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Micron's microscopic NVMe SSD packs 2TB of lightning-quick storage

Image of Micron's new 2400-series of SSDs that use 176-layer QLC NANDImage: Micron

It may be incredibly small, but Micron’s new 2400 SSD is still capable of packing up to 2TB of storage and PCIe 4.0, the company said Tuesday.

Micron said the teeny-tiny SSD (the smallest one above) measures 22mm x 30mm but is still capable of hitting 2TB of capacity and decent performance thanks to the company’s new 176-layer QLC NAND. Micron calls its 176-layer ultra dense NAND an “unprecedented” development for PC storage for not only decreasing the physical space, but also upping the performance over its previous tiny 22x30mm SSD. The company said the new 2400 series SSD can deliver 33 percent higher I/O as well as 24 percent less latency compared to the previous Micron SSD built on its 96-layer technology.

Micron is actually offering the 176-layer QLC NAND in the less runty 22x42mm size as well as the familiar 22x80mm “gumstick SSD” size in capacities of 512GB, 1TB and 2TB. Performance of the 2TB versions (no matter the size) is rated at 4,500MBps sequential read and 4,000MBps write.

Power consumption is also impressive on the new QLC NAND, with active idle power of the highest capacity drive at under 150 milliwatts. It’s enough that Micron said the drives are capable of meeting Intel’s Evo (or “Project Athena”) requirements that mandate at least nine hours of battery life on a laptop even with a high-resolution display.

So why buy this tiny SSD? For most people with a desktop it likely makes no sense, and most laptop owners will simply buy the standard 22x80mm drives. But as PC makers increasingly look to shrink laptop footprints without giving up storage performance and capacity, smaller 22x30mm SSDs may increase in popularity.

One of founding fathers of hardcore tech reporting, Gordon has been covering PCs and components since 1998.

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