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  • Homeles - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    My first reaction to this was a negative one. I'm worried that Seagate won't develop Sandforce as well as LSI could. Reply
  • nirolf - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    I'm not to thrilled either, I hope the SSD market won't end up like the HDD one. Very few players (basically a duopoly) with high prices and low quality. Reply
  • Murloc - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    I never felt the need for anything different from what was offered. There were 4 big companies and HDDs were cheap.
    The SSD market already has more players than that.
  • TerdFerguson - Saturday, May 31, 2014 - link

    Murloc said, "I never felt the need for anything different from what was offered. There were 4 big companies and HDDs were cheap."

    Then you haven't been paying attention. The blatant price fixing at play after the Tawain floods, along with tripling of prices, reduction of quality and warranty, and subsequent postings of record years are a good example of the OP's message.
  • TSnor - Sunday, June 01, 2014 - link

    +1 re prices that didn't make sense and record profits. Reply
  • ZeDestructor - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    Fairly unlikely:

    We have three NAND manufacturers: Intel/Micron, Toshiba and Samsung; and a bunch of controllers: Intel, Marvell, Samsung, LAMD, Sandforce and JMicron, as well as more exotic stuff in the PCIe cards, with lots of the variability coming purely from the firmware. Things are looking good!
  • Penti - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    Don't forget about Hynix here, they do have proper NAND (and controller), there just happens to be no other (than these mentioned) significant memory companies around any more. If you count both Intel and Micron in IMFT I guess we can count Sandisk too when they "resell" Toshiba NAND as part of their joint investment.

    It looks more like four NAND vendors, Samsung, Toshiba, IMFT and SK Hynix. As said, there isn't really any proper memory manufacturers other than these either, not any more. Latest victim was Elpida which was absorobed into Micron. Many more before it. Companies like Spansion were pioneers, but focuses on other areas. Four is of course more than the three we have in mechanical HDD's that was 4-5 players not long ago.
  • Morawka - Friday, May 30, 2014 - link

    the only company charging high prices is Western Digital. Seagate has always been a Value Brand. Even when the flooding happened, Seagate drives did not increase in price much. WD on the other hand was charging $350 for a 1TB WD Black Drive for almost 3 years.

    I understand a temporary spike while the plant gets repaird, but WD milked it way to long.
  • ViRGE - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    I second that concern. Seagate has not instilled me with confidence over the years. They always seem to come up short in some way. Reply
  • tuklap - Monday, June 02, 2014 - link

    Seagate will continue to improve the technology that LSI left and will also adopt them on their SSHD variants which leads better value to performance for users. :) Reply
  • althaz - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    The only surprising part of this announcement is that Seagate didn't make this move when LSI did a few years ago.

    Hopefully Seagate and Sandforce can bring some good drives to the table. Lately, all I ever seem to buy are Samsungs.
  • Hrel - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    "Lately, all I ever seem to buy are Samsungs."

    So pretty much anything is a step up for you. Congratulations, you're at rock bottom, a current Seagate or Mushkin would be better.
  • Guspaz - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    Seagate's SSDs have amongst the lowest failure rates in the industry. How would Seagate or Mushkin SSDs be a step up? Reply
  • takeshi7 - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    Having the lowest failure rates in the industry is a good thing. Nobody likes it when their SSDs fail. Reply
  • althaz - Friday, May 30, 2014 - link

    Samsung drives are amongst the best performing (in most categories holding outright leads) and are CLEARLY the most reliable in terms of consumer drives (I don't know too much about enterprise drives). If you're not buying Samsung right now, you're doing it wrong. Reply
  • edzieba - Friday, May 30, 2014 - link

    "and are CLEARLY the most reliable in terms of consumer drives"

    No, that would be Intel's consumer offerings.
  • althaz - Monday, June 02, 2014 - link

    Intel's high-performance drives are slower, more expensive and less reliable than Samsung's drives - which is why I've stopped buying Intel and started buying Samsung. Intel's drives are the next best for reliability, which just goes to show you how good Samsung's drive are at the moment. Reply
  • romrunning - Friday, May 30, 2014 - link

    If you think Samsung SSDs are "rock bottom", you really need to wake up, drink some coffee, and try looking at some benchmarks. Samsung may not *always* take the #1 spot, but for quite a while now, they have always been in the top 5.

