Here is some great news I’ve received from tipster Hitori Futari. Photofast will be releasing a SATA Solid State Disk enclosure called the CR-9000 that enables you to inexpensively build your own SSD with your choice of flash memory cards.
The enclosure will allow up to 6 SDHC (MLC or SLC) cards to be used simultaneously and will allow the use of just 1 card if that’s all you have on hand. For good performance, however, you’ll want to use as many of those 6 slots as possible, as demonstrated in the benchmark test screenshots below.
No prices have been announced, but the product is ready to go (Photofast actually sent Futari one as a gift).
There are a few other models on the way as well. Here is Futari’s overview of the lot:
SSD SATA RAID 0 – 2.5″ harddrive enclosure
1-6 cards of any capacity. Max 6 x 32GB cards = 192GB
SSD SATA RAID 1, NRAID – 2.5″ harddrive enclosure
Maximum of two Compact Flash cards
SATA/miniUSB RAID 0/1 – adapter for one Compact Flash card
Maximum capacity 2TB(!)
Adapters for one Compact Flash card to SATA, IDE, ZIF or CF 50 Pin
Futari performed a few benchmark tests of his own using a single cheap 4GB SDHC card (MLC type) that he had on hand. He used a friend’s MacBook Pro with a fresh install of Tiger 10.4. Here are his results, timed with a stop watch:
Bootup time from cold boot:
75 secs in total until all icons on desktop available and system ready
(57 secs until desktop first appears)
OS X startup bar:
20 secs to complete
Macbook Pro 100GB Hitachi 2.5″ HDD 7200rpm: 113g
CR-9000 (empty): 67g
1 SDHC card: 2g
Futari also mentioned that the CR-3100 and CR-5400 adapters have officially been released (in Asia at least), which is great news for Sony PSP fans looking for more storage. There is no word on a U.S. or European release.
A big thanks to Hitori Futari. Great work once again.