Fit in three for the price of two with Icy Dock's SATA cage

Subject: Storage | January 24, 2013 - 03:41 PM |
Tagged: icy dock, MB153SP-B FatCage, sata 6Gps

Do you find yourself wishing you had more space to put in an additional three 3.5" HDDs and have nothing to do with a pair of 5.25" bays?  Icy Dock has a solution for you with the FatCage MB153SP-B which takes up two 5.25" bays and can fit three 3.5" SATA drives, even better it can run them with only two SATA power connectors.  Thanks to the easy opening front this might just be the easiest way to add hotswap drive to your machine without needing anything hanging off of the outside of your box.  As you can see from the rear shot, the drives are actively cooled and Pro-Clockers did indeed test the compatibility of 2.5" to 3.5" SSD adapters with no problems whatsoever.

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"There are several manufacturers of such devices but we have one of the better ones on tap for you today. Icy Dock has been doing this for over fifteen years and has become a leader at it. FatCage MB153SP-B is one of several models coming from Icy Dock; the series would include the DataCage Basic and the FlexCage. Each having their own unique features, so we will try and get them into the lab so we can give you more insight on them."

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Storage

Source: Pro-Clockers

Intel Announces Intel Solid-State Drive 330 Series

Subject: Storage | April 16, 2012 - 10:14 AM |
Tagged: ssd, Intel, intel 330, sata 6Gps

Intel has released an SSD aimed at the consumer and casual user market, as well as offering a choice which might help future Ultrabook models dip below the $1000 mark while keeping the speed of an SSD.  At a price of just under $1.50/GB on the smallest 60GB drive and better pricing on the 120GB and 180GB models, it is possible to upgrade your system to a good sized SSD for less than $250.  You don't lose much performance either, the drive beats the old 320 series and can come close to the new 520 series.  One thing to note is that those drives both carried 5 year warranties, while the 330 has only a 3 year warranty.  Check out the full scoop in Intel's news room.

 

SANTA CLARA, Calif., April 16, 2012 – Intel Corporation announced today the Intel Solid-State Drive 330 Series (Intel SSD 330 Series), a SATA 6 gigabit-per-second (Gb/s) solid-state drive (SSD) that gives consumers a more affordable entry into the accelerated storage performance of SSDs.

 

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Ideal for upgrading desktop or notebook PCs, the Intel SSD 330 Series offers the price-conscious PC enthusiast a brand-name SSD that blends performance, Intel quality and value. Offered in the most popular capacity points, 60 gigabytes (GB), 120GB and 180GB, the Intel SSD 330 Series boosts overall system performance and responsiveness for a broad range of applications.

“An SSD is still the single best upgrade you can make to your existing PC, and the Intel SSD 330 Series gives users the latest Intel SSD technology at a price to meet their budget,” said James Slattery, product line manager for client SSDs, Intel Non-Volatile Memory Solutions Group. “Backed by Intel’s rigorous testing process, the Intel SSD 330 Series offers our users the speed they need at a great price, backed by world-class manufacturing, reliability and tech support.”

Unlike a traditional hard disk drive (HDD) with spinning disks and moveable parts, SSDs offer a more rugged, low-power storage solution that dramatically improves system performance to keep up with today’s I/O-intensive applications. The Intel SSD 330 Series contains Intel 25-nanometer (nm) multi-level cell (MLC) NAND memory. Its SATA 6Gb/s interface doubles the bandwidth of its current SATA 3Gb/s Intel SSD 320 Series, providing up to 500 megabytes-per-second (MB/s) sequential read speeds and up to 450MB/s sequential write speeds for faster data transfers. Random read performance can go up to 22,500 Input-Output Operations Per Second (IOPS) and 33,000 write IOPS to boost overall application and system responsiveness, significantly outperforming a typical consumer hard disk drive.

Intel offers a broad range of SSD choices within four product families. The Intel SSD 300 Family is aimed at entry-level, mainstream client users. The Intel SSD 500 Family offers more fully featured, higher-performing client SSDs for computer and gaming enthusiasts. The Intel SSD 700 and Intel SSD 900 Families are targeted for data center applications.

The Intel SSD 330 Series comes in a standard 2.5-inch/9.5mm form factor as a replacement to a slower-performing HDD. It can be used in a dual-drive desktop PC configuration to speed up boot times and applications speeds, or as a single-drive notebook upgrade.

Available beginning today at worldwide retailers and online e-tailers, the Intel SSD 330 Series is offered at the suggested channel price of $89 for a 60GB drive, $149 for a 120GB drive and $234 for a 180GB drive. It is also backed by a 3-year limited warranty.

