Introduction, Specifications and Packaging
Finally, a large consumer 3D XPoint SSD!
It’s been two long years since we first heard about 3D XPoint Technology. Intel and Micron serenaded us with tales of ultra-low latency and very high endurance, but when would we have this new media in our hot little hands? We got a taste of things with Optane Memory (caching) back in April, and later that same month we got a much bigger, albeit remotely-tested taste in the form of the P4800X. Since April all was quiet, with all of us storage freaks waiting for a consumer version of Optane with enough capacity to act as a system drive. Sure we’ve played around with Optane Memory parts in various forms of RAID, but as we found in our testing, Optane’s strongest benefits are the very performance traits that do not effectively scale with additional drives added to an array. The preferred route is to just get a larger single SSD with more 3D XPoint memory installed on it, and we have that very thing today (and in two separate capacities)!
You might have seen various rumors centered around the 900P lately. The first is that the 900P was to supposedly support PCIe 4.0. This is not true, and after digging back a bit appears to be a foreign vendor mistaking / confusing PCIe X4 (4 lanes) with the recently drafted PCIe 4.0 specification. Another set of rumors centered around pre-order listings and potential pricing for the 280 and 480 GB variants of the 900P. We are happy to report that those prices (at the time of this writing) are way higher than Intel’s stated MSRP's for these new models. I’ll even go as far as to say that the 480GB model can be had for less than what the 280GB model is currently listed for! More on that later in the review.
Performance specs are one place where the rumors were all true, but since all the folks had to go on was a leaked Intel press deck slide listing figures identical to the P4800X, we’re not really surprised here.
Lots of technical stuff above, but the high points are <10us typical latency (‘regular’ SSDs run between 60-100us), 2.5/2.0 GB/s sequential reads/writes, and 550k/500k random read/write performance. Yes I know, don’t tell me, you’ve seen higher sequentials on smaller form factor devices. I agree, and we’ve even seen higher maximum performance from unreleased 3D XPoint-equipped parts from Micron, but Intel has done what they needed to do in order to make this a viable shipping retail product, which likely means sacrificing the ‘megapixel race’ figures in favor of offering the lowest possible latencies and best possible endurance at this price point.
Packaging is among the nicest we’ve seen from an Intel SSD. It actually reminds me of how the Fusion-io ioDrives used to come.
Also included with the 900P is a Star Citizen ship. The Sabre Raven has been a topic of gossip and speculation for months now, and it appears to be a pretty sweet looking fighter. For those unaware, Star Citizen is a space-based MMO, and with a ‘ship purchase’ also comes a license to play the game. The Sabre Raven counts as such a purchase and apparently comes with lifetime insurance, meaning it will always be tied to your account in case it gets blown up doing data runs. Long story short, you get the game for free with the purchase of a 900P.
|Review Terms and Disclosure
All Information as of the Date of Publication
|How product was obtained:||The product is on loan from Intel for the purpose of this review.|
|What happens to product after review:||The product remains the property of Intel but is on extended loan for future testing and product comparisons.|
|Company involvement:||Intel had no control over the content of the review and was consulted prior to publication for technical clarification.|
|PC Perspective Compensation:||Neither PC Perspective nor any of its staff were paid or compensated in any way by Intel for this review.|
|Advertising Disclosure:||Intel has not purchased advertising at PC Perspective during the past twelve months.|
|Affiliate links:||This article contains affiliate links to online retailers. PC Perspective may receive compensation for purchases through those links.|
|Consulting Disclosure:||Intel is a current client of Shrout Research for products or services related to this review.|
If someone picks up one of
If someone picks up one of these and doesn’t play games or just doesn’t want the Star Citizen code, would you mind sending it to firstname.lastname@example.org Thank you in advance to anyone who helps out!
The prices in Europe are
The prices in Europe are ridiculous at best. Over 550 euros for the 280, over 1000 for the 480.
Can these SSDs mine coins too, faster and more efficient than a Vega64?
550k/500k random read/write
550k/500k random read/write
FOR WHAT IS GOOD ?
I wish techsites test how
I wish techsites test how long it takes to setup games especially with bigger and bigger game files. As well as game patches ( in some moba games it’s literally a few gigs a week). I have a sata 6 SSD with a gigabit FiOS connection the sata 6 SSD is the rate limiting step.
If you want to convince people for the next big upgrade to nvme from sata 6. Loading times for games made compelling argument from hd to SSds.
I personally would love an SSds that will get me game ready faster and not just in load times but in installing the games and the daily weekly patches as well.
If you can somehow test this and show the time saved I would appreciate it.
This test would actually be useful real world data gamers can use.
What about backwards
What about backwards compatibility? Does it require NVMe support in UEFI? Will it work in an older BIOS motherboard? Does Intel put an option ROM in the firmware to support booting in older systems?
I’m planning to build a
I’m planning to build a gaming PC with dual 1080 Ti’s, which mobo do you think would be best to use with the 480GB 900p Optane and would I have trouble fitting the add-in Optane card into the board with the 1080 Ti’s there? Thanks for the post.
Conflict of Interest…
Conflict of Interest…
Shame! PCPer is a complete
Shame! PCPer is a complete sellout! Probably “forgot” to mention the whitepaper (that this article is based on) Intel paid you to write… What a shame..
Might want to include
Might want to include something on the front page.
The FTC’s Endorsement Guides: What People Are Asking
Making it clear to the readership and viewership is important that ones receiving items and disclosing relationships.