Caching is all about a hybrid design which combines the benefits of a regular HDD with an SSD. You as an end-user will be able to benefit from the large storage capacities offered by today's platter but slow based HDD drives alongside the high speeds and low access time provided by SSDs, as that SSD will be used as a fast memory cache for the HDD.
Intel offers fairly similar technology on their SRT supporting products and now next to the Hybrid solutions you can create a 'Hybrid' setup yourself.
All you need is a PC with a HDD as root and boot drive, you seat this Catalyst CACHE SSD next to it and then install Dataplex software that manages and functions as the cache layer. The Dataplex caching software layer is used to create an environment where the most frequently used "hot" data stays on the fast SSD, while the "cold" data remains on the larger capacity HDD (sold separately).
That means with 1st reads you are working in with HDD access times and speeds, but after that 1st run, if the data is frequently accessed, you'll see performance speedups at SSD levels.
Since the Cache SSD is a fully fetched Sandforce 2281 based SSD it guarantees performance levels of close to 550 MB/sec on reads and 515MB/s writes (over SATA3). Lets have a look at some of the specs:
Available in 50GB and 100GB capacities
Interface: SATA 6Gbps / Backwards Compatible 3Gbps
MLC NAND Flash
Native TRIM support
Integrated Dataplex caching software
ECC Recovery, Data Encryption
Slim 2.5" Design: 98 x 69.9 x 9.1 mm
Operating Temp: 0°C ~ 70°C
Ambient Temp: 0°C ~ 55°C
Storage Temp: -45°C ~ 85°C
Low Power Consumption: 2.7W Active, 1.5W Idle
Shock Resistant up to 1500G
Included 3.5" Desktop adapter bracket
Compatible with Windows 7 32-bit and 64-bit
MTBF: 2 million hours
Mushkin will launch with two models, a 50 and a 100GB cache SSD version. Honestly the 50GB version is plenty sufficient for a data-cache. Mind you though that the SSD has 50GB/100GB of NAND flash storage (25nm MLC), however the Synapse Series uses a chunk of that NAND flash for over provisioning to accommodate performance and software features. One part is used as an actual cache and formatted as such, the rest is for redundancy and performance enhancements.
As far as performance is concerned, the model we test comes with a Max Read of up to 550 MB/s and a Max Write: up to 515 MB/s. Now, please do understand that these are always best case scenarios and based on peak performance. Your non-cached sustained and linear writes will show a somewhat different picture. Read performance on modern age SSDs is however bitching fast alright.
We'll pair today's product with a HDD with some serious booty, the 2 TB Samsung 5400 RPM drive to see where we end up in performance.
Mushkin Catalyst Cache SSD review Mushkin now introduces the Catalyst Cache solid state drive. It's in fact an optional 50 or 100 GB SSD intended just for caching. Combined with Dataplex cache application software and your own HDD, the combination could be just what you have been looking for.
Mushkin Blackline Ridgeback 2000 MHz DDR3 8GB review Mushkin offers their dual-channel Blackline Ridgeback in 8GB kits at $125 (USD), and to spice that up .. it is offered as a 2000 MHz kit, with granted not the most sexy timings but at a CAS latency of 9 versus 2000 MHz versus two 4GB high-density DDR3 modules. At 125 USD , and that's 15.6 USD per GB, you can understand that this kit might be a nice alternative to low latency 1333 and 1600 MHz kits. Muskin even tops that off by a lifetime warranty on this product so all in all that can't be a bad deal, no Sir.