Phison's new tech will push PCIe 4.0 SSDs to extreme speeds

Phison E18 SSD controller
(Image credit: Phision)

Phison has announced the "industry’s fastest" SSD controller that shows we’re already close to the limits of PCIe 4.0 speeds. 

The new PS5018-E18 PCIe 4.0 controller, or E18 for short, is a step above Phision’s E16 controller that dropped in 2019 and is currently found in many Gen 4 SSDs. 

The E18 has been designed from the ground up on TSMC 12nm process node, and is capable of delivering extreme read and write speeds upwards of 7GB/s. By comparison, the E16 controller, which debuted alongside AMD's Ryzen 3000 processors, was capable of 5GB/s read and 4.4GB/s write speeds. 

The eight-channel E18 also delivers up to IOPS and will be available in capacities of up to 8TB per drive. That means it’s also a step above the recently-released Samsung 980 Pro, which also reaches 7GB/s read speeds but is only offered with up to 1TB storage. 

The Phison E18 arrives just in time for the release of AMD’s Ryzen 5000 CPUs, which are PCIe 4.0 compatible.

“AMD leads the industry with the first desktop processor and chipset support for PCIe 4.0. As we continue to build new platforms that support PCIe® 4.0 technologies, we are happy to see companies like Phison expanding their Gen 4 SSD product offerings,” said Chris Kilburn, corporate vice president and General Manager, Client Component business unit, AMD. 

“In partnership with industry leading storage companies like Phison, we are committed to delivering new levels of storage performance across the entire PC landscape.”

Intel has also confirmed that it’s incoming Rocket Lake processors will support the PCIe 4.0 standard,  but these are unlikely to show up until early-2021. 

Carly Page

Carly Page is a Freelance journalist, copywriter and editor specialising in Consumer/B2B technology. She has written for a range of titles including Computer Shopper, Expert Reviews, IT Pro, the Metro, PC Pro, TechRadar and Tes.