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DRAM Price-Fix Uncovered in China, 'Massive Evidence' Against Samsung, SK Hynix and Micron

The Chinese State Administration for Market Regulation has been conducting an anti-monopoly investigation of the global Dynamic RAM market. According to an interview of Wu Zenghou (bureau's head) in the Financial Times, this process has found "massive evidence" against the three companies (Samsung, Hynix, and Micron) that are responsible for the vast majority of this segment. "The anti-monopoly investigation into these three companies has made important progress", points out the investigator. On April these three companies were hit with a price-fixing suit on the same matter in the US, and this investigation seems to confirm those reports.

There is even an older precedent, as Samsung and Hynix were fined both by the US Department of Justice in 2005 and by the European Commission in 2010 on price-fixing allegations. The charges now are similar, and if the companies are found guilty, they could face fines of over $2.5 billion. Some analysts suggest this investigation could be part of the trade war between China and the US, with the former trying to get some leverage pushing the Chinese semiconductor company Fujian Jinhua Integrated Circuit as a bigger player on this market. One that, by the way, is being investigated on allegations of misappropriated trade secrets from Micron. Samsung and SK Hynix have accused China DRAM makers of industrial espionage, too.

SK Hynix Announces 1Ynm 16Gb DDR5 DRAM

SK Hynix announced that it has developed 16 Gb DDR5 DRAM, the industry's first DDR5 to meet the JEDEC standards. The same 1Ynm process technology used for the recently-developed 1Ynm 8Gb DDR4 DRAM was applied to the new DRAM, giving an industry-leading competitive edge for the Company.

DDR5 is a next-generation DRAM standard that offers ultra-high speed and high density with reduced power consumption as compared to DDR4, for use in data-intensive applications such as big data, artificial intelligence, and machine learning.

SK Hynix Develops 10 nm-class 8 Gb DDR4 DRAM

SK Hynix Inc. announced that it has developed 1Ynm 8Gb (Gigabits) DDR4 (Double Data Rate 4) DRAM. The productivity of this product is increased by 20% and the power consumption reduced by more than 15%, compared to the previous generation, 1Xnm DRAM. It also supports a data transfer rate of up to 3,200Mbps, which is the fastest data processing speed in DDR4 interface. The Company adopted a '4-Phase Clocking' scheme, which doubles the clock signal to boost data transfer speed and stability.

SK Hynix also introduced its own 'Sense Amp. Control' technology to reduce power consumption and data errors. With this technology, the Company successfully enhanced the performance of the sense amplifier. SK Hynix improved the transistor structure to lower the possibility of data errors, a challenge that accompanies technology shrink. The Company also added a low-power power supply to the circuit to prevent unnecessary power consumption.

SK Hynix Launches World's First 'CTF-based 4D NAND Flash' (96-Layer 512Gb TLC)

SK Hynix today launched the world's first 96-Layer 512Gb CTF (Charge Trap Flash) based 4D NAND flash. Don't let the name trick you - it's still based on 3D TLC technology, but SK Hynix has gone and added a 4th dimension due to its pairing of charge trap flash technology in conjunction with PUC (Peri. Under Cell technology.

SK Hynix says that their approach is (obviously) better than the industry-wide 3D Floating Gate approach. The 4D NAND chip design results in a reduction of more than 30% in chip size, and increases bit productivity per wafer by 49% compared to the Company's 72-Layer 512Gb 3D NAND. Moreover, the product has 30% higher write and 25% higher read performance. Also, its data bandwidth is doubled to an industry-leading (in size) 64KB. Data I/O (Input Output) speed reaches 1,200Mbps (Megabits/sec) at 1.2 V.

NAND Flash Prices May See Further Drops in 2019, DRAM to Remain Flat

Solid-state drives are cheaper than ever, thanks to systematic decline in NAND flash prices owing both to oversupply and increases in densities. NAND flash prices have already declined by 50 percent over 2018, according to a DigiTimes report, and will continue to slide through 2019. ADATA chairman Simon Chen commented that NAND flash makers haven't slowed down capacity expansions, and 2019 could witness an even bigger drop in prices than 2018.

