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Social News Community Let's talk about PC SSD's

GHG

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Before anyone starts, this is a serious thread.

I think with all the hullabaloo out there in the console world regrading SSD's we should have a place to talk about PC SSD's and what's going on in the PC SSD world. #PCtoo

Any news or developments that I see regarding upcoming NVMe drives will be posted in this thread.

I myself am in the market for an NVMe SSD which will be the boot drive for my new build (x570, so PCIe 4.0) and I'm looking for something reliable and fast (in that order).

I came across the following video from Der8auer but it's from 8 months ago and this area of the industry is moving fast. Is this still the case with the latest models:


What's recommended? Should I stick with a fast 1tb 3.0 drive for now (was looking at the Intel 665p)? Or is it worth spending double the money to get the same capacity 4.0 drive such as the Sabrent Rocket?
 

Rentahamster

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What's recommended? Should I stick with a fast 1tb 3.0 drive for now (was looking at the Intel 665p)? Or is it worth spending double the money to get the same capacity 4.0 drive such as the Sabrent Rocket?
Since you posted this on gaming side, I assume the priority is gaming? If that's the case, any SATA or faster SSD (preferably with DRAM cache) is fine. You probably won't notice the difference in the real world.


That can change once we start seeing games that are developed with an SSD as part of the minimum specs, but that day isn't here yet, and we have no real world examples yet to show us what kind of improvements we can expect so that we can judge if it's worth it or not. In the meantime, just get whatever's on sale.
 
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Sabrent is coming out with the first 8TB NVMe M.2


Not sure how much it is gonna cost, probably more than an average rig

I have 3 Samsung SATA SSDs (850 and 860 Evos) in my PC and they seem to get the job done pretty well. I am upgrading my mobo and CPU soon so will probably an M.2 SSD once that is complete since I will finally have a port for one.
 
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GHG

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Since you posted this on gaming side, I assume the priority is gaming? If that's the case, any SATA or faster SSD (preferably with DRAM cache) is fine. You probably won't notice the difference in the real world.


That can change once we start seeing games that are developed with an SSD as part of the minimum specs, but that day isn't here yet, and we have no real world examples yet to show us what kind of improvements we can expect so that we can judge if it's worth it or not. In the meantime, just get whatever's on sale.
Cool thanks, will take a look.

I use my PC for both work (programming, affinity suite, Adobe XD and running VMs) and gaming so to be honest the faster (and more reliable) the better because it will be my boot drive and I won't want to change that for at least a couple of years.

If I were to settle on the Sabrent for instance is that a safe buy or is there anything that will compete imminently upcoming?
 
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Kyshakk

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Cool thanks, will take a look.

I use my PC for both work (programming, affinity suite, Adobe XD and running VMs) and gaming so to be honest the faster (and more reliable) the better because it will be my boot drive and I won't want to change that for at least a couple of years.

If I were to settle on the Sabrent for instance is that a safe buy or is there anything that will compete imminently upcoming?
I would wait for Samsung to release their 980 PRO coming out later this year.
 
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BusierDonkey

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When I got my first NVMe drive they were still pretty expensive at the time, but I bought into the hype for the new format. In games I see better loading times, and in most games that's about it outside modded games that have enormous textures. In actuality I've rarely seen a vanilla game that runs better on my NVMe drive than on my external USB HDD outside load times. If there is a performance improvement it's little enough I don't notice it. My biggest improvement is in system boot times, which are well under 15 seconds from a complete shutdown.

Game engines will be focusing on utilizing faster SSDs better in the coming years so SSDs will likely have a bigger impact in the future. Game texture sizes are growing as well and moving those large files are where NVMe 4.0+ SSDs will really start to shine.

If you're upgrading soon, have the budget, and want to adopt NVMe SSDs into your PC, PCIe 4.0 drives like the 980 Pro are right on the horizon and will be significantly faster than current PCIe 3.0 drives.
 

Rentahamster

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I use my PC for both work (programming, affinity suite, Adobe XD and running VMs) and gaming so to be honest the faster (and more reliable) the better because it will be my boot drive and I won't want to change that for at least a couple of years.
Since you sound like a semi-power user you might as well get a gen 3 or gen 4 M.2 NVME SSD. The price premium from SATA to PCIE 3 NVME isn't that big, and you'll be somewhat futureproof.

