9 Replies Latest reply on Jul 12, 2011 9:34 AM by DuckieHo

    7.0mm and 9.5mm SSD


      Wow!! Another mega corporation with HORRIBLE product documentation.


      Is there one simple place on the Intel site to find the model number for the 320 series SSD drives that are 7.0mm?  Geez the dumb PDF http://download.intel.com/design/flash/nand/325212.pdf that you can download indicate that the 320 comes in 40GB, 80GB, 120GB, 160GB, 300GB, 600GB capacities in both 7.0mm and 9.5mm but you can't find a model number anywhere!!  How hard would that have been to do?


      So after searching, which I should not have to do this should just be part of the "Products >> SSD" page, I found this link http://cache-www.intel.com/cd/00/00/47/64/476434_476434.pdf.


      So for all of you that are buying a Lenovo and will be surprised that it can only accept a 7.0mm drive and want an SSD ....

        • 1. Re: 7.0mm and 9.5mm SSD

          The T420 takes normal 9.5mm SSDs. The T420s, X220, and X220t need the short drives. I don't know about the X1.

          • 2. Re: 7.0mm and 9.5mm SSD



            I hope you are correct but until I receive my T420 I will not know for certainty.  What I do know is that Lenovo's site makes no mention of the height of the drive.  Lenovo's sales staff directed me to a document http://www.lenovo.com/psref/pdf/tabook.pdf and it is vague regarding the height of the drive, indicating "Some" configurations may have 9.5mm or they may have 7.0mm drives, but no clear indication.


            What I do know is that after spending several days searching for information regarding SSD's and the T420, I have found numerous forum entries from users who recently purchased T420 to find they had 7.0mm drives.  The individuals did not state that they had purchased T420s but T420 and my experience with people who would attempt to upgrade the hard drive in their laptops themselves would lead me to believe they would clearly specify which model they owned, I could be wrong.


            In any event both Lenovo and Intel should be ashamed of the poor information provided on their respective web sites.  Consumers should not have to rely on forums or extensive searches to find product information.  As I stated before I should be able to click on "Products" then "Solid State Drives & Caching" and then there should be a CLEAR link to all the models of SSD's.  That is sadly not the case.  Only after searching the Intel site and clicking on various links to PDF's did I stumble upon the document that listed the different SSD models.  That document indicates there are three 7.0mm drives in the 320 series but under the "Where to buy" section of the website http://www.intel.com/buy/components/ssd/embedded.htm?fmlid=1&sSKU=-1 after selecting the 320 series there are only 6 options and all are for 9.5mm.  That is pathetic.

            • 3. Re: 7.0mm and 9.5mm SSD

              The fact that you haven't seemed to figure out that all the drives are 7.0mm and use a plastic "spacer" to extend their height to 9.5mm is pretty amazing, especially for someone who's going on and on about "the state of misinformation".  The "spacer" can be removed, but I believe you'll also need shorter screws (which DuckieHo at Intel can provide).  You can read more about it if you want.

              • 4. Re: 7.0mm and 9.5mm SSD

                The T420 is capable of using a 9.5 mm drive. I know because I am typing this right now on a T420 that has 9.5mm drive. An Intel 320 in the 9.5mm size fit perfectly in my machine. Lenovo may decide to ship your T420 with a 7.0mm drive; however, it will be able to support a 9.5mm drive. If it is shipped with a 7.0 mm drive you may need to purchase or ask Lenovo nicely for a harddrive cage (and possibly bumpers / spacers) that are capable of being used with a 9.5mm drive. If your computer has not shipped yet, I would also try asking your rep to make sure it comes with a 9.5mm drive.


                The 320 does have a plastic spacer. My understanding is that it can be removed and replaced with shorter screws. However, the drive says right on it that removal of any screw or the label voids the warranty. The post koitsu linked to was edited by an admin to read that removal of the picture frame voids the warranty. Warranty is not something I would want voided on the 320 right now. Mine died (8MB bug) in less than 24 hours of use.

                • 5. Re: 7.0mm and 9.5mm SSD



                  I never stated anything regarding "Misinformation" but clearly stated the ”lack of information”, and if your claim of spacers is correct this would only seem to emphasize my point, where is this clear reference to all SSD drives actually being 7.0mm with a spacer to make them 9.5mm?  Please provide a link so that I can become enlightened. Crucial, OCZ, OWC, etc don’t show any removable spacer so I will  assume your statement that all SSD’s are 7.0mm with a spacer only refers to Intel SSD’s.


                  The photos I have seen on the Intel site of Intel SSD’s don’t show a spacer.  Again provide a link to an Intel website page, not a forum posting, which shows this.  Even the installation PDF for the 320 series drives does not show any spacer or that it can be removed to install it in a 7.0mm drive bay, it seems this would be useful presales information.  While I have not read every review of every Intel SSD I have not read one where the reviewer mentions this spacer can be removed, although I will grant you the images on the review websites show the spacer, and one could infer the spacer can be removed. But why should I have to?


                  I read again the information on the Intel site and I do not see any reference to the spacer except in the forum.  So again my point being that I as a consumer should not have to search for this information which is clearly very important to laptop owners.  Perhaps I am blind and missed this on the Intel website and you can show me an Intel website page, not buried in a technical document, which states this.  I will then stand corrected and amend my post.


