EDIT: Samsung has corrected its specifications to indicate the drive is not PCIe 4.0. Instead, it is PCIe 3.0 x4.
Samsung has come a long way from the days of exporting dried fish to becoming the industry’s leading solid-state drive manufacturer. The Korean giant’s dominance extends from the conventional SATA 2.5-inch drive to the latest M.2 form factor, but today it revealed an upcoming 8TB NVMe PCIe 3.0 x4 solid-state drive based on the NF1 form factor.
With a heavy focus on enterprise customers and data center, the Samsung 8TB NF1 is by far the company’s largest NVMe solid-state drive to date. It’s quite an achievement that Samsung can stuff eight terabytes of storage onto a printed circuit board that measures 110mm by 30.5mm. Samsung’s new solid-state drive officially belongs to the next-generation small form factor (NGSFF) NF1 category, which will be standardized by the JEDEC Solid State Technology Association in October of this year. In comparison to a M.2 solid-state drive with dimensions of 110mm by 22mm, an NF1 solid-state drive is only 8.5mm wider. However, the added area allows it to feature up to double the capacity of a simple M.2 drive. In its press release, Samsung bragged about how one of its partners installed a total of 72 of the 8TB NF1 drives into a 2U rack to amass up to 576TB of storage space.
Samsung’s secret to producing the 8TB NF1 resides in the company’s 512-gigabyte (GB) NAND packages. The solid-state drive expert soldered 16 of those bad boys to the printed circuit board of the solid-state drive. Each package is comprised of 16 layers of 256 gigabit (Gb) 3-bit V-NAND chips. Unfortunately, Samsung didn’t disclose the exact model of the controller. However, the company previously used one of its Phoenix controllers in past NF1 prototype drives.
On the bright side, Samsung did confirm that 8TB NF1 will employ a brand new high-performance controller that supports the NVM Express 1.3 protocol and a PCI Express 3.0 x4 connection. Therefore, the solid-state drive can deliver sequential read speeds of 3,100 MB/s and write speeds of 2,000 MB/s. It also offers 4KB random read performance up to 500,000 IOPS and 4KB write performance up to 50,000 IOPS. To put the icing on the cake, the 8TB NF1 also sports 12GB of LPDDR4 memory to accelerate data processing and improve energy efficiency. The drive is rated for 1.3 DWPD and backed by a three-year warranty.