In my personal case, I'm sticking with gen 3 NVME SSD now for 2 reasons:

1. My motherboard doesn't support gen 4 anyway, so I might as well wait until I upgrade my CPU + MOBO which will probably happen in 2021 or 2022
2. Gen 4 is still new and there's probably lots of room for improvement. I'd rather not be an early adopter for this tech when gen 3 is already saturating my bandwidth for most of my activities anyway.,
 
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GHG

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On paper the Samsung 980 Pro looks amazing but there's no release date and I'll probably need to have this thing built in the next month because I've already ordered my CPU and RAM. That said the Samsung 970 evo plus looks like a good option at the moment.

I've narrowed it down to the following so far:
  • Sabrent Rocket
  • Intel 665p
  • Samsung 970 evo plus
Anyone got experience with any of those drives/brands?

One thing I've noticed is that the speed of the same model drive varies dependant on the size of the drive. What the hell is that about?
 
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I built my brothers PC using the new AMD processor and X570 mobo.

We went with the MP600 from Corsair.
Be aware about the motherboard you choose if you’re going to go for gen 4 pcie m.2 drives because we had to cut some of the chipset fan covered to make it fit.

So many people say that you don’t need to go for the fastest drive because the difference isn’t noticeable and it really doesn’t make enough of a difference to care about. I agree with this statement with the caveat “as of right now”.

With the upcoming console releases I believe we will start to see games utilise data streaming tech it may end up being a very important factor in game graphic quality going forward and honestly if you’re looking to upgrade I feel like you should do whatever you can, spend a few hundred dollars extra here and there to future proof yourself as much as possible.

Unless you’re wealthy and can afford to upgrade whenever the next best thing comes along I personally following the philosophy you should always be buy stuff that is future proof so you can get the best bang for buck out of your system.

My personal PC is going on 9 years old but it was a beast at the time and I feel is still going strong today although it is probably getting close to due for an upgrade. I will probably be upgrading with the release of Zen 3 and I’ll also go the Corsair MP600 for the boot drive.

Then there is always the option of the second M.2 slot most X570 motherboards have which I will put a second drive in once the next generation pcie4 SSD’s that are up there with the PS5 speeds. I’m hoping they will be releasing at around the same time as the PS5. This is going to be an expensive year for me as im planning on getting and OLED and upgrading to 4K also.

On paper the Samsung 980 Pro looks amazing but there's no release date and I'll probably need to have this thing built in the next month because I've already ordered my CPU and RAM. That said the Samsung 970 evo plus looks like a good option at the moment.

I've narrowed it down to the following so far:
  • Sabrent Rocket
  • Intel 665p
  • Samsung 970 evo plus
Anyone got experience with any of those drives/brands?

One thing I've noticed is that the speed of the same model drive varies dependant on the size of the drive. What the hell is that about?
I firmly believe Samsung is the way to go because they’re the ones that manufacture the memory chips for the other cards as far as I’m aware.

Because of the annoying heatsinks on the pcie4 drives it’s probably a good idea to go with the 970 plus for now and then you can upgrade to the next gen pcie4 drives when they come with your second M.2 slot, Im hoping they will have put more thought and development into the heatsinks issue by then.
 
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Rikkori

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My advice is: don't overspend just now. We simply DON'T have enough information about how this space will change even within the next year.

The I/O situation is MUCH more complicated than just looking at advertised read/write speeds. If you can wait, wait, and if you can't then something like a Crucial MX500 can go a long way while still being affordable. If you care about reliability in particular I'd avoid QLC drives. Those have lower lifespans (write capacity) and that's important for a boot drive, and they also slow down as they fill up to a certain point.
Right now, the situation is simple to make recommendations for (just get an SSD with cache, ala Crucial MX500), because there's so much software limitations in place to account for HDDs, but we don't know HOW and to what degree that will change with these new consoles. I/O is actually very very complicated when properly taken into account by software, and it's only because the software has been so limited that the differences equalised between drives and mediums. This WILL change tho, you can bet on it.

