PNY demonstrated its new external SSD at Computex earlier this month. The new Elite-X Portable SSD uses a USB 3.1 Gen 2 interface and a USB Type-C connector, thus providing higher performance when compared to the company's existing portable drives.

PNY’s Elite-X Portable SSDs will be available in 240 GB, 480 GB, and 960 GB configurations. The manufacturer specs the drives for up to 800 MB/s sequential read speed, which indicates that there is an SSD with a PCIe 3.0 interface inside that communicates with the host via a PCIe-to-USB bridge (ASMedia’s first-gen bridges could barely hit 10 Gbps). Keeping in mind that PNY specifically chose USB Type-C instead of Thunderbolt to maintain compatibility with Apple’s MacBooks and other ultra-thin laptops with 5 Gbps USB 3.0 connectors, 800 MB/s does not really seem as a major performance bottleneck of the drive.

The manufacturer does not explicitly disclose what drive it uses is inside the Elite-X Portable SSD. Meanwhile considering the fact that PNY works closely with Phison, it is highly likely that the Elite-X Portable SSD uses a Phison PS5008-E8 controller as well as Toshiba’s BICS 3D NAND.

Since the combination of Phison’s PS5008-E8 and Toshiba’s 3D NAND is relatively widespread in the industry, PNY will not have to spend a long time validating the work of the design. Therefore, expect the Elite-X Portable SSDs to hit the market in the coming months. Prices will depend on multiple factors, but expect them to be comparable to the current-generation PNY Elite Portable SSDs: between $90 and $280.

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  • repoman27 - Wednesday, June 27, 2018 - link

    Basically, the Elite-X is just PNY's take on the SanDisk Extreme 900:

    Nothing exotic here, and in both cases, performance is primarily limited by the SATA SSDs they use, not the Asmedia bridge chip. I'd love to see someone benchmark the ASM1352R with a pair of 500 GB Samsung SSD 850 PROs, as I'm guessing that would be the high-water mark for USB 3.1 Gen 2 performance with currently shipping devices. Given the performance numbers quoted, that may actually be what Angelbird has done with with their SSD2GO PKT XT:
  • Ynnanandre - Tuesday, July 3, 2018 - link

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