New NVMe SSDs and a USB 3.2 Moveable SSD

Kingston launched a wide range of new storage merchandise at CES 2021, asserting new NVMe SSDs starting from entry-level to high-end client and enterprise drives, plus new moveable storage merchandise.

NV1 SSD: Entry-Degree Client NVMe

Kingston’s new entry-level client NVMe drive would be the NV1, probably ushering in a brand new naming scheme for his or her client NVMe lineup. The product technique for the NV1 was likened to their A400 SATA SSD: the NV1 will in all probability be competing to be one of many most cost-effective NVMe drives from a recognizable model. The {hardware} used within the NV1 will fluctuate based mostly on market circumstances. Initially, we should always see a mixture of DRAMless controllers (Phison E13T, SM2263XT) paired with TLC NAND for decrease capacities and QLC NAND for no less than the very best 2TB capability. This implies the NV1 will probably be extra low-end than their present A2000, which straddles the road between low-end and mainstream NVMe SSDs by utilizing TLC NAND and a SM2263 controller with DRAM, albeit solely 4 NAND channels. Kingston is planning for the NV1 to be able to hit the market across the finish of Q1 or early in Q2.

Excessive-Finish Client NVMe, Codenamed Ghost Tree

On the excessive finish, Kingston is engaged on a PCIe 4.0 SSD based mostly on the Phison E18 controller. That is at present codenamed “Ghost Tree”, and a extra typical product title will probably be chosen earlier than launch. This drive will take over the flagship place from their present KC2500, their second product based mostly on the Silicon Movement SM2262EN controller. The Ghost Tree product will supply capacities as much as 4TB. Kingston did not disclose what NAND will probably be used, however given the timing we might anticipate to see Micron’s 176L TLC moderately than the 96L TLC utilized by the Phison E18 drives which can be already available on the market.

XS2000 USB 3.2 Moveable SSD

Within the second half of the 12 months, Kingston will introduce the XS2000 high-end moveable SSD. This can help USB 3.2 Gen2x2 to offer speeds of as much as about 2GB/s, and capacities will vary from 500 GB to 2 TB. Kingston hasn’t formally determined which controller the XS2000 will probably be based mostly on, however they need to use a local USB controller moderately than a NVMe controller behind a bridge chip. Which means the newly-announced Phison U18 controller ought to be one of many main candidates.

Enterprise SSD Updates

Final 12 months, Kingston launched the DC1000M, their first U.2 SSD. This 12 months, they’re changing it with the DC1500M, a reasonably easy replace to 96L 3D TLC from Kioxia that ought to carry some efficiency and energy enhancements. The DC1500M will nonetheless be utilizing the Silicon Movement SM2270 16-channel enterprise NVMe controller, and this time they’ve added a number of namespaces help to the firmware. The DC1500M is at present in qualification and will probably be out there across the finish of Q1.

Kingston’s different enterprise NVMe product line is the DC1000B server boot drive, based mostly on the Phison E12DC controller. Presently, the DC1000B is obtainable in 240G B and 480 GB capacities, however Kingston will quickly be including a 960 GB mannequin.

Kingston can also be beginning to plan for a PCIe 4.0 U.2 drive, however that is in very early levels; they have not selected a controller but, so we cannot be seeing this launch any time quickly. Kingston did not share any plans for his or her enterprise SATA merchandise, however they’re nonetheless promoting extra of these drives than their enterprise NVMe merchandise. (Kingston’s enterprise/datacenter buyer base tends to be much less aggressive about migrating to newer platforms than the highest hyperscalers which have been the first drivers of NVMe adoption in datacenters.) Kingston’s DC450/DC500 household will in all probability be getting the occasional NAND updates for an additional few years.


Workflow Station and Card Readers

For content material creators that juggle quite a lot of reminiscence playing cards and USB storage gadgets, Kingston is introducing a brand new sequence of card readers and a 4-bay dock for these readers. The dock makes use of a USB 3.2 Gen 2 (10Gbps) host interface and acts as a USB hub offering USB 3.2 Gen 1 (5Gbps) connectivity to 4 modules. One module is bundled with the dock, offering one every of USB-C and USB-A ports. Two different modules are offered individually: a two-port SD reader and a two-port microSD reader, each supporting UHS-II. All three sorts of modules are able to working individually from the Workflow Station utilizing a USB-C cable.

Kingston’s Workflow Station is an analogous idea to the Workflow HR1 and HR2 hubs previously provided by Lexar. Kingston’s system is extra fashionable (USB-C help) and cheaper, however would not help as many alternative reminiscence card codecs. That is primarily as a result of Kingston is not all for making a reader module for a format they are not at present promoting playing cards for, ruling out CFast and all of the newer PCIe-based requirements which can be attempting to realize a foothold out there.

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