Intel today released its fastestsolid-state drive (SSD) to date, the Intel Solid-State Drive 520 Series (Intel SSD 520), a 6 gigabit-per-second (gbps) SATA III SSD produced using Intel 25nm NAND memory process technology.
Aimed at PC enthusiasts, gamers, professionals or small-medium businesses (SMBs), Intel SSD 520 is based on the the SandForce SF-2281 LSI, it has and fast throughput performance and new security features.
The Intel SSD 520 delivers up to 80,000 maximum 4K random write Input-Output Operations Per Second (IOPS) and up to 50,000 4K random read IOPS to speed through every day operations. Sequential read performance is up to 550 megabytes-per-second (MB/s) and up to 520MB/s sequential writes. This is backed by a 5-year limited warranty.
The Intel SSD 520 will mark the high end of its client SSD offerings and include these new features: a range of user capacities from 60GB to 480GB, Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) 256 bit encryption capabilities and stronger password protection for added security in the event of theft or power loss.
According to the early reviews of the new drive, it seems to be on par with the current speed king, OCZ's Vertex 3, although it additionally features high random write speeds , meaning that Intel and SandForce have optimized the firmware with the NAND. However, Intel's new SSD series is expensive. You'll have to spend $149 for the 60GB model, $229 for 120GB, $369 for 180GB, $509 for 240GB and almost $1000 for 480GB. Obviously these prices are well above the prices of competitive SSDs.