Crucial M500 SSD Review (960GB) – Speed, Value, Size and Data Security Redefined

REPORT ANALYSIS AND FINAL THOUGHTS

The Crucial M500 SSD just raised the bar in the consumer SSD arena. There are just so many truly ‘game changing’ features that the hardest part of this report is trying to determine a start point for our final analysis.

VALUE

We wish we could take a trip into the future to see where SSD pricing is going to sit 6 months from now. With the Crucial M500 coming in at under $600 for the 960GB version, sales are inevitable but with the 480GB already found at $380… the line in the sand just moved significantly. These two prices aren’t even opening day pricing, but rather, prices leaked before the embargo date by sellers who, as they always do, throw a premium on their SSDs as they are a new release and in demand. Crucial has seen fit to ensure Amazon worlwide released their distribution this morning right on at MSRP pricing.

Crucial even bettered their already rock bottom prices on the M4, which leads us to wonder if the M4 will soon be EOL. In addition, what will become of so many manufacturers who already have low prices for their 240GB SSD, yet are now experiencing the inevitable effect of M500 480GB prices that are equal or only slightly higher. We have already seen one or two third party manufacturers bow out of the SSD race recently, but with these prices, it is almost like Crucial is challenging Samsung to a low price duel, one that would shake up many manufacturers. He who owns the fab…

Crucial M500 960GB SSD Featured2

PERFORMANCE

Going into this analysis, we didn’t think the M500 had a chance of competing with such monsters as the Samsung 840 Pro and OCZ Vector. After all, both have higher specifications and claim IOPS of 100,000 or more where the M500 claimed 85,000. Were we wrong!

Our first indication that something was up was the great IOPS result and Total Score we saw with AS SSD. It was only then that we pulled up both other reviews for comparison. What we saw next astonished us as all three AS SSD Copy Benchmark results were very close and now comprise our top three results to date. Anvil Tests then displayed the M500 just below the 840 Pro and above the Vector and then came Vantage Testing. Our initial Vantage result of the M500 wasn’t remarkable but the latter testing blew us away, so much so that we ran the same test over several times just to be sure. With 76569 Total Points in PCMark Vantage, the Crucial M500 is now ‘King of the Hill’ in Vantage testing. No flukes….bit by bit this SSD proved that it was in good company with both other SSDs.

ENTERPRISE FEATURES, WARRANTY AND NO TOOL KIT

The Crucial M500 SSD contains both power loss data protection and thermal protection, features that are typically reserved for enterprise SSDs. Considering that the success of the M500 wouldn’t be affected whatsoever without these features, Crucial deserves two thumbs up for their inclusion as it speaks clearly to Crucial/Micron’s commitment to quality. On the other hand, SSDs today are typically being marketed with five year warranties and some of the best include software that allows the user to configure the SSD to their own needs. The M500 come standard with a three year warranty and, unlike Intel and Samsung, does not include a ‘toolbox’. These are the only two knocks we could see with the M500.

FINAL THOUGHTS

The Micron/Crucial Team must have one day sat down and decided they were going to produce an SSD with the best of everything. They have exceeded expectations, not only in value that everybody expected but also, in performance, enterprise features as well as being the first to mass market a 1TB SSD at consumer level pricing. Editors Choice!

Check Out Crucial M500 pricing at Amazon! (link)

Now hop on over to Technology X to take a look at their Crucial M500 480GB SSD Review

 

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alan1476ScourLes@TheSSDReviewMark ElliottMikeGR7 Recent comment authors
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alan1476
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alan1476

They are in Stock and 570.00 on Amazon. No forum link for this drive

Crucial M500 960GB SATA
2.5-Inch 7mm (with 9.5mm adapter) Internal Solid State Drive
CT960M500SSD1

alan1476
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alan1476

20nm nand and 25 nm nand is very hard to find which I find puzzling because Crucial makes their own nand. Hence this 960gb Crucial is not available at its 599.00 price anymore. Its out of stock at most vendors and as soon as its in stock its sold out in 5 minutes.

Cape Dave
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Cape Dave

This is one heck of a drive! I want one.

Les@TheSSDReview
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Hey David my old friend. Good to see you jump in as always…been a few years hasnt it…

MikeGR7
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MikeGR7

Nice performance for the price! Not so high end but can’t complain.

Les@TheSSDReview
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The performanc on this drive is rather unique. On one hand we can see where the Samsung and OCZ better it in areas such as IOPS and incompressible data performance but, on the other hand, it seemed to stand up to both in such things as the AS SSD and Anvil Total Scores and blew both away in Vantage Total Point Scoring.

MikeGR7
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MikeGR7

Right as always Les. Well i consider the low 4k read the most important factor for ssd perf because it’s the only value that you can’t improve by RAID. Actually you might decrease it a bit. Drives with strong perf should be >35mb/s in 4k like m5pro or 840pro. I may be wrong though and feel free to correct me.

Mark Elliott
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Mark Elliott

The drive has support for both TCG Opal 2.0 and IEEE 1667 specifications. Having the Opal 2.0 support means that you can utilize third-party encryption to make the system more secure. It also provides full compatibility with BitLocker encryption built into Windows 8. This is the first SSD with explicit support for this feature. It also support’s Device Sleep (DEVSLP), a new standard which consumes less power between state changes, enabling fast exit latency and a more efficient energy profile. I have been reading the SSD review for many months now and really enjoy the articles and respect the attention… Read more »

Les@TheSSDReview
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Thanks Mark!!! Always looking for new site contributors and your background is solid!

Scour
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Scour

Is it possible to show Host Read/Write-values with CDI?