Performance wise, to get informed and think about it in the context of future drives, I'd read through this first:
 

longdi

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Both fast 1TB pcie3 SSD were on sales recently, you can add to watchlist
 
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On paper the Samsung 980 Pro looks amazing but there's no release date and I'll probably need to have this thing built in the next month because I've already ordered my CPU and RAM. That said the Samsung 970 evo plus looks like a good option at the moment.

I've narrowed it down to the following so far:
  • Sabrent Rocket
  • Intel 665p
  • Samsung 970 evo plus
Anyone got experience with any of those drives/brands?

One thing I've noticed is that the speed of the same model drive varies dependant on the size of the drive. What the hell is that about?
I have the 970 Evo Plus, paid just over 200 quid for it. I don't notice a whole lot of difference over my other M.2 drive.
 
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zeomax

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I firmly believe Samsung is the way to go because they’re the ones that manufacture the memory chips for the other cards as far as I’m aware.
Yes, all the other like Sabrent or Corsair are buying the chips from different manufacturers. You can't be sure to get always the same quality from these brands. If it comes to SSD drives Samsung is right now the best choice.
 
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GHG

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I built my brothers PC using the new AMD processor and X570 mobo.

We went with the MP600 from Corsair.
Be aware about the motherboard you choose if you’re going to go for gen 4 pcie m.2 drives because we had to cut some of the chipset fan covered to make it fit.

So many people say that you don’t need to go for the fastest drive because the difference isn’t noticeable and it really doesn’t make enough of a difference to care about. I agree with this statement with the caveat “as of right now”.

With the upcoming console releases I believe we will start to see games utilise data streaming tech it may end up being a very important factor in game graphic quality going forward and honestly if you’re looking to upgrade I feel like you should do whatever you can, spend a few hundred dollars extra here and there to future proof yourself as much as possible.

Unless you’re wealthy and can afford to upgrade whenever the next best thing comes along I personally following the philosophy you should always be buy stuff that is future proof so you can get the best bang for buck out of your system.

My personal PC is going on 9 years old but it was a beast at the time and I feel is still going strong today although it is probably getting close to due for an upgrade. I will probably be upgrading with the release of Zen 3 and I’ll also go the Corsair MP600 for the boot drive.

Then there is always the option of the second M.2 slot most X570 motherboards have which I will put a second drive in once the next generation pcie4 SSD’s that are up there with the PS5 speeds. I’m hoping they will be releasing at around the same time as the PS5. This is going to be an expensive year for me as im planning on getting and OLED and upgrading to 4K also.



I firmly believe Samsung is the way to go because they’re the ones that manufacture the memory chips for the other cards as far as I’m aware.

Because of the annoying heatsinks on the pcie4 drives it’s probably a good idea to go with the 970 plus for now and then you can upgrade to the next gen pcie4 drives when they come with your second M.2 slot, Im hoping they will have put more thought and development into the heatsinks issue by then.
Yeh I usually have the same mindset as the one you described - buy the best you can afford at the time and hold on to it for a long time. That's why I've had the 'core' of my current system for 7 years and that's why I've purchased a 3900x and 32gb ram for my next build.

At the time of my last build I was told 16gb of ram would be overkill but it really hasn't turned out that way. My only regret from building my last system was that I didn't get an i7 instead of my i5 which probably would have allowed me to hold off on my current upgrade for another 12 months. I've been lucky it's lasted as long as it had, much in part due to the stagnation in the CPU market that we've seen for much of the last decade.

All that said, this SSD situation at the moment has a different feel to it and I have a nagging feeling that if I buy the best SSD possible now there is a strong possibility it won't last due to what's on the horizon. So I might just get something decent for now to use as a boot drive and my programs, then buy the "best" SSD available early next year but use that exclusively for gaming for the foreseeable future.

Lots of conflicting information out there so it's not as simple a decision as it might seem at first glance.
 
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Leonidas

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PCIe4 drives are a waste right now. There was testing back in Zen2 launch where PCIe4 drives reached their max speeds even on Gen3 interface when paired with the correct CPU, still not worth it yet.