Major NAND flash makers such as IMFlash Technology, SK Hynix, Samsung, Western Digital, Toshiba, have already taped out their 96-layer 3D NAND flash products, which could enter volume production in the first half of 2019. This could impact prices of existing swelling inventories of products based on 64-layer NAND flash. In theory, the 96-layer chips introduce 50 percent increases in densities. Adoption of newer technologies such as QLC (4 bits per cell) will expand densities even further. The same report also projects that DRAM prices could largely remain flat throughout 2019. Most NAND flash makers also happen to make DRAM, and could balance their NAND flash losses with DRAM profits.

Samsung To Reduce DRAM Output Growth in Favor of Maintaining Prices, Says Bloomberg

In a bid to head off investor worries of a potential downturn, Samsung is looking to tighten their belts in regards to the manufacturing of DRAM. In particular, this move is preempted by the expectation of DRAM bit growth to be less than 20% year-over-year, with bit growth being the key measurement for gauging market demand based on the amount of memory produced. Considering the semiconductor industry is known for its up and down cycles, Samsung's preemptive move could stabilize or even drive up the cost of memory coming out of not just them but Micron and SK Hynix as well. This would help keep their profits rolling in, just in case a downturn in demand does take place, but it also means PC enthusiasts will have to deal with memory prices remaining roughly the same or possibly climb higher going forward.

Anthea Lai, an analyst for Bloomberg Intelligence, in Hong Kong made note that "If Samsung does cut its DRAM bit growth, it shows the company is happy with the current oligopoly market structure." Elaborating further, he said that "It prefers keeping supply tight and prices high, rather than taking market share and risking lower prices, therefore chances for DRAM prices to stay strong is higher."

Samsung, SK Hynix Slowing Down NAND, DRAM Fab Expansion Plans in Wake of Lower Demand Projections

DigiTimes is reporting plans from both Samsung and SK Hynix to slow down their fabrication capacity expansion plans for NAND and DRAM in wake of lower than expected demand projection for the first half of 2019. This move comes at a time where DRM pricing is still extremely prohibitive due to "higher demand than fabrication capacity output" - and we'd already seen the companies base their fabrication expansions on lower than expected demand increases, as a way to artificially keep pricing for the memory commodity high. NAND is another case - price per GB has been dropping like a rock. And now, the companies want to thwart expected lower demand with lower production values.

Samsung, for one, has reportedly put its plans for additional new production capacity for 1ynm DRAM chips at its fabs in Hwaseong and Pyeongtaek on hold. The chip vendor previously planned to build an additional 30,000 wafers monthly for DRAM memory starting the third quarter of 2018, the sources said - but is now looking to reduce that number to keep pricing from bottoming out. Sk Hynix is also reported to have slowed down its projected production, but details are scarcer on that side of the fence. All in all, it seems that whether there is demand or not, seeing DRAM prices falling to their previous levels is a dream in both name and, not paradoxically, reality.

SK Hynix Unveils 4D NAND Flash Memory Concept

3D NAND flash revolutionized flash storage as it used the third dimension (height) to stack multiple NAND flash layers, resulting in infinitesimally smaller footprint and reduced costs. SK Hynix believes that a "4-dimensional" NAND flash package is possible. Don't worry, such a stack doesn't look like a tesseract. Conventional 3D NAND flash relies on stacks of charge-trap flash (CTF) cells spatially located alongside its periphery block (which is responsible for wiring out each of the layers of the CTF stack). On a 2-D plane you'd be spending substrate real-estate on both the CTF and periphery block.

SK Hynix believes that the periphery block can be stacked along with the CTF stack, with microscopic vias wiring up the stack along the periphery, reducing the footprint of each cell stack. 4D stacking will also allow for greater number of CTF stacks per cell. Just to be clear, we're talking about stacks of cell and not stacks of NAND flash dies. The V5 cell-stack in SK Hynix's design entails 4 cells and periphery blocks sandwiched. The first implementation of this technology is a 96-layer 4D NAND flash chip with 512 Gb of capacity and TLC (3 bits per cell) density, although the technology is ready for QLC cells. This 512 Gb chip will begin sampling by the end of 2018, and the company is already working on a 1 Tb chip for 2019.

SK Hynix to Build New $3.5B Plant for Future Memory Technologies

SK Hynix Inc. today announced that the Company will construct a new semiconductor fabrication plant (or 'the FAB') at its headquarters in Icheon, Gyeonggi-do, to respond to growing demand for memory chips and to secure a future growth engine.

Construction on the 53,000 m² site in Icheon will begin late 2018 and is slated to be completed in October 2020. SK Hynix will invest 3.5 trillion won in the FAB. The production portfolio of the FAB shall be decided considering future market conditions as well as the Company's technology capability.

