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Thread: Anandtech News

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    Anandtech: Western Digital: Nearly All NAND Capacities Resumed Normal Operations

    Western Digital and its manufacturing partner Toshiba Memory Co. (TMC) had managed to resume normal operation of almost all of their joint production lines at their Yokkaichi Operations campus in Japan, Western Digital said on Wednesday. Damages to wafer and manufacturing tools will cost Western Digital up to $339 million in total.
    A 13-minute unexpected power outage in the Yokkaichi province in Japan on June 15 affected the manufacturing facilities jointly operated by Western Digital and TMC. The incident damaged wafers that were processed and also production equipment used by the companies. Western Digital said in late June that the accident would reduce its NAND flash wafer supply in Q3 by approximately 6 EB (exabytes), which was believed to be about a half of the company’s quarterly supply of NAND. Toshiba also confirmed that wafers and equipment was damaged, but did not elaborate.
    By now, virtually all production capacities at the Yokkaichi Operations are back online, according to Steve Milligan, chief executive of Western Digital.
    “Western Digital and TMC teams have worked diligently on recovery activities and as of now, nearly all of the equipment in the fabs has returned to normal operations.”
    The company believes that all the lost wafers will be contained in the September quarter, but the incurred damages will be quite vast. In Q4 FY2019 (Q2 C2019) the company took a $145 million charge for impacted equipment as well as operations, and plans to take another $170 – $190 million write-off in the September quarter. As a result, the impact on Western Digital will total $315 – $339 million.
    Being a private company, Toshiba Memory does not disclose the impact of the accident, but if the company lost the equal number of wafers and has had to restore its production capacities, so its losses will be comparable to those of Western Digital. Overall, the 13-minute power outage will cost the two companies $630 to $678 million.
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    Source: Western Digital


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    Anandtech: Marvell Announces Client SSD Controllers With PCIe Gen4

    Last year Marvell announced updated client NVMe controllers that we have not yet encountered in the retail SSD market, but now that the transition to PCIe gen4 is underway those controllers are already due for replacement. The new family of controllers reflect shifts in the market that Marvell is expecting, and are intended more for OEM SSDs than retail products. (Silicon Motion and Phison have almost completely displaced Marvell from the retail consumer SSD market.)
    As NAND flash interface speeds and per-die capacities are increasing, Marvell is betting that mainstream client NVMe products can get away with just four NAND channels rather than eight. They're also making DRAMless SSDs (optionally with NVMe Host Memory Buffer support) a bigger part of their strategy. Those two changes combined means controllers can be physically much smaller, and Marvell expects shorter M.2 cards like the 22x30mm size to become much more popular now that they can offer higher performance and capacities up to 2TB (when using QLC NAND).
    Marvell's new generation of client NVMe controllers consists of three products: DRAMless controllers with two or four lanes of PCIe gen4, and one controller with DRAM support and four lanes of PCIe gen4. All three controllers have four NAND channels, but the largest 88SS1321 that has the DRAM interface also has twice as many chip enables on the NAND channels and thus can support higher capacities than the DRAMless 88SS1322 and 88SS1323.
    Marvell Client NVMe SSD Controller Comparsion
    88SS1321 88SS1322 88SS1323 88SS1084 88SS1100 88SS1093
    Market Segment Consumer, Entry-level Datacenter Mainstream Consumer Mainstream Consumer High-end Consumer Consumer &
    12nm FFC 28nm
    CPU Cores 3x Cortex R5 4x Cortex R5 3x Cortex R5
    Host Interface PCIe 4.0 x4 PCIe 4.0 x2 PCIe 3.0 x4 PCIe 3.0 x4
    NAND Interface 4 channels,
    4 channels,
    8 channels, 800MT/s 8 channels, 533MT/s
    Sequential Read 3.9 GB/s 3.9 GB/s 3.5 GB/s 3.0 GB/s 3.6 GB/s 3.2 GB/s
    Sequential Write 3.3 GB/s 3.3 GB/s 3.0 GB/s 2.6 GB/s 3.0 GB/s 2.0 GB/s
    4KB Random Read 690k IOPS 500k IOPS 450k IOPS 450k IOPS 780k IOPS 300k IOPS
    4KB Random Write 500k IOPS 350k IOPS 300k IOPS 400k IOPS 650k IOPS 250k IOPS
    Announced August 2019 June 2018 August 2014
    The sequential IO performance of the new 4-channel controllers is only slightly better than Marvell's earlier 8-channel controller, and random IO has taken a step backward. Marvell isn't aiming to saturate a PCIe 4 x4 link, though the smallest 88SS1323 with only a PCIe 4 x2 link does hit the speeds we're used to seeing from PCIe 3 x4 SSDs.
    Instead, Marvel is touting that they have the most power-efficient PCIe Gen4-capable SSD controllers, addressing concerns raised by AMD's latest chipsets and the Phison E16 SSD controller about PCIe 4 being a power hog. Marvell's new DRAMless controllers run at less than 2W with a PCIe 4 x4 link active, which isn't much more than the NAND flash itself requires. This is made possible by Marvell's jump to 12nm fabrication, compared to 28nm that has been the standard for most NVMe controllers. Even though these controllers are using a relatively advanced fab process, Marvell says they will allow for very cost-effective SSDs, especially when used in DRAMless configurations.
    Aside from the faster PCIe and NAND interfaces, the new generation of controllers are architecturally similar to their predecessors, with a handful of Arm Cortex R5 CPU cores and the same fourth-generation LDPC engine used by last year's controllers from Marvell.
    Marvell is currently sampling the new controllers, and will be showing them off next week at Flash Memory Summit.


