Paul Braren and Allyn Malventano discuss NAND SSD's rough start, M.2 NVMe, and how 3D XPoint will get even faster

Posted by Paul Braren on Apr 9 2017 (updated on Oct 30 2023) in
  • Storage
  • Introduction

    If you're looking for a deep dive into the history of consumer and enterprise SSDs that stretches back about 9 years now, right through to today's NVMe and 3D XPoint (which Intel calls Optane and Micron calls QuantX), and tomorrow's NVDIMMs, then you're in the right place!

    This audio I recently recorded with PC Perspective's Allyn Malventano is intended for the home lab enthusiast. We discuss how far SSD tech has come since the original consumer 2.5" SSD called the Intel X25-M (80GB, about $900), and where it's headed in the future. We also touch upon the use of SATA SSDs versus NVMe SSDs under VMware ESXi.

    This is an audio-only segment, 1 hour and 15 minutes in length. "Allyn Malventano discuss SSD NAND's rough start, M.2 NVMe, & how 3D XPoint performs even faster soon". Hope you enjoyed this audio learning experience. Please feel free to give feedback by leaving a comment.


    Here's just a brief back story, to paint a picture of how this informal, unscripted recording came to be, from two early adopter/bleeding edge kind of guys. I'm one of those guys, Paul Braren of, and I've been to roughly 35 of the 50 United States doing consulting, I had actually been to Cincinnati's airport before, which is actually at the northern edge of Kentucky. This time I was all over Ohio to meet with customers and to help out at the Cincinnati's VMware vSAN SociaLab, a guided hands-on lab sponsored by VMware AND Intel. vSAN is when you aggregate individual disks into a pool of fast storage using 10GbE networking, and this recording is all about the technical underpinnings that make All Flash vSANs possible.

    Southern Hospitality


    So while near Northern Kentucky, I reached out to a PC enthusiast and self-made storage expert who you are about to hear, an ex-navy guy named Allyn Malventano. He's living near the lovely Florence Kentucky, just a few miles south of Cincinnati, where the huge water tower seen from the highway says a welcoming "Florence Y'All." This is also where PC Perspective Founder Ryan Shrout has his recording studio/office where the weekly PC Perspective podcast and videos are produced that I've so enjoyed for many years.

    Allyn has done so much in his Navy career before becoming the Storage Editor at PC Perspective, and I've referenced his work hundreds of times these past 6 years of writing at TinkerTry. Why? Because his work is incredibly technical, and because of his in-depth storage coverage. His segment on the weekly podcast bringing his hardware tests to life, supplementing my learning so nicely. Listen in as I attempt to moderate the discussion, my first time doing this interviewer role in a real studio with great microphones, face-to-face, without the usual Skype or Google Hangout lag. I did my best to keep the conversation flowing in a somewhat chronological manner.

    PCIe 3D XPoint eventually goes DDR5/NVDIMM-P

    This audio was recording Wednesday April 6 2017, just before Allyn went on the air at for the weekly 10pm eastern recording. If you enjoyed this storage conversation, please consider subscribing to the YouTube Channels for PC Perspective and/or TinkerTry, and you can follow Allyn @malventano and me, Paul Braren, @paulbraren. Thank you for listening.

    Apr 23 2017 Update

    Here's Ryan:

    I would encourage everybody to go read this article about the P4800X SSD.
    It's an enterprise product, it is very much targetted at enterprise, it's incredibly expensive, it's $4 a gig, the 375GB model is what we tested, it's not flash, it's not NAND, right, so it's doing things from a technological and like a logistics standpoint on the chips that it's fundamentally different and that fundamental difference allows things to go much faster. Now the problem is software is still a thing, operating systems still exist...There's a picture in the first page of the article that looks at app to SSD I/O read latency and it kind of gives you an idea of how much of it is the software, the platform, the link, the SSD itself, and the non-volatile memory itself.

    "Intel Optane SSD DC P4800X 375GB Review - Enterprise 3D XPoint" featuring Ryan Shrout and Allyn Malventano

    See also at TinkerTry

    All links to PC Perspective, Optane, 3D XPoint, and NVDIMM.


    See also


    I was fortunate to get a behind the scenes look at the live recording of PC Perspective Podcast #444 on April 7 2017! Why the different views? Because the streamed video has a few seconds of buffer.