Chinese DRAM Companies Stealing DRAM IP From Samsung and SK Hynix

It's not just Micron, but also Korean DRAM giants Samsung and SK Hynix, that are the latest victims of large-scale industrial espionage by Chinese DRAM makers to steal vital DRAM intellectual property (IP), according to Korea Times. Today's DRAM makers build their products on IP acquired over decades, and that is time Chinese companies do not have, and aren't willing to license from established DRAM makers, either.

"Samsung Electronics and SK Hynix have become the target of industrial espionage by Chinese memory chip manufacturers. In semiconductors, patents are critical to the cost structure. The companies have to protect what they have spent decades building. The result is Chinese companies are attempting to infringe on Samsung and SK patents," said a Korean official involved in the investigation of IP theft.

Samsung & SK Hynix 18 Nanometer DRAM Yields Plagued By Technical Problems

Digitimes reports that Korean memory manufacturers Hynix and Samsung have both been hit by unstable yield rates for their 18 nm server DRAM production.

While the yields are claimed to be sufficient for notebook and desktop PC production, they are not good enough for server memory, which has higher quality requirements. Due to the shortage, Chinese enterprises like Alibaba, Huawei, Lenovo and Tencent are now switching to use 20 nanometer DRAM for their servers, which is in better supply. Other vendors have even requested that no more 18 nm chips are shipped by these Korean suppliers, in a bid to improve quality, which might take several months, but shouldn't have a significant impact on overall DRAM prices.

NVIDIA GeForce "Volta" Graphics Cards to Feature GDDR6 Memory According to SK Hynix Deal

NVIDIA's upcoming GeForce GTX graphics cards based on the "Volta" architecture, could feature GDDR6 memory, according to a supply deal SK Hynix struck with NVIDIA, resulting in the Korean memory manufacturer's stock price surging by 6 percent. It's not known if GDDR6 will be deployed on all SKUs, or if like GDDR5X, it will be exclusive to a handful high-end SKUs. The latest version of SK Hynix memory catalogue points to an 8 Gb (1 GB) GDDR6 memory chip supporting speeds of up to 14 Gbps at 1.35V, and up to 12 Gbps at 1.25V.

Considering NVIDIA already got GDDR5X to run at 11 Gbps, it could choose the faster option. Memory remains a cause for concern. If 8 Gb is the densest chip from SK Hynix, then the fabled "GV104" (GP104-successor), which could likely feature a 256-bit wide memory interface, will only feature up to 8 GB of memory, precluding the unlikely (and costly) option of piggy-backing chips to achieve 16 GB.

China's Tsinghua Unigroup to Manufacture 3D NAND Flash for Intel

In a bid to ensure sufficient supply of NAND flash memory to meet the growing demands of not just PC, but also smartphone markets, China's Tsinghua Unigroup and Intel are in talks to license-manufacture 64-layer 3D NAND flash, based on existing IMFlash Technologies designs. IMFlash is a joint-venture between Intel and Micron Technology. Tsinghua Unigroup is one of the biggest beneficiaries of the Chinese Government's ambitious plan to invest RMB 1 trillion (USD $158 billion) over the next five years, to increase China's semiconductor self-sufficiency to 70 percent, by 2025.

The move will significantly increase supply of NAND flash memory, and is seen as a market threat to Korean NAND flash giants Samsung and SK Hynix, and Japanese Toshiba. IMFlash Technology released its first 64-layer 3D NAND flash to the market in 2017, and is currently developing a 96-layer 3D NAND flash chip, which, along with newer 10 nm-class silicon fabrication process, could double densities over the current 64-layer chips.

SK Hynix Ramps Up Enterprise SSDs with Its 72-Layer 512Gb 3D NAND Flash

SK Hynix Inc. today announced that the Company recently completed developing an enterprise SATA Solid State Drive (or 'eSSD'). With its 72-Layer 512Gb (Gigabits) 3D NAND Flash chips, the Company is paving the way for its full-fledged entrance to the high value-added eSSD market. SK Hynix combined the 72-Layer 512Gb 3D NAND Flash with its in-house firmware and controller to provide the maximum density of 4TB (Terabytes). SK Hynix makes the most of its 72-Layer 512Gb 3D NAND chips to double the biggest density of the SSD of the same size with 256Gb NAND chips.

