Earlier this week Samsung introduced two new NVME SSDs – the 970 EVO and the 970 PRO drives. Some tests have started to appear and we have a few notes about what we think about these SSDs that many professional content creators have been using in recent years.
We have been working with Samsungs SSDs for a long time and they have been the benchmark of the industry for quite a few years now. Despite some attempts by Intel and a few other manufacturers the 960 EVO and PRO NVMEs have been the gold standard for high-end consumer solid-state drives with almost no direct competition.
That is all until recently when WD and Sandisk (which is now owned by WD) introduced the WD Black NVMe SSD and the SanDisk Extreme PRO M.2 NVMe SSD drives (see our coverage – here). According to benchmarks done by Anandtech these new drives are very close and in some tests are even better than the Samsung 960 EVO and 960 PRO (they also seem to be more power efficient).
Samsung responded with a new set of drives of its own – the 970 EVO and the 970 PRO which were supposed to give Samsung the clear lead again. The interesting thing is that at least from the initial testing of the 970 EVO the results are not as clear-cut as they use to be when the 960 EVO/PRO were released into the market and they surpassed anything else in the category. This time around the 970 EVO seems to have only minor gains compared to the 960 EVO (it does bring some significant gains in sequential write speeds though which is very welcome but at the expense of less energy efficiency it seems).
At the end of the day and this is important to realize if you are looking for a fast solid state drive – the current bottleneck seems to be the PCIe 3 x4 protocol and what it can take and in order to see significantly faster drives we will have to see faster protocols and supported systems which will take some time.
Actually maybe the most interesting aspect of this release is the price point of the 1TB and 2TB EVO drives. Selling for $450 and $850 this is a very attractive price point (the WD Black and the SanDisk Extreme PRO has a similar price point for the 1TB but currently have no 2TB option).
Here is a little bit more info on these new drives:
- Anandtech’s 970 EVO review.
- PCworld’s review of the 970 EVO/PRO and WD Black NVMe SSD (yes, the 970 PRO is FASTER) – link.
- Official Samsung 970 EVO/PRO specs – here.
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