Solid state drives have a lot of advantages over hard drives. They consume less power, generate less heat, and usually offer faster read and write speeds. Since an SSD has no moving parts, it’s also less likely to break than a HDD if you drop your laptop or other device.

But there’s one area where traditional hard drives have the edge: price. While SSD prices have been falling quickly over the past few years, they still tend to cost much more on a price-per-gigabyte basis than HDDs.

Now SanDisk is hoping to bridge the gap.

sandisk z400s

The company has unveiled a new line of solid state drives which SanDisk says will offer “a price point on par with HDDs.” That’s a bold claim since SanDisk hasn’t actually said how much it will charge for its new Z400s series drives. But if SanDisk even comes close to delivering on its promise, it could encourage device makers to consider using solid state storage in low-cost products.

SanDisk isn’t just targeting laptop computer makers. The SanDisk Z400s SSD is also aimed at embedded devices such as point-of-sales, surveillance, and digital signage systems. Since you don’t necessarily need a lot of storage for those types of products, SanDisk is offering models with as little as 32GB of storage, or as much as 256GB. They’ll be available in 2.5 inch, M.2, or mSATA form factors.

The company says the Z400s SSD offers 20 times the performance of a hard drive while using about 1/20th as much power and offering 5 times the reliability.

via SanDisk

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18 replies on “SanDisk introduces Z400s SSD, promises hard-drive like prices”

    1. Well, that’s about twice as much as already existing SSDs according to a quick look at newegg. Maybe they are planning on dropping the prices considerably.

  1. Well I will upgrade my old MacBook Pro with an ssd if I can get a 500gb one for less than $100

  2. i’m not a fan of SSDs because of the unreliable wear leveling that occurs. lose power at the wrong time and you can corrupt the whole drive

      1. Hardly. That report makes no mention of power-loss failures… Which can happen quite a bit on embedded systems. SSDs are very susceptible to power-loss.

        1. that article is from 2013. I think most SSDs now have caps that prevent that from happening.. When power goes out at the wrong time, all you pretty much lose is in flight data. Also, HDDs can also cause catastrophic fails if power goes out at a bad time, so sticking with HDDs instead of SSDs for that reason isn’t valid either.

        2. SSDs are not “very susceptible” to power loss. There may be an elevated risk, sure, but let’s not overstate it, and when you consider overall reliability, it’s clear that SSDs are easily in the same ballpark as HDDs. A failure is a failure, no matter how it happens. (And no, post-crash recovery is not really an issue when it costs hundreds of dollars to recover a single drive.)

          Either way, you should always back up your data. I’ve had both fail on me, though I did manage to coax the SSD back to life a few months later (it was the infamous Crucial m4 firmware bug).

          The performance benefits from using an SSD as your system drive far outweigh any slight risk there may be of drive failure. My old laptop became usable again with the addition of an SSD. The difference is night and day. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend the switch under almost any circumstances.

  3. For several different reasons I hate seeing lower end fanless atom convertibles shipping with a 500gb platter drive. I also hate seeing them ship with 32gb emmc. It’d be amazing to start seeing that same class of device with 128GB SSDs and at the same time see the next tier of computers push their minimum storage up too.

    The other opportunity is core m. Most of the core m’s on the market are priced for enterprise. Throw in a Z400 and reuse old broadwell core m’s this fall for new mid-range consumer devices while skylake core m’s target the next generation of high end and enterprise devices and you could see something special in the space between atom fanless and core m fanless.

  4. They are probably talking mostly about the low end — under 256GB — where the minimum cost of a unit is more of a factor.

    Still, given that most consumers don’t care about storage in the terabyte range these days, they’re probably on the right track.

    P.S. Most consumers /= Liliputing readers

  5. Yeah but not at the same capacity, the claim is as empty as it can be.
    If you compare 128GB SSD with a 1TB HDD, (or 64 vs 500)they might get relatively close.
    You should make it clear in the article that this is an OEM drive and won’t be in retail, not everybody seems aware of that.

  6. As a consumer, the only thing I would want to be assured of (when I hear the words “low cost SSD”) is are they aren’t going to do similar “bait and switch” tactic as Kingston and PNY.

    Both of those companies launched low-cost SSDs, and then couldn’t keep costs low (or got greedy) and lowered costs by downgrading components.

  7. 4 TB HDD are around $100 on sale vs the 256 GB SSD for the same price. If they can get it down to even 1 tb for $100 bucks, it would be a huge accomplishment. I wouldn’t mind 1 TB SSD for my steam folders.

    1. i have a feeling that when they said “price point on par with HDDs”, there’s a large * next to the HDD. They probably mean the enterprise class HDDs, which cost a ton more than normal consumer HDDs. That or some small capacity HDD (like 500GB), since we know that HDD prices don’t go down much for lower capacities. I do hope I’m proven wrong tho.

  8. Woo Hoo, need one for my FreeNas as i am tired of flash drives quitting.

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