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Intel Intros SSD For Gamers, Content Creators

By - Source: Intel | B 19 comments

Meet the new Intel SSD 730 Series.

On Thursday, Intel launched a new line of performance SSDs ideal for the workstation and gaming, the Intel Solid-State Drive 730 Series. Arriving in 240 GB and 480 GB capacities on March 18, customers can pre-purchase one of these drives now for $269.99 and $499.99, respectively.

"Both the NAND and the third-generation Intel controller have been infused with data center DNA for quality and reliability, and factory tuned for extreme performance. Delivering low latency and consistently high throughput, the 730 Series helps PCs respond quickly," reads Intel's Chip Shot blog.

The new 2.5-inch 7 mm SATA drives feature Intel's eight-channel controller (PC29AS21CA0), the company's 20 nm NAND (IMFT, 64 Gb Die), and 1 GB of DDR3-1600 cache. However, the company overclocked the controller by 50 percent, bumping the speed up from 400 MHz to 600 MHz. The company also overclocked the NAND by 20 percent (83 to 100 MHz), resulting in 50┬Ás read latencies.

According to the specs, the 240 GB version provides sequential read speeds up to 550 MB/s and sequential write speeds up to 270 MB/s. Random 4 KB read and write are up to 86,000 and 56,000 IOPS, respectively, and the endurance is 50 GB writes per day. This drive, along with the 480 GB version, comes with a five year warranty.

The specs of the 480 GB SSD don't stray far from the 240 GB model, with sequential read speeds up to 550 MB/s and sequential write speeds up to 470 MB/s. Random 4 KB read and write speeds are up to 89,000 and 74,000 IOPS, respectively, and the endurance is 70 GB writes per day.

"We finally have another modern consumer-oriented drive with an Intel controller. Dubbed the SSD 730 Series, it leverages the same platform as the company's SSD DC S3700 and S3500," reads our review of the new SSD series. "This is a prosumer product, aimed at professionals who remember Intel's commitment to speed and reliability from the generation prior."

To read our full review of the Intel SSD 730 Series, head here. To pre-purchase one of these drives, head here to see a list of Intel partners such as Amazon, Newegg and TigerDirect.

Display 19 Comments.
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  • 0 Hide
    childofthekorn , February 27, 2014 5:30 PM
    Quote:
    the company overclocked the controller by 50 percent, bumping the speed up from 400 MHz to 600 MHz.
    Although still a decent overclock...I'm not sure that's 50%...


    *EDIT*

    LOL Yes, I do see the error in my math. Leaving it here to use as an example.
  • 4 Hide
    ShadyHamster , February 27, 2014 5:36 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    the company overclocked the controller by 50 percent, bumping the speed up from 400 MHz to 600 MHz.
    Although still a decent overclock...I'm not sure that's 50%...


    Hows that not a 50% overclock?
    Either that's a sarcastic comment or you need to relearn maths.

  • 3 Hide
    jd_w98 , February 27, 2014 5:37 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    the company overclocked the controller by 50 percent, bumping the speed up from 400 MHz to 600 MHz.
    Although still a decent overclock...I'm not sure that's 50%...
    50% of 400 is 200, 200 Plus 400 is 600.......
  • 3 Hide
    childofthekorn , February 27, 2014 5:39 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    Quote:
    the company overclocked the controller by 50 percent, bumping the speed up from 400 MHz to 600 MHz.
    Although still a decent overclock...I'm not sure that's 50%...
    50% of 400 is 200, 200 Plus 400 is 600.......


    Indeed
  • 3 Hide
    JamesSneed , February 27, 2014 6:13 PM
    Overclocked SSD's? :rollseyes Show me the tests. Which TomsH just tested and its a good SSD but nothing to write home about especially considering the premium pricing.
  • 0 Hide
    firefoxx04 , February 27, 2014 6:27 PM
    overclocked and does not beat the samsung? okay.
  • 4 Hide
    airplanegeek , February 27, 2014 7:08 PM
    lol, the reviews always come before the news articles
  • 0 Hide
    airborne11b , February 27, 2014 7:30 PM
    When it comes to games, I doubt you'll see any noticeable load time differences between any cheap SATA III SSD and these. Ohh my Skyrim game now loads from start screen in 1.3 seconds instead of 1.6!In my experience with a lot of SSD drives, there doesn't seem to be much of a difference between any of them that you would notice, when it comes strictly to games.So the best value would be the cheapest possible SATA III SSD you can get that's a decent size.
  • -2 Hide
    jimmysmitty , February 27, 2014 8:12 PM
    Quote:
    When it comes to games, I doubt you'll see any noticeable load time differences between any cheap SATA III SSD and these. Ohh my Skyrim game now loads from start screen in 1.3 seconds instead of 1.6!In my experience with a lot of SSD drives, there doesn't seem to be much of a difference between any of them that you would notice, when it comes strictly to games.So the best value would be the cheapest possible SATA III SSD you can get that's a decent size.


    You are forgetting quality. You are right that most SSDs that utilize SATA 6Gbps are about the same performance wise, some a bit faster. The main thing I look at is the quality of the NAND and right now Intel/Micron and Samsung have the most reliable quality NAND out there.

