Toshiba XG6 NVMe SSD Review (1TB) – BiCS Flash Shows Off

M.2 SSDs have been out for some time and, well quite frankly, they still amazing the heck out of me whenever a new one is released.  I mean think about it.  An M.2 SSD is the size of a stick of gum, weighs less than a AAA battery, yet can store 2 million pictures if each was around 500k.  Fifteen 1TB M.2 SSDs could back up the entire US Library of Congress, yet you would easily forget them being in your pocket as their total weight is just over 5oz.  

This is the Toshiba XG6 NVMe 1TB SSD and, while it looks so big in this picture, it is one of the smallest storage devices available today.  And it transfers data at over 3GB/s. A bit confusing perhaps, but storage is measured in how much we can move from one place to another in seconds.  3GB translates to roughly two full HD movies but if you think you are moving both of these in a second, think again.  While we have seen typical HD movies move from one storage device to another in 3-4 seconds, advertised speeds in storage typically speak to the peak at which it can transfer data in certain conditions.  Don’t get me wrong though, the Toshiba XG6 NVMe SSD is one of the fastest SSDs not available to the consumer today.

Yes… I did write ‘not available to the consumer’  and it is probably the biggest downfall we will speak of in the report today, although I am certain we will see a consumer version of the XG6 available soon enough.  So… the Toshiba XG6 is an OEM SSD and available to manufacturers to use in their product. If I were looking for a new ultrabook, you know I’d be looking for one with the XG6 within.  A bit unusual however, is the fact that this SSD comes with a five year warranty as an OEM (original equipment manufacturer).

BUILD, FEATURES AND SPECIFICATIONS

The Toshiba XG6 is a M.2 SSD of the 2280 (80mm) form factor and is a PCIe 3.0 NVMe SSD that is available in 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB capacities. It is capable of 3.2GB/s read and 3GB/s (2.96 actually) write data throughput along with 355,000 IOPS read and 365,000 IOPS write.  Power specifications are 4.5w typical read and 4.7w typical write and the XG6 can also include TCG Pyrite and Opal 2.01 self encryption (SED).

Taking a closer look at the Toshiba XG6 NVMe SSD, we can describe it as single sided as all components are contained on one side.  It contains two chips of Toshiba’s latest 96-layer BiCS 3D NAND flash memory, each having a RAW capacity value of 512GB.  Formatted, only 954GB is available as consumer storage. 

To the right of the memory is the the Toshiba TC58NCP090GSD NVVMe 4-lane controller which is the same controller that we looked at in our previous Toshiba XG5 Report.  Finally to the left of the controller is a NANYA 512MB DRAM buffer.

So… for the most part our XG6 is marketed with a simple replacement from 64 layer to the newest 96-layer Toshiba BiCS flash, memory that provides a 40% higher capacity point and superior performance.

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