CES 2013: Micron demos DDR4 DIMMs, announces 20nm Crucial M500 SSDs at $0.60/GB

Subject: Storage, Shows and Expos | January 10, 2013 - 11:12 AM |
Tagged: micron, crucial, ces 2013, CES

At the Micron/Crucial, we were shown an expansion to their DDR3 memory line, to include lower profile parts:

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These reduced height modules should make for easier installation into HTPC and other small form factor PCs and even 1U Servers.

Next we saw DDR4 running at its native 2133 MHz speed. Here is what the DDR4 DIMM looks like:

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Note the slight bulge at the center of the pin area. This is to make installation easier, as there is a considerable increase in pin count, which would have made installation more difficult if not for that design feature. Note the increased contact density in this pic:

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Last (and most certainly not least), Micron announced their next SSD Series, the M500. This line uses a newer Marvell controller with Micron engineered firmware, driving 20nm IMFT flash:

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All models will employ the enterprise feature of a capacitor bank used to store some reserve power. This helps to minimize any possible data loss should power be interrupted while data is being written:

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Micron told me they are planning a 1TB model, running *MLC* flash (not TLC), and they are shooting for a price point of $600. That's $0.60/GB! If this scales down at the lower capacity points, we should be in for some pretty nice price dips in Solid State Storage for 2013!

 

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Crucial's 16GB Ballistix Tactical has a nice surprise

Subject: Memory | November 30, 2012 - 02:04 PM |
Tagged: crucial, Ballistix Tactical, 16GB, ddr3-1600

It is a nice change when a company understates the performance of their product instead of barely living up to their promises.  Such is the case with the dual channel Crucal Ballistix Tactical 1600MHz kit, at least the one that Funky Kit benchmarked.  They hit 2133MHz and kept the timings at 9-9-9-24 1T, not bad for DIMMs which are billed for 8-8-8-24 1T@ 1600MHz!  Even better these DIMMs are very low profile, so even on boards with the DIMM slots clustered around the CPU socket you won't be limited in your choice of oversized CPU coolers.  The full review is available here.

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"This has been some fun memory to play with, it's ability to hit clocks 50% higher than stock is impressive. It's ability to hit 2133MHz with 9-9-9 timings at only 1.5v is quite impressive."

Here are some more Memory articles from around the web:

Memory

Source: Funky Kit

Compact racer, the 256GB mSATA SSD from Crucial

Subject: Storage | August 15, 2012 - 02:21 PM |
Tagged: msata, crucial, Crucial m4

mSATA drives are for far more than just Intel's Rapid Storage Technology to give a platter based drive a performance boost.  At 256GB the Crucial M4 mSATA drive is large enough to run a system off of, tiny enough that it could fit into any system and at $220 it is affordable as well.  If you are looking to build a fast HTPC or simply have a motherboard with an mSATA port you want to fill then you should check out Funky Kit's review.

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"We've just published a review on the Crucial M4 mSATA 256GB SSD. We've seen a lot of mSATA SSDs in the past, but sadly they've out of reach to a lot of consumers. But fear not ... Crucial is now making their mSATA SSDs mainstream and widely available. We take a closer look at their M4 mSATA 256GB SSD."

Here are some more Storage reviews from around the web:

Storage

Source: Funky Kit

Crucial Launches Three New Ballistix DDR3 Module Series

Subject: Memory | January 9, 2012 - 09:00 PM |
Tagged: ram, memory, ddr3, crucial, ballistix

Crucial, a company most well known for their RAM modules, today announced three new series of Ballistix DDR3 RAM modules. The RAM is available in low latency modules based on Micron's 4 Gb chips, and runs at either 1600 MHz and 1866 MHz. The three new series are called Ballistix Sport, Ballistix Tactical, and Ballistix Elite.

The Ballistix Sport modules are the low end modules of the three new series and are designed for mainstream users and a gamers on a budget. They are available in single, dual, and triple channel matched kits. The single modules are available in a DDR2 module running at 800 MHz, DDR3 stick running at 1333 MHz, or DDR3 DIMMs running at 1600 MHz. The DDR2 DIMM need 1.8 volts and delivers a CAS latency of 5-5-5-15 while the DDR3 DIMMs need 1.5 volts and have a CAS latency of 9-9-9-24. The dual and triple channel kits have the same specifications as the single module DDR3 RAM, though obviously they come with multiple matches DIMMs in one package.

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Ballistix Tactical brings up the middle ground in the new lineup, and are comprised of DDR3 DIMMs only. The single DIMMs are available in 2 GB, 4 GB, and 8 GB capacities. They need 1.5 volts, run at 1333 MHz and 1600 MHz, and have a CAS latency of 7-7-7-24 or 8-8-8-24. Like the other kits, they come in single, dual, and triple channel kits. The Dual channel kits come in 4 GB, 8 GB, and 16 GB capacities and the triple channel kits come in 6 GB and 12 GB capacities. Other than the additional sticks of RAM, they run at the same voltages and CAS latencies.

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Last up is the top tier of the three new Ballistix series, dubbed the Ballistix Elite. These modules are designed for high performance gaming and memory intensive tasks. They have the most flair as well, with tall aluminum heat spreaders. The Ballistix DIMMs come in single, double, and triple channel memory. The single modules come in 2 GB, 4 GB, and 8 GB capacities. They operate at 1.5 or 1.65 volts and either 1600 MHz, 1866 MHz, or 2133 MHz. CAS latencies vary between the various SKUs and include CAS 8-8-8-24, 9-9-9-27, and 9-10-9-27 (for the module running at 2133 MHz).

