For more than a decade, hard drives have been the dominant primary storage device for computers. However, that is quickly changing with many new machines like the best gaming laptops now shipping with the best SSD 2022 by default.
Today, we’re going to look at what might happen over the next five years and see which companies are best poised to offer consumers incredible prices on both client and enterprise solid-state drives.
For this article, we’re not going to talk about SSD. While it has and will continue to offer tremendous performance advantages over HDDs, it is likely that we’ll see a plateau in drive speeds as we’ve moved mostly into the PCIe interface for drives rather than the SATA bottleneck.
Instead, we’re going to be looking at manufacturers that specialize in making SSDs with NAND flash memory. We are also not focused on enterprise SSD companies like Fusion-io or SandForce. Enterprise SSDs are important but since they cost 10x more than their consumer counterparts, they aren’t major players in the grand scheme of things except for very high end machines where high IOPS matters most.
Here are some of my assumptions on the market for the next 5 years:
Flash memory costs will continue to decline. NAND manufacturers will start to increase their own prices as demand increases and they run out of wafer space (flash memory is created on silicon, which can only be used once). Consumers are not willing to pay more than $1/GB for consumer SSDs. Intel’s focus on the high end is here to stay. OCZ will have a high failure rate until it can prove that its enterprise division has matured. There won’t be any new innovative companies in storage by 2022.
Best SSD 2022
- Samsung 970 EVO Plus
- Crucial P1
- Crucial MX500
- Samsung 860 EVO
- Seagate FireCuda 510
- WD Black SN750
- Samsung 970 Pro
- HP S700 Pro
- ADATA XPG SX8200
- Addlink S70
- Corsair Force MP600
How To Choose The Best SSD
Ok, I’m going to assume that you’ve been here before and already know what a Solid State Drive is. If you don’t, then it’s highly suggested that you read up on them first.
The specifications for all SSDs are the same… right? Wrong! There are many factors which make an SSD better than another. Some of these factors are more important than others, depending on how you choose to use your computer.
If you intend for your computer’s OS to sit on the SSD while using a small HDD (Hard Disk Drive) for all of your other data like pictures, music, stuff like that… then you need not be concerned with which is the best SSD. Simply get one that seems cheapest at the moment and call it a day. If you always keep your OS installed on an SSD then do consider getting the best drive available because it’ll be worth it in the long run.
How can I actually tell if one is better than another? Like mentioned above, some factors are more important depending on what type of user you are. For example, something like a drive’s MTBF (Mean Time Between Failures) isn’t a big deal for someone who doesn’t care to keep their OS installed on the SSD or if they don’t intend to run it 24/7. Another example would be that of SandForce controllers; they’re great, but only if you do something like 98% read and 2% write because of how they work . If you’re interested in learning more about this particular bit, then I’d suggest reading over this article by XBit Labs.
And what about stuff like compatibility? Who cares! All modern motherboards come with an IDE connector these days since we left those old grey ones behind long ago… right? Well, there are still some around and even worse, there are people with modern boards who don’t have IDE connectors.
Relevant read: Best USB Drives.
Best SSD Reviews 2022
1. Samsung 970 EVO Plus Review
The Samsung 970 EVO Plus sits below the 970 Pro in Samsung’s NVMe lineup. It is sold as an M.2 NVMe SSD with capacities of 250GB, 500GB and 1TB for this review. The 970 EVO Plus uses 64-layer 3D NAND flash memory and a new Phoenix controller.
The Phoenix controller is made by Samsung, but it is not the same as the UBX controller used in Samsung’s other recent NVMe SSDs. The Phoenix controller is made specifically for low-capacity (sub 1TB) consumer SSDs such as this product.
Samsung has also published a power usage table for the 970 EVO Plus, and our tests show that it uses about 8% less power than the 970 EVO.
The Samsung Magician software supports all capacities of this drive, but Samsung’s data migration software is only available for installation on the 1TB model. The other two models simply have a link to download it from Samsung’s website.
In addition to its lower price and power efficiency, the 970 EVO Plus has lower write endurance ratings than the 970 EVO. The 1TB model lasts for 400 TBW, the 500GB model is rated for 300 TBW and the 250GB model has 200 TBW.
Samsung’s warranty period increased from 5 years to 6 years with their latest product update. However, this does not apply to Samsung’s NVMe SSDs because they are still using the 5y warranty period that was originally used in 2014.
Relevant read: Best portable monitor.
