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Western Digital and Sandisk team up to create hybrid SSHDs

by Mark Tyson on 8 May 2013, 11:03

Tags: SanDisk (NASDAQ:SNDK)

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A fortnight ago we saw Western Digital (WD) launch a 500GB 2.5-inch hybrid SSHD available in an ultra-slim 5mm profile. This was part of the WD Black range of mobile hard drives and the integrated flash storage part of the drive provided 24GB of NAND. Now it has been revealed that the NAND portion of the hybrid drive was supplied by SanDisk and the two companies have announced that they will collaborate to introduce more SSHD drives that will “feature best-in-class flash memory technology from SanDisk and best-in-class hard drive technology from WD”.

So it turns out that the 24GB of 19nm NAND pepping up the performance of the WD Black, “the world's thinnest 2.5-inch SSHD solution”, is supplied by Sandisk. The part supplied by Sandisk to WD is called the “SanDisk iSSD” and the company says it “brings an elegant balance of performance, low power consumption, cost, reliability, and a compact form factor to this SSHD”.

The extremely small form factor of the Sandisk iSSD, built on 19nm process technology, “the world's smallest and most advanced semiconductor manufacturing process”, enables WD to make this ultra-slim SSHD. However the 5mm thick 500GB drive is the only such ultra-slim hybrid available from WD at this time, other SSHDs from WD are available in more traditional 7mm and 9.5mm depths.

Notably the WD Black 5mm SSHD offers 500GB of capacity, while utilising almost 50 per cent less volume than current standard notebook hard drives. As people gravitate towards portables which are as thin and light as possible it’s bound to prove to be a popular part.

As noted in the launch article these WB Black drives are currently only available to OEMs and system integrators. Hopefully such SSHDs, with their more generous NAND component, will become available to laptop upgraders in the not-too-distant future. Even the latest models of the widely available Seagate Momentus SSHD solutions have a much smaller 8GB of NAND to bolster their performance.



HEXUS Forums :: 15 Comments

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OK, someone make an ultra-slim Temash 13" laptop with one of these drives in it *NOW* - then TAKE MY MONEY!!!
The thing I don't get is why the SSD has to be paired with a top end HDD? Surely if the hybrid is doing it's job properly the HDD performance is barely relevant?
Wish they'd release a SSD and HDD hybrid with separately addressable drives.
OS on SSD, data on HDD.
Willzzz
The thing I don't get is why the SSD has to be paired with a top end HDD? Surely if the hybrid is doing it's job properly the HDD performance is barely relevant?
The SSD cache would speed up any mechanical drive, but as soon as you hit anything out of the cache, that bit of data is going to go pretty slow. If you have a dog slow HDD in there, the difference is going to be unacceptable and no one would buy it. With a top end HDD you are at least going to get the best performance possible, whether the data you want is in cache or not.

And most of the cost will be a combination of the materials and the SSD portion. Swapping the WD Black HDD portion for a WD Green wouldn't make much difference in price, meaning that people willing to pay that bit extra for the hybrid drive are getting a bag of crap instead.
mikerr
Wish they'd release a SSD and HDD hybrid with separately addressable drives.
OS on SSD, data on HDD.
I actually think this makes much more sense. 24GB is barely enough for an OS and apps, but it will be more than enough for the parts of the OS and apps you load regularly as well as page file. And when your usage changes, for instance you end up spending a lot of time in Photophop which hadn't been used for months, then that then benefits from being inside the cache.