Samsung 950 Pro M.2 NVME SSD Review (256/512GB) – The NVMe Effect

PCMARK VANTAGE X64 HDD SUITE

The SSD Review uses benchmark software called PCMark Vantage x64 HDD Suite to create testing scenarios that might be used in the typical user experience. There are eight tests in all and the tests performed record the speed of data movement in MB/s to which they are then given a numerical score after all of the tests are complete. The simulations are as follows:

  • Windows Defender In Use
  • Streaming Data from storage in games such as Alan Wake which allows for massive worlds and riveting non-stop action
  • Importing digital photos into Windows Photo Gallery
  • Starting the Vista Operating System
  • Home Video editing with Movie Maker which can be very time-consuming
  • Media Center which can handle video recording, time shifting and streaming from Windows media center to an extender such as Xbox
  • Cataloging a music library
  • Starting applications

SAMSUNG 950 PRO M.2 NVME VANTAGE TOTAL SCORE

Both versions of the Samsung 950 Pro did extremely well in PCMark Vantage testing and surpassed the 200, 000 point mark, something very few other SSDs have done.  Both had in excess of 5 out of 8 of the tests surpass 1GB/s data transfer speeds with the high speed on both tests being 1.7GB/s during Windows media Player testing.

256GB

Samsung SSD 950 Pro 256GB M2 PCMark Vantage

512GB

Samsung 950 Pro NVMe 512GB SSD PCMark Vantage Score 2

IOMETER

Iometer is an I/O subsystem measurement and characterization tool for single and clustered systems. It is typical for our enterprise reviews, actually most enterprise reviews of any SSD review site, but we thought we might use it here just to see the highest we could reach.  This is not steady state testing.

512GB READ IOPS

IOMeter 4K Read 353K IOPS

512GB WRITE IOPS

IOMeter 4K Write 105K IOPS

We thought we might throw in these IOMeter results, solely for the fact that the 512GB version hit a high of 353,000 IOPS and this is well above listed specs.  Additional results for bandwidth and the 256GB version were unremarkable and displayed results similar to what we have seen in the several other completed benchmarks.

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John Stevens
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John Stevens

curious if on the ASUS Z170 Deluxe if you use the M.2 port and the PCIe card that come with the board if you can raid 0 two 512 GB 950 Pros together and boot form that drive.

Nick Dedman
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Nick Dedman

From what I remember from the manual, yes you can.

Jim Vogts
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Jim Vogts

Les. How are you s e curing the M.2 to the motherboard.
I see the screw but ASRock doesnt provide the holes for the screw.
Are you customizing this yourself?
I need the PCI e 1X slot so before I even try to secure this I just wanted to hear how you are doing this.

Thanks

Les@TheSSDReview
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No I dont believe you can unless that board, like the ASRock Extreme 7+ Z170, has Intel RST built right into the BIOS to accomodate for that boot; I believe only ASRock has tackled this but might be wrong. That is what makes this board so special.

Edward Escamilla
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Edward Escamilla

can you check and reply it should be able to the Asus deluxe boot? as it has NVME boot support

Les@TheSSDReview
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It has NVMe support for a drive in the M2 slot, not a RAID configuration. For the NVMe setup you are speaking of to be bootable, it needs to be tackled as a RAID boot at the UEFI level. I may be wrong but believe only ASRock has tackled this by including SRT in their UFI. I am using that right now.

Edward Escamilla
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Edward Escamilla

how did you configure you bios on the Asrock deluxe to boot from this M2 slot ? Are you using WIN 10?
Any lessons learned to get it to recognize ? Thank you for your time

Les@TheSSDReview
Guest

There is no configuration necessary; simply plug it in and install your OS. It should be recognized immediately. Are you using this board? If so, read the manual to understand that one needs to match the right storage with the right slot. For instance, the first M1 slot is tied into the first 2 Intel SATA 3 slots (0/1) and both cannot be used simultaneously UNLESS you configure the M.2 to bypass that through the UEFI.