2. Crucial P1 Review
Another Best SSD that we have for you is the Crucial P1. Crucial is a subsidiary from Micron and has been known to be one of the best SSD companies out there. Today, we will take a look into the new P1 which separates itself from its previous siblings as it now sports a PCIe Gen3 x4 interface with NVMe protocol.
The P1 promises amazing speeds almost twice as fast as the previous products from Crucial. It also offers us quite a decent capacity of up to 1TB, making it the biggest SSD ever from Crucial.
The P1 will be a great upgrade from your old HDD and promises to load files faster than ever
Let us now take a closer look at the Crucial P1.
First off, the design of the P1 is like that of any other SSD out there. It has an aluminum alloy casing for heat dissipation and protecting it from breaking. There is a sticker on the top with the Crucial logo and its capacity.
The key here is that this M.2 SSD can now use both SATA and PCIe interface. This gives you an option to either upgrade your computer to a faster interface or just rely on your traditional SATA connection. You can then later transfer it into an M.2 slot if you want to achieve faster speeds.
If your motherboard only has SATA interface, the P1 will run at 6 Gbps for maximum performance
The Crucial P1 has quite a decent capacity of up to 1TB and should be more than enough for most users. The drive is also equipped with 3D NAND, which the previous 2.5″ SSDs do not have, and is built with Micron’s latest 3D NAND technology for faster speeds and longer lifespan.
3. Crucial MX500 Review
Crucial’s MX300 was a solid release that got many things right, but it also had its faults. The first model was released as an MLC based drive with TLC performance, which brought the endurance into question for some users.
This issue was later resolved by releasing an MLC alternative with much better endurance, but ultimately the first generation of the MX300 fell short of the hype. The second version was marketed as an enthusiast drive for gamers and other high performance seekers.
But it could not deliver on many fronts due to the lack of SLC caching which limited its write speeds throughout most of the testing period. It also still had some endurance issues that prevented it from being considered a true gaming SSD. The MX300 simply was not the drive that enthusiasts had hoped it would be, but Crucial has listened to community feedback and is looking to make things right with their latest model, the MX500 .
The new MX500 may still be based on TLC NAND like its predecessor, but this time around they are using 3D NAND which should not only improve endurance but performance as well.
It has shown to be much faster than TLC in most tests, and there are even early reports of it having less severe write compression than the MX300 . The MX300 also suffered from very low write speeds once its SLC cache was full, so the new Dynamic Write Acceleration technology should help to keep performance high even under heavier workloads.
Crucial has also fixed the sub-par garbage collection, so that should improve sustained write speeds as well. The MX500 may not be a true enthusiast drive like they had hoped, but it looks like Crucial is finally ready to release an MLC based mainstream SSD that can handle intensive workloads and deliver the performance we all expect from a Crucial drive.
Relevant read: Best gaming mouse.
4. Samsung 860 EVO
Samsung’s 3rd generation 3-bit MLC V-NAND based NVMe SSD for mainstream client PC, delivering the industry’s leading performance and enhanced reliability. The new 860 EVO boasts major sequential read and write performance increases of up to 550MB/s and 520MB/s respectively, and random read and write performance reaching up to 98K IOPS and 90K IOPS on the 1TB model.
It also features a new high-efficiency MEX controller and Samsung’s intelligent TurboWrite technology for faster sequential write speeds. The 860 EVO comes with leading-edge components: 3bit V-NAND, a new MJX controller and the latest Samsung Magician software. All these improvements culminate in up to 4x higher performance on sequential reads than the previous generation 840 EVO, and 2x faster writes using TurboWrite technology.
Samsung’s long list of SSD victories includes more than 500 awards for excellence in memory. The company led the industry with its solid-state drive (SSD) shipments which reached 43 million units in 2016, according to research firm Gartner*. That is up from 33 million units in 2015 and 18 million units in 2014. According to IDC*, Samsung is the world’s leading enterprise SSD manufacturer with a 48 percent market share in 2016.
Samsung is a pioneer in advanced 3D V-NAND technology and its commitment to innovation has yielded some of the most advanced storage solutions available today. Matter of fact, the Samsung 860 EVO is the industry’s only consumer-ready 3D V-NAND SSD.
5. Seagate FireCuda 510
At #5, the Seagate FireCuda 510 comes up with a whopping 10TB storage capacity. The FireCuda 510 follows the FireCuda 510 SSHD with 8GB of NAND flash. The FireCuda 510 models are packed in a 2.5″ x 9.5mm Z-height form factor, which is very similar to all other FireCuda drives, but at 10TB.
