click to visit home page
leading the way to the new storage frontier .....
SSDs over 163  current & past oems profiled
SSD news ..
pcie  SSDs - click to read article
PCIe SSDs ..
RAM image - click for RAM directory, articles and news
RAM news ..
DRAM latency
DRAM's latency secret ....
InfiniBand SSDs and storage
InfiniBand ...
Rackmount SSDs click for news and directory
rackmount SSDs ..

the Fastest SSDs

are we ready for infinitely faster RAM?
How fast can your SSD run backwards?
is it realistic to talk about NVDIMM IOPS?
the Problem with Write IOPS - in flash SSDs
Can you trust flash SSD specs & benchmarks?
understanding flash SSD performance limitations
what's in a number? - introducing SSDserver rank
are you ready to rethink enterprise DRAM architecture?
why buy SSDs? - user value propositions (ancient and modern)
the Top 10 SPC-1 benchmarks (combinations of boxes various sizes)
the Fastest SSDs

by Zsolt Kerekes, editor -

Before the modern era of SSD market history the main reasons for buying enterprise SSDs was acceleration, speed and cost (compared to more / faster processors).

And it followed that RAM SSDs were always the fastest (albeit the most expensive) which also meant that InfiniBand and FC SAN (and latterly) DIMM socket based SSDs dominated the lists of the fastest SSDs.

But in 2004 things started to get a bit more complicated when flash wars started in the enterprise. And in 2007 - PCIe SSDs (based on flash) began to change the way that people bought servers. With more affordable acceleration capacity - flash SSDs overtook RAM SSDs in throughput - despite lagging in latency. So you could say that things became more complicated.

So in 2007 I started publishing this simple list of the fastest SSDs in popular form factors. I'd say it's more like the start of your continuing search rather than the end. But for what it's worth - here it is.
SSD news
SSD controllers
will SSDs end bottlenecks?
latency loving reasons for fading out DRAM
should we set higher expectations for memory systems?
are we ready for infinitely faster RAM? (and what would it be worth)
SSD ad - click for more info
related stories in the SSD news archives
October 2018 Violin Systems said the "fastest enterprise storage in the world just got faster!"
May 2018 Crossbar demonstrated a ReRAM based AI accelerator chip.
March 2018 Micron said it was using AI to shorten the design time of porting in-memory processing to FPGAs embedded in DRAM accelerators.
February 2018 Gen-Z specification 1.0 released for futuristic memory fabric designers.
November 2017 IntelliProp demonstrated a memory controller for the emerging Gen-Z memory fabric.
April 2017 Rambus said it was working with Microsoft on the design of prototype super cooled DRAM systems to explore avenues of improvement in latency and density due to physics effects below -180 C.
May 2016 efficiently coded memory architecture unveiled in systems by Symbolic IO
March 2016 Cadence and Mellanox demonstrated PCIe 4.0 interoperability at 16Gbps.
the Fastest in-production shipping SSDs - ©
rackmount SSDs Earlier versions of this document only listed the single fastest rackmount SSD in each u-size (1U, 2U etc) - but there were some disadvantages in that method. So instead this now includes a mini list of the most important companies and product lines in this market space which covers a range of different interfaces and architectures. You'll have to look at each vendor's own offerings to get the exact specifications - but these are the vendors who are positioning themselves as the companies to beat in terms of latency and throughput. Speed has a different value in fault tolerant rackmount SSDs - where the raw latency and IOPS may be outweighed by user preferences about the exact design and consequences of the differing FT architectures.

See also:- InfiniBand SSDs
NVDIMM SSDs For RAM SSDs in this form factor see the hybrid DIMMs page.

For flash SSDs and other nvm SSDs in this form factor see the memory channel SSDs page.
PCIe SSD cards See also:- the article -
Memory technology, generation level (2, 3 or upcoming 4), the number of lanes and the API integration with critical apps are some of the vital filters in assembling any list of really fast PCIe SSDs. And that's before you get you controller architecture.

