Earlier this year a leaked roadmap showed Intel was planning to release a successor to their 510 Series SSD that would use the latest-gen SATA 6Gb/s interface and come in 60GB, 120GB, 160GB, 240GB and 480GB capacities. There's been some speculation that Intel might partner with Sandforce for its upcoming drive, based in part on the capacities listed. But while the company has remained tightlipped on its plans, today the folks at The SSD Review have posted some fresh specs and product information reinforcing this notion.
According to the report, which cites data sheets obtained by BouweenPC and T-Gathering, the Intel SSD 520 Series will feature transfer rates of up to 550 MB/s and 520MB/s for sequential read and write operations, respectively, as well as 70,000IOPS at random 4k aligned write disk access. The current 510 Series, which is based on a Marvell controller, is available only in 120GB and 250GB variants and offers up to 500MB/s and 315MB/s read and write speeds on the higher capacity model -- you can read our review here.
The SSD 520 Series also has built in 256 bit AES encryption listed within its specs, a feature that is supported in the SF-2000 range of controllers from Sandforce but is missing on Intel's SSD 510 Series. Last but not least, there's mention of a five year limited warranty on the drive.
Unfortunately there's no word on pricing at the moment, and the quoted release target of November 2011 clearly did not come to pass. The SSD Review reports that the launch of these drives is imminent. It remains to be seen if the Sandforce rumors pan out and if the new drive will be able to deliver Intel's famed reliability.
The Intel SSD 510 drops Intel's traditional 7mm design that uses a shim to reach the 9.5mm thickness of a standard 2.5" drive. The drives casing now measures 3.92 x 2.74 x 0.37" (99.8 x 69.63 x 9.5mm) and weighs 0.18lbs (81.6 grams). It boasts read and write speeds of 450MB/s and 210MB/s. Naturally, the SATA 6Gb/s interface is essential to achieving these staggering read speeds.
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