: the XG gets spec'd for 355K IOPS on random reads and 365K IOPS on random writes.
Toshiba says it achieved the XG6's “industry-leading” sequential write performance by optimizing the drives' controller. Said controller supports NVMe 1.3a and connects to PCIe 3.0 x4 as usual. These drives are intended for OEMs, and the company says it's already sampling the XG6 for prospective buyers. Toshiba will be showing the XG6 series at the Flash Memory Summit on August 7, so maybe we'll hear more then.