    Now if you were just trolling, go find another bridge.
  • Penti - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    Pretty sure Seagate has their in-house (SSD) SAS-controllers based of Marvell designs. So they obviously already has some semiconductor design competence and firmware team in this field. Though, they basically had to choose between SF, Marvell and the NAND-fabs own controllers as LAMD is an asset of Hynix, Toshiba has their custom Marvell-variant plus Indilinx through OCZ, Samsung has their own that they won't really share, Intel has their own, WD/HGST has their own assets. Lite-on and a few others do their own firmware to compete in this mix. A mix which is still larger than the three companies controlling HDD's. I guess Marvell will be left as the only independent player. Reply
  • hojnikb - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    Well, there is also phison, jmicron, SMI not just marvell :) Reply
  • Penti - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    They are all too small to count or not focused on performance/mainstream drives. Will check the new article over here at Anand's on the new Jmicronstuff though. Not really a choice for mainstream drives from Seagate though. Or future PCIe m.2/sata-express drives. Reply
  • weimeng4359 - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    I totally agree with you.
    Marvell's chip is suitable for development by some design house like Lite-on.
    Other small SSD controller companies would be acquired by NAND vendors or be dead.
  • orenc17 - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    WTF?!?!?!?!??!?!?! Reply
  • hojnikb - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    Is anand gonna reviewer the new SMI based ssds, that came out in the last few weeks ? Reply
  • Taft12 - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    I can think of Kingston, Mushkin and Intel... Are there any other OEM brands shipping SSDs today with Sandforce controllers? Reply
  • hojnikb - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    There are literaly shitton of companys selling sandforce based drive. There must be atleast 50 companies (if not more) that sell sandforce based drives. Reply
  • Kristian Vättö - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    Yup. Last time I saw SandForce had over 50 partners, although not all of them are in the retail SSD business (but there are a ton of those too). Reply
  • Penti - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    Most of these has at some point had SF-drives – if one likes to jog their memory about some of the vendors out there. Companies like OWC also use SF exclusively thus far. Let's see if they take the step into PCIe-based SSD's. You will find over 20 companies offering SSD's on an online retailer such as Newegg. Only a few of those have stayed away from SF.

    If you like to see some of the names (directed at thread starter) you also have Verbatim and ADATA which seems to use SF in their high-perf drives. Patriot use SF too. PNY and Team group seems to be exclusive SF-users too. Look around and you will probably see a lot.
  • creed3020 - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    My Seagate 600 240GB SSD has been excellent, and I'm sure that is everything to do with the LAMD sourced controller. With this aquistion I don't see them needing to lean on an external controller anymore.

    I'm not if I really like the combo fo Sandforce and Seagate. Neither brand has a rock solid realiability record. Combine them and I'm not sure what you get?!?
  • JarredWalton - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    Here's an interesting thought: Avago tends to be more of an enterprise company, right? Yes, they offer a bunch of smaller components, but they have a lot of industrial, military, etc. stuff. If so, they may have looked at SandForce and LSI and over time decided they just weren't a good fit. It was a completely new market for Avago and would require a lot of changes; Seagate on the other hand has a big consumer focus (with some enterprise stuff as well), so they could do more there. I'm sure there are plenty of reasons for the sale, but it certainly doesn't instill much confidence in SandForce for me. After the various reliability issues with earlier SF controllers/drives, if SF-3700 was headed the same way Avago may have just decided, "You know what: we don't want to be involved with the inevitable fallout." Seagate already has plenty of experience dealing with unhappy customers, so not a problem. :-) Reply
  • BMNify - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    +1000 Reply
  • odoyle-rulez - Friday, June 19, 2015 - link

    If you look past the grandiose fairy tells that LSI was telling in 2012 and 2013, what sticks out is that LSI could never close a major deal with their PCIe-SSD products. Time after time, all the big companies (Google, FB, Microsoft, etc.) either went with in house designs for Flash storage or awarded Fusion IO the business. Prior to LSI getting bought out, the lack of success and execution by the ASD organization had caused that group to get merged back into a single storage group with the RAID (RSD) folks. Once Avago got a good look at the books and the product development, the decision pretty much made itself for them. Avago makes money, and that group was failing to pull their weight.

    Seagate is the last stop for the LSI/Avago ASD group. I am sure that they have already started to purge a good deal of the employees who came over, particularly in management. Seagate will either push the Nytro products into actual relevancy in the marketplace or absorb the technology into future products and drop the product line altogether.
  • jwcalla - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    LSI never really did much with SF. It just kind of withered on the vine it seems. Reply
  • Wall Street - Thursday, May 29, 2014 - link

    I am surprised that so may sites are surprised. LSI took on over $5 bn. of debt to acquire Avago. High growth businesses generally require a lot of investment relative to the amount of cash flow that they generate because so much of the money needs to be rolled into the next generation of product. Sandforce would clearly be a good candidate where LSI could sell it off for a high cash value and use the proceeds to pay down some of the debt. This seems like a logical move, LSI isn't really in a position to pour more money into Sandforce R&D who need it for their next gen controller. Seagate has the money in the short tern and will look to develop Sandforce's long-term potential to wedge themselves into the SSD market. Reply
  • isa - Friday, May 30, 2014 - link

    Well, if the SF3700's are really delayed, this acquisition isn't going to help in the short run: engineers and other employees understandably will be heavily distracted for many days as they await their true fate, new management, priorities, work location, benefits impact, etc. Doubtful many will trust or believe the inevitable initial message of "nothing really changes: keep working!"

    And if really delayed prior to this acquisition, I hope the Anandtech crew can pick up insightful info at Computex for what's the cause(s) of the delay up to this point. I doubt any SSD maker will comment honestly and specifically on the record, so I'd expect specific insights to be understandably unattributed.
  • MS - Friday, May 30, 2014 - link

    It will be interesting to see how the IP plays out. I know that I have been issued at least 2 patents on technology used by Sandforce, even though those patents are owned by Toshiba now (courtesy of the OCZ acquisition). Those go back to the crazy times when Ryan and I were just looking into the crystal ball and everybody called us Loonies and now some .... have a chance to harvest the fruit of our (no, it is not loins).. :P Reply
  • bji - Monday, June 02, 2014 - link

    The fruit of your what? Patent trolling? Or did you actually attempt to create product from these patents you acquired? Reply

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