TeamGroup is leaning into the "new crypto craze" by pitching its highly durable T-Create Expert SSD (opens in new tab) with "spectacular" write endurance as being the ideal candidate for mining Chia. And so it begins.
This could become a trend if Chia can build on its pre-release momentum. That's a big 'if', however, as the new storage-based cryptocurrency lost half its value on the first day of trading alone—it launched at $1,600 yesterday, and is now worth around $680. But, in terms of value per digital coin (and not the overall market cap), that still puts it in the top 10.
Despite TeamGroup's newfound marketing pitch, the T-Create Expert is a notable SSD, offering an endurance level of up to 12,000 TBW (terabytes written). TeamGroup points out the T-Create Expert is 3-10 times more durable than its MP33 and QX SSD lines, thereby "eliminating the hassle of constantly replacing SSDs and providing more valuable time to mine cryptocurrency!"
Sure, that's one angle.
Incidentally, T-Create is a sub-brand of TeamGroup (sort of like Republic of Gamers, or ROG, is a sub-brand of Asus). It's used to promote Expert SSDs to creators by leveraging 'enterprise-level' NAND flash memory chips that can withstand more write cycles than what's found on most consumer SSD models. I'd postulate there is still widespread appeal for a high endurance SSDs, beyond crypto mining and creating.
To put the 12,000 TBW figure into perspective, Addlink's S70, one of the best SSDs for gaming, tops out at 1,600 TBW for the 2TB model. Samsung's 980 Pro is good for up to 1,200 TBW at the same capacity.
The T-Create Expert is relatively fast, too. It is an M.2 form factor drive with an NVMe interface, and is rated to deliver up to 3,400MB/s of read performance and up to 3,000MB/s of write performance. Not at all bad for a PCIe 3.0 drive.
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TeamGroup is offering the series in two capacities—1TB (6,000 TBW) and 2TB (12,000 TBW). Given the crypto marketing angle (Chia is mined on unused storage space, and the more of it you have, the better), it's odd that TeamGroup doesn't have larger capacities available.
Both are backed a lengthy 12-year warranty. TeamGroup's marketing pitch suggests that mining Chia (or other storage-based cryptocurrencies) will not void the warranty, though I've reached out to the company for clarification and will update this article when I hear back.
The drives are supposedly up for pre-order, but I couldn't find them anywhere. According to TechPowerUp, which reviewed the 2TB model earlier this month, pricing checks in at $800 for the 2TB drive and $400 for the 1TB model. So there's your caveat—the incredibly high endurance ratings and long warranty period are nice amenities, but they come at a steep price ($0.40 per gigabyte).