updated 12:00 pm EDT, Mon March 24, 2008
Toshiba 128GB SSD
Toshiba is about to ship its 128GB solid-state drive, the first SSD from the company and the first it says to offer the speed of faster drives with the storage of slower models. The 1.8-inch drive uses the same multi-level cell (MLC) process as the flash memory used in portable music players but also relies on a new controller that boosts its speeds well past the sometimes slow speeds of these cheaper drives. As promised, the unit can read at 100MB per second and writes at 40MB per second, making it faster than many 2.5-inch, notebook-sized drives.
The company has not revealed pricing for the Serial ATA drive, which currently ships in a raw, board-only format and will primarily be used in the DynaBook SS RX1 (Portégé R500 in the US) as well as future PCs from third party manufacturers. Versions with the casings normally used for 1.8- and 2.5-inch hard drives should start sampling in April and go into production within the next few months.
Toshiba's drive is expected to cost less than a competing Samsung 128GB drive, which will also start shipping soon but will use single-level cell technology and write faster at 70MB per second.