Back in April, WD announced that it was shipping the world's first 2.5-inch, 5 mm WD Blue hard drives and WD Black solid state hard drives. The Blue hard drives (model: WD5000MPC) utilized a new SFF-8784 edge connector that's used in internal storage devices for smartphones and tablets. These were shipping in 500 GB capacities to select industrial distributors and OEM customers for $89 USD. The Black SSHD versions were shipping to OEMs and integrators only.
Now the company is shedding a bit more light on the SSHS model, reporting that WD has teamed up with SanDisk to use the latter company's iSSD storage device in the WD Black SSHD series. According to WD, this integrated 19 nm flash drive promises to bring an "elegant" balance of performance, reliability, and a compact form factor to WD's hybrid solution.
The chip's actual specs reveal that it offers up to 128 GB of capacity (although expect only up to 24 GB), sequential read/write performance up to 450/350 MB/s, random read/write performance up to 9K/1K IOPS, and a typical power consumption of only 55 mW. This chip will be used for cache only in order to speed up the overall data transfer performance across a SATA 3 (6 Gb/s) connection.
"I am delighted for SanDisk to team up with WD on these exciting new hybrid products," said Kevin Conley, senior vice president and general manager of client storage solutions at SanDisk. "By combining SanDisk’s unparalleled flash memory expertise and technology with the hard drive know-how of WD, WD Black SSHDs offer outstanding hard drive-like capacity, and the slim form factor and the level of performance that you will only get with flash memory solutions."
The focus of WD's Black SSHD is primarily on the slim notebook (Ultrabook) market, as it consumes almost 50 percent less volume than other HDD solutions, measuring a mere 5 mm tall compared to the typical 9.5 mm HDD form factor. The Black SSHD also provides 500 GB of space, meaning end-users aren't sacrificing storage space for a thinner design.
"Working with SanDisk, WD realized our vision for products that combine the best of both technologies," said Matt Rutledge, vice president of client computing at WD. "WD’s SSHDs are a significant achievement in the continuing SSHD/flash storage revolution."
As previously stated, the WD Black 5 mm SSHDs are now shipping to OEMs. WD is also currently shipping to OEMs ultra-slim, 7 mm and 9.5 mm SSHDs for portable devices.