At an event in China last December, GALAXY Tech flashed an image of a new PCIe SSD with very high performance (at the time) and an amazing look. The image above with the cover over the GALAXY HOF PCIe SSD doesn't do it justice because the black cover obscures the white PCB, host power fail caps, and overall look that brings out the inner twelve-year-old in all of us.
Very little information was given at the time, and I feel that led to even more Internet hysteria. We reached out to GALAXY Tech after the event to get more information, but the company was reluctant to provide additional details. We found the representatives to be very courteous, but they provided what they could. I want to mention that part because they were not being rude about the exchange; they just couldn't tell us what we now know today.
Persistence is like sun and water. If you work at it hard enough, it bears fruit. In the slide above provided by GALAXY Tech we see the Hall of Fame (HOF) PCIe SSD uses the JMicron JMF811 flash controller. Just days ago we met with JMicron to discuss our recent preview article with the JMF670H flash controller, upcoming announcements and the direction of the SSD industry in general.
In the meeting we learned that JMicron's JMF811 controller used in one of the best looking SSDs ever to grace this planet was discontinued before entering mass production. The JMF811 flash controller specifications stated PCIe 2.0 x4 connectivity with up to 4 TB of addressable flash capacity. As time passed, JMicron decided PCIe 2.0 was no longer a competitive path to pursue. The SSD market is quickly moving beyond PCIe 2.0. The transition is so rapid that when looking back at 2014 and 2015 for historical reference, PCIe 2.0 will be a very small blip on the timeline.
JMicron plans to introduce an updated PCIe-to-flash controller with PCIe 3.0 x2 connectivity. The new design will increase performance over the end of life (EOL) JMF810 and JMF811. The new JMicron JMF815 flash controller builds on the original design and will be the company's first native PCIe controller.
From the information we received, the new JMF815 will reduce the flash density to 2 TB, down from 4 TB on the JMF811. The performance is also down to 1200 MB/s sequential read and 1000 MB/s sequential write, down from 1600 MB/s on the JMF811. The new controller does bring advanced ECC to the table. We suspect this is some form of LDPC that increases TLC endurance.
We reached out to GALAXY for a HOF update, and Ben from the company told us, "The HOF PCIE SSD is still under development and shall be available late Q2 or Q3."
Let's hope the updated HOF PCIe SSD keeps the same great look as the early prototype model.