Samsung SM951 PCIe 3.0 M.2 SSD In Mass Production

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., has recently announced that it has begun mass producing a high-performance, low-powered PCIe M.2 SSD, the SM951. The OEM drive is targeted for ultra-slim notebook PCs and workstations. It is compatible with both PCIe 3.0 and PCIe 2.0 interfaces. On PCIe 2.0 sequential reads can get up to 1,600MB/s and up to 1,350MB/s for writes, around 3x faster than current SATA based drives. When connected via PCIe 3.0 speeds can reach up to 2,150MB/s for read and 1,550MB/s for write. Random 4K read and write speeds can reach up to 130,000 and 85,000 IOPS respectively.

Samsung SM951-1

“We are helping to accelerate growth of the ultra-slim notebook PC market with the introduction of this energy-efficient, high-speed PCIe SSD,” said Jeeho Baek, Senior Vice President of Memory Marketing at Samsung Electronics. He added that, “We will continue to introduce next-generation high-density SSDs with improved performance and increased differentiation, as we further strengthen our business competitiveness in global SSD market.”

When utilizing a PCIe 3.0 interface, the drive achieves substantially higher energy efficiency, requiring only about 450MB/s per watt for sequential reading and 250MB/s per watt for sequential writing, which translates into a more than 50 percent of improvement in performance per watt over that of the XP941 SSD.

Samsung SM951-2

The SM951 is also the first SSD to adopt the L1.2 low power standby mode, which allows all high-speed circuits to be turned off when a PC is on sleeping or in hibernation. By utilizing the L1.2 level of standby operation, power consumption is drastically reduced – to under 2mW, about a 97 percent decrease from the 50mW consumed using a L1 state.

The SM951 and other Samsung PCIe SSDs will be using 10-nanometer class MLC NAND flash. Samsung will have the SM951 available in different SKU’s for those who need the AHCI interfaces and another for those who need NVMe support. Samsung’s SM951 comes in the 2280 M.2 form factor which is only about one seventh the size of a 2.5 inch SSD and weighs approximately six grams.  The SM951 lineup consists of capacities ranging from 128GB to 512GB.

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Chris LonardoInaliMark GrestyLes@TheSSDReviewKaren Atanesyan Recent comment authors
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Seb
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Seb

Any info on when you might get your hands on one of these for a review?

Les@TheSSDReview
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Hoping to be one of the first but Samsung is always very hot and cold in supplying non-retail items for review…got word in though and hopefully our friends will pull though.

Laststop311
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Laststop311

Been waiting a long time for a proper m2 ssd to slot in to an ultra m2 slot with pcie 3.0 x4 interface. It’s a shame it using 2d planar nand tho. Looks like we will be waiting another generation for 1TB, possibly 2TB, m2 ssd’s with 3d vertical nand. I think 1TB is the minimum needed to comfortably ditch mechanical HDD totally. Samsung has stated that they have already produced 2TB SSD’s using their current 3d nand tech. I’ll be happy if we can have 20-25 cents per GB 4TB drives so like 800-1000 for 4TB SSD in the… Read more »

Karen Atanesyan
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Karen Atanesyan

Hi, Les. I’m a professional stock and options trader. I want to buy an SSD, or two SSDs configuration for my new 8 monitor workstation: Core i-7 5960X, ASUS X99 E-WS, 2 GeForce GTX 980s Video Cards, etc. I was looking to buy Samsung 850 PRO(s), but now I’m thinking about PCIe SSDs. Will PCIe make any substantial difference to me? I’m not playing games, trading only. I’ve heard that for trading the random speeds are what maters, not the sequential speeds, and they are pretty much the same on SATA III and PCIe. If PCIe will still make a… Read more »

Les@TheSSDReview
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That board has the PCIe 3.0×4 so your best bet IMHO would be the Samsung XP941 right now. We haven’t got word whatsoever on the timing of any retail release for this product. If you want to give me a day or two, I will check as there is a great deal of interest however.

Inali
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Inali

Trading? Most of that setup is insane overkill for that. What a waste of money…

Chris Lonardo
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Chris Lonardo

The hedge funds buying up FPGAs and SLC SSDs beg to differ. If your goal is to be able to click “buy” to place your odd lot orders, then yes, it’s overkill. If you’re running real-time, continuously-optimizing models with big kid money, then fast is never fast enough.

Chris Lonardo
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Chris Lonardo

Hi Karen, I work as a high frequency portfolio manager at a small fund. I realize that your post is now a few months old, but a few points: -For backtesting and analytics, it absolutely pays to have a fast SSD. When I built my workstation a year and a half go, I went with one of the less expensive PCIe options (a 300gb OCZ Z-Drive R4, which was $2300). Now, you have plenty of cheaper PCIe options, and even some NVMe drives like the Intel 750 trickling out. Any of these will make a major difference if you’re dealing… Read more »

Karen Atanesyan
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Karen Atanesyan

Also, when approximately do you think this new SM951 will become available in the stores? Thank you.

Mark Gresty
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Mark Gresty

SM951 Mid March