Crucial's MX100 has been one the most successful SSDs on the market. Its very aggressive pricing along with decent performance and great feature set has made it an excellent buy for mainstream users. Here at CES Crucial just introduced the MX200, the successor of MX100, and a new budget-oriented model called the BX100.

The MX200 is essentially the branded version of Micron's M600 that we reviewed earlier. The notable change compared to the MX100 is that the MX200 features Dynamic Write Acceleration (DWA), which is Micron's/Crucial's SLC cache implementation. I covered the feature in detail in our M600 review, but in short the SLC cache size is adaptive and changes depending on how much data the user is storing in the drive (unlike e.g. Samsung's and SanDisk's implementations where the SLC cache size is fixed). I wasn't very impressed by the performance of the M600 and DWA, but what DWA does provide is higher endurance since SLC is significantly more durable. Crucial is rating the 250GB version at 80TB, 500GB at 160TB and 1TB at 320TB, which is a notable increase over the 72TB that the MX100 had.

Otherwise the MX200 is very similar to the MX100. It's a Marvell 88SS9189 based design with Micron's 16nm 128Gbit NAND and as usual the MX200 features DevSleep, TCG Opal 2.0 and eDrive encryption. MSRPs are $140 for 250GB, $250 for 500GB and $470 for 1TB, which is certainly a bit more compared to the MX100. M.2 and mSATA models are also available, though the capacities only go to up to 500GB. Availability will be later in this quarter and we are expected to get samples in the next couple of weeks.

The other SSD that Crucial is launching is more interesting. The BX100 will be Crucial's entry-level drive (the B stands for budget) and the intriguing part is that Crucial is using Silicon Motion's 2246EN controller with 16nm 128Gbit NAND, which is change from Crucial's usual Marvell designs. Actually, the BX100 is the first drive from a NAND OEM to ship with a Silicon Motion controller, so that is certainly a big design win for the company. I've been pretty pleased with the 2246EN and it has done well in our tests, so I can see why Crucial chose to go with that one.

Feature wise the BX100 drops all the M-class features, so there is no hardware-accelerated encryption or SLC caching. Pricing is $70 for 120GB, $110 for 250GB, $200 for 500GB and $400 for 1TB, so it's very competitively priced like the MX100, although given the lack of features I would have like to see a bit lower pricing since the MX100 currently retails for about the same prices. Availability is also Q1'15 and we will be getting samples soon.

Finally, after a long period of waiting, Crucial is launching its own toolbox for SSDs, called the Crucial Storage Executive. The 1.0 version is a fairly basic toolbox with support for firmware updates, drive monitoring, secure erase and PSID revert, although Crucial has plans to add more features in the future. Supported drives are currently the M500, M550, MX100, MX200 and BX100 and the software is already available for download from Crucial's website. 

Crucial MX200 Product Page

Crucial BX100 Product Page

Crucial Storage Executive

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  • harrynsally - Friday, January 9, 2015 - link

    It appears (e.g. based on pricing) that the BX100 will be the replacement for the MX100 and the MX200 will replace the M550. Interesting enough, during CES, Newegg was selling the 256GB M550 for $89.99!

    I needed another SSD for a new laptop. While the 256GB MX100s I installed in 2 older laptops have performed flawlessly, just purchased a 250GB Samsung 850 EVO.

    Was really conflicted in not buying another MX100, but the better performance specification and 5 year warranty won out.

    With this announcement, glad I did. I was also able to snag a 250GB 850 EVO for $ .35 / GB.

    PS Also installed the Crucial Storage Executive. It's not a stand alone application, instead. runs via a web browser (e.g. choice of Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome). It's pretty basic in regard to information / tweaking, but promises, if ever needed, to wipe the drive clean and easily install firmware updates.
    Reply
  • piiman - Saturday, January 10, 2015 - link

    I don't get the BX100 pricing.
    $200 for 500GB WTF? You can get the mx100 for 9.00 more and once the MX200's are out that price will be even less. budget? Hardly.
    Reply
  • Siana - Monday, February 2, 2015 - link

    These things tend to tumble down in price, and MX100 is no longer new.

    BX100 replaces MX100 at its approximate price-point. MX200 is the higher-spec successor. It would appear they are going from two price tiers to three to cover moar market.
    Reply
  • mobutu - Friday, January 9, 2015 - link

    Hello Kristian, can you test the new NVMe PCIe SM951 Samsung SDD?
    http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/201501060066...
    Reply
  • juhatus - Friday, January 9, 2015 - link

    Seems like nice. It should be 30% faster than XP941, from your pasted URL:

    it can read and write sequentially at 1,600MB/s (megabytes per second) and 1,350MB/s respectively based on PCIe 2.0. This performance level is approximately three times faster than that of the latest SSD with a SATA interface and about 30 percent faster than that of the Samsung XP941, its predecessor. In addition, the new SSD’s random read and write speeds reach up to 130,000 and 85,000 IOPS (inputs/outputs per second) respectively.
    Reply
  • Kristian Vättö - Friday, January 9, 2015 - link

    As soon as I get the drive, yes. Reply
  • tisho75 - Friday, January 9, 2015 - link

    Just downloaded Crucial Storage Executive - it can't recognize MX100 in storage spaces :( Reply
  • hojnikb - Friday, January 9, 2015 - link

    I wonder how are they pulling ~90k IOPS outta 2246EN. Most drives i've seen using this controller usually top at ~70k IOPS. Either they are using special sauce firmware or they overclocked controller a bit Reply
  • TheWrongChristian - Friday, January 9, 2015 - link

    I hope the bx100 isn't another V4. All the reviews of that showed it was a dog and a very poor value proposition. Reply
  • Kristian Vättö - Friday, January 9, 2015 - link

    The V4 used a Phison controller and back then Phison wasn't exactly known for performance. The SM2246EN is a very solid controller, so I'm confident that the BX100 will be a decent drive for the price. Reply

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