For the storage fan with money to burn, Texas Memory Systems (TMS) has announced what it claims is the world's fastest PCI Express-connected flash-powered solid-state drive: the RamSan-70.
Using 685GB of single-level cell (SLC) NAND flash parts - of which 450GB is usable, with the rest given over to overprovisioning and RAID parity storage for reliability and performance purposes - alongside a hefty on-board PowerPC CPU, TMS claims that its RamSan-70 can hit 2,500MB/s sustained read with between 300K-1,200K read input/output operations per second (IOPS) and 220K-440K write IOPS, along with a write latency of 30 microseconds. This bandwidth is sustained through an 8x PCI Express 2.0 connection to the host.
TMS claims it's the fastest flash-based SSD around, and it's hard to argue: rival products like the OCZ RevoDrive 3 max out at around 1,000MB/s read and 130,000 write IOPS to the RamSan-70's 2,500MB/s and 440,000 write IOPS. With figures like that, the RamSan-70 is likely to prove popular with IO-heavy enterprise users with deep pockets - and doubly so with the inclusion of integrated RAID-5 support to maintain data integrity should a single chip fail, on-board ECC error-checking and the availability of an optional mezzanine card which doubles the usable capacity to 900GB/s.
Before you get excited, however, there's one key point in TMS's marketing: the RamSan-70 is a professional product for professional users. Its use of SLC NAND flash, rather than the cheaper multi-level cell (MLC), means stunning performance but at a serious cost. Although an official selling price isn't available, we're going to conservatively put this in the box marked 'after our numbers come up on the Lottery.'
More information, and a link to request a quote should you have a significantly larger budget than ours, is available on the official website