Are you assembling a new computer, need more space, or have you just returned from a deep hibernation to the world of the living and bid farewell to the disk drive set up as the system? You’re in the right place – we recommend which NVMe SSD is worth buying and which models offer the best value for money.
Ranking of Drives 2022. The Best M.2 SSD NVMe Drives – Table of Contents:
- M.2 SSD NVMe drives – what to look for when buying?
- What will the future hold for the world of semiconductors and disk drives?
- Goodram PX500. The model that destroyed the feeling of buying SATA drives
- Cheap doesn’t mean slow. Kioxia Exceria G2 a real hit in the PCIe 3.0 drive segment
- When speed is the priority. Samsung 980 Pro, the best M.2 PCIe 4.0 SSD
- Fast M.2 PCIe 4.0 SSD for work and play on PlayStation 5. GIGABYTE Aorus 7000s
M.2 SSD NVMe drives – what to look for when buying?
Before buying, it is worth considering some issues and questions that will allow us to narrow the circle of searches and choose the right data warehouse for us.
For example, they will be important disk dimensions and interface type† Although SSDs with SATA III interface are still available for sale, they are not profitable to buy. M.2 driveswho use the interface PCIe (PCI Express) and protocol NVMe, are much more efficient and more competitively priced, so it makes little sense to buy the former. Although the latest and most efficient designs are based on: PCI Express 4.0the models that use the standard in version 3.0 will offer a good level of performance.
As for the dimensions, the most popular at the moment are the length models 80mmthat is media type 2280† However, keep in mind that there are also shorter and longer variants (2230, 2242, 2260 and 22110) that may not be compatible with the slot in a laptop or ultrabook (worth checking before buying) . We will not have this problem in the case of installation on a desktop computer – as a rule, motherboards have at least one universal socket that works with most devices.
Going to disk capacity, let’s pay attention to two things: a certain margin and space that we must leave if we want maximum performance (filling the drive almost completely will result in reduced performance) and the cost per gigabyte of data. In most cases, 1TB drives are the most profitable – sizes too large or small will translate into a slightly less favorable price.
Finally, we must not omit important information from the technical specifications. Although the designation controller may prove useless to the untrained eye, the mere presence of an accessory DRAM cache or at least technology Host Memory Bufferconnecting the drive directly to the CPU’s DRAM should make a difference for us.
Let’s also look at memory technology (MLC, TLC, QLC, 3D NAND), current performance (writing and reading), temperature† Guarantee and related TBW indicator (Total Bytes Written – parameter that specifies how much data the disk must write before the warranty expires; the higher the value, the better).
What will the future hold for the world of semiconductors and disk drives?
The future looks bright for both the semiconductor disk world and traditional disk designs. According to recent announcements, upcoming chipset-based motherboards X670 (including Gigabyte X670 Aorus Pro AX, X670 Aorus Master, X670 Aorus Xtreme and X670 Aero D), will have a socket M.2 thermal protection III† It wouldn’t be surprising if the potential parameters of the supported drives were not marked as SSD gen5 M.2 25110†
This notation means that, according to the nomenclature adopted in the industry, the dimensions of some discs PCIe 5.0 can differ significantly from the most common standard today M.2 2280† The devices will be slightly wider (25mm) and certainly longer (110mm† If such dimensions are confirmed, the existing motherboards with M.2 slots will not be compatible with the new solution.
Responsible for PCIe specifications PCI SIG mentioned possible changes at the end of 2020. The new dimensions should allow the production of highly efficient drives, which require a suitable surface and heat sink to work in optimal conditions.
A real revolution, not an evolution, in turn, can take place in the disc drive market. Thank you all the discovery of scientists at MITwho decided to abandon the heads floating above ferromagnetic disks. For this purpose, a 2D shape of the so-called multiferrousthat would preserve the data fidelity for which traditional hard drives are famous and the reliance on electric fields in flash memory. This would combine the benefits of both today’s leading technologies – read speed SSD drives and durability of HDDs†
The coming period will bring many new, interesting solutions. And to think that in my old-fashioned Dell Inspiron Mini 1010 netbook with Windows XP on board (does anyone remember the term netbook?), I was using a 32GB SSD drive, for which I paid about PLN 400 in 2009. Technological progress is racing like crazy.
Goodram PX500. The model that destroyed the feeling of buying SATA drives
PX500 it may not be the most efficient drive in this comparison, but it is certainly several times faster than SATA drives and costs the same or less. We prefer not to take long when choosing equally priced constructions.
