A number of online retailers listed an Intel 330 SSD over the weekend, which would have been cool except that the drive was supposed to remain in the shadows until given a proper announcement. Some sellers pulled their listings pronto
, but not before giving us a good glimpse at the drive's likely specs. These include the arrival of the SATAIII 6Gbps interface in this budget line, the same 25nm NAND fabrication process used for last year's 320
, and promised sequential read / write speeds of up to 500MB/s and 450MB/s. None of this is especially thrilling, perhaps, when you recall that a similarly-specced SSD, the SanDisk Extreme, topped even the premium Intel 520
in recent benchmarks
, but it all starts to make sense when you look at the pricing. SabrePC
lists $149 for the 120GB variant, which is a full $40 cheaper than SanDisk's rival, $60 cheaper than the Intel 320, and only enough to pick up 60GB-worth of Intel 520. There are also 60GB and 180GB flavors, listed at $89 and $234 respectively. Assuming these prices hold tight, and that there's no repeat of the 320's firmware issues
, this could be a bargain drive worth waiting for.Update:
Amazon UK helpfully lists April 13th as launch day.