    At one of my old jobs we built about 25 systems for use in the store. Each one had a OCZ 60GB SSD that within a year each one started either failing or started having compatibility issues with the SATA controllers and would randomly disappear and not be seen by the controller.

    We swapped them all with Intel 80GB 330 SSDs and never had an issue.

    Of course every SSD has the same chance of failure but there are some out there that are just worse.

    So I stick with Samsung and Intel for my SSDs and I only have one game on my 180GB 520 right now, GW2. Since I see almost no load difference in almost every game (GW2 did benefit a bit) I keep my games all on my 4TB RAID0 setup.
  • 1 Hide
    nitrium , February 27, 2014 9:51 PM
    Quote:
    So I stick with Samsung and Intel for my SSDs and I only have one game on my 180GB 520 right now, GW2. Since I see almost no load difference in almost every game (GW2 did benefit a bit) I keep my games all on my 4TB RAID0 setup.

    You might want to rethink Samsung. "The Samsung 840 Series is spitting out an increasing number of bad blocks, though." http://techreport.com/review/25559/the-ssd-endurance-experiment-200tb-update/2

  • 2 Hide
    Zeh , February 28, 2014 7:06 AM
    So they overclock it without any significant improvement and call it 'Gamer/Workstation' to sell it?
  • 1 Hide
    Pherule , February 28, 2014 9:47 AM
    Comparing these with my 256GB Vertex 4 is a joke. 2xxMB/s write on a high performance SSD is very slow.
  • 0 Hide
    WithoutWeakness , February 28, 2014 10:32 AM
    Quote:
    So the best value would be the cheapest possible SATA III SSD you can get that's a decent size.
    Value isn't just about price per GB. It depends on the intended use and the needs of the user. The Intel 730 isn't as fast as some other high-end drives but it's still plenty fast and has a separate feature set that distinguishes it. The complete power loss protection is very useful if you have a write-heavy workload as it will prevent data corruption in the event of a power loss. That alone will sell this drive to certain users when compared to Samsung or Crucial or anyone else's offerings. It's not the fastest drive but it has its merits and the high price is a product of Intel's name and reputation.
  • 0 Hide
    danwat1234 , February 28, 2014 12:18 PM
    From the reviews it looks like this SSD has high power consumption compared to the competition and doesn't really bring more performance except on IOmeter and a few other things but not in real world non-server traces. Samsung 840 pro or the Evo especially has really low power consumption and is 1 of the top contenders. It really comes down to what's cheapest and not high power consumption.
  • 0 Hide
    childofthekorn , February 28, 2014 12:52 PM
    Quote:
    Quote:
    So I stick with Samsung and Intel for my SSDs and I only have one game on my 180GB 520 right now, GW2. Since I see almost no load difference in almost every game (GW2 did benefit a bit) I keep my games all on my 4TB RAID0 setup.

    You might want to rethink Samsung. "The Samsung 840 Series is spitting out an increasing number of bad blocks, though." http://techreport.com/review/25559/the-ssd-endurance-experiment-200tb-update/2



    After 200Tb of writes, thats not too bad. Also gotta keep in mind the Pro VS EVO. MLC vs TLC can have a moderate impact. Very good information overall though, thanks for sharing.
  • 0 Hide
    airborne11b , February 28, 2014 1:00 PM
    It seems WithoutWeakness and JimmySmitty have issues with reading comprehension. My post was about "gaming", not workstations, and I did specify that at the start of my post.When it comes to gaming rig components, gaming performance is what matters. You can point to anecdotal evidence of "quality", but in reality, it's all random. What I was saying is that this is being labeled as a "Gamer" SSD, and for what? What is the "performance difference" between this "Gamer SSD" and any other SATA III SSD?Hell what's the difference between SATA II and SATA III SSD? Boot time saves of about 2-3 seconds? Game load times reduced by 1-2 seconds?Which was my point. When it comes to gaming performance, SSD vs SSD you're not going to be able to tell the difference.If you have some sort of anecdotal evidence that you think justifies you buying a more expensive and / or different brand SSD, then go ahead. But that wasn't the point of my post.
  • 0 Hide
    littleleo , February 28, 2014 2:15 PM
    I don't see how a SSD can serve two different segments like gaming and workstations well. Gaming is more about speed and workstations are more about dependability. Though they are not mutually exclusive when one caters to one segment it make some sacrifices to the other. Saying it targets both is a bit disingenuous.

    The Samsung 840 Pro 512GB sells for around $410.00. and Seq read/Write is 540/520 and the random read/write is 100k/90k and you can buy them form Amazon now with free shipping.
  • 0 Hide
    10tacle , March 1, 2014 7:49 AM
    Specs are not impressive, especially the writes. Not to mention each of these things is OVER the $1/GB price barrier. No thanks Intel. I'll stick to Samsung and Crucial. Fail.
  • 0 Hide
    bigj1985 , March 3, 2014 1:31 AM
    Lol My 2 year ols Vertex 3 has comparable read speeds and faster write speeds. Now I understand that Intel carries a better more reliable controller but I haven't had a single issue with my Vertex for the 2 years I've owned it so theres that.Not to mention the price is to high. The tech is old enough now we should be getting better deals than this. At this rate we wont see SSD as standard in OEM for another five years or more.Not to mention this thing is EXPENSIVE>