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    Anandtech: Phison to Showcase PS5013-E13T BGA SSD: Up to 1.7 GB/s At Under 2 W

    Phison said this week that it will demonstrate its next generation turnkey BGA SSD at the 2019 Flash Memory Summit next week. The tiny drive uses a 324-ball BGA packaging, and promises to be faster than its BGA predecessor while consuming around half the power.
    The Phison PS5013-E13T 1113 BGA SSDs come in 128 GB and 256 GB configurations, use a PCIe 3.0 x2 interface, and iare rated for up to 1.7 GB/s sequential read speeds as well as up to 1.1 GB/s sequential write speeds (when pSLC caching is used). The drives do not use DRAM and rely on Host Memory Buffer (HMB) instead.
    When compared to Phison’s current-generation PS5008-E8T BGA SSD (rated for up to 1550/950 MB/s read/write speeds), the new PS5013-E13T is not radically faster. However, its key advantage of the new one over its predecessor and existing BGA SSDs is power consumption. The new drive consumes only about 1.5 W, down from 2.9 W – 3.4 W consumed by today’s high-end BGA SSDs. Furthermore, the drive supports configurable power profiles to meet requirements of various applications.
    Phison’s PS5013-E13T 1113 BGA SSDs will be available sometimes in 2020 and hopefully the company will reveal more information about the new drives at FMS next week.
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    Source: Phison


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    Anandtech: Liqid to Show Element LQD450 PCIe 4.0 x16 SSD: 32 TB At Up to 24 GB/s

