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Question What companies (besides Intel) use Intel NAND in their SSDs?

cbn

Lifer
Mar 27, 2009
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According to this Anandtech News post, ADATA is using Intel 3D QLC in their new SU 630 Ultimate dram-less SATA SSD (which uses Maxio Technology MAS0902A controller).

And in the past, I know Silicon Power was using Intel MLC NAND in their 1st version of the S60 SATA SSD--> https://www.tweaktown.com/reviews/6868/silicon-power-s60-240gb-ssd-review/index.html

We fully expected to find a SandForce SF-2281 controller paired with genuine Intel NAND flash inside of the case of our Silicon Power S60, just like a Silicon Power S60 reviewed on another site last August

Read more: https://www.tweaktown.com/reviews/6868/silicon-power-s60-240gb-ssd-review/index.html
But what other companies are using Intel 3D QLC NAND for their SSDs?

P.S. According to the Anandtech Intel 660p review Intel reportedly will not be releasing new SATA SSDs....so that obviously means no 3D QLC SATA SSD from them.

Intel has reportedly cut off further development of consumer SATA drives, so naturally their first consumer QLC SSD is a member of their 6-series, the lowest tier of NVMe SSDs.
 
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arandomguy

Senior member
Sep 3, 2013
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Depends a bit on your criteria. Intel and Micron have joint partnership in NAND development and production in a company known as IMFT. Although this partnership is ending it will still encompass I believe upcoming third generation IMFT 3D NAND.

So all Micron/Crucial drives would also use Intel NAND as it is the same. In terms of Intel specific NAND as in Intel selling to other parties it isn't a focus of Intel's in their side of the partnership to act as NAND producer, for them it's part of the vertical model to supply their own SSD products.

The only 3D QLC consumer product so far is the Samsung 860 QVO series. Both IMFT QLC products are NVMe (Crucial P1).

The funny thing also with QLC at the moment is apparently yields for IMFT QLC is bad so the actual improvement $/bit is questionable at the moment. QLC yields in general are reported as being spotty currently.

This is something to keep in mind with regards to the prospects of QLC. QLC yields more bits per given density, while there is a correlation to cost there is only a correlation as even ideally given same die size in terms of cost it's going to be QLC>TLC>MLC>SLC due to the complexities involved. QLC has a maximum theoretical 25% cost savings per bit, but in real world savings will almost certainly be lower especially once you get to the end product.
 

cbn

Lifer
Mar 27, 2009
12,968
220
106
In terms of Intel specific NAND as in Intel selling to other parties it isn't a focus of Intel's in their side of the partnership to act as NAND producer, for them it's part of the vertical model to supply their own SSD products.
Yep, totally makes sense as according to my first link in post #3 Intel is the sixth largest manufacturer of NAND and with Micron's buyout of IMFT that would likely leave them even smaller as a NAND producer.

However, maybe part of the reason Intel is doing this is to build bridges. Build bridges for the selling of Optane?

Optane vs. Yangtze Xtacking NAND* for NVDIMM-P or other high performance SCM devices?

http://www.ymtc.com/index.php?s=/cms/172.html

“At present, the world’s highest 3D NAND I/O speed is targeting 1.4Gbps while the majority of the industry is offering NAND I/O at 1.0Gbps or below. With our XtackingTM technology, it is possible for NAND I/O speed to reach up to 3.0Gbps, similar to I/O speed of DRAM DDR4. This is going to be a game changer in the NAND industry,” said Simon Yang, CEO at YMTC.
*Yangtze Memory Technologies is owned by Tsinghua Unigroup.
 
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cbn

Lifer
Mar 27, 2009
12,968
220
106
Intel and Micron have joint partnership in NAND development and production in a company known as IMFT. Although this partnership is ending it will still encompass I believe upcoming third generation IMFT 3D NAND.

So all Micron/Crucial drives would also use Intel NAND as it is the same.
Yes, at this point in time I know that Intel and Micron NAND share the same design and are fabbed in the same location.

However, I do wonder if Intel bins their NAND differently. I know their NAND packages are marked Intel not IMFT. Likewise Micron NAND has the Micron symbol on the package.

P.S. It looks like the Phison S11 reference design for 3D QLC will be using IMFT NAND---> https://www.phison.com/en/company/newsroom/press-releases/general/734-phison-ships-s11t-sata-controller-with-64-layer-3d-qlc-nand-flash (But will any drives use Intel 3D QLC rather than Micron 3D QLC? Or is Intel going exclusively with Maxio technology MAS0902? If Intel is going exclusively with MAS0902 I will be very interested to see how they compare to Phison S11 with Micron 3D QLC)

SIDE NOTE: One advantage MAS0902 has over Phison S11 is capacity. MAS0902 can go to 2TB (4TB according to this Anandtech news post) whereas Phison S11 is limited to only 1TB. Both are dram-less SATA controllers (although the Phison S11 does have a optional dram-buffer (which hasn't been used on a production SSD yet). Not sure if MAS0902 can use a optional dram-buffer.)
 
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