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The Crucial 8 GB Ballistix DIMMs are able to be installed in configurations up to 64 GB in the case of the Intel X79 motherboards. They are available for purchase now worldwide and are backed by a lifetime warranty. To give you an idea of pricing, the 4 GB Ballistix Sport kit running at 1600 MHz is $33.99 USD while the 8 GB Ballistix Tactical kit running at 1866 MHz is $79.99 USD. Finally, the 8 GB Ballistix Elite kit at 1866 MHz is $87.99 USD.

Source: Crucial

Look for the SSD sweet spot

Subject: Storage | September 26, 2011 - 06:44 PM |
Tagged: ssd, round up, corsair, crucial, Intel 320, Intel 510, kingston, ocz, SF-2281 controller, Marvell 88SS9174, Intel PC29AS21BA0

Making the assumption you are not as rich as Croesus, there is a sweet spot that many look for when it comes to SSDs.  If you go too small the channel limitations will impact your performance, but a 256GB+ drive is simply out of the budgets of many enthusiasts ... at least for the storage subsystem.  The Tech Report set out in search of the perfect size for an SSD, big enough for full speed performance but small enough it doesn't break the bank.  To that end they assembled nine SSDs, ranging in size from 120GB to 128GB, which gives away the ending in a way.  What you don't know is which drive came out on top, especially in the price to performance tests.  Find out in their full article.

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"The latest generation of SSDs is out in full force. We've rounded up nine of 'em to see which offers the best performance and overall value proposition"

Here are some more Storage reviews from around the web:

Storage

 

New Firmware Offers Performance Boost To Crucial M4 SSDs

Subject: Storage | August 30, 2011 - 02:17 AM |
Tagged: ssd, SATA3, M4, crucial

Crucial, a relatively new but successful entrant to the SSD space recently released a new firmware for its M4 lineup that promises faster boot up times and improved write performance. Specifically, the new firmware is version 0009, and users can directly update their m4 SSDs from either revision 0001 or 0002. The update is installed by downloading and burning a bootable CD.

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According to Tom’s Hardware, the company is promising up to a 20 % performance improvement in sequential read speeds. Further, the official firmware change log includes improvements in throughput performance, write latency, and compatibility with the latest chipsets. In synthetic application testing, Crucial noted an increase in the PCMark Vantage benchmark score using the new firmware update. The company has also improved compatibility between SATA 2 (3Gb/s) chipsets and the SATA 3 (6Gb/s) solid state drives. Lastly, the new firmware reduces the chances for a failed cold boot up (starting the computer from a completely powered down state) of the SSD on certain systems.

Its is certainly nice to see firmware fixes that both squash bugs and offer up some free performance improvements. You can find the firmware download for your specific m4 solid state drive in addition to update instructions here. Let us know what you think of the new firmware.

Source: Crucial

Dual channel DDR3 roundup, only the best for your Z68 system

Subject: Memory | July 8, 2011 - 12:53 PM |
Tagged: corsair, patriot, kingston, crucial, G.Skill, ddr3, roundup

At Hardware Heaven you can catch a dual channel DDR3 roundup featuring Corsair Vengeance, Crucial Ballistix, Kingston HyperX, Patriot Division 2 Viper Xtreme and G.Skill RipjawsX kits.  The kits range from DDR3-1600 @ 7-8-7-24-2T to DDR3-2133 @ 9-11-9-27-1T and even features a low power 8GB kit which uses 1.5V.  They didn't have much luck overclocking the high speed DIMMs, it seems they are running stock speeds close to the maximum possible and had much better luck with the 1600MHz kits.  The charts do reveal a truth that not many like to admit, spending all that extra money on the high speed kits will not give you a noticeable jump in real world performance.

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"Last month, for the first time in a while, we took a look at various different memory products which were designed for Intel's X58 architecture and found that there are a number of great kits available from a number of manufacturers. Whether it is capacity, speed or low energy use there was something for everyone and the various approaches created an interesting comparison. Not everyone has access to an X58 system though so today we are going to look at Intel's mainstream chipset and put 5 different kits through their paces in a selection of real world and synthetic tests on Z68."

Here are some more Memory articles from around the web:

Memory

Five way triple channel DDR3 roundup

Subject: Memory | June 22, 2011 - 01:46 PM |
Tagged: ddr3, triple channel, X58, corsair, crucial, G.Skill, kingston, patriot

Hardware Heaven have not given up on the X58 chipset and its support for triple channel memory and offer a round up for those of you who are sticking with those boards.  Five vendors with RAM ranging from Crucial's Ballistix SmartTracer DDR3-1600 @ 8-8-8-24-1T to Patriot's Viper Xtreme DDR3-2000 @ 9-11-9-27-2T so not only do you get a look at the different speeds you also get to see what different timings do.  They finish off by overclocking the modules, not only to see the maximum speed at default timings but also the limit when relaxing the timings.

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"Every so often though we like to take a look at what the major manufacturers have to offer, something which will be particularly relevant for those building a new system or wondering how they can get some extra zip from an existing build and today is one of those days. We'll be using our high end X58 build to look at kits which each have their own unique selling points to find out what Corsair, Crucial, G.Skill, Kingston and Patriot have to offer in the triple channel DDR3 market."

Here are some more Memory articles from around the web:

Memory