Corsair claims world's fastest 128GB USB flash drive

It touts SLC-like performance in an MLC flash drive

Corsair Memory Inc. today announced what it claims to be the world's fastest a 128GB USB flash drive, the Flash Voyager GT. The newest Flash Voyager GT is based on a dual-controller architecture to achieve what Corsair said is single-level cell (SLC) NAND flash memory performance levels using less expensive and higher-density multilevel cell (MLC) NAND flash.

According to Corsair, the 128GB Flash Voyager GT can achieve read speeds of up to 32MB/sec. and write speeds of up to 25.6MB/sec. The limiting factor in throughput is the speed of the USB 2.0 bus -- a maximum of 480Mbit/sec. -- and any operating system overhead.

In comparison, the 8GB Iron Key USB flash drive, which actually uses SLC flash memory, has a read speed of up to 30MB/sec. and a write speed of up to 20MB/sec. (Computerword's review of the 4GB Iron Key showed it had a read rate of 29MB/sec.) Flash drives with more memory tend to have better performance.

"High performance is a key requirement for super-high-capacity flash drives such as the 128GB Voyager GT, simply because it is able to store such a large volume of data," John Beekley, vice president of applications at Corsair, said in a statement. "The 128GB Voyager GT is nearly twice as fast as other high-capacity flash drives, which means less time waiting for your music, video or office files to copy to and from the drive."

The 128GB Flash Voyager GT also utilizes a water-resistant rubber housing to protect the drive against accidental damage.

But the greater speed comes at a price. The Corsair drive retails for $399 on sites such as Newegg.com.

The 128GB Flash Voyager GT is available now from Corsair's authorized distributors and resellers worldwide and is backed by a 10-year limited warranty. Customer support via telephone, e-mail, forum and Tech Support Express is also available.

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