SanDisk: Solid State Disk Drive

One of the most impressive product demonstrations we witnessed was a comparison between two identically prepared Dell notebooks except for the drive option. One notebook contained a standard 2.5" disk drive while the other one featured the new SanDisk SSD UTAT 5000 1.8" drive with a 32GB capacity. This fifth generation drive features a sustained read rate of 62 megabytes (MB) per second and a random read rate of 7,000 inputs/outputs per second (IOPS) for a 512-byte transfer - up to 100 times faster than most notebook hard disk drives. It also can achieve an average file access rate of 0.12 milliseconds, compared with 19 milliseconds for a typical laptop PC hard disk drive. The SanDisk SSD features an extremely low power consumption rate compared to the laptop hard disk drive: 0.4 watt during active operation versus 1.0 watt which could mean up to 22 minutes or more of additional battery life depending upon usage patterns.

In a demonstration that featured Windows Vista Enterprise edition on each notebook we noticed the SSD equipped system shutdown about 95 seconds faster with four Office applications open at power down . This same configuration booted into Vista and opened the same four Office applications about 115 seconds faster. When resuming from hibernation mode the SSD system took less than five seconds while the hard disk system took close to forty seconds before it was fully functional.

We expect to see these drives to start appearing in OEM systems by the end of Q1 with a price premium around $500 at this time for the 32GB drive. By the end of the year we should expect prices to fall about 40% while drive capacities will increase to 64GB in Q3 and 128GB in Q4. This is a very exciting technology and we should have review samples in the near future.

Pioneer: Blu-ray Combo Drive

Pioneer's first Blu-ray drive featured full read and write capability for Blu-ray and DVD formats but did not have CD read or write capability. The drive was mainly designed for industrial use in creating or playing back Blu-ray discs. Pioneer will be introducing the new BDC-202 drive that offers full DVD/CD read and write features with Blu-ray BD-ROM, BD-R, and BD-RE playback capability. The drive should be available around the beginning of Q2 with an estimated street price below $399 and features a true SATA interface.

Our next article will feature products from Antec, Zalman, G.Skill, Creative Labs, NetGear, and others as we finish up our CES 2007 coverage.

ASUS: Motherboards and More…


View All Comments

  • Visual - Friday, January 12, 2007 - link

    If it's true that the BDC-202 drive will be only $400, this is great news. I was OK with the $1000+ starting prices of the first drives, but was expecting them to fall faster. Some models quickly fell to $700-800, but then got stuck and not changed much by now. These $400 devices sound much more like something I could afford, here's to hoping that LG's BD/HDDVD hybrid drive will also be in this price point. Reply
  • Visual - Friday, January 12, 2007 - link

    Just realised this drive is a reader only, can hardly believe this crap.
    And to think how happy and enthusiastic I was for a minute in my delusion, only to be ruthlessly brought back into the cruel cold real world...
  • bnme - Friday, January 12, 2007 - link

    Reader only, IMO, is fine... I mean, seriously, I just want to use my PC to watch Blu-ray and HDDVD, and most drives that are out (not many of them), are all writers and expensive relative a normal DVD burner.

    Why splurge on stuff you don't need right away. Bluray and HDDVD reader for the movies is probably what a lot of people are looking for right now.
  • DigitalFreak - Friday, January 12, 2007 - link

    You can already get a Blu-ray burner (lite-on, I believe) at Newegg for $569. Reply
  • jnmunsey - Friday, January 12, 2007 - link

    The English in the Sandisk article has to be some of the worst I have ever read, and "Gary Key" doesn't sound like an ESL name.. Reply
  • Hypernova - Friday, January 12, 2007 - link

    Page 2:
    "Both units are designed for 24/7 operation at up to 40c with an 8285% power efficiency rating at 20~100% load."

    This thing generates 80 times more power then it uses?!
  • goinginstyle - Friday, January 12, 2007 - link

    The text appears to be corrected now to 82~85%. Reply
  • KHysiek - Friday, January 12, 2007 - link

    I don't get this. Such drive would be usable even in Win XP, as cache, pagefile placement or other caching purpose.
  • Zoomer - Sunday, January 21, 2007 - link

    I would rather use ram (ram drive) to store these useless files. The point of using nvram is to have it retain data even if powered down.

  • DigitalFreak - Friday, January 12, 2007 - link">There is one - here Reply

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