WE MET UP with JMicron at Computex and although the company had a tiny booth at the show it was packed with people during our entire visit. JMicron is the first company to have a range of solutions for SDXC card readers, including support for USB 3.0. We ended up chatting with a very nice representative for the company who also spilled the beans on some upcoming products from JMicron.
The company is offering two different SDXC card reader controllers, the JMB389 which has a PCI Express interface and the JMB710 which has a USB 3.0 interface. As SDXC cards are set to have a potential read speed of 104MB/s with future SDXC cards hitting 300MB/s, USB 2.0 is no longer an option for card readers. As such, JMicron was approached by Toshiba to develop a solution for its notebooks which ended up being the JMB389. The JMB389 is also compatible with Sony’s new MSXC memory cards.
The JMB389 is likely to be found in more notebooks in the future. JMicron was showing off ExpressCard solutions as well as desktop PCI Express cards with the controller. The JMB710 was a further development to make it easier to get SDXC support on desktop PCs by adding a USB 3.0 interface. JMicron already has partners for all of these solutions, so we should be seeing SDXC compatible card readers arriving in the market shortly.
As with regards to a USB 3.0 host controller, JMicron was working on a solution, but due to time constraints and some other factors, such as the difficulty in creating drivers for USB 3.0, the company decided to focus on device solutions instead. The company will be offering a wide range of USB 3.0 device solutions and is already shipping a wide range of solutions for external storage devices.
JMicron is also working on a new, faster SSD controller which should arrive sometime in Q4. We were told that the new SSD controller would be faster than Intel’s current solution. JMicron ended up with a bit of a tarnished reputation in the early days of the SSD market as its controllers weren’t designed for the type of devices that manufacturers started to put them in and as such suffered from “drive stuttering”. This problem is long gone though and its current product is a joint venture with Toshiba (Toshiba offers its own version of the same solution), although JMicron didn’t actually admit to this outright.S|A
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