    Liqid, a maker of SSDs for mission critical and performance-hungry applications, plans to demonstrate one of the world’s first PCIe 4.0 x16 solid-state drives at Flash Memory Summit next week. The Element LQD4500 SSD is designed to offer superior sequential and random performance along with an enterprise-grade feature set and reliability. Making this all the more noteworthy is that the drive is based on consumer-grade components.
    The Liqid Element LQD4500 SSD is based on multiple Phison PS5016-E16 controllers (with a PCIe 4.0 x4 interface) featuring a custom firmware and carries up to 32 TB of raw 3D TLC NAND flash. Liqid is presumably doing on-card NVMe RAID here, similar to what we've seen in some PCIe 3.0 x16 cards in the last couple of years. Being aimed at datacenters or enterprises, the Element LQD4500 supports power loss data protection and features numerous proprietary technologies from Liqid, including active telemetry monitoring, advanced error recovery, and active thermal throttling.
    The fastest Liqid Element LQD4500 SSDs will offer up to 24 GB/s sequential read and write speeds as well as up to 4 million read and write IOPS (sustained random writes are rated at 600K IOPS). Such drives will also offer an ~80 μs read access latency as well as a ~20 μs write latency.
    The drive comes in a full-height full-length (FHFL) add-in-card (AIC) form-factor with a one-wide passive cooling system, and is therefore compatible with large systems that need extreme performance and can provide a minimum of 400 LFM of air flow, as the card consumes and dissipates up to 65 W of power. Depending on customer requirements, the drive can be configured for different capacities, performance, and endurance levels.
    General Specifications of the Liqid Element LQD4500 SSD
    Data Center Drives Enterprise Drives
    SKUs 7.68 TB: LQD-E2DPNBD08M007T68
    15.36 TB: LQD-E2DPNBD08M015T36
    30.72 TB: LQD-E2DPNBD08M030T72
    6.40 TB: LQD-E2DPNBD08M006T40
    12.80 TB: LQD-E2DPNBD08M012T80
    25.60 TB: LQD-E2DPNBD08M025T60
    Controller 4x Phison PS5016-E16
    NAND Flash 3D TLC NAND
    Form-Factor, Interface Full-height full-length (FHFL) add-in-card (AIC)
    PCIe 4.0 x16, NVMe 1.2.1
    Sequential Read up to 24 GB/s
    Sequential Write up to 24 GB/s
    Random Read IOPS up to 4M IOPS
    Random Write IOPS up to 4M IOPS
    Sustained Random Write IOPS 600K IOPS
    Pseudo-SLC Caching ?
    DRAM Buffer Yes, capacity unknown
    AES Data Encryption Yes
    Power Consumption up to 65 W
    Warranty 3 years
    Compatibility Windows, Windows Server 2012, 2012 R2 RHEL; SLES; CentOS, Solaris, SUSE, VMware
    TBW up to 61.53 PBW
    Additional Information Link
    MSRP ? ?
    The Liqid Element LQD4500 SSD will be demonstrated at FMS by Phison, which happens to be an investor of Liqid. There is no word regarding availability or pricing of these drives, but given their performance and capabilities, we're not expecting this card to come cheap.
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    Sources: Liqid, Phison


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    Anandtech: Biostar Unveils Racing X570GT: An mATX Motherboard for AMD Ryzen 3000