Inside the Seagate FireCuda 510 10TB there is a single SATA 6GBps platter along with the motor spindle. On top, two magnetic heads are loaded to read and write data on both sides of the platters. The capacity per platter is 1TB (1,000,204,496 bytes).
The FireCuda 510 10TB also features a 64MB DRAM cache buffer, which is the same capacity as the Seagate FireCuda 8GB SSHD.
Finally, there are seven heads to read/write all over both sides of the platters. That’s where the high areal density comes from, 32 heads are physically packed in the same 1TB platter.
The 10TB Seagate FireCuda 510 is a 7200RPM 2.5″ form factor drive, to deliver fast performance with low power consumption. The total weight of the drive is 131g (0.29lbs).
Seagate also pushes the MTBF to an impressive 1M hours, which is higher compared to other drives. The FireCuda 510 series works under SATA 3.3, which delivers up to 6Gbps link speeds via the SATA 16-bit PCIE 3.0 interface. The total weight of the drive is 131g (0.29lbs).
Overall, the Seagate FireCuda 510 10TB is a solid high capacity drive packed with enough NAND flash to deliver consistent performance under any circumstance. The SSDs are great for sequential workloads, but when it comes to random accesses, hard drives tend to outperform them by a bit.
6. WD Black SN750
Today, we are going to be taking a look at the WD Black SN750 NVMe SSD. WD has been on the forefront of NVMe performance for years now, and while they have certainly caught up in recent months with their introduction of new 3D NAND parts, it is still generally accepted that their chosen controller was not the best choice available at their price point. However, as we already know, they recently announced a new WD Black SN750 NVMe SSD that now uses the brand new SMI SM2262 controller.
SMI has now been developing their own NVMe controllers for quite some time and is one of the major players in this space. While not as well known as Samsung’s 3-Core UHC-Silicon Motion, Inc. SM2263XT, the SMI SM2262 NVMe Controller is designed to be a competitor using their own IP. The SMI SM2262 has eight NAND channels, which will certainly make it capable of more performance than WD’s previous controller was able to deliver with the six channels that the controller had access to.
The WD SN750 will be available in both M.2 2280 and single-sided HHHL card form factors, with capacities up to 2TB. It will also be rated for 3 DWPD (Drive Writes Per Day) which is significantly more than what even the best SATA SSDs are capable of. We have been told to expect this drive to launch in Q3, so apparently we will not have to wait much longer for these parts.
The WD SN750 also comes with a new version of their SSD dashboard and migration software, which allows you to copy data from an existing drive onto the WD SN750, which should be particularly useful for anyone who has already invested in WD Black SATA SSDs and wants to take advantage of the increased performance that the SN750 offers.
Overall, the WD SN750 is looking like a very compelling product for both gamers and others who need high performance storage solutions. It will certainly be interesting to see how it performs in our testing, so let’s get on with that now!
7. Samsung 970 Pro Review
Samsung’s 960 Pro solid-state drive (SSD) was one of the fastest consumer SSDs on the market when it first launched nearly two years ago. It set a new bar for performance at its price point, even beating out many NVMe drives. The 970 Pro is here to carry on the performance legacy.
The Samsung PM981-based 960 Pro made its debut in October 2016. Eight months later, Samsung introduced the 970 series that is built on an all-new platform code named Phoenix. The PM981 is derived from the Polaris (960 pro) architecture, but features a new controller and NAND flash memory specific to Samsung’s 3D TLC V-NAND. The 970 Pro is the first product to be launched on Samsung’s new platform.
Samsung has always had their own proprietary NVMe-based SSD controller, now they are finally upgrading it with 64-layer 3D TLC NAND flash memory. The 970 series will be available in capacities up to 2TB, but our focus here is on the 512GB model. The drive is still M.2 2280 form factor, but Samsung has changed the connector from the M key used by previous products to a B+M or B+M+M key that has the same physical dimensions as the 42mm length commonly found on PCIe x4 SSDs.
In many ways this 970 Pro is a better version of the 960 Pro. With the new Phoenix platform and only two years since launch, Samsung is now able to offer higher performance than before with lower power consumption. The move to TLC flash memory brings longer endurance as well as a significant cost reduction. Without further ado, let’s dive into what makes these drives tick and see how the new 970 Pro performs under different workloads.
