After selling off the Vaio computer wing, Sony is trying to sneak back into the computing market with a pair of new SSDs, as spotted on Sony’s website by MaximumPC. The new drives, which will be available in 240 and 480GB, offer eSATA speeds in a 2.5-inch form factor.
The SLW-M series drives are a fairly standard offering when it comes to SSDs. The 2.5-inch eSATA drives measure just 7mm thick, and weigh between 50 and 60 grams. There are actually two initial offerings in the series, the SLW-MG2 and SLW-MG4, which pack in 240 and 480GB respectively.
Chinese tech site diyhk.pc got their hands on one of the drives, so of course they tore it open and tested it. Inside the 240GB SLW-MG2 they found Toshiba A19 TLC flash chips, and a Phison S10 series controller. Both are fairly common parts in SSDs, although the A19 TLC flash chips are among the slower flash chips in Toshiba’s arsenal.
They tested the drive with CrystalDiskMark, the same software we use to benchmark hard drives. Despite the relatively slow chips, they measured 531.9 MBps read and 483.2 MBps write. That’s a very respectable score, falling in line with popular drives like the Samsung 850 Evo. The drive’s write speed is a little behind the pack, but there are more egregious offenders in that category.
As an added value, the drives include access to Acronis True Image 2015 HD, as well as Sony’s SSD Toolbox for handling configuration and maintenance. It’s not a huge added value, but those without dedicated storage management software will appreciate its inclusion.
What’s really interesting about the new drives is it shows that Sony isn’t totally done with the PC side of the market. Sony is still trying to capitalize on PC builders, despite the fact it sold off Vaio, and no longer produces complete systems.
There’s no word on release date or how much the drives will cost when they hit shelves. With the sharp rise of PCIe drives that boast speeds up to three or four times those of eSATA drives, these will have to be priced aggressively to sell well. Still, there’s a huge market for these 2.5-inch eSATA drives, so Sony is right to get in on the rush before PCIe drives completely take over.
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