A single 4TB SSD could contain 200 UHD (Ultra-HD) movies, each of which is generally as large as approximately 20GB (Gigabytes). The new eSSD supports sequential read and write speed of up to 560MB/s (Megabytes per second) and 515MB/s, respectively, and it can perform 98,000 random read IOPS (Input/Output operations per second) and 32,000 random write IOPS. SK Hynix also improved the read latency, which is of the utmost importance in eSSD performance. The Company is sampling the product to server and data center clients in the United States.

SK Hynix Announces Availability of 16 Gb DDR4 Chips, up to 256 GB DIMMs

Sk Hynix has added to its product catalog single-die 16 Gb DDR4 memory chips, which should enable a two-fold increase in maximum memory capacity per single DIMM. This allows SK Hynix to sell same-capacity chips with fewer memory semiconductor dies, due to the increase in storage density, and to increase maximum memory capacity at the same memory die populations as before. The benefits are lower power consumption (due to the reduced number of memory dies to power), and the possibility of putting together either dual-ranked 64 GB modules, quad-ranked 128 GB LRDIMMs and octal-ranked 256 GB LRDIMMs. That last part is the most important: theoretically, the maximum amount of memory on top Intel or AMD server platforms could double, which could enable up to 4 TB RAM in EPYC systems, for example. And as memory-hungry as big data applications have become, there's ever need for higher memory capacity.

SK Hynix's 16 Gb DDR4 chips are organized as 1Gx16 and 2Gx8 and supplied in FBGA96 and FBGA78 packages, respectively. Current 16 Gb density speeds stand at DDR4-2133 CL15 or DDR4-2400 CL17 modes at 1.2 V. SK Hynix plans increase the available frequencies in the third quarter of this year, adding DDR4-2666 CL19 to the lineup.

SK Hynix Marks its 8Gb GDDR6 Memory Chips "Available" in Latest Catalog Update

SK Hynix, the other Korean DRAM and NAND flash giant than Samsung, updated its DRAM product catalog to reflect immediate availability of its 8-gigabit (1 GB) GDDR6 memory chips. The company is selling four SKUs, part "H56C8H24MJR-S2C" in 14 Gbps and 12 Gbps variants; and part "H56C8H24MJR-S0C" in 12 Gbps and 10 Gbps variants. The -S2C chips are more energy efficient, in achieving 14 Gbps at 1.35V and 12 Gbps at 1.25V; while the -S0C achieves 12 Gbps at 1.35V, and 10 Gbps at 1.25V. Unless NVIDIA decides that the GTX 1080-successor should feature 16 GB of memory, the company could be in the market for 8 Gb GDDR6 chips.

Meanwhile, rival Samsung announced that it began mass-production of 16 Gb (2 GB) GDDR6 memory chips, which should enable 16 GB of memory across a 256-bit memory interface, or 8 GB over a 128-bit interface. Samsung's latest chips not only have double the density as SK Hynix's, but also tick faster, at 18 Gbps, with a voltage of 1.35V. It is widely expected that GDDR6 will be the dominant memory standard for entry, mainstream, and even high-end graphics cards, which launch through 2018-19. NVIDIA is expected this year to launch its new "Volta" graphics architecture across various consumer-graphics market-segments.

The Balloon Falls: Memory Chip Price Decrease in Q4 2017 Prompts Investor Fear

Reuters reports that a sudden (if ridiculous) 5% drop in memory chip prices in Q4 2017 has brought revenue expectations and investors' profit measurements to a teetering halt. 5% may not look like much - it certainly isn't much when we look at the historic price increases that almost doubled the cost of DDR4 memory kits, as you can see in the PC Part Picker chart below. This memory module price chart doesn't include the 5% drop yet, probably because it takes time for memory chip pricing to materialize in end-user module pricing. But for investors, it's like a spark in a paper archive - it could signal an impending price decrease that would push all profit estimates out the window.

This 5% drop in pricing has prompted industry analysts to review their profit estimates for 2018, and expect that the memory industry's growth rate will fall by more than half this year to 30 percent. You read that right - investors are scared because growth rates will be 30 percent instead of 60 percent. Oh the joys of inflated pricing, and slower-than-usual ramp-up to keep demand higher than supply. The joys of economic capitalism, where prices for consumers go up, and an industries' value skyrockets by more than 70$ in a single year (2017).

