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Intel Unveils Entry Level SSD

When used with a hard disk drive, the X25-V solid state drive can boost a PC's performance by up to 43%, the company says.

Intel has introduced a low-cost, solid-state drive that could be used to shorten the boot up time of PCs.

The 40 GB X25-V is aimed at inexpensive netbooks and desktops with a dual-drive setup. The latter uses an SSD as a boot drive for faster loading of the operating system or to boost performance of some applications.

The X25-V is nearly four times faster than a 7200 revolutions per minute hard-disk drive, according to Intel. When used in conjunction with a HDD, which is necessary for higher capacity data storage, the X25-V can boost overall system performance by up to 43% and gaming performance by as much as 86%.

To improve overall system performance, for example, the X25-V could be loaded with Microsoft Windows 7 to lessen system start up time, or with applications such as Office or games to boost their performance. The drive can also be used to wake up a system that's on standby.

In releasing the X25-V, Intel has added an entry-level product to its family of SSDs. "Adding the Intel X25-V to our existing family of high-performance SSDs gives our resellers a full range of high-performing, quality SSDs for notebook upgrades, dual-drive desktop setups, or embedded applications," Pete Hazen, director of marketing for the Intel NAND Solutions Group, said in a statement.

The latest SSD features 34-nanometer NAND flash memory and uses a SATA interface. Intel also offers mainstream SATA SSDs, including the X25-M with 80 GB or 160 GB of storage. All of Intel's NAND flash products include the company's proprietary controller and updatable firmware.

The X25-V is priced at $125 for quantities of 1,000 units. Intel also offers a set of utility tools to configure its SSDs.

Intel is not the only SSD maker to offer low-cost, entry-level products. Competitors included Toshiba and Micron Technology.

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