Toshiba's BG4 is the company's 4th generation ball grid SSD that uses multichip packaging. On the surface, it doesn't sound all that exciting unless you care about the packaging technology that incorporates the controller and the memory together. The BG4 is also a drive you won't likely find on Amazon or Newegg since it's designed for embedded systems like new IoT devices, tablets, and slightly larger systems like Chromebooks.
Don't close this browser tab just yet. The BG4 uses Toshiba's latest flash memory technology with an interface speed increase. Controller optimizations to the host also double bandwidth. The result is a futuristic SSD that adds little to the BOM cost and allows for thinner devices while delivering impressive NVMe performance. The BG4 we're testing today is faster than some of the best SSDs released just a year ago.
Do we have your attention now?
Toshiba will ship the BG4 in four capacities that range from 128GB to 1TB. There are two different form factors. The first is what you will see today with the BGB mounted to an M.2 2230 PCB. The circuit board has some power management functions onboard to convert standard NVMe from PCIe 3.0 to work with the BGA.
The second form factor is the BGA or Ball Grid Array. This form factor is part of the NVMe specification, although not one we talk about often. The BGA has the same controller and flash in the multichip package. The real difference between these two form-factors is one comes mounted to a board making it removable/replaceable, and the other is a surface mount component.
The highest performance model is the same we're testing today, the 1TB. This drive delivers up to 2,300 MB/s sequential read, and 1,800 MB/s sequential write speeds. Random read performance peaks at 390,000 IOPS and around half of that for random writes, 200,000 IOPS.
Pricing, Warranty, and Endurance
The BG4 is not a retail or channel product, so we don't have specific pricing info. Pricing generally depends on the quantity ordered and terms of the sale, such as warranty coverage. The warranty changes from each company and falls under the device guarantee. One company lay use the BG4 in a notebook with a 2-year warranty, but another BG4 may be in a tablet with a 1-year warranty.
Endurance falls under the same arrangement between Toshiba's sales team and the customer.
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