SanDisk Extreme II SSD Promises Blazing Speed, Long Lifespan


TAIPEI, TAIWAN — Looks like there’s a new contender for the high-performance SSD upgrade crown. Not content to let such other players as Samsung — whose 840 Series is our current speed champ — dominate the high-end of the market, SanDisk has fired the latest volley with its new Extreme II SSD, a solid state drive that promises eye-popping performance and an incredibly long duty cycle.

Available in 120, 240 and 480GB capacities, the SanDisk Extreme II is one of the only drives on the market powered by a Marvell 88SS9187 controller and combines that high performance chip with its own custom firmware. The drive uses SanDisk’s 19nm NAND Flash and employs its unique nCache 2 write cache, which pools many write operations together in a small layer of speedy SLC Flash memory before writing them to disk.  

Because of its firmware, memory and nCache, SanDisk says the Extreme II can provide read and write transfer rates of 550 MBps and 510 MBps with 95,000 and 78,000 IOPS respectively. Perhaps more importantly, the drive is rated to write 80TB of data over its lifetime, allowing users to perform huge file transfers without worrying that they’ll run out of write cycles. SanDisk even backs the Extreme II with a 5-year warranty.

The SanDisk Extreme II is available starting today at MSRPs of $129.99, $239.99, and $439.99 at 120GB, 240GB and 480GB instances, respectively. We look forward to giving this drive a thorough test and seeing how it stands up to the competition.

Avram Piltch
Avram Piltch
The official Geeks Geek, as his weekly column is titled, Avram Piltch has guided the editorial and production of since 2007. With his technical knowledge and passion for testing, Avram programmed several of LAPTOP's real-world benchmarks, including the LAPTOP Battery Test. He holds a master’s degree in English from NYU.
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  1. Bruce Ades Says:

    Very misleading. I am a home user and regularly read / write nearly 1TB a month. Based on this story, I’d get 80 months, tops. Sure, that’s almost 7 years, but there are no long term reliability studies on SSDs. Further, the warranty is for hardware only, not data recovery. Also, there are no probability or statistical formulas to indicate when the failure might occur in the SSDs lifecycle.

    Lastly, what difference the speed if the computer buses (data highways) do not support the input / output capabilities. Just compare reliability and $/Mb versus owing a speed ‘freak’ and for the typical home or even power business end-user, there is simply reason to buy these drices.

  2. Brian Says:

    Bruce, you obviously don’t have a clue, or have not used an SSD drive, or both! Having an SSD drive as your boot drive is the single best upgrade you can do to your computer today, period.

    Your “reliability” issue is a false premise. Everyone should have a current backup of their data. That being said, whether an SSD drive fails, or a spindled drive fails it’s all the same, i.e. it failed. You should ALWAYS assume that your drive IS going to fail, thus the need to always have a current backup of your data. Whether the drive that failed is an SSD or a spindled drive makes no difference at all, it failed, thus your point is pointless. All drive fail at some point.

    Why do you think that all the BIG storage/server companies have begun using SSD drives as their primary drives and use the spindled drives as backup and storage? Because the SSD drives DO provide a HUGE speed increase.

    For the normal user, the only down side to SSD drives is the price per GB in comparison to spindled drives. That’s it. So, for the normal user the best thing they can do is upgrade to an SSD drive for their boot drive and make sure they have a current backup of all their data. Which is what has been encouraged all along way before SSD drive even existed.

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