Plextor got their start in 1989, releasing their first CD-ROM drive. Plextor’s optical quickly earned a reputation for speed and reliability. When Solid State Drives entered the market, Plextor decided to release enter that market as well. Since then, Plextor has become one of the most popular brands of SSD’s on the market. Plextor’s latest released into the mainstream line is the M6S.
Crucial is a global brand of Micron Technology, Inc., one of the largest memory and flash storage manufacturers in the world. They make computer memory upgrades (DRAM) and solid state drives (SSDs), and offer more than 250,000 upgrades for over 50,000 systems. They have a reputation for quality and their SSD’s are well regarded.
Today we will be looking at Crucial’s M550 256 Gb SSD. Offing speeds up to 550 MB/s read and 500 MB/s write is quite a step up from their previous offering, the M500. The M500 was a staple in the SSD market and with good reason, it was fast and reliable. Crucial has taken the M500 and upgrade the controller to the new Marvell 88SS9189. Also new is the Micron 64Gb 20nm (MLC) Flash. This is certainly interesting. Let us find out if the M550 is a worthy successor.
It is a question that is almost as old as the computer hard drive itself. What do I do with this old hard drive? As soon as people started upgrading the storage on their computers, that question has been asked. For quite some time, the options were limited. You could reuse it, sell it, or recycle it. Recently though, a new option has emerged, you can now re-purpose it. This brings us to the Vantec NexStar WiFI. The Vantec NexStar WiFI allows a person to use any new or not so new 2.5 SATA I/II/III to create a portable drive. Vatec has also made sure that there are numerous connection options as well. The enclosure can be connected by USB 3.0 or by WiFi. This alone would seem to be a great option, but they chose to take it a step further, by adding connection options Android OS and Apple iOS devices as well. iOS devices can also use AirPlay to stream content as well. This all sounds very intriguing.
There's a new type of SSDs that recently came out this year, the M.2 which is also known as the Next Generation Form Factor (NGFF). These are to replace the mSATA standards and uses the PCIE mini card layout. The introduction of this form became available in the Intel 1150 platform under the Z97 chipset. The form factor boasts some of the fastest read and write speeds available today with bandwidths of up to 10 gb/s compared to the typical 6 gb/s on SATA III. And Kingston Technology is happy to send us one of their M.2 SSDs for us to test. Let's see just how good an M.2 SSD is compared to typical SSDs in the market today.
The Kingwin EZ-Connect allows you to connect either Parallel ATA type drive or a Serial ATA drive to your computer via a USB 2.0 cable. Indeed, the idea is quite interesting. It surely would eliminate the need for multiple adapters, not to mention having to open up your computer to install the drive. It is also supposed to be completely plug and play, so no need to configure your system for the new drive. The Kingwin EZ-Connect sounds like a data migration dream come true.
Over the last few years Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices have gained in popularity. The ability to store and share files, media, and other data on a small, but powerful piece of network equipment provides for easier setup, administration, and faster data access at an affordable price. Thecus, a company that prides itself on creating quality storage devices, has a wide variety of storage products to fit the need of the individual user, as well as, the enterprise level storage solutions. The Thecus N2310 is a lower price alternative to the expensive file servers and media servers available in the retail market. This entry level NAS server is running at 800MHz, and has 512MB of DDR3 RAM. The N2310 has two 3.5" and 2.5" hard drive bays for up to 8 TB of storage. Let's learn who Thecus is and what they are all about.
Today we are taking a look at the OCZ Vertex 460 240GB SSD. This is OCZ's first product after the Toshiba acquisition. It uses the company's own Indilinx Barefoot 3 M10 controller, a slightly under-clocked version of the Barefoot 3 M00 controller used in OCZ's flagship Vector 150 SSD. The Vertex 460 uses the same Toshiba 19nm Multi-Level Cell (MLC) Flash as the Vector 150 SSD. It also features a sizable 512MB DDR3 SDRAM buffer like the the Vector 150, but operating at 1333MHz, instead of 1600 MHz. It appears that Toshiba is looking to enter the SSD market with a bang.