It’s always fun to hear about new SSD products, especially when it features all new hardware. The Crucial M500 series – also available on the OEM market under the Micron brand – was just announced today, and has some interesting specs.
The controller used is the all new Marvell 88SS9187, and is paired up with IMFT 20nm MLC NAND – the same type that was introduced on the Intel 335 Series SSD.
Another interesting thing about the M500 is the form factor – all capacities of the drive will be in the 2.5″ form factor (7mm tall, and will come with a 9.5″ adapter for laptop installation), with an mSATA and M.2 version also available in all but the largest capacity.
Here are the basic specs:
|Capacity||Form Factors||4KB Read||4KB Write||Sequential Read||Sequential Write|
|120GB||2.5", mSATA, M.2||62K IOPS||35K IOPS||500 MB/s||130 MB/s|
|240GB||72K IOPS||60K IOPS||250 MB/s|
|480GB||80K IOPS||80K IOPS||400 MB/s|
These are ‘paper specs’ of course, a ‘best case scenario’ if you will. However we can learn that the M500 uses the same type of over-provisioning recently only seen on SandForce drives in terms of consumer SSDs. We have found that this makes a huge impact on performance consistency – something that we focus more on than anything when evaluating SSDs. You can see a perfect example of this in our latest SSD review – the Intel DC S3700. Drives with over-provisioning perform consistently well even when in a used state, while others like the Crucial m4 and Samsung 830 fall flat on their faces after a while.
Another interesting note is the price. While nothing has been officially announced, word from CES is that the 960GB version will be available for under $600. This puts it at the $0.62 per GB range. This should put the 240GB version at around $150 or so (most likely slightly higher).
TBW is said to be 72 TB, which isn’t as high as the Intel 335 which uses the same type of flash. The Intel 335 is helped by the compression used by the controller, and 72 TB is still good for 66GB a day of writes over its 3 year warranty.
If you’re wondering what the “M.2” form factor is all about, this is what it looks like:
They call it “Ultra Thin” an you can read more about it here.