Micron puts large-capacity SSD in small package

Micron shrinks its solid-state drives but preserves the performance.

Micron Technology C400 mSATA solid-state drive is tiny but is available in capacities up to 256GB.
Micron Technology C400 mSATA solid-state drive is tiny but is available in capacities up to 256GB. Micron Technology

Micron Technology has updated its RealSSD C400 series of solid-state drives for small mSATA packages.

Basically, Micron is delivering the same performance of previous C400 products but in a 1.2 x 2.0 inch (3cm x 5cm) mSATA size -- the size typically used in thin laptops.

SSDs are faster than the standard spinning hard disk drives found in mainstream laptops (and often a lot faster).

The higher-capacity Micron models deliver the best performance. For example, the 256GB version has a read rate of 500 megabytes per second (MB/s) and write speed of 260 MB/s. The smaller-capacity 32GB SSD has write performance of only 50 MB/s. All models are based on a 6-gigabits-per-second SATA interface.

Large-capacity models (including a 128GB part) are intended as hard disk drive replacements (in Windows laptops, for example). While the smaller capacity models can act as a cache drive in dual-drive (HDD/SSD) systems, Micron said.

"Our new mSATA delivers on the true promise of SSD technology -- high-performance storage in a tiny, low-power package," Justin Sykes, Micron's general manager of client SSD solutions, said in a statement.

Anandtech did benchmark tests of the C400 mSATA drives. "It's...insane to think that you can pull 500MB/s from something this small...I have no issues recommending this drive should you be in the market for an mSATA based SSD," Anandtech said.

Pricing was not immediately available though the larger Micron 2.5-inch 256GB RealSSD C400 (not mSATA) retails for around $320.

About the author

Brooke Crothers writes about mobile computer systems, including laptops, tablets, smartphones: how they define the computing experience and the hardware that makes them tick. He has served as an editor at large at CNET News and a contributing reporter to The New York Times' Bits and Technology sections. His interest in things small began when living in Tokyo in a very small apartment for a very long time.


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