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Corsair MP510 2TB AES 256-bit Encryption? ..AKA does Phison E12 actually support TCG Opal?

2019-07-18, 18:38 PM
The Corsair MP510 is a Phison E12-controller based NVME drive that costs $250 in 2TB configuration. It has similar real-world performance as the 960/970 Samsung series at about half the cost. The big question...does this drive support hardware encryption of any kind?
The Corsair MP510 spec sheet states "Encryption: AES 256-bit Encryption":
Two questions: (1) What does Corsair mean when they say "Encryption: AES 256-bit Encryption"; and (2) Does the Phison E12 controller support TCG Opal?
On question (1), assuming this is not TCG-OPAL but is some other kind of hardware encryption, does anyone have any idea how to enable this mysterious "AES 256-bit Encryption" feature? There seems to be zero discussion, instructions, or any mention anywhere of anyone enabling hardware encryption on the MP510.
On question (2), scattered across the Internet are claims that the Phison E12 supports hardware encryption via TCG Opal. However, I have not been able to find a single report of anyone actually enabling TCG Opal preboot encryption (either with NVME Class 0 encryption, as supported by newish Lenovo Thinkpads, or via SEDutil preboot authentication).
There is one comment I found regarding enabling TCG Opal via SEDutil that mentions the MP510 that states "Most drives mention AES-256 somewhere on their spec sheet, but that doesn't mean they are TCG Opal compliant. The Corsair MP510 definitely is not detected as Opal-capable by sedutil.":
This comment is very interesting, particularly because Phison, via its spec sheet for the E12 controller makes encryption claims, interestingly stating "Self Encrypting Function (Optional):AES, TCG Opal, TCG Pyrite":
What does "Optional" mean in "Self Encrypting Function (Optional):AES, TCG Opal, TCG Pyrite"?
Also, the comment above "The Corsair MP510 definitely is not detected as Opal-capable by sedutil." may have been written regarding an older version of Phison E12 firmware. The original firmware version (12.1) is now updated to 12.3 - perhaps some form of encryption has been enabled in a firmware version after 12.1? In the case of the MP510, even though Corsair has not officially released the 12.3 firmware update, the reference 12.3 firmware can be installed by following these instructions:
..with the Phison firmware utility download linked here:
Does anyone have answers to these questions? I would love to get some kind of hardware encryption enabled on the MP510.

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Re: Corsair MP510 2TB AES 256-bit Encryption? ..AKA does Phison E12 actually support TCG Opal?

2019-12-06, 11:51 AM
I am facing the same problem with a Silicon Power P34A80 nvme SSD built with the same Phison E12 controller.

It is not clear if there is a technical component missing or if it is disabled because of some commercial policy.

I did not found any firmware update on Silicon Powers's web site but I am still searching.
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