Plextor Releases M5 Pro Series SSDs With Marvell 88SS9187 Monet Controller

Plextor has announced the release of their M5 Pro Series of SSDs and the M5 Pro will be the very first based on Marvell’s new 88SS9187 Monet SSD Controller, the successor to Marvells 9174 controller widely used by companies including Intel and OCZ. Plextor’s new products will deliver sequential R/W speeds of up to 540 MB/s and 450MB/s respectively, not to mention random R/W performance of up to 94,000 and 86,000 IOPS.

Although we’ve seen the release of several new SSD processors in recent months, it isn’t everyday we see a new implementation by a heavy hitter such as Marvell. Indeed, this is a very exciting release for several reasons. First of all, as many of you are no doubt aware, Marvell is the main competition for LSI/Sandforce when it comes to third party controllers, and as such, will really help to turn up the heat in the industry, especially when it comes to pricing. Subsequently, I’m sure there are many consumers who will be elated by this sudden but not entirely unexpected state of affairs.

Another point I have to touch on is performance, which has gone up considerably when compared to the previous 9174 processor. With Monet achieving random performance parity, as well as moving into striking distance when it comes to sequential bandwidth, it seems we may have a real brawl on our hands. Oh, and don’t forget, Marvell’s controllers don’t make use of any kind of on the fly compression, so write bandwidth should be pretty consistent, regardless of the kind of data your working with, giving them yet another potential advantage over the competition. Speaking of hardware differences, AES encryption is another area in which Monet has an eminent advantage, especially since it came to light that there is errata which is preventing SF-2200 processors from handling real time encryption properly at the AES 256-bit level. Though a new stepping is due any day now, until we see shipping drives, Marvell based products can proudly proclaim their superiority when it comes to security.

 

One final thing I wish to mention are the drives’ being backed by the Plextor name, which has historically been synonymous with stability and reliability. It’s true, if you’ve been following this industry long enough to remember the first CD burners that hit the market, you might also recall that one of the best ways to prevent your coaster collection from getting out of control was to invest in a Plextor drive. As luck would have it, it appears that reputation for reliability has held up well over the years, with Plextor SSDs being widely regarded as some of the most reliable in the industry, as evidenced by their 5 year warranty. With the enhanced performance of Monet now in their corner, Plextor is in an excellent position to make significant headway in the SSD market, especially against some of its more established competitors. If they can manage to price the M5 Pro aggressively, Plextor may end up having a masterpiece on it’s hands.

11 comments

  1. good stuff, just wondering when will this be out on the market. and to be honest, it was quite difficult to obtain one of the m3pro in canada its only on newegg =/

  2. Bring on the Tosh 19nm toggle baby!!!!

  3. Agree completely ref quality of Plextor cd burners. Porsche quality! 🙂 also Porsche price if I rem correctly

  4. Still doesn’t compare very well with SandForce when data is on the drive.

  5. Sandforce SSDs bench well with high compressible data only and most benchmarks just reproduce access pattern but not data compressablility. These Marvell SSDs don`t care about what data they do write, they do it allways with the same speed.

  6. This is not the first Marvell 9187 to market! OCZ already has this out…..
    AES Data encryption is working on the SandForce controllers.AES 256 is not working, but 128 IS working.

    • Actually it is. The controller in the OCZ is definitely based on the 9187 but we do not know to what degree it has been influenced by OCZ engineering. This is the first SSD to officially announce release with the SS9187. Thanks for the point in clarification of the encryption…slipped through!

      • The specific Marvell processor used in the Vertex 4 was actually never identified. This seems to be an excellent opportunity for a benchmark comparison……

  7. Les must be benching it right now. My prognosis is the results will be very equal to M3S Pro, despite new controller.

  8. I am getting to the point that I cant tell the difference, I have 5 toggle nand SSDs and now this ,19mm toggle nand, will I see the difference using it?

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