CARDS - What is the difference between SLC and MLC flash memory chips?

Most flash products on the market utilize NAND flash memory which can be sub-divided into two categories, SLC and MLC. MLC is by far is the most popular because it has a lower cost.

  • SLC (Single Level Cell) products store only one data bit per NAND flash cell which leads to faster transfer speeds, higher cell endurance and a lower power consumption. The only downside to SLC chips is the manufacturing cost per Megabyte. SLCs are intended for the high-end consumer and server market and they have approximately 10 times more endurance compared to MLCs.
  • MLC (Multi Level Cell)  store two or more bits per NAND flash cell. Storing more bits per cell achieves a higher capacity and lower manufacturing cost per Megabyte. MLC products are designed for the mainstream consumer market.


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