GBLE
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GBLE

Would it run on a x99 deluxe 3.1???

Daniele Cosentino
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Daniele Cosentino

No way to make this work on x99 deluxe. Recognized one time after 5 reboots…installed with brackets, everything tried. Never seen in BIOS, seen twice in the OS, installed driver and at random disappears freezeng the system. Latest 1901 bios

i m going to return this and buying a cheaper 850 pro

Les@TheSSDReview
Guest

Why anyone still jumps at those boards amazes me. I have heard heartache after heartache with respect to that company and M2 SSDs. ASRock…plug and play…simple as that. Right now I am playing with and testing 3 NVMe drives as a boot device in the ASRock Extreme 7. You cannot do this with any other board in the world. Meanwhile, people frustrate themselves trying to get one drive working with ‘those boards’.

otto
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otto

Hi i have right now a 950 pro windows 10 and a 951 ahci windows 8,1running on my x99 a asus board and it works great

Louis Kleiman
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Louis Kleiman

Well, I am running one 950 Pro on my ASUS Z170 Deluxe right now under Windows 10. Performance is amazing, setup was easy — no need to touch anything in the UEFI for me. I’m about to add a second 950 Pro in RAID 0 and jump to ludicrous speed. I’ll post a follow up when it is done.

Rune Jeppesen
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Rune Jeppesen

How did it go? 🙂

Louis Kleiman
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Louis Kleiman

It was slightly tricky to set up, but I’m running strong now. Sequential benchmark reads are 3GB/s+, and Sequential writes are the same at high queue depths and ~1.5GB/s at lower queue depths. I believe some of these speeds are capped by the PCI 4x interface.

Jim Vogts
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Jim Vogts

Les explain how you are securing the M.2,
I see the screw but do not see a receptacle on any ASRock or Supermicro board I own.
Just curious how you secure it on the PCB…

State of Affairs
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State of Affairs

I believe some of Gigabyte’s Z170 boards have two M.2 slots onboard (e.g., GA-Z170X-UD3). From what I read in the manuals, these slots can be set up in RAID mode. But I need to double check.

ale squatter
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ale squatter

Can I use thi 950pro on MSI GE72 2QD?

specifications from manual:
2x SATA Gen 3 M.2 Slot
1x SATA Gen 3 M.2 & PCIe 2.0 x2/ x4 Combo Slot

spec from msi:
2 x M.2 Socket 2 for B Key Type 2280
1 x M.2 Socket 3 for M Key Type 2280

thanks!

Cape Dave
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Cape Dave

This thing is so awesome I am going to need to get a computer to put one in! I currently have an iMac so no way I am going to mess with that.

Ottoore
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Ottoore

Atto disk benchmark performance drop: throttling?

Les@TheSSDReview
Guest

No… I considered this and it would occur elsewhere if that were the case, especially in PCMark 8 testing.

Steve
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Steve

Does Samsung supply Windows 7 drivers for this? I had a Intel 750 with the Intel drivers working ok in Windows 7 as my boot drive. Had to dump it though because it took Intel way to long to release a updated firmware to fix performance issues.

Les@TheSSDReview
Guest

They only supply the NVMe driver as discussed and we cannot answer as to whether that is Win 7 compatible or not. Question is submitted though.

Steve Beck
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Steve Beck

Thank you, look forward to hearing an update on comparability with win 7.

Steve
Guest
Steve

I see name drivers that only install from a exe but I need stand alone driver to make it bootable with win 7. Don’t want to order one till its confirmed

venovus
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venovus

is it going to work well any laptop with this spec: M type, M.2 sata, 80mm?

Les@TheSSDReview
Guest

No it will not. This is a NVMe SSD and not AHCI so getting it to work on older chipsets where NVMe is not integrated may be tricky. As well, because NVMe is so new, things can get a little tricky from one situation to another.

To clarify, this is not a plug and play upgrade for older systems that may have used M2 AHCI SSDs.

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