Just when things seem to be shaping up in the world of SSDs, an unexpected entry always seems to appear. This is the case with the Western Digital Black SN850 NVMe SSD we have on the bench today, and many might say that we really never saw this coming. Like a freight train… We were all just so excited to see Gen 4 storage hitting 7GB/s with Samsung and the up and coming Phison E18 controller that we totally overlooked the WD_Black Gen 4 SN850!
The Western Digital Black SN850 is a PCIe 4.0 (Gen 4) NVMe 1.4 M.2 SSD that is available in 500GB. 1 and 2TB capacities. Specifications list this SSD as reaching 7GB/s read and 4100MB/s write with up to 800K IOPS for the 500GB capacity, 7GB/s read and 5.3GB/s write with up to 1 million IOPS for the 1TB capacity we are testing today, and 7.1GB/s read and 5.1GB/s write with up to a million IOPS for the 2TB capacity. Check Amazon pricing now.
The WD_Black SN850 comes with a 5-year limited warranty and has a TBW (Terabytes Written) rating of 300TBW for the 500GB, 600TBW for the 1TB and 1200TBW for the 2TB SSD. MSRP Pricing is listed at $149.99 (500GB), $229,99 (1TB) and $449.99 (2TB) and checking Amazon, we are seeing it available up to 1TB with prices a bit higher than MSRP…but it is available to those that want one of the fastest storage devices available today.
Our WD Black SN850 is comprised of a black M.2 2280 (80mm) SSD which contains the SanDisk 8-channel Gen 4 PCIe 4.0 controller (named the WD Black G2), two pieces of proprietary 96-layer BiCS4 3D TLC NAND flash memory, and a 1GB DDR4 buffer.
The back of the SSD is void of any components and we are aware that the 2TB is one sided as well, which means that, if WD wanted, they could easily market a 4TB version of the SN850. Last but not least, the WD_Black SN850 has a free copy of Acronis True Image available for data migration, as well as the WD Dashboard for maintaining the SN850 in optimal condition. Both are available here.
This is the WD Dashboard, which is probably one of the most complete SSD tool kits available today. Under the performance, it uses Windows Performance Monitor to monitor SSD speeds in real time.