China Regulator to Look Into Possible DRAM, NAND Price Fixing by Manufacturers

It's been a couple years now that we've seen continuously increasing pricing of DRAM and NAND semiconductors. The price increase, which has been hailed and documented over, over, and over again (and there are way more articles on this subject here on TPU), follows reported increased demand which has failed to be accompanied by its respective manufacturing and supply ability.

However, reports that companies were planning on increasing production of DRAM and NAND below the expected increases in supply demand may have turned at least some regulatory eyes towards the issue. China's National Development and Reform Commission's Pricing Supervision Department (NDRC) said they are aware of the situation, how it could point towards price-fixing from the four major NAND production players (Samsung, Hynix, Micron and Toshiba), and are looking into the matter. "We have noticed the price surge and will pay more attention to future problems that may be caused by 'price fixing' in the sector," the official Xu Xinyu was quoted as saying in an interview to Chinese newspaper Daily China.

AMD Develops GDDR6 Controller for Next-generation Graphics Cards, Accelerators

This news may really not come as such; it's more of a statement in logical, albeit unconfirmed facts rather than something unexpected. AMD is working (naturally) on a GDDR6 memory controller, which it's looking to leverage in its next generations of graphics cards. This is an expected move: AMD is expected to continue using more exotic HBM memory implementations on its top tier products, but that leaves a lot of GPU space in their product stack that needs to be fed by high-speed memory solutions. With GDDR6 nearing widespread production and availability, it's only natural that AMD is looking to upgrade its controllers for the less expensive, easier to implement memory solution on its future products.

The confirmation is still worth mention, though, as it comes straight from a principal engineer on AMD's technical team, Daehyun Jun. A Linked In entry (since removed) stated that he was/is working on a DRAM controller for GDDR6 memory since September 2016. GDDR6 memory brings advantages of higher operating frequencies and lower power consumption against GDDR5 memory, and should deliver higher potential top frequencies than GDDR5X, which is already employed in top tier NVIDIA cards. GDDR6, when released, will start by delivering today's GDDR5X top speeds of roughly 14 Gbps, with a current maximum of 16 Gbps being achievable on the technology. This means more bandwidth (up-to double over current 8 Gbps GDDR5) and higher clock frequency memory. GDDR6 will be rated at 1.35 v, the same as GDDR5X.

DRAM Output in 2018 Planned for Continued High Pricing - TrendForce

DRAMeXchange, a division of TrendForce, has come forward with the expected announcement that DRAM output in 2018 likely won't be enough to fully satisfy supply. This has been the case for some time now. However, what started with simple insufficient output that could contain the explosion of DRAM capacity in smartphones seems to now be turning into a conscious decision by the three top memory manufacturers. Samsung, Micron, and SK Hynix are seemingly setting output at a lower than required level so as to artificially inflate pricing due to low supply. TrendForce themselves say so, in that these suppliers "(...) have opted to slow down their capacity expansions and technology migrations so that they can keep next year's prices at the same high level as during this year's second half. Doing so will also help them to sustain a strong profit margin."

DRAM production is expected to increase by 19,6% in 2018; however, this ratio is lower than the expected growth in demand, which is being pegged at 20,6%. This means 2018 is likely to see increased constraint in the supply channels (whereas 2018 was actually expected to see a slight relief in supply issues). This means that pricing will either stabilize or tend to increase from current levels. To be fair, semiconductor production isn't as simple as hitting a "increase production by 10x" button; reports say that all three players are contending with insufficient room to expand output on their production lines, and getting a new production facility online isn't a trivial effort - neither in funds, nor on time. However... All involved companies would much rather keep prices as they are than see them being brought down by oversupply.

Toshiba Sells its Memory Business to Bain Capital for $18 Billion

Toshiba today announced that it has signed an agreement with a consortium led by Bain Capital to sell its memory business for JPY 2 trillion (approximately USD $18 billion). The consortium includes Korean memory giant SK Hynix, which contributed JPY 395 billion (nearly 20 percent) of the consortium's investment toward acquisition of Toshiba Memory Corp. Apple and Dell are the other members of the consortium.