In the RAM SSD category - the fastest PCIe SSD is PMC's Flashtec NVRAM drive family . This RAM SSD in PCIe form factor has a x8 lane, PCIe 3.0 host interface - 16GB capacity - rated at over 10 million IOPS.

In the flash based PCIe SSD category - the fastest flash based PCIe SSD (at the time of writing - September 2015) is Mangstor's MX-Series . This is the fastest according to either IOPS or latency when compared to any of the previous industry leaders in this category listed in these pages.
3.5" Although the 3.5" form factor was at the sharp end of SSD performance in earlier phases of SSD history - it is no longer a launchpad for new high speed products. Although you will find some older legacy 3.5" SSDs which were fast at the time they were launched - they are mostly EOL - or simply available for old designs. Instead you'll get better results by installing one or more smaller SSDs in a 3.5" carrier module.
2.5" fastest 2.5" flash SSDs?

In the 2.5" form factor - the 2 interfaces with claims for the "fastest 2.5 inch SSD" are 2.5" NVME PCIe SSDs and 12Gbps SAS.

Here are examples of some of the faster products in these categories2.5" PCIe SSD fastest contenders include :-
  • Radian's RMS-250 - is a 2TB eMLC NVMe Gen3 x4 PCIe SSD with 581K / 681K sequential R/W IOPS (Over 300K IOPS in 66% Read/33% Write mix)
  • WDC's Ultrastar SN200 - offers upto 500K mixed R/W IOPS (PCIe 3.0 x4) or 240K mixed R/W IOPS (2x2 NVMe 1.2).
2.5" SAS SSD fastest contenders include several products with 12Gbps line rates:- Note... In many real life applications - particularly in arrays of such SSDs - the factors which contribute to higher performance (higher power consumption and bigger RAM cmake such SSDs bad citizens. Therefore some of these SSDs have pre-selectable electrical power settings (in watts) which also impact the performance.
1.8" The question arises - what kind of interfaces are available for 1.8" SSDs?

At the time of writing this I'm unaware of any 1.8" PCIe SSDs.

That leaves the speed race to SAS SSDs. .
M.2 SSDs This form factor is becoming a surprising hotbed of innovation and (surprisingly) even speed.

fastest M.2 SSD?

Aupera Technologies - low capacity SSD implemented using MRAM instead of flash.

Kingston - enterprise M.2 flash SSD using SSD controller from by Liqid.
SSDs on a chip This section will be updated soon with details of the fastest BGA PCIe SSDs.
PS - if you've got this far and think that an SSD drive or system from your own company deserves to considered for inclusion in the list above - then contact me with the details.

Although it's rare - it has happened that I've missed hearing about a significant new SSD product. In which case another important question to ask - is whether your marketing is reaching the audience it deserves?

I'm always open to communications and reconsiderations. And if I've got things wrong and missed something which is significant - I'll set the record straight.


storage search banner

the fastest SSDs
that's one way to do it
"...this is why lower latency is good."
SSD Bookmarks - suggested by IBM
how fast can your SSD run backwards?
SSDs are complex devices and there's a lot of mysterious behavior which isn't fully revealed by benchmarks and vendor's product datasheets and whitepapers. Underlying all the important aspects of SSD behavior are asymmetries which arise from the intrinsic technologies and architecture inside the SSD.
SSD symmetries article Which symmetries are most important in an SSD?

That depends on your application. to read the article
SSD ad - click for more info
A good way to think about what SSDs will do in the 100 per cent SSD enterprise - is to set the limits for how an enterprise can repurpose, leverage and monetize its data - and increase process efficiency by analyzing and anticipating customer demands in real-time.

Bottlenecks in the pure SSD datacenter will be much more serious than in the HDD world - because responding slowly will be equivalent to transaction failure.
will SSDs end bottlenecks?

SSD ad - click for more info

Unlike before - today new companies entering the market can rely on a sophisticated SSD ecosystem - in which key elements of their solutions are already being supplied by other companies.
what changed in SSD year 2013?

"In April 2005 -Texas Memory Systems offered the world's first money-back performance guarantee for SSDs..."
...from:- SSD market history