Gigabyte presents super fast DDR memory hard disk

Posted on Thursday, June 02 2005 @ 19:08 CEST by Thomas De Maesschalck
Gigabyte is showing off its new IRam PCI add-in card with four memory slots at Computex. The solid-state device is designed to act as a fast hard drive with Serial ATA interface and it supports up to 4GB DDR memory. Extremely low access times are the main advantage over normal HDDs.

The company said it designed IRam for video and editing applications that require fast access to very large files, but realized that it might also appeal other users such as gamers and tweakers. Gigabyte says loading Windows XP only takes a few seconds with the IRam instead of minutes with a normal hard drive.

DDR memory loses its data when you turn off your computer so Gigabyte provided a few solutions from this problem. The device uses the PCI bus so even when your turn off your PC it will still get standby power. When you completely cut off the power the device will use its battery so your data will still be safe for another 16 hours.
Given that the card offers no real backup other than the battery it’s not really suitable for extremely sensitive data, but it works well if your system is on all the time. Obviously the biggest benefit of using DDR memory as storage is that all accesses occur in nanoseconds, not milliseconds and is thus much faster at random accesses than regular hard drives. Transfer rates are also improved, but you're limited by the bandwidth of the SATA interface so DDR200 memory is the fastest that is supported.
The IRam will become available this month for around $50 without memory modules. Gigabyte says its IRam is up to sixty times as fast as a normal HDD. Check out AnandTech for some pictures.

About the Author

Thomas De Maesschalck

Thomas has been messing with computer since early childhood and firmly believes the Internet is the best thing since sliced bread. Enjoys playing with new tech, is fascinated by science, and passionate about financial markets. When not behind a computer, he can be found with running shoes on or lifting heavy weights in the weight room.

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Re: Gigabyte presents super fast DDR memory hard disk
by Anonymous on Friday, June 03 2005 @ 17:35 CEST
Don't you mean low access times?

  • Reply by Anonymous on Friday, June 03 2005 @ 22:11 CEST

    Corrected. Thanks for notifying me about it.