So we were just winding down from CES 2012 last week and bidding adieu to many of our friends for another year when we popped by the Super Talent booth.
Our relationship with ST goes back a few years and Peter Carcione, Super Talents Director of Marketing, is a good friend who always seems to have something up his sleeve. This time was no different as Peter tossed over a brand new TeraDrive Nova SATA 3 240GB SSD for review and we couldn’t wait to get it on the bench!
The TeraDrive Nova SSD is Super Talents enthusiast offering, available in capacities from 64GB to 480GB, and performance fluctuates slightly depending on the capacity purchased. The performance sweet spot is seen in the 240GB version which lists read and write performance of 540MB/s and 520MB/s at high sequential disk access. We did an earlier review of the 120GB version of the Tera Nova that displayed excellent SATA 3 performance a short time ago.
The TeraDrive Nova arrived in a case, standard of all Super Talent products that we have received, with some key literature on the back that might be valuable to the new user in their decision to move to a SSD. Not only does it describe the SSD as being a SATA 3 storage device and capable of .1ms disk access, but it also carries on to state how SSDs have no moving parts, are completely silent, shock and vibration resistant, as well as being able to perform in severe temperature climates.
The TeraDrive Nova is comprised of a number of components mounted on a printed circuit board (PCB) which is protected by a black metal exterior case. The PCB is secured inside the case by four screws, as is the exterior, which is secured in the same fashion by a metal plate on the back of the unit. To prevent tampering, Super Talent seals the SSD with two strips of security tape which will result in visible damage to the tape should one try to open the unit, thus voiding the Tera’s warranty.
The PCB contains the heart and sole of the SSD which is the LSI SandForce SF-2281 processor capable of amazing SATA 3 speeds. There are also a total of 16 modules of Micron asynchronous 25nm NAND flash memory (29F128G08CFAAA) of which each chip has a capacity of 16GB for a total of 256GB of RAW capacity.
The total advertised capacity of this SSD is 240GB as one 16GB NAND flash memory module is proprietary to the firmware itself and ensures SSD longevity and performance. The final formatted capacity is 224GB.
Asynchronous memory is not our choice for an enthusiast drive, however, Super Talent understands that end value may be more of benefit than high sequential disk access speeds of which many users will never appreciate.