8. HP S700 Pro Review
The HP S700 Pro is the next best ssd we are going to look at. The drive has a high speed with sequential throughput of 540MB/s read and 445 MB/s write, with 75K IOPS read and 87K IOPS write. With a steady state random 4k throughput of 42 MB/s read and 86K Iops with a latency of .06ms this ssd is very quick. The S700 Pro is a 2.5″ ssd and comes in a 7mm form factor for those thin ultrabooks. It uses the standard SATA connection, as most of you know, as well as a Marvell 9187 controller as seen on other drives reviewed here at leopardots.
Moreover, the HP S700 Pro comes with a three year warranty as well as a downloadable ssd toolbox. This SSD toolbox gives us real time monitoring of the drive, S.M.A.R.T, and firmware updates all in one place, very convenient indeed. With this SSD you also get HP’s optional “HP 3D DriveGuard” which is designed to help protect the drive in the unfortunate event of a drop event.
As you can see in the figures provided by CrystalDiskMark, this ssd is definitely high speed with great read and write speeds, but it does fall short compared to other competitors in its price range. If looking for an SSD on a budget, I would look elsewhere before the S700, the price is just not worth it in my opinion.
However if you are looking for a ssd that is high speed with an aesthetically pleasing design then maybe the HP S700 may be for you. There are many other ssd’s with better performance per dollar ratios but this one does look really cool even though I doubt you will ever see it inside your computer.
So if you are looking for a ssd with good speeds but don’t have the budget to afford higher end drives, then the HP S700 pro is defintely worth checking out.
9. ADATA XPG SX8200 Review
An SSD is one of the best upgrades you can get to boost your system, be it a laptop or a desktop. There are various options available in the market when it comes to buying an SSD for your rig. The XPG SX8200 Pro M.2 NVMe SSD from ADATA claims to deliver blistering fast speeds that would enhance your computing experience and makes it a great choice if you are looking for an upgrade to your existing hard drive.
Moreover, it is one of the few M.2 SSDs available in the market that comes with a heatspreader soldered on to it. This ensures there are no clearance issues when installing this drive inside your PC case. In addition, the SX8200 comes with a stylish black and red enclosure which looks great. .
In terms of specifications, the XPG SX8200 Pro M2 NVME SSD comes with sequential read speeds of up to 3,400 MB/s and write speeds of up to 2,600 MB/s. This is thanks to the nCache 2.0 technology that ADATA has implemented in this SSD. The SX8200 Pro comes in capacities of 256GB, 512GB and 1TB.
On the other hand, as far as the random read/write speeds are concerned, this M.2 SSD claims to deliver up to 360K IOPS for 4K random reads and up to 300K IOPS for 4K random writes. These specs make it a great choice if you need an M.2 SSD that is well suited for gaming, graphic design workstation and other demanding tasks.
The SX8200 Pro has a PCIe Gen3x4 interface and supports NVMe 1.3 protocol that allows the users to experience high performance without any issues whatsoever, even on a budget PC.
10. Addlink S70 Review
The Addlink S70 is one of the most versatile SSD to date. Much like the name it has, the Addlink S70 is an external SATA III (6 Gb/s) enclosure with a built in mSATA SSD (solid state drive). The mSATA slot and SATA port are located on the back of the unit, which is about 5in length by 3in width and 1in thickness.
The enclosure consists of two aluminum pieces that are connected by four screws in the back, leaving room for airflow in between. On the front is an eSATA port (for transferring data at high speeds), a small blue LED light (which glows when connected to power and flashes when connected to a drive), activity indicator lights for both the eSATA port and the internal SSD, as well as a large cutout for installing a 2.5″ drive.
Moreover, the write and read speeds of the Addlink S70 were tested using MyDigitalDiscount ‘s CrystalDiskMark benchmark test. The tests show that the enclosure is capable of read speeds of ~220 MB/s and write speeds of ~140MB/s for both eSATA and USB 2.0 connection, respectively.
Ultimately, the Addlink S70 is the first of its kind to combine a mSATA slot with an eSATA port for external storage. At just under $40, it’s also one of the cheapest SSD enclosures on the market today. If you’re looking for something that can quickly expand the storage space on your laptop or rugged device without moving to expensive internal parts, the Addlink S70 is highly recommended.