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Source: Intel

A 240GB SSD roundup

Subject: Storage | March 2, 2012 - 10:26 AM |
Tagged: sata 6Gps, intel 520, mushkin chronos, corsair force 3, kingston hyper x

OC3D have rounded up a batch of 240GB SATA 6GBs SSDs, the Intel 520, the Mushkin Chronos, the Corsair Force 3, and the Kingston Hyper X.  The consistent size helps to highlight the difference a controller can make as there are several current generation SandForce controllers represented in the review.  Reading through the review keep an eye out not only for the drives that provide the best performance in each test but also for the drives which provide the most consistent performance as some benchmarks will not represent the usage you would get from an SSD in your own system.

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"As we bring a new benchmark to the OC3D suite of testing, we thought we'd give you a quick run through of some popular SSDs."

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Source: Overclock3D

Careful which model of OCZ Octane you pick up

Subject: Storage | December 6, 2011 - 11:47 AM |
Tagged: Octane, ssd, sata 6Gps, ocz, Octane 512GB, Indilinx Everest

If you are looking at OCZ SSDs and are considering the Octane line, please bear in mind that the S2 model which is selling for less than the non-S2 model is a SATA 3Gbp/s drive not a new 6Gb/s capable drive.  The testing done at The Tech Report was on the 6Gbp/s model and they compared this Indilinx Everest powered SSD against a variety of competing SSDs.  The drive comes with a 3 year warranty and comes in 128GB, 256GB, the 512GB model The Tech Report reviewed as well as a 1TB model which will cost a pretty penny.  If you do choose a smaller drive, remember that the reduced channel count will make the drive perform more slowly than the larger models.

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"OCZ bought SSD controller maker Indilinx earlier this year, and the first product of that acquisition is now out. Join us for a look at the Octane SSD and its new Everest controller."

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Storage

 

Silicon Power hits the SSD market

Subject: Storage | November 21, 2011 - 10:03 AM |
Tagged: silicon power, Velox Series V30, ssd, Sandforce SF2281, sata 6Gps

Silicon Power have extended their lineup in a logical manner, with their familiarity with flash based storage it makes sense for them to move into SSDs.  They've chosen proven parts, the SandForce SF2281 is a familiar SATA 6Gb/s controller as are the Intel branded flash chips that make up the 60GB of storage.  As you would expect, similar components produce similar results, but since each manufacturer introduces some differences as do the parts inside the benchmarks for each SSD are slightly different but price remains the factor which most heavily impacts choice.  If you are shopping for an SSD you should check Think Computers review of a drive from a brand you may not have previously considered.

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"Silicon Power is not a name you really think about when you think about solid state drives. If you did not know Silicon Power was founded in 2003 and they mainly specialize in memory products. Today we are going to take a look at one of their first SATA 6GB/s drives the Velox Series V30. This drive is powered by the SandForce SF-2281 controller and boast speeds of 550MB/s read and 500MB/s write. Let’s check it out!"

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Storage

 

Seven Sandforce SF-2281 SSDs

Subject: Storage | September 13, 2011 - 02:13 PM |
Tagged: sandforce, Sandforce SF2281, ssd, roundup, corsair, kingston, ozc, patriot, sata 6Gps

Four companies with seven SSDs that all share the same controller were tested at X-bit Labs to see if there is any noticeable difference in their performance.   The price per gigabyte varies on the different models as they all use slightly different flash memory as well as different interfaces.  X-bit tries to come out with a general statement about performance and captures the heart when they state "SSDs with synchronous MLC NAND flash are generally faster but also more expensive whereas SSDs with asynchronous flash are cheaper and slower".  That generalization doesn't quite capture the results fully however as even within those two categories there are some choices better than others.  Check out the full review to see which drives came out on top.

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"We tested seven high-speed solid state drives built on second generation SandForce controller that support SATA 6 Gbps. Please welcome our heroes: Corsair Force 3, Corsair Force GT, Kingston HyperX, OCZ Agility 3, OCZ Vertex 3 Max IOPS, Patriot Pyro and Patriot Wildfire."

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Source: X-Bit Labs

Solid State Penguin

Subject: Storage | September 6, 2011 - 12:00 PM |
Tagged: vertex 3, ssd, SF-2281 controller, sata 6Gps, ocz, linux

The majority of reviews of solid state drives have been focussed on the performance of the drives under Windows, thankfully Phoronix can be counted on to differ from that and present a reveiw of an SSD under Linux.  This particular time it is the OCZ Vertex 3 240GB SSD under Ubuntu 11.10 with the Linux 3.0 kernel and an EXT4 file-system.  The OS had no problems recognizing the drive and it is obvious that Linux has no problems fully utilizing the SATA 6Gb/s interface as the drive blows the competition out of the water.  The only problem is that the price of the drive remains prohibitive no matter what OS you use, but your money will not be wasted.