I'll stick with my 2 TB PCIe3 drive and be comforted in the fact that XSX runs it's SSD at PCIe3-like speeds. By the time faster than Gen3 becomes necessary on PC I'll probably be on a Gen5(or Gen6) system :lollipop_smiling_face_eyes:
 
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Yeh I usually have the same mindset as the one you described - buy the best you can afford at the time and hold on to it for a long time. That's why I've had the 'core' of my current system for 7 years and that's why I've purchased a 3900x and 32gb ram for my next build.

At the time of my last build I was told 16gb of ram would be overkill but it really hasn't turned out that way. My only regret from building my last system was that I didn't get an i7 instead of my i5 which probably would have allowed me to hold off on my current upgrade for another 12 months. I've been lucky it's lasted as long as it had, much in part due to the stagnation in the CPU market that we've seen for much of the last decade.

All that said, this SSD situation at the moment has a different feel to it and I have a nagging feeling that if I buy the best SSD possible now there is a strong possibility it won't last due to what's on the horizon. So I might just get something decent for now to use as a boot drive and my programs, then buy the "best" SSD available early next year but use that exclusively for gaming for the foreseeable future.

Lots of conflicting information out there so it's not as simple a decision as it might seem at first glance.
This is a sound plan. It also makes sense not to store your games on the boot drive either so you probably don’t need to go full 1tb for the initial drive now and buy bigger for the game drive.
 
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Rentahamster

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All that said, this SSD situation at the moment has a different feel to it and I have a nagging feeling that if I buy the best SSD possible now there is a strong possibility it won't last due to what's on the horizon. So I might just get something decent for now to use as a boot drive and my programs, then buy the "best" SSD available early next year but use that exclusively for gaming for the foreseeable future.
Many enthusiasts are going to end up with multiple M.2 drives eventually anyway, so buying something decent now and getting something additional that's awesome in the future is a perfectly fine strategy. That's what I'm doing.

15 years ago, I only had HDDs in my system.
13 years ago, I got my first SSD, used that as my OS drive, and repurposed the HDDs as secondary data drives.
*cue multiple SSD upgrades over the years as SATA upgraded*
2 years ago, I got my first NVME SSD, used that as my OS drive, and repurposed the other SATA SSDs as secondary data drives.
I suspect next year, or the year after, once I have PCIE 4.0, the level of SSD I can buy will be much higher and I'll continue the cycle.

As for now, though, this gen 3 NVME SSD is kicking all kinds of ass for the workloads I'm throwing at it, and I'm content. Paying more for slight increases in performance that I probably won't notice is too far into the diminishing returns category.
 
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BusierDonkey

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Yeh I usually have the same mindset as the one you described - buy the best you can afford at the time and hold on to it for a long time. That's why I've had the 'core' of my current system for 7 years and that's why I've purchased a 3900x and 32gb ram for my next build.

At the time of my last build I was told 16gb of ram would be overkill but it really hasn't turned out that way. My only regret from building my last system was that I didn't get an i7 instead of my i5 which probably would have allowed me to hold off on my current upgrade for another 12 months. I've been lucky it's lasted as long as it had, much in part due to the stagnation in the CPU market that we've seen for much of the last decade.

All that said, this SSD situation at the moment has a different feel to it and I have a nagging feeling that if I buy the best SSD possible now there is a strong possibility it won't last due to what's on the horizon. So I might just get something decent for now to use as a boot drive and my programs, then buy the "best" SSD available early next year but use that exclusively for gaming for the foreseeable future.

Lots of conflicting information out there so it's not as simple a decision as it might seem at first glance.
Keep in mind that even if you end up with a PCIe 3.0 drive it'll work just fine in PCIe 4-5-6-etc boards as long as they support the M.2 form factor. While 3.5 GB/s isn't as fast as what's coming, it will still be much faster than a SATA drive, and will still be useable as a second drive if your mobo has more than one way to mount M.2 drives. Gaming on PC is entirely different than console as well. Where the upcoming consoles rely entirely on a single small 16GB pool of gddr6 vram, you have your GPU's vram available and your system ram to work with on top of that, so upcoming games on PC will rely much less on SSD speed as there is so much more information to draw at much higher speeds from the system ram than from even a PCIe 4.0 SSD. Right now I run 32 GB of DDR4 which is still more than anything I play uses. I predict games will start pushing more detail to the screen over the next few years and 32 GB will start to become a standard amount for a gaming PC. My fairly old Asus X-99 mobo can handle 128GBs quad-channel. I suspect I'll replace it and my 5820K before 2021, but I'm not experiencing any issues running any games at 4K/60 so I'm not really in a big hurry.

