Western Digital introduces Blue and Green SSD

Five months ago, Western Digital completed its acquisition of SSD and NAND flash manufacturer SanDisk, adding consumer SSDs and more enterprise SSDs to their existing portfolio of hard drives and HGST enterprise SSDs. WD is now introducing two families of WD-branded consumer SSDs, each derived from existing SanDisk product lines.

The WD Blue SSD is based on the SanDisk X400 SATA SSD with minimal hardware changes but has modified firmware and different usable capacities. Like the X400, the WD Blue is available as either a 2.5″ or M.2 drive and uses SanDisk 15nm TLC NAND with the Marvell 88SS1074 controller. Our review of the 1TB WD Blue SSD shows that it improves on some of the X400’s weaknesses but sacrifices some performance on many tests, producing a drive that is not quite as fast overall. The MSRP for the WD Blue is about the same as current actual retail prices for the SanDisk X400, which position it as a mid-range SATA SSD and puts it up against formidable competition from the new wave of drives using the more affordable 3D TLC NAND from Micron.

Western Digital WD Blue Specifications
Form Factor2.5″ 7mm SATA or M.2 2280 SATA
ControllerMarvell 88SS1074
NANDSanDisk 15nm TLC
Sequential Read540 MB/s545 MB/s545 MB/s
Sequential Write500 MB/s525 MB/s525 MB/s
4KB Random Read97k IOPS100k IOPS100k IOPS
4KB Random Write79k IOPS80k IOPS80k IOPS
Average Power70 mW
Max Power4.4 W
Endurance (TBW)100 TB200 TB400 TB
WarrantyThree years

The WD Green SSD is an entry-level product line with limited capacity options. Based on the SanDisk SSD Plus, it uses a Silicon Motion controller in a DRAM-less configuration with SanDisk 15nm TLC NAND. The WD Green has a similar purpose to drives like the Samsung 750 EVO and the recently-announced OCZ TL100: to offer the lowest possible price while still providing acceptable reliability and a noticeable performance jump over hard drives. Higher capacities are omitted from the product line because the total price would be too high for the most cost-sensitive consumers even if the price per GB is marginally lower than a more mainstream budget drive.

While the Green label has connotations of better than average power efficiency when applied to WD’s hard drives, the low performance of DRAM-less SSDs usually leads to poor energy efficiency during active use and the idle power savings tend to be minimal.

The WD Green will be available later this quarter, and pricing has not been announced.

Western Digital WD Green Specifications
Form Factor2.5″ 7mm SATA or M.2 2280 SATA
ControllerSilicon Motion SM2256S
NANDSanDisk 15nm TLC
Sequential Read540 MB/s545 MB/s
Sequential Write405 MB/s435 MB/s
4KB Random Read37k IOPS37k IOPS
4KB Random Write63k IOPS68k IOPS
Idle Power30 mW
Endurance (TBW)40 TB80 TB
WarrantyThree years


Source: Andantech