CES 2015: OCZ readying next-gen SSD controller


OCZ has been under Toshiba’s wing for just under a year now and the company can now reveal what they’ve been working on behind the scenes: A brand-new controller, completely unrelated to their previous offering, that will power all of their next-generation products and will likely find its way into some Toshiba SSDs as well. Its called JetExpress and it’s set to change things about quite a bit for the company that once laid claim to the SSD market.

JetExpress is new silicon designed to work on SATA, SATA Express and M.2 connections as well as PCI-Express. It is a native NVMe controller that understands SATA commands, but can be run without the legacy signaling standard. Its set to power OCZ’s upcoming products in 2.5-inch and M.2 form factors and it’s also going to be inside their SATA-Express products, which means that ASUS will finally be able to sigh in relief that they aren’t pushing for adoption for a technology that is essentially dead weight at this point.

Not much else was mentioned about JetExpress, only that OCZ would have products to demonstrate at Computex 2015 and might have commercial lines ready for the public before the third quarter of 2015. These will likely debut with 19nm Toshiba flash NAND. The SATA products will probably peg the SATA 6Gb/s interface at around 550MB/s, but the NVMe/M.2 solutions will probably go as fast as they are allowed by the amount of PCI-E bandwidth they are given.

OCZ Vector 180 PCB

The company is also getting ready for a launch later this quarter of the Vector 180 family, which is targeted at SSDs from Intel, Samsung and Crucial that have underpinnings of enterprise drives. The Vector 180 family has six capacitors on the board that store power for any power losses that may occur, allowing the controller to finish its write queue, save its current state and shut down safely. The new line will stretch from 120GB to 960GB offerings in a 2.5-inch form factor, but will carry the Barefoot 3 controller, possibly for the last time.