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"It's been a while since last providing a Phoronix review of a solid-state drive from OCZ Technology, but now with Serial ATA 3.0 support becoming more prevalent on modern Intel and AMD motherboards, they have been releasing a number of updated products to take advantage of SATA 3.0. In the review we have our hands on an OCZ Vertex 3 240GB SSD as we see how this SATA III SSD performs under Ubuntu Linux."

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Source: Phoronix

The Good, the bad and the ugly of SSDs

Subject: Storage | August 15, 2011 - 11:23 AM |
Tagged: ssd, SF-2281 controller, sata 6Gps

The good and the bad are obvious, unparalleled transfer speeds and a very high price per gigabyte are familiar to anyone keeping up with the new storage medium.  The ugly is the reliability, as we have seen a variety of manufacturers and controllers spawn significant problems for users.  That is before you consider how long an SSD will last, something that we have yet to fully see the scope of as niether the technology nor the drives have been on the market long enough for MTBF to be tested in the real world.

If you are willing to risk the possible failures that some users have been seeing with the SF-2281 controller, AnandTech have rounded up several drives which use that specific controller.  Head over to see if you can pick a winner in this incredibly close race.

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"It's a depressing time to be covering the consumer SSD market. Although performance is higher than it has ever been, we're still seeing far too many compatibility and reliability issues from all of the major players. Intel used to be our safe haven, but even the extra reliable Intel SSD 320 is plagued by a firmware bug that may crop up unexpectedly, limiting your drive's capacity to only 8MB. Then there are the infamous BSOD issues that affect SandForce SF-2281 drives like the OCZ Vertex 3 or the Corsair Force 3. Despite OCZ and SandForce believing they were on to the root cause of the problem several weeks ago, there are still reports of issues. I've even been able to duplicate the issue internally."

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Source: AnandTech

For a few dollars more; synchronized SSD shooters draw first

Subject: Storage | August 8, 2011 - 11:10 AM |
Tagged: ssd, sata 6Gps, asynchronous flash, synchronous flash, SF-2281 controller

With the latest SSD controller from SandForce, the SF-2281 SATA III, we have been seeing two different types of flash memory used as the storage medium depending on which vendor or product line you look at.  Asynchronous flash and synchronous flash differ in their timing when sending read and write commands, [H]ard|OCP's analogy of synchronous flash working like DDR is perfect as the new variety can send a command on both the rise and the fall of a clock cycle.

The reason this now matters is SATA III, which allows enough bandwidth for synchronous flash to show off its higher speeds; with the previous SATA standard it simply had no impact.  That speed impact on the new standard becomes obvious in [H]'s testing, especially when they fill both drives half way and conduct some real world tests.  Now that some of both types of drives are on the market, they also look at the price difference between the two types of flash,; a comparison in which the old asynchronous flash does not look good coming out of.

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"News flash! All flash NAND is not created equal! Sure, you know about multi-level and single-level NAND when it comes to speed, but what about synchronous and asynchronous NAND inside your shiny new SSD? We have answers and tell you where your money is best spent for real data speed."

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Source: [H]ard|OCP

Huda hudda mrphh; Patriot translates the Pyro

Subject: Storage | August 4, 2011 - 12:16 PM |
Tagged: SF-2281 controller, sata 6Gps, patriot. ssd, patriot pyro

Patriot has now split it's SATA 6GB/s SSDs into two lines, the faster and more expensive WildFire series and the new Pyro series, which is intended to be a bit more affordable for the average user.  Legit Reviews tested their middle sized 120GB drive to see what, if anything, was sacrificed to bring the price of the Pyro down.  The SF-2281 controller will be familiar to SSD fans while the MLC flash is 25nm Micron which is likely where the cost savings and slightly lower transfer speeds come from.   Legit Reviews calculated the drives MSRP to be roughly $1.88 per usable GB for the 120 GB Pyro drive, under the magic $2/GB mark.

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"Patriot hasn't been as active in the SSD realm as some other companies, focusing instead on their memory products and USB flash media. Recently they released their Wildfire line of SSDs and they follow that up with another flame related theme in the Pyro line. Each features the popular SandForce SF-2281 controller and a SATA III interface but differ in the NAND flash employed. The Pyro line is the more value oriented drive as opposed to the Wildfire line which sports slightly better max performance specifications in terms of MB/s and IOPS..."

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