SSD Controller IC
It can be seen in all these tests that the major difference between SSDs is in reading and writing efficiency in addition to adopted Flash chip specifications (form, node, speed). Multi-channel access and wear leveling technologies also influence the efficiency of SSD controllers.
Besides, the controlling chip adopted and the size of Cache also could have impact on the SSD efficiency. Other factors to be considered are: the algorithm of SSD controller, the need of cache, the system stability and its impact on the product lifespan, finally, the price and cost on the whole. Here is a brief list of the tested SSD products and their controllers:
1, Intel X25-M SSDSA2M080G2GC 80GB (Intel)
2, OCZ Agility EX 60GB SSD (Indilinx)
3, KingFast KF251MCI 64GB SSD (Indilinx)
4, A-Data SSD S592 64GB (Indilinx)
5, STAREX 64GB SSD (Indilinx)
6, Gingle V3 64GB SSD (Jmicron)
7, PQI SSD S528 64GB (Indilinx)
8, CORSAIR CMFSSD-64GBG2D P64 SSD (Indilinx)
9, RiDATA X-series NSSD-X25-64-C07M-PN 64GB SSD (JMicron)
10, RunCore RCP-IV-S2564-C 64GB SSD (Indilinx)
1, Intel X25-M SSDSA2M160G2GC 160GB (Intel)
2, OCZ Vertex PRO 120GB SSD (SandForce)
3, A-Data SSD S599 100GB (SandForce)
4, G.SKILL PHOENIX 100GB SSD (SandForce)
5, MX-Technology MXSSD2MDS 100GB SSD (SandForce)
6, Micron REALSSD C300 128GB (Marvell)
7, STAREX 128GB SSD (Indilinx)
8, Apogee Mars FlashSSD 128GB (Indilinx)
9, CORSAIR CMFSSD-128GD1 X128 SSD (Indilinx)
10, SUPER Sspeed SSD 128GB (Indilinx)
Overall Performance Evaluation
At this stage, we found out that in the efficiency of SSD controllers, in addition to Intel and Samsung’s Flash which are produced in-house, others such as SandForce, Indilinx, JMicron also performed well.
In view of the controller of 41 products we tested, 14.6% are SandForce, 7.3% Samsung, 2.4% Marvell, 22% Jmicron, 4.9% Intel,2.4% Initio, 46.3% Indilinx.
Among them, SSDs featuring SandForce chip generally do not have built-in DRAM cache. The new design enables the SSD to rival against SSDs with DRAM cache and Indilinx, JMicron controller.
Indilinx is Korea-based maker, claiming to provide excellent performance equipped with DRAM cache, whose SSD controller are most used during this test.
The second most adopted SSD controller comes from JMicron, a Taiwan maker. The controller also has good performance and stability and it can go with DRAM cache.
Intel SSD controller performs well and so did its Flash chip. The two will offer good performance together.
It can found out in our tests that in terms of efficiency, SandForce SSD controller, the rising star which offers special algorithm looks very outstanding. Although it shows high efficiency without DRAM, but its chip price is comparatively much higher, suitable for efficiency-seeking customers.
In all, Indilinx and JMicron controllers are most used in SSD products and both present quite good performances. However, JMicron product is lower priced, suitable to shape as sales-oriented product to speed up SSD popularization.
In long term, the SSD penetration rate will increase. Especially when the matched SSD controllers come out with the launches of Flash by next generation node technology, overall SSD prices tend to further decline in the future. Meanwhile, the rising market acceptance of SSD products will pave the way for future market shares.
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