Typically, we see a lot of 2.5″ 7mm, M.2, and mSATA SSDs for review on our site, but rarely do we see 1.8″ SATA SSDs. As a matter of fact, our first and only 1.8″ SSD review was the Mushkin Chronos GO Deluxe, that we reviewed back in May 2013. Now, nearly two years later we finally have another with the Edge Boost Pro Micro SSD.
If you haven’t heard of Edge Memory before, they are a US-based manufacturer and have been in the memory and storage industry for nearly 30 years. Their products are mainly focused on the enterprise market and corporate-level projects. As a matter of fact, we had taken a closer look at another one of their SSDs last year, their 240GB Boost Server 7mm SSD.
The Edge Boost Pro Micro SSD has been designed for laptops that are compatible with 1.8” SSDs, as well as servers and white box solutions. The smaller capacities of this SSD line contain a SandForce controller, however with the adaption of a Silicon Motion SM2246EN controller, they have been able to expand their capacity range up to 1TB!
SPECIFICATIONS, PRICING, AND AVAILABILITY
The EDGE Boost Pro Micro is a SATA 6Gb/s, 1.8″ form factor SSD (78.5mm (L) x 54mm (W) x 5mm (H)). Models utilizing the Silicon Motion SM2246EN controller are available in 800GB (28% provisioning), 960GB (7% provisioning), and 1TB (0% provisioning) capacities. The varying capacity options allow purchasers to choose a model with a suitable amount of default over-provisioning for their workload needs. More over-provisioning allows for more scratch space to extend the lifespan of the SSD. The 1TB model we are reviewing today utilizes synchronous MLC NAND and should provide sequential speeds of up to 560MB/s read and 460MB/s write. IOPs are rated for up to 74K read and 76K write. The 120GB, 240GB, and 480GB capacities feature a SandForce SF-2281 controller and are rated for similar speeds.
The Edge Boost pro Micro SSD supports DevSleep and software encryption, as well as the ability to be secure erased. On the NAND maintenance side of things, early bad block retirement helps to improve the lifespan of the SSD by ensuring that weak blocks are retired. TRIM and NCQ are also supported for improved performance throughout its use. The built-in BCH ECC helps to avoid memory errors and promotes stability during reads and writes, up to 66 bits correctable per 1024 bytes.
The MTBF rating for this 1TB Boost Pro Micro is 1.5 million hours and it is also RoHS, FCC, and CE compliant. To top everything off, it comes with a 5-year warranty.
Currently these SSDs are available through their key partners’ websites such as CDW, PCC, Synnex, and Ingram as well as through Amazon. The pricing for the 800GB/960GB/1TB capacities is currently $835.00.
PACKAGING AND COMPONENTS
The glossy packaging is a black and silver color theme with blue accent. The front has a viewing window to the SSD itself. Besides the SSD, the packaging is void of any accessories or documents, however documents are available for digital download via their website.
Once removed from the packaging, we are able to get a better look at the SSD, the exterior featuring a light metal shell. The label indicates capacity, model number and serial number as well as stating that it was “Assembled in USA.” The backside is free of any labels or markings.
A CLOSER LOOK
If you didn’t notice at first, this 1.8″ SSD has a microSATA connector. This is due to the 1.8″ form factor and this connector allows for a more compact power connector. As this SSD will be tested in our test bench, we will be utilizing an adapter for system connectivity.
Disassembled we can see that, rather than using a thermal pad to transfer heat to the shell, this SSD has a dab of thermal paste for the task.
The overall design features four NAND packages and a DRAM chip on each side of the PCB. After clearing away most of the thermal paste we can take a better look at the SATA controller, it is indeed the Silicon Motion SM2246EN.
By using the Micron FBGA Decoder, we can identify the NAND product number for this 1TB drive as being MT29F1T08CUCABH8-6:A. This NAND flash is Micron’s 20nm L85A synchronous MLC. Each package is 128GB in capacity. The usable storage space is 931GB once formatted. We can also see that they have gone with 1GB Samsung DDR3 1600MHz for DRAM cache.