Corsair has begun shipping two more affordable lines of solid state drives: the Nova and Reactor. Both series utilize MLC NAND flash memory, are available in similar capacities, and come with Windows 7 TRIM support. However, different controller chips under the hood will slightly set them apart in terms of price and performance.
The Corsair Nova is built around the venerable Indilinx Barefoot controller, featuring 64MB of cache, and comes in either 64 or 128GB capacities. Speeds are a bit faster on this series, with the larger model reaching up to 270MB/sec read speeds and 190MB/sec write speeds. The 60GB version maintains the same read performance but has slightly slower write speeds as it is rated up to just 110MB/s.
Meanwhile, the Reactor series sees JMicron crawling back into the mainstream SSD market with its new JMF612 controller. Corsair lists a 60GB version capable of 250MB/sec read and 110MB/s write speeds, while a 120GB model bumps write throughput to 170MB/s. Hoping to dispel any concerns and bad memories, the company actually stressed that the JMF612 "incorporates 128MB of DDR2 cache memory for stutter-free performance." It also included a USB 2.0 port for added connectivity besides 3.0Gbps SATA.
As far as pricing is concerned, the Reactor SSDs are priced at around $185 and $349 for the 60GB and 120GB drives, respectively, while the Nova series comes in at around $199 for the 64GB and $375 for 128GB model. All four drives are shipping now and come with a two-year warranty.