SLC CACHE AND 50% FILL TESTING
We became just a bit curious as to Samsung’s claim that TurboWrite 2.0 significantly increases the sustained writes of the 980 and did a bit of testing of our own. In this test, we move 473GB of video files (just over 50% of the 980 storage) onto the SSD and measure at what point storage declines, to what point, followed by a Crystal DiskMark test of the SSD at 50% full.
As shown here, an average of 1.8GB/s transfer speed was maintained for 171GB before it dropped to 400MB/s transfer speed and averaged that for the remainder of the transfer. We then let the SSD sit for a few hours and tested it at the 50% full mark.
Although the write performance did drop somewhat, we don’t find this anything to be concerned about, especially having just spent the past few days and 2700GB in pushing the drive to its limits.
REVIEW ANALYSIS AND FINAL THOUGHTS
We started this report off with a straight up view of where DRAM-less SSDs stand in the retail market today. Rarely would anyone recommend one publicly simply because of the hit on performance they demonstrated historically, or the sheer fact that one might always be able to find a similar SSD with a DRAM buffer chip for a price close to that DRAM-less SSD. With that, we also provided an explanation that we have had absolutely no problem recommending DRAM-less SSDs if the price was right and the user understood exactly what their specific need was; this being straight-up typical PC use. The reason was, of course, that people don’t typically push the SSD to perform outside the realm of that HDD to SSD disk access visible increase through typical PC use. The Samsung 980 NVMe M.2 Gen 3 SSD changes that.
In our testing, the 1TB Samsung 980 reached highs of 3568MB/s read and 3020MB/s write with low 4K IOPS of 502K read and 468K write. To the best of our knowledge, no other DRAM-less SSD has even come remotely close to this, and much can be said the same for so many typical DRAM chip based SSDs. This performance is unparalleled. Even considering the resulting performance through PCMark 8, PCMark 10 and our True Data Testing, the speed of the Samsung 980 is in no way inherent of other DRAM-less SSDs. In fact, we would go as far as to say that even the best would have a very hard time differentiating between this and any mainstream upper tier DRAM buffer contained SSD on the market in blind typical or performance testing.
For such a high performing SSD, one would expect to pay much more than the MSRP of $49.99 (250GB), $69.99 (500GB) and $129.99 (1TB). We predict this SSD will be in demand because of its performance, 5-year Samsung warranty, and it’s low price with that 1TB coming so close to the $100/TB mark so many are sitting back and still waiting for. Great SSD Samsung!