Looking forward to the next three generations of SSD master control: Phison talks about active cooling, L4 cache, new interfaces and other details
During the Insider live broadcast event held by MSI recently, Sebastian Jean, Chief Technology Officer of Phison, looked forward to PCIe Gen 5 / Gen 6 / Gen 7 master controllers related to future generations of SSDs.He said: Although it takes about 16 to 18 months to develop a new SSD design, the technology launch of the new generation of silicon process nodes should start 2-3 years in advance.
Take the PCIe 5.0 chip that is currently the most concerned as an example, Phison is scheduled to start shipping to customers next year. Based on this, the company is obviously already working on the PCIe Gen 6 that will appear from 2025 to 2026.SSDDo the bottom design.
In terms of specifications, it is reported that PCIe 5.0 SSD can bring a transfer rate of up to 14 GB/s-equivalent to the bandwidth of single-channel DDR4-2133 memory.
Although SSD cannot completely replace modern DRAM system memory solutions, the combination of the two may open up a new scenario based on “L4 cache” for more applications.
WCCFTechPoint out that modern CPU architecture already includes L1/L2/L3 level cache. Thanks to a similar design architecture, future versions of PCIe 5.0 SSDs will be able to be used more efficiently as the last level cache (LLC / L4) of the CPU.
As for how SSDs will develop in the future, it is not difficult to imagine that we will usher in more affordable prices, higher NAND flash memory density, and resolve size constraints.
In addition, with the iteration of the PCIe standard, we can use fewer channels to meet storage requirements, such as changing from PCIe 6.0 x4 to PCIe 7.0 x2.
Interestingly, Phison claims that 3-bit (TLC) flash memory will continue to develop, and 4-bit (QLC) flash memory will have a greater advantage in game read speed. In addition, manufacturers will also use PCIe 6.0 / 7.0 The era is more detailed pollen workstation / enterprise-class SSD product line.
At the software level, byMicrosoftLeading direct storage (Direct Storage) API and other technologies will allow consumers of the next-generation platform to experience tremendous performance improvements.
As for heat dissipation and power consumption, although Phison “recommends” PCIe 4.0 SSD manufacturers to equip with heat sinks, the PCIe 5.0 era will become standard. Because performance squeezing will cause higher heat generation, even many manufacturers will choose to install active heat dissipation for it.fan.
It is reported that the average thermal design power (TDP) of PCIe 5.0 SSD is 14W, while PCIe 6.0 SSD will grow to 28W, and thermal management is a major challenge facing the development of the industry.
At present, 30% of the heat is dissipated through the M.2 connector and 70% is conducted through the screw fixation. Therefore, the new interface/slot will also be considered at the beginning of the design.
Even though the current PCIe 4.0 SSD main control/DRAM cache can withstand operating temperatures up to 125°C, NAND flash memory still needs excellent heat dissipation to maintain long-term stability-exceeding 80°C or trigger overheating protection.
Phison hopes that the SSD can maintain a baseline operating temperature of around 50°C, otherwise the performance of the SSD will increase its throttle as the temperature increases. Take Kioxia’s newly released PCIe 5.0 SSD prototype as an example. Its reading speed has reached 14 GB/s, and its IO performance has doubled compared to PCIe 4.0 SSD.
Finally, Phison will compete with the high-end PCIe 5.0 SSD master control marketSamsungIn the fierce confrontation, Marvell also announced its new Bravera SC5 SSD controller that supports the NVMe 1.4b standard. It is known that it will be launched on the market in 2022 with Silicon Motion.