The price difference between SATA SSDs and PCIe 3.0 NVMe drives is often very small but tends to fluctuate as well. If you're buying a drive anyways for a new PC, you may as well go for the PCIe 3.0 NVMe drive if it's within range.

On PCPartPicker the 500GB Samsung 860 Evo is $99.99 while the 970 Evo Plus is $104.99. When I checked yesterday the 1TB Samsung 860 Evo was only $10 more than the 970 Evo Plus, but that's changed. It changes day-to-day and if you get lucky you can sometimes find the 970 Evo Plus on sale under the 860 Evo price.
 
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Armorian

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PCIe4 drives are a waste right now. There was testing back in Zen2 launch where PCIe4 drives reached their max speeds even on Gen3 interface when paired with the correct CPU, still not worth it yet.

I'll stick with my 2 TB PCIe3 drive and be comforted in the fact that XSX runs it's SSD at PCIe3-like speeds. By the time faster than Gen3 becomes necessary on PC I'll probably be on a Gen5(or Gen6) system :lollipop_smiling_face_eyes:
PS5 "magical" SSD is above PCIE 3.0 specs and we will have as fast or faster drives in next years. Will games designed with SSD speeds in mind benefit from it? That's to be determined.
 

Rentahamster

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Right now I run 32 GB of DDR4 which is still more than anything I play uses. I predict games will start pushing more detail to the screen over the next few years and 32 GB will start to become a standard amount for a gaming PC
I hope so. I got 64GB that's only really useful for Adobe programs and Cities Skylines (because that game has a shit load of asset mods you can add)

I want my future games to take advantage of all my system has to offer.
 

Shakka43

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I have a Samsung 500GB 970 Evo nvme for OS and Applications, and a 2TB Intel 660p nvme for game storage. They both work pretty great for my needs. I've heard complaints about the 660p getting slower when getting close to full capacity but at the time I bought it it was by far the cheapest option available.
 

dcx4610

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Samsung is still king in my eyes. Stable, reliable, fast.

I stuck with SSD as a boot drive only for the longest. After playing Assassin's Creed Odyssey and it taking over a minute to load, I decided to go SSD for my games drive. Especially now that SSD prices are affordable for 1TB+. Now, load time are seconds for games. Well worth it.
 
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Rentahamster

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I stuck with SSD as a boot drive only for the longest. After playing Assassin's Creed Odyssey and it taking over a minute to load, I decided to go SSD for my games drive.
I just keep my games installed on my OS SSD since it's the fastest. I don't have that many games installed at one time anyway.
 

Celcius

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Samsung is my preferred ssd brand, although I’ve also used intel and Corsair with no issues.
My 1tb Samsung 960 pro is still going strong, very fast, and has plenty of free space so I plan to continue to stick with it. If I was looking for pci-e 4.0 I’d wait on the 980 pro.
 
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Samsung SSD 970 Evo Plus and 970 Pro are the 2 names you need to know. 970 Pro is more of a professional product which uses 2-bit MLC (actual MLC) and can sustain it's performance when being written to constantly for example during video editing. 970 Evo Plus uses 3-bit MLC (TLC) and is just fine for 99% of use cases, including loading the OS and games.

Intel has gone downhill very quickly, I personally know 2 people who had Intel SSD 660p which blew up on them and nuked all their data. I would not personally recommend Intel SSD's anymore. I need 4-bit MLC (QLC) like I need holes in my head and that's what these Intel SSD's use.

The dark horse for reliable, though not fire-breathing performance, SSD's are Crucial/Micron. Very reliable, very cheap, and honestly they are fast enough for 99% of users.

 
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