Phison Announces New PS5026-E26 Controller Firmware after Testers Discover PCIe 5.0 NVMe SSDs Failing in Less Than 3 Minutes without Proper Cooling

The FPS Review may receive a commission if you purchase something after clicking a link in this article.

Image: Corsair

Phison has confirmed that it will be releasing new firmware relevant to PCIe Gen 5 NVMe SSDs with the PS5026-E26 controller after reviewers and other enthusiasts discovered that they could fail in just a few minutes when they aren’t paired with the proper cooling solutions. One drive, the Corsair MP700 PCIe 5.0 NVMe SSD, will “reliably hit file-system errors in three minutes or less without added cooling,” Phoronix’s Michael Larabel claimed in a report today, which includes a lengthy log showing various errors, including potential data loss. “SSD cooling required,” reads a disclaimer on Corsair’s MP700 page.

“After carefully reviewing the recent reports from TechPowerUp and Phoronix, Phison would like to acknowledge the issue found in the reviews of products using the new Phison PS5026-E26 controller. We take this matter seriously and are committed to resolving it promptly,” reads the statement from Phison.

“Our firmware engineering teams have already isolated the problem and made the necessary adjustments to the thermal throttle curve within hours of the report. However, the new firmware must undergo Phison’s strict validation process before our partners can release it to customers. Rest assured our partners will notify end-users as soon as the validated update is available.”

“It is important to note that all E26 SSDs shipped without a heatsink are intended to be used with a heatsink. Most motherboards shipping with PCIe Gen5 enabled also include cooling specifically designed for Gen5 SSDs. We offer the ‘bare drive’ option to allow customers to use their existing cooling products.”

“We want to emphasize our commitment to providing high-quality products and solutions to our customers and will continue to work diligently to ensure their satisfaction. Thank you for your patience and understanding during this process.”

From a Phoronix report:

As mentioned in the review, I was hitting file-system errors simply when installing tests after a clean Ubuntu 23.04 install and not even getting to actually stressing the NVMe drive with benchmarks. So I was quite curious to see how long the drive would last under the disk benchmarking workloads when run without any after-market cooling. Long story short, it was less than 3 minutes into clean boots before reliably hitting errors.

When collecting the dmesg logs remotely, typically within 180 seconds of a boot and simply starting a MariaDB server and running mysqlslap to exercise the database server there would be file-system errors. Repeating this several times, it would always happen within three minutes and the reported NVMe drive temperature via the NVMe HWMON sysfs was always around 87 degrees. For what it’s worth, the MP700 tech specs outline a temperature range of -40C to 85C.

Join the discussion in our forums...

Tsing Mui
News poster at The FPS Review.

Recent News