    The Micro-ATX form-factor seems to have walked into the crossfire between ATX and Mini-ITX in the recent years, and as a result, the mid-sized form factor isn't quite as prevalent as it once was. Nonetheless, since many inexpensive systems keep using mATX platforms, motherboard makers thankfully continue to support the form-factor. One of such manufacturers is Biostar, which has released its Racing X570GT Micro-ATX motherboard for AMD’s latest Ryzen 3000-series processors. This is the second mATX motherboard based on the AMD X570 chipset announced so far (as far as we are aware).
    The Biostar Racing X570GT is a compact AMD X570 platform that supports AMD’s 2nd and 3rd Gen Ryzen processors and features a seven-phase digital VRM to ensure their stable operation. The motherboard carries four DDR4 memory slots for up to 128 GB of DRAM (up to DDR4-4000 speeds are supported, depending on CPU), one iron-reinforced PCIe 4.0 x16 slot for graphics cards, one M.2-2280 slot for SSDs with a PCIe 4.0 x4 interface, four SATA connectors (with RAID 0, 1, 10), and two PCIe 3.0 x1 slots for add-on cards.
    On the connectivity side of matters, the motherboard has a GbE port (controlled by Realtek’s RTL8111H chip and supporting Biostar’s protection against power surges), four USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A along with two USB 2.0 connectors (additional USB connectors are supported via internal headers), a PS2 port, two display outputs (D-Sub and HDMI), and 7.1-channel audio connectors (enabled by Realtek’s ALC887 codec with an isolated circuit design). In addition, the motherboard features an RGB 12V LED header and a Digital 5V LED header that are used to control RGB LED strips, fans, memory modules, and so on.
    Biostar’s Racing X570GT Micro-ATX motherboard does not carry any extra controllers to enable features like Wi-Fi or additional SATA ports, which will make it cheaper when compared to beefy competitors. Keeping in mind that the platform still supports the key feature of the AMD X570 platform: PCIe 4.0, the motherboard is good enough for most gamers. Unfortunately, for some reason Biostar decided not to enable USB 3.2 Gen 2 (10 Gbps) ports, but stuck to USB 3.2 Gen 1 (5 Gbps) connectors, which will be a disadvantage for those using high-performance external storage devices supporting 10 Gbps speeds.
    Biostar AMD X570 Micro-ATX Motherboard
    Racing X570GT
    Supported CPUs AM4
    AMD's 2nd and 3rd Gen Ryzen APUs and CPUs
    PCH AMD X570
    Graphics Integrated (APUs only)
    PCIe 4.0 x16 slot
    Display Outputs 1 × HDMI
    1 × D-Sub
    Memory 4 × DDR4 DIMM
    Up to 128 GB of DDR4 (up to DDR4-4000+ in OC mode)
    with or without ECC, depending on CPU
    Slots for Add-In-Cards 1 × PCIe 4.0 x16
    2 × PCIe 3.0 x1
    Ethernet Realtek RTL8111H GbE controller
    Storage M.2 1 × M.2-2280 (PCIe 4.0 x4)
    SATA 4 × SATA 6 Gbps
    Audio 7.1-channel audio with analog outputs (ALC887)
    USB 4 × USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A
    2 × USB 2.0 Type-A
    additional ports supported by internal headers
    Other I/O Internal headers for audio and USB
    Monitoring ?
    Bundled Software Racing GT EVO Utility
    Form-Factor Micro-ATX (243 mm × 235 mm)
    Biostar will start selling the Racing X570GT Micro-ATX motherboard for AMD’s Ryzen 3000-series processors in the near future. The company has not announced details about its pricing, but given its configuration, expect this to be an entry-level AMD X570-powered platform.
    Related Reading:

    Source: Biostar


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    Anandtech: Toshiba Launches XL-FLASH 3D SLC NAND

    Last year at Flash Memory Summit, Toshiba announced XL-FLASH, a specialized low-latency SLC 3D NAND flash memory that is their answer to Samsung's Z-NAND (and to a lesser extent, Intel's 3D XPoint). Few details were provided at the time, but this year Toshiba is ready to give out more information, including a timeline for bringing it to market: sampling starts next month, and mass production begins next year.
    The first XL-FLASH parts will use a 128Gb die, divided into 16 planes to support a much higher degree of parallelism than existing capacity-oriented 3D NAND parts. The page size will be 4kB, significantly smaller than what most 3D NAND uses, but that's not a surprise given that XL-FLASH is storing just one bit per cell rather than three or four. Toshiba's press release does not disclose the erase block size, but we expect it to be similarly smaller than what's used in high-capacity NAND designs. As for performance, Toshiba says read latency will be less than 5 microseconds, compared to about 50 µs for their 3D TLC.
    The most significant difference between Toshiba's XL-FLASH and Samsung's Z-NAND may end up being the business model. Samsung's keeping Z-NAND to themselves for use in their Z-SSD products, but Toshiba's XL-FLASH will be for sale the same as their 3D TLC and QLC NAND. We have already heard from a few SSD controller vendors that they plan to support XL-FLASH in their upcoming controllers, so when XL-FLASH starts to hit the market it will probably be arriving in SSDs from several competing brands.
    Flash Memory Summit kicks off tomorrow in Santa Clara, and Toshiba will be giving the first keynote presentation.


