Super Talent Technology introduced the world's first USB 3.0 flash drives a couple of months ago, and started shipping in small quantities just in time for the holiday shopping season. SuperSpeed USB 3.0 has a theoretical throughput of 4.8 Gbps, which translates to a raw transfer speed of 480 MB/s thanks to the 8b/10b encoding used. Actual performance is expected to peak around 400MB/s with protocol overhead, similar to how USB 2.0 peaks at around 40MB/s.
The RAIDDrive that is shipping comes fairly close to this maximum, providing 320MB/s read using a UAS protocol driver. However, the cost for this premium drive has brought numerous requests for a more affordable solution that balances speed with affordability.
Super Talent is therefore working on a new SuperSpeed USB 3.0 flash drive. The Express drive will achieve read speeds of 125MB/s and write speeds of 50MB/s. Downloading a 600MB movie will take only 12 seconds with this new drive. It will come in two models; a 16GB model will sell for under $70, while the 32GB model will sell for under $150.
The size and cost is slashed dramatically by cutting out the RAID circuitry and reducing the amount of NAND flash memory needed. The Express drive has dimensions of 62 x 37 x7.5 mm.
"This product underscores Super Talent's continued leadership in the USB 3.0 storage market.", said Super Talent COO, C.H. Lee. "We've listened to our customers and responded with a USB 3.0 product that not only meets the market needs but hits the balance point between price and performance."
The company will show off the first prototypes at CeBIT next month, with retail availability expected by the end of March.SuperSpeed USB 3.0 is now a standard feature on many premium motherboards. ASUS sells a adapter card featuring two 6Gbps SATA ports and two USB 3.0 ports for under $30.
16GB USB 3.0 Express Drive
32GB USB 3.0 Express Drive