The Polish manufacturer really has nothing to be ashamed of when it comes to the popular NVMe drives on this shelf. Variant 512GB it costs just over two hundred zloty and offers a lecture at the same time 2000MB/s and a record of 1600MB/s† Efficient memories made in 3D technology and SMI 2263XT controller allowed to obtain 173 thousand reads and 143 thousand writes per second (IOPS).
In addition, we can count on very favorable competition SLC buffer (200 GB for the 1 TB variant), which will improve the work in real everyday applications and well working temperature† The latter is provided by a special foil composed of copper and graphite, which facilitates heat dissipation without increasing the heat sink.
GOODRAM PX500 is available for sale in capacities 256† 512GB and 1TB† The format used is natural M.2 2280, with one-sided placement of components. The whole is supplemented with a 3-year warranty and a nominal working time of approx 1.5 million hours†
Cheap doesn’t mean slow. Kioxia Exceria G2 a real hit in the PCIe 3.0 drive segment
The Japanese manufacturer, which until now has not been particularly popular in this segment in the European and American markets, has created an extremely successful product that is synonymous with performance at a good price. It can even be said that it has stormed all kinds of sales rankings and guides, and countless user opinions seem to confirm the legitimacy of this choice. As a result of the success of this ride†
Kioxia Exceria G2 has a successful combination of some very important functions. First, as applied here controller called TC58NC1202GST (the name on the case) is actually hidden Phison E12C – a solution that has been recognized and proven many times over in well-reviewed products. It is worth noting during this rebranding that the company has made additional improvements to the firmware.
Another important advantage is presence DRAM cache (1 GB DDR4-1600)which in the case of this price range is a surprising move and a very positive move compared to the competition. This, of course, translates into efficiency, both in random and sequential transfers.
The main problem with this design is: pseudo SLC memory buffer and working temperaturewhich fortunately we can easily correct using the heat sink. Without it, performance loss won’t occur until after reaching 75°C and storing ~120GB of data, so it’s not a huge issue, but worth mentioning. Ultimately, these drawbacks do not affect the profitability of purchasing this model, which is one of the best choices in its price range anyway.
When speed is the priority. Samsung 980 Pro, the best M.2 PCIe 4.0 SSD
After two models with interface PCIe 3.0time for faster, standards-based solutions PCIe 4.0 x4 (NVMe 1.4† Samsung 980 Pro 1 TB is a hard drive for demanding users, for whom the word of compromise does not come down their throats.
The maximum transfers here run up to 7000MB/s when reading and 5100MB/s when signing up. The performance image is complemented by 1 million random operations per second (IOPS), a result that fully reflects the capabilities of the 8-channel controller Samsung Elpis and modern memories used here 3D TLC NAND†
The only regret is that the manufacturer has not decided to use the type of bones MLCas in the case of its famous predecessor (970 PRO), but it is a tablespoon of tar in a vat of honey. The work of the memory in good thermal conditions is ensured by a nickel coating, and from the programming point of view, the technology is sensitive to the whole thing Dynamic thermal protection†
As for a drive for professional use, the price is not shocking – the rating of the version looks particularly attractive 1TB and 2 TB† The 980 PRO is also available in 500 GB and 250 GB, but the latter is not recommended due to the unfavorable price-to-data ratio.
Fast M.2 PCIe 4.0 SSD for work and play on PlayStation 5. GIGABYTE Aorus 7000s
The model from the series was also on the list aorus businesses Gigabyte† It’s a proven drive that will work in any scenario – be it graphics processing† video editing or play on console Playstation 5 (full interface compatibility) PCIe 4×4†
Top performance up to 7000MB/s for sequential reading and up to 5500MB/s for writing, the controller offers: PS5018-E18 second generation. Support for 8 channels NAND Flash from 32CE is supported here by cache DDR4 SLCwe can therefore count on uninterrupted work with very good parameters.
An integrated paragraph also deserves a separate paragraph aluminum heat sink Of nano carbon coating and double sided thermal pad with high conductivity, which facilitates good heat dissipation. In this regard, it is one of the best designs on the market and we don’t have to worry about the temperature sensor readings.
In addition to the hardware aspect, the software is of course also important. The manufacturer has prepared SSD toolbox, the program from which we will check, among other things, to view the disk status, firmware version or information about device diagnosis. The secure erase option also allows us to easily and quickly erase all data without the possibility of recovering it.