Although they were the fastest option available in the SSD land when they first came out, Intel's solid state drives had to give up the performance crown to the SandForce SF-1200 controller and all the drives built on top of this thing, but this may soon change since the blue giant is preparing its third generation of SSDs based on 25nm Flash cells.
Known internally as the Postville Refresh (since the second generation SSDs were called Postville), these new offerings will still carry the same X25-M moniker that we are all accustomed with, although Intel will update the storage capacities of the drives, the G3 X25-M being available in 80GB, 160GB, 300GB and 600GB sizes.
Performance-wise, the new generation will also offer some pretty impressive developments, Intel updating the sequential write speed to 170MB/s (although this will vary depending on the drive's capacity), while the number of 4K random IOPS will also be improved to 50K for reads and 40K for writes.
Sequential read speed will remain unchanged and will top out at 250MB/s, the G3 X25-M coming in with the same 3Gbps SATA interface as before, so no SATA 6Gbps support until Intel enables this on its chipsets.
Apart from these speed improvements, the drives' reliability has also seen a turn for the better, Intel promising anywhere between 30TB and 60TB of total 4KB random writes (compared to 7.5TB – 15TB in the previous generation), AES-128 encryption being also added to the feature list.
Together with the X25-M line, Intel also announced updating the X25-E SSD range
, this enterprise drives being the first such offerings from Intel to come with MLC flash cells, eMLC to be more precise.
The enterprise series will be available in 100GB, 200GB and 400GB capacities, will offer write speeds of up to 200 MB/s while its 4K random IOPS performance has also been increased to offer up to 50K reads and 5K writes.
Although not as impressive IOPS wise as their consumer counterparts, these new enterprise offerings can reach a total of 2PB of 4KB random writes making them a lot more resilient then the X25-M line.
Unfortunately, we don't know when these new Intel
SSDs will hit the streets, although its pretty safe to assume they should start appearing sometime during Q4 2010 or Q1 2011. (via AnandTech