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Memblaze Technology

Memblaze Technology, founded in 2010 and based in Haidian District, Beiijng, China, has the mission of making data processing faster and smarter by designing innovative high-performance PCIe SSD accelerators.

see also:- Memblaze's PCIe SSD overview page, @MemblazeCorp

Editor:- May 28, 2016 - Memblaze has made its first appearance ranked in the Top SSD Companies List in the Q1 2016 edition.

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Who's who in SSD? - Memblaze Technology

by Zsolt Kerekes, editor - May 21, 2014

Memblaze Technology - (new to me - but which designed it first prototype PCIe flash accelerator in 2010 - and whose customers include Baidu) says its design architecture provides the lowest CPU load in the industry - with host system memory usage as low as 1MB per PCIe SSD card, and R/W latencies (for SLC) in the region of 60 / 14 microseconds.

Memblaze designs its own controllers using FPGAs.

Their MLC SSDs use modern 19nm flash.

More details about their controller architecture can be seen in this Xcell Journal article.

Memblaze's performance (latency and throughput) comes from its architecture (pdf) - which benefited from analyzing the weaknesses of earlier product implementations by other vendors in the market. - Memblaze has created what it calls a 3rd generation approach.

Memblaze's partitioning and distribution of controller functionality between its offload controller and host interaction means that the interrupts per IO in its design are typically 10x lower than other fast PCIe SSDs with comparable capacity and performance.

Memblaze also claims to have the industry's lowest write amplification parameter - for SSDs in this performance class and form factor.
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PCIe SSDs from Memblaze
At the time of writing this (May 2014) Memblaze offered 4 main categories of products within the PBlaze3 product line.

See datasheet for more details (pdf).
(all specs for 4KB) half height
half length
full height
half length
MLC models
(80µS /1µS latency)
upto 1.2TB,
130K random write IOPS
upto 2.4TB,
260K random write IOPS
SLC models
(60µS /1µS latency)
upto 600GB,
155K random write IOPS
upto 1.2TB,
280K random write IOPS
some Memblaze Milestones from SSD Market History

In July 2012 - Infinity Group (a VC company) announced that, together with Z-Park Venture Capital in Beijing, it had invested 20 Million RMB (nearly US$3.2 Million) in Memblaze.

In January 2013 an article in Gigaom - based on an interview with the Memblaze's Marketing Director - Zhibo Tang - talked about the investors in - and aspirations of - Memblaze - revealing among other things that - "Memblaze wants to displace Fusion-io as the server-side flash king in China..."

In October 2014 - Memblaze launched its EBlaze3 (14µS latency PCIe SSDs) in Europe.

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Memblaze gets more funding
Editor:- December 21, 2015 - Memblaze today announced it had received "tens of millions of US dollars" in Series C funding. Among other things the company said it will now expand its sales efforts in international markets.

See also:- VC investments in SSDs
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Memblaze enters 2.5" PCIe SSD market
Editor:- March 16, 2015 - Memblaze today announced it is showing a 2.5" NVMe PCIe SSD variant of its PBlaze series at CeBIT in Germany.

Memblaze was the 27th most highly searched SSD company by readers of in Q4 2014.

Memblaze accounted for 60% market share of the enterprise PCIe SSD market segment in China in 2014 - according to CEO Yin Xuebing who made this comment in a follow up press release announcing general availability of the PBlaze4.
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why did Memblaze launch its new 14µS latency PCIe SSDs in Europe before US?
Editor:- October 31, 2014 - Something I saw in a press release this week by Memblaze Technology made me think I'd better pause to check the significance behind the words before mentioning it here.

The story - from their PR agency - A3 Communications - was about the launch of a new PCIe SSD - the EBlaze3 - in Europe - which contained the phrase.

"This will be the first time the technology is available outside China."

I wondered if - behind that statement - there might have been an implied message that the new product will be sold preferentially in Europe - rather than the US - as we have seen evolving in stories about one of the world's biggest enterprise companies - to have emerged from China - Huawei.

Or was this wording - and the showing of Memblaze's EBlaze3 at a trade show this week in Germany - simply due to the timing of having booked booths at trade shows and the availability of the new product - rather than an expression of preference about which market - the US or EU - is more important for their new enterprise SSD to be seen in?

So I asked Ron MacLeod - who is VP of marketing for Memblaze in Europe - to clarify.

Ron said - "The product will be available in the US in the same way it is available in Europe. And with regard to timing indeed it was just coincidence that the Powering the Cloud event was running and at which was the first time Memblaze was public in Europe. There is no favouritism over markets except the US is potentially larger - so no hidden messaging. We value the European business and other potential global partners equally."

Editor's comments:- That's good to know. So - my apologies to readers for having sat on this story for a few days longer than was necessary.

FYI - The Memblaze EBlaze3 (upto 2.4TB in HHHL and 4.8TB in FHHL single slot) is a new version of the PBlaze3 card - which is aimed at, Hyperscale and OCP (Open Compute Project market).

It offers an ultra-low latency of 14µs and enables customers to define and alter key settings to ensure optimum performance in their specific applications and platforms.