Some Kaby Lake-Based systems will ship with Intel Optane storage solutions

Some Kaby Lake-Based systems will ship with Intel Optane storage solutions

Some Kaby Lake-Based systems will ship with Intel Optane storage solutions

 

For a long time, we have talked about the future of memory technology, be the high storage densities offered by modern 3D NAND, the enhanced speeds offered by the NVMe storage protocol and the almost DRAM-grade offered by Intel’s upcoming XPoint technology. 

XPoint is a new memory type which can effectively be considered as a storage medium that bridges the gap between traditional NAND and DRAM, offering Non-volatile storage (isn’t reset/deleted when powered down) with speeds which are well in excess of what is offered by traditional NAND flash. 

The main problem with XPoint is that it does not offer the same capacity/price ratio as NAND, making it ill suited to affordable/ultra-fast SSDs, though with the combination of it’s low latency throughput and high speeds at low que depths it is extremely viable as a system accelerator. 

Lenovo has announced a refresh of their ThinkPad lineup with Kaby Lake CPUs and Intel Optane/Xpoint M.2 drives for HDD caching, with models like the ThinkPad T470p, L570, T470 and T570 coming with Optane SSD caching. 

  

Some Kaby Lake-Based systems will ship with Intel Optane storage solutions

 

These new Optane Storage accelerators are likely Intel’s previously leaked Stony Ridge lineup of M.2 storage accelerators, which will come with capacities of 16GB and 32GB, which while small will be able to significantly improve the speeds of systems using mechanical storage. 

Right now Lenovo states that their new lineup of ThinkPad devices will be available in January and February 2017, though they have not officially announced when their Optane accelerated models will be released. 

Hopefully, we will be able to test out Intel’s Optane series of HDD accelerators soon, as they offer storage speeds which have the potential to improve upon traditional SSDs and not just mechanical storage. 

 

You can join the discussion on Intel’s Optane series of XPoint storage accelerators on the OC3D Forums.