                  Also, read down through this forum post http://communities.intel.com/thread/20867?wapkw=%28ssd+spacer%29 and read where the Intel Admin corrected a post and indicates that removing the spacer DOES void the warranty.  It doesn’t seem logical but who wants to spend $500 - $1000 and void your warranty on day one.   And who wants to order an expensive drive, wait several days, only to find out it doesn’t fit.  Also notice in this posting that several people comment about needing shorter screws so if it was intended by Intel to remove the spacer then the screws should be part of the package contents.


                  Again my point being information that should be clear and easy to find on the Intel SSD website not buried in technical documents or community forums is missing.  Sorry if my desire to hold a major corporation to higher standards bothers you.

                  • 6. Re: 7.0mm and 9.5mm SSD

                    Section 3.2, Figure 3 of the Intel® Solid-State Drive 320 Series Product Specification has what you claim doesn't exist anywhere.  You can access this PDF by going to the Intel Solid-State Drive 320 Series page and clicking on Technical Documents.  The specifications clearly show the spacer in question, as well as provide its dimensions.  Remember: this is a mechanical diagram and is thus not worded/phrased like "LOOK HERE FOR THE SPACER LULZ!"  Look at the difference in the mechanical diagram between the 7.0mm and the 9.5mm models.  The spacer is quite apparent.  This isn't going to dissuade you from your argument however, because "it's buried in technical documents" rather than "on a web page".  Welcome to the enterprise world, glad you could participate!  :-)


                    I will agree that Intel doesn't provide enough photos of their devices on their site.  Every photo of the 320-series SSD I find is of the 7.0mm model w/out the spacer.  I'm absolutely 100% certain that's done because the non-spacer version looks more elegant; what company tries to advertise a product by putting up ugly photos of their product?  None that I know of.  But that said, they could definitely do with more product photos, and from multiple angles, agreed.


                    If you want to ensure a product (e.g. SSD) is compatible with the device you're using (e.g. laptop), you need to communicate with the company who manufacturers the device (e.g. Lenovo, HP, Dell, etc.).  Sure, removal of the spacer voids your warranty -- you didn't know that until I just pointed you to it.  That wasn't what you originally came here bitching about, so now you've got more ammunition for a different argument, which means this entire thread is becoming nothing but a troll attempt.  Come on man.


                    Sorry to make it sound like I'm ragging on you and giving you a hard time, but step back for a moment and look at how you approached the situation: aggressively.  I tend to side with people/customers who are frustrated (really, honestly I do!), but your approach in this case was pretty uncool.


                    I'm not sure how to properly direct your complaints either.  The best I can find is the Product Pre-sales Feedback page, but I have no idea how effective that page is for getting Intel to update documentation to reflect your concerns.

                    • 7. Re: 7.0mm and 9.5mm SSD

                      My post from the outset was meant to be a rant.  I had already found the information I needed, including the other thread that you referenced.   I wasn’t trying to find a hack to a product but the actual PART NUMBERS for the claimed 7mm drives referenced vaguely in the product specs so that I could find pricing.  The fact that I had to dig for this information annoys me.  In my opinion it should be extremely easy to find.


                      Even contacting Lenovo directly I was not provided with assurance that the drive bay is 9.5mm and unfortunately I encountered several forum posts (non Intel) where people said they received their T420 with 7mm drives and they were trying to find compatible SSD’s.  This led me to believe I might encounter a problem finding a suitable SSD (without hacking).


                      I highly doubt either Intel or Lenovo will make any changes to their websites to provide concise and easy to find information and we will continue to see posts everywhere from users seeking this information.   To just accept this type of information and never complain nothing will ever change, which is why I bitch.  It may not be cool but if enough people complained maybe it would change.


                      Anyway, this has gone on to long, but I appreciate the effort you made to help.  My apologies for taking up your time.

                      • 8. Re: 7.0mm and 9.5mm SSD

                        "Look at the difference in the mechanical diagram between the 7.0mm and the 9.5mm models.  The spacer is quite apparent."


                        It is not obvious from the mechanical diagram (or from any other easily-discoverable information) is that that is a spacer. It implies that there are two ranges of models, some 7.0mm and some 9.5mm. How is anyone, looking at that document alone (which is the only source of information about the 7.0mm measurement), supposed to know that the spacer is removable, rather than there being two sizes of drives?


                        The document that vijer discovered further complicates matters: there are two sizes of drive. Apparently, only OEMs can get hold of the 7.0mm drives as-shipped (at least, I can't find retailers for those specific model numbers). Retailers and resellers are stuck with the 9.5mm drives.


                        So, assuming that you discover (probably unofficially, on this forum) that it's the same drive, and that retailers get the 9.5mm ones with the spacer fitted, and that it is removable, you then discover that removing it voids your warranty.


                        Hardly a sensible state of affairs. One, in fact, that will cause most retail customers to look elsewhere for a source of 7mm drives.

                        • 9. Re: 7.0mm and 9.5mm SSD

                          Hi, the 7.0mm and 9.5mm SSDs are identical except for the picture frame spacer.  Intel does sell the 7.0mm SSDs in brown box packaging but I will have to follow up on retailers.


                          I am awaiting a response from Intel if removal of the spacer is allowed.  I had posted it was but I have found out there exist some unclearity on the issue.


                          I can (I am NOT am employee of Intel) send you the necessary screws.  However, this may void your warranty and you would be doing this at your own risk.  If you want to procede, send a private message with your address.