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Intel SSD 330 Review Discussion


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#1 Kevin OBrien

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Posted 20 April 2012 - 07:58 PM

Today we look at Intel's newest mainstream performance-oriented SSD, the Intel SSD 330.

Intel SSD 330 Review

#2 Molten

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Posted 22 April 2012 - 04:14 AM

I saw over at The Daily Circuit that flash manufacturers are now stacking chips in 3D in order to scale faster than Moore's law. At this rate I wonder when spinning disks will be a thing of the past for consumer electronics?

#3 rugger

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Posted 22 April 2012 - 08:09 AM

Can't you compare the 120gb Intel 330 against a 120gb Intel 520 or some other 120gb SSD with synchronous NAND? That way we can see how it performs in comparison to other 120gb sandforce based drives.

Of course a 240gb drive will beat the tar out of a 120gb. It has more NAND banks per channel and can interleave more write/erase commands to achieve greater performance, so it isn't really a fair test, and all we can say is that a 240gb drive beats a 120gb drive.

#4 [ETA]MrSpadge

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Posted 22 April 2012 - 03:23 PM

Yeah, it's odd that no traditional 120 GB SF2281 drive has been included. As you stated, the performacne win of the 240 GB drives was expected.. although I think not by that much.

Given these benchmarks it looks to me like Intel is indeed using 8 x 16GB dies, which leaves half of the channel unpopulated. A regular 120 GB drive would have used 16 x 8GB dies, populating all channels with just one chip (no interleaving between dies, but otherwise full performance). That means this 120 GB drive should perform more like a traditional 64 GB drive with sync NAND! However, these are not in the comparison, so it's hard to tell..

Using 16 GB dies instead of 8 GB probably allows Intel to save a bit on packaging the dies. Nobody else has been using such chips in consumer SSDs up to now, so they may be a recently introduced product. Which we may soon see on some other drives, too.

Or Intel is just using 8 packages of 2 x 8 GB dies, which might save e penny on packaging cost but is an odd choice.. unless you want your drive to perform slower. In that case the 60 GB drive might still populate 8 channels like all the others.

@Molten: stacking is not really relevant regarding Moore's Law, as you're just throwing more chips at the problem. Chips, for which the law still holds true.

MrS

Edited by [ETA]MrSpadge, 22 April 2012 - 03:28 PM.

#5 rugger

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Posted 22 April 2012 - 09:21 PM


Using 16 GB dies instead of 8 GB probably allows Intel to save a bit on packaging the dies. Nobody else has been using such chips in consumer SSDs up to now, so they may be a recently introduced product. Which we may soon see on some other drives, too.

Or Intel is just using 8 packages of 2 x 8 GB dies, which might save e penny on packaging cost but is an odd choice.. unless you want your drive to perform slower. In that case the 60 GB drive might still populate 8 channels like all the others.


Intel would have to use the SF2282 rather then the SF2281 to use 16GB dies.

Probably just 2x8 GB dies per package.

#6 Kevin OBrien

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Posted 23 April 2012 - 03:17 PM

On the lack of 120GB comparisons, we never actually got a 120GB Intel SSD 520, with the bulk of our comparisons being 240GB SSDs. The closest might be the Corsair Force GT 120GB model, but then its different firmware revisions, etc to worry about.

#7 rugger

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Posted 24 April 2012 - 05:26 AM

On the lack of 120GB comparisons, we never actually got a 120GB Intel SSD 520, with the bulk of our comparisons being 240GB SSDs. The closest might be the Corsair Force GT 120GB model, but then its different firmware revisions, etc to worry about.


The Corsair force gt 120gb would be a great SSD to compare the intel 330 120gb to. They both have sync NAND, so we can easily see the difference between intel 330 and "normal" sandforce with sync NAND.

#8 Brian

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Posted 24 April 2012 - 08:09 AM

We'll get there soon, the Corsair 120 is part of a larger test and couldn't have been included in the SSD 330 review. You'll see what we're up to with the Corsair drive in a week or two.

Brian

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