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    Anandtech: Everspin’s STT-MRAM Now Supported by Cadence’s DDR4 Controllers

    Cadence and Everspin on Monday announced that Cadence’s DDR4 IP and verification IP now support Everspin’s 1 Gb STT-MRAM. Cadence’s support will make it easier for chip designers to support MRAM.
    8-bit and 16-bit DDR4 memory controllers as well as verification IP from Cadence now support Everspin’s 1 Gb STT-MRAM in a JEDEC-compliant BGA package. This enables SSD controller and flash array manufacturers to add support for MRAM to their devices. Being aimed at enterprise-class SSDs (eSSDs), Everspin’s 1 Gb STT-MRAM offers lower latencies than traditional NAND flash memory, and the manufacturer envisions their MRAM being used to significantly lower the overall latency and increase the random performance of MRAM-equipped drives versus typical SSDs.
    Everspin has done quite a lot for STT-MRAM promotion. In the last couple of weeks it announced support from Phison and Sage. Now STT-MRAM is supported by Cadence. When exactly we see the fruits of this work is something that remains to be seen.
    Related Reading:

    Source: Everspin


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    Anandtech: Memblaze’s PBlaze5 X26: Toshiba’s XL-Flash-Based Ultra-Low Latency SSD

    With the annual Flash Memory Summit kicking into high gear this week, Memblaze will be showcasing one of the industry’s first ultra-low latency NVMe SSDs based on Toshiba’s XL-Flash memory. The drives promise consistent, high performance as well as ultra-low latencies and will compete against Intel’s Optane and Samsung’s Z-NAND drives for mission critical and performance-demanding applications.
    The Memblaze PBlaze X26-series drives are based on the company’s proprietary controllers and are paired with Toshiba’s XL-Flash memory. XL-Flash was announced last year, promising to reduce operational latencies by an order of magnitude compared to 3D TLC NAND (i.e., 1/10th of 3D TLC NAND latency). Memblaze claims that prototypes of the PBlaze X26-series SSDs feature a 4K random write latency under 10 μs and a 4K mixed read-write latency as low as 26 μs on average. In fact, the company expects the final drives to offer a latency of below 20 μs. This is still higher when compared to Intel’s Optane SSDs, but these SSDs are expected to be cheaper as well.
    Here is what Taile Zhang, Memblaze’s senior vice president of products, said:
    “Based on Memblaze’s core flash memory technology, PBlaze5 X26 brings advantages of XL-FLASH’s ultra-low latency, high QoS and provides fast, stable performance across the enterprise. Compared to 3D XPoint and other SCM media, XL-FLASH has an obvious price advantage that offers the PBlaze5 X26 series a boost for market acceptance and wide adoption across the industry.”
    Memblaze is not sharing any further details about the drives at this time, yet it does reveal a product name — the PBlaze5 X26 800 — which could possible indicate an 800 GB capacity.
    The manufacturer is currently sampling the drive with select customers and plans to ship commercial products in 2020.

    NOTE: Image is for illustration purposes only.
    Related Reading:

    Source: Memblaze


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    Anandtech: The Fractal Design Ion+ 760P 80Plus Platinum PSU Review: A High-End PSU Fo

    Fractal Design is releasing their new high-end PSU series, the Ion+. The series consists of four units with power outputs ranging from 560 to 860 Watts, all with impressive specifications overall. Today we'll be taking an in-depth look at the 760W model from this family, the aptly-named Ion+ 760P, and seeing first-hand how Fractal's new PSUs live up to the company's lofty claims.


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    Anandtech: Intel to Offer Socketed 56-core Cooper Lake Xeon Scalable in new Socket Co

    Today Intel is announcing some of its plans for its future Xeon Scalable platform. The company has already announced that after the Cascade Lake series of processors launched this year that it will bring forth another generation of 14nm products, called Cooper Lake, followed by its first generation of 10nm on Xeon, Ice Lake. Today’s announcement relates to the core count of Cooper Lake, the form factor, and the platform.


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