We have been seeing more M.2 SSDs lately, a lot of which are companies’ first steps into the market since the form factor is so new. They have been designed to meet strict size requirements and allow for greater flexibility in product development. They are the perfect fit for mobile devices with their compact size and light weight.
Transcend was founded in 1988, today they are a leading global brand for digital storage with over 2,000 products. From memory modules to SSDs, they market and sell them all. Their commitment to quality control has been one of the main factors for their success. They were the first memory module manufacturer in Taiwan receive ISO 9001, ISO 14001, QC080000, and ISO/TS 16949 certifications. Every product is tested before is goes off to market to ensure customer satisfaction.
Transcend just recently released their SSD370 SSDs in the 2.5″ 7mm form factor. Now, they have released their latest MTS series of M.2 SSDs with the same TS6500 SATA 6Gb/s controller. They offer a plethora of M.2 form factors and capacities for consumers to choose from. They boast quite a load of features and with smaller capacities of 32GB and 64GB, include Intel Smart Response Technology support. Today on the test bench is their MTS800 in 128GB capacity.
TRANSCEND MTS800 SPECIFICATIONS, PRICING, AND AVAILABILITY
The MTS800 has quite a few features. To start, it has AES full drive encryption. The controller has an internal power shield circuit to protect data in the SSD during a sudden power outage. The SSD also has an optional hardware trigger for quick data erase and write protect. These can be enabled by connecting a switch designated pins.
It also features a few typical, yet important flash memory management features such global wear leveling, which ensures all blocks have an equal erase count. For its ECC algorithm, the controller uses BCH 40 Bit ECC per 1024 bytes to allow for greater endurance. Their bad block management prevents usage of bad blocks to prevent data loss in the future. And their advanced garbage collection allows for stable performance over long periods of time.
Finally, they have implemented a feature that is quite clever, they call it StaticDataRefresh Technology. As time goes by, the error bits in the NAND increase and sometimes exceed the ECC engine’s capabilities. This can cause data corruption. Transcend’s StaticDataRefresh Technology automatically restores the charge levels in the NAND cells as the number of bit errors accumulate. This restores the data to a like new error free state.
With all these management features working together, the endurance for the Transcend MTS800 SSDs are rated from 45TB total bytes written for the 32GB model up to 550TB for the 512GB model.
Sequential read speeds are rated for up to 570MB/s and writes of up to 450MB/s. IOPS wise, random 4K read speeds are rated up to 75,000 IOPS and random 4K write speeds up to 75,000 IOPS. Transcend is offering the MTS800 series of SSDs in capacities and price points of 32GB ($39.00), 64GB ($59.00), 128GB ($99.00), 256GB ($169.00) and 512GB ($319.00).
As for power consumption, maximum read consumption is rated for up to 3W and maximum write is rated for up to 1.75W. Idle power consumption is rated for 0.314W. And since the M.2 form factor is typically implemented in and aimed towards ultra-thin and light weight devices, the MTS800 drives also support DevSleep. For those who don’t know, DevSleep allows for these drives to reach an ultra-low power state in which they consume only a few milliwatts of power and give devices longer sleep times.
And all drives in the MTS series are covered by Transcend with a 3 year warranty.
And with the drive you can download their SSD Scope software, it is Transcend’s SSD toolbox. It allows for health monitoring, manual TRIM, secure erase, benchmarking, virus scanning, firmware updates, and system cloning.
PACKAGING AND COMPONENTS
Moving on, our review sample did not come in any retail packaging, simply an antistatic bag.
After a quick glance around, we can see that the MTS800 has a single Transcend TS6500 controller, four packages of Micron NAND, and a single Samsung DRAM chip. Furthermore, the drive has M and B-key connectors.
The controller is marked as a Transcend TS6500 controller, however, as revealed in our Transcend SSD370 report, it is a re-branded Silicon Motion SM2246EN controller. It is a four channel SATA 6Gb/s controller that has been popping up a lot in SSDs we have reviewed so far this year due to the industry’s drive towards value.
The NAND packages are Micron L85A 20nm MLC NAND. By using the Micron FBGA Decoder, we can identify the NAND product number for this drive as being MT29F256G08CECABH6-6:A. Each package is 32GB in capacity for a total RAW capacity of 128GB, as there are two modules on each side of the PCB. When formatted, the total capacity available to the user is reduced to 119GB. The Samsung DRAM is DDR3-1333 and 128MB in capacity.