Toshiba Corporation (erstwhile parent of Toshiba Memory Corp.) continues to hold a 40.2 percent stake, which along with another Japanese company, Hoya Corporation, holding a 9.9 percent stake, ensure that Japanese firms hold 50.1 percent of the business, keeping Japanese regulators happy. The Bain Capital-led consortium will hold a 49.9 percent stake, ensuring that Toshiba Memory Corp. stays afloat, and away from rival Western Digital, which has dragged Toshiba to a multitude of international courts and arbitrators. Apart from SK Hynix, the Bain Capital-led consortium includes Apple and Dell, who feared they would lose DRAM and NAND flash price bargaining power if Toshiba Memory fell in the hands of Western Digital, which owns SanDisk.

WD Comments on Toshiba's Statement Regarding NAND Flash-Memory JV

Western Digital Corp. (NASDAQ: WDC) today commented on Toshiba Corporation's ("Toshiba") statement regarding the transfer of its interests in its NAND flash-memory joint ventures operated with Western Digital's SanDisk subsidiaries ("JVs"):

"We are disappointed that Toshiba would take this action despite Western Digital's tireless efforts to reach a resolution that is in the best interests of all stakeholders. Throughout our ongoing dialogue with Toshiba, we have been flexible, constructive and have submitted numerous proposals to specifically address Toshiba's stated concerns. Our goal has been - and remains - to reach a mutually beneficial outcome that satisfies the needs of Toshiba and its stakeholders, and most importantly, ensures the longevity and continued success of the JVs.

Furthermore, it is surprising that Toshiba would continue to pursue a transaction with a consortium led by Korea-based SK Hynix Inc. and Bain Capital Japan without SanDisk's consent, as the language in the relevant JV agreements is unambiguous, and multiple courts have ruled in favor of protecting SanDisk's contractual rights. We remain confident in our ability to protect our JV interests and consent rights."

AMD RX Vega Supply Issues to Persist At Least Until October - Digitimes

DigiTimes is reporting, through "sources from the upstream supply chain", that AMD's current shortage of RX Vega cards to distribute to the retail market will continue at least until October. The tech reporting site says that sources are pointing towards the package integration of HBM2 memory (from SK Hynix or Samsung Electronics) and the Vega GPU (manufactured on Global Foundries' 14 nm FinFet) as being at fault here, due to low yield rates for this packaging effort. However, some other sources point towards the issue being with the packaging process itself, done by Advanced Semiconductor Engineering (ASE) through use of SiP technology. Whichever one of these cases may be, it seems the problem lies with AMD's choice to use HBM2 on their Vega graphics architecture.

As a footnote to its story, DigiTimes is also reporting that according to industry sources, NVIDIA has, in light of RX Vega's performance, decided to postpone the launch of Volta-based GPUs towards the first quarter of 2018.

Graphics Memory Prices Surge 30% in August, Could Affect Graphics Card Prices

The DRAM industry is experiencing an acute shortage of various classes of GDDR memory (graphics DDR), which could affect graphics card prices come Holiday. Supplier quotes for various graphics memory components have risen by as much as 30.8% in August, from an average of USD $6.50 in July, to $8.50. Top graphics memory suppliers Samsung and SK Hynix have committed a bulk of their inventories to manufacturers of servers and mobile handsets, which triggered the price rally. Samsung is the largest supplier of graphics memory, with a 55 percent market-share, followed by SK Hynix at 35 percent, and Micron Technology at 10 percent.

Where's My Storage? Viking Technology Begins Shipping 25 TB, 50 TB 3.5" MLC SSDs

If there's one thing enthusiasts usually complain regarding SSDs is that here doesn't seem to exist any viable alternatives to a good old high-capacity platter-based drives. Where are my 2 TB SSDs for 200$? How can I possibly save my entire music library in this puny 512 GB SSD that has already cost me my arms and legs?

Well, those answers might not be coming anytime soon (even though the advent of QLC NAND might change that.) In the meantime, we can put our eyes on Viking Technology, so as to see that a halo SSD product can achieve amazing storage capacity in a standard form factor. The company has just started selling their UHC (Ultra High Capacity) Silo Series, which leverage SK Hynix's MLC NAND (if the capacity doesn't put your $ klaxons running, the use of MLC should.) The SSDs leverage a 6 GB/s SAS interface, and deliver 500 MB/s read and 350 MB/s write speeds. The manufacturer says these can sustain up to 60,000 IOPS on random reads, and 15,000 IOPS on random writes. These may sound low in high-performance terms (and they sort of are), but remember these are products geared for the enterprise market. Pricing wasn't (maybe smartly) disclosed. I believe I'd laugh maniacally should I know how much they cost. However, if you must have a high-capacity SSD, you know where to look for.
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