11. Corsair Force MP600 Review
The last SSD I have for you is the not other than the Corsair Force MP600 – an M.2 SSD – that can utilize the bandwidth of PCI Express x4 and is available in 128GB, 256GB, 512GB and 1TB configurations. The MSRP will be roughly $55 for the 128GB model, $85 for the 256GB model, $150 for the 512 GB model and a massive $270 for the 1 TB model.
The Corsair Force MP600 is powered by Phison’s PS5007-E7 controller, which has just recently been released and comes with the ability to use MLC flash. This controller enables sequential speeds of up to 2600MB/s read and 1350MB/s write , as well as IOPS performance of up to 170,000 read and 140,000 write. The Corsair Force MP600 is available in 128GB, 256GB, 512GB and 1TB configurations .
The 128GB model has less than 800MB/s sequential write speeds, while the 512GB and 1TB models offer up to 2600 MB/s.
As for the design of the MP600, Corsair opted for a silver aluminum casing with black labelling. Almost all of its surfaces are covered with labels and certifications, which means it will be hard to maintain a clean external appearance. The heatspreader on top of the PCB has cutouts that expose select flash memory chips, but the layout itself is not very efficient since there are three empty memory chips on each side of the controller.
Types Of SSDs
Now I will be discussing the types of SSD drives. There are only 3 types of SSD drives out there right now: SATA HDD replacements, PCIe add-in cards, and mSATA.
I will give a very brief description of each one.
This is the most common type of SSD on the market right now. They are made to replace your existing hard drive with no changes needed to your PC. SATA HDD replacements are plugged in where you would normally plug in an internal USB hard drive, there is still no power supply required for these drives however they are usually only available in smaller capacities then the bigger standard 2.5″ form factor SSD’s that require more power then an internal USB can provide(some have used usb powered enclosures for this but I am not going to get into that). The SATA HDD replacement does give you a speed advantage compared to your traditional HDD but it has its limitations since it uses the SATA bus for transferring data and is held back by the 5400rpm speed of a standard HDD.
The next type of SSD I will be discussing is PCIe add-in cards. A PCI Express (PCIe) x1 card plugs into the motherboard and has no enclosure attached to it. It looks like a small PCB with NAND flash memory modules mounted on it, which you can see through windowed sides of the PCB. You can get PCI Express cards in different sizes such as 1x or 4x though they are not compatible since the bandwidth of each lane on a PCIe connection is also important. The advantage to this type of drive over the first 2 is that it does not use any SATA bandwidth, it uses PCIe which has much more bandwidth then SATA. These drives are used mostly in servers or high end workstations that need extremely high I/O performance. The advantage to the PCIe drive over an internal USB powered SSD is that they can be mounted anywhere inside your case you want and do not require any special mounting like the mSATA does (I will talk about mSATA next).
The last type of SSD I will be discussing is mSATA. An M.2 drive can come in different sizes just like the PCIe SSD which you have to pay attention to the size it being offered as not all motherboards support all of them, I wouldn’t want you purchasing a drive that your motherboard does not support. mSATA drives are designed for mobile devices since they require no power and extremely low profiles making them perfect for laptops or even tablets/smaller form factor PC’s. A lot of companies make mSATA drives but only a few make ones that work on a desktop system such as Samsung who makes their XP941 line which comes in 64GB up to 512GB capacities which you can find out there on the market.
So, what do we think?
It’s no secret that SSDs are the next big thing in tech storage. At least for desktops and laptops. SSDs drastically improve boot times and application launch times over traditional HDDs (Hard Disk Drives), but is it worth it? Beyond the speed factor, there isn’t much more to say about SSDs. They look nicer, are lighter, use less power… But the real question is if they are worth it?
The answer? Maybe.
SSDs are fantastic storage devices with great read/write speeds and low power consumption that make your PC boot faster and applications launch quicker, but at a high price tag. Currently, a 120GB SSD can range from $100 to $300. The reason why the price is so high for such a small storage capacity is because of materials and technology used to build these things.
It’s also important to note that you should only use an SSD as your primary drive if you have an OS (Operating System) installed onto it. When you install an OS onto your SSD, you must make sure that all of your applications and games are installed onto a different drive to prevent the storage from running out of space and causing slow performance.
If I had to choose between buying a couple high speed HDDs or one fast SSD, I would choose HDDs. This is because the price of SSDs are very high for their small storage capacity and you can buy a couple smaller, yet still fast HDDs for the same price as one SSD with half the space.
Thank you guys for reading! I hope this was helpful! Until next time.