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Best Samsung 500GB SSD Black Friday Deals 2020
For four years now, Samsung’s 850 Evo has reigned supreme as the go-to SSD for anybody seeking the perfect balance between performance and price. Because of Samsung being the first company to advertise using its cost-effective 3D NAND, it had been able to keep the price tag on its drives low. Meanwhile, the company’s nippy MGX and MEX controllers kept the drives ticking along quickly, too.
Not when Crucial and Toshiba had started creating their own 3D NAND could any commercially available drive really challenge the 850 Evo. Actually, it’s only with the brand-new Crucial MX500 that Samsung has really faced a genuine fight. It’s equally well, then, that Samsung also offers a brand-new drive of its. The Samsung 860 Evo is Samsung’s long-awaited refresh of the 850 Evo. It’s still limited by the SATA interface but, just like the 850 Evo, it’s obtainable in M.2 and mSATA form factors too.
The big upgrade may be the move from 256GB dies to 512GB dies, although this move hasn’t enabled Samsung to improve the maximum capacity of the drives. The 850 Evo already had a 4TB version, and that’s again the most capacious version of the 860 Evo – a snip at £1,400 inc VAT. The M.2 version tops out at 2TB, however.
Another key change may be the proceed to LPDDR4 DRAM, which uses less power compared to the LPDDR3 RAM found in the prior drives. With up to 4GB of the memory on each drive, the energy saving could possibly be significant too, specifically for laptop computer makers.
The final little bit of the puzzle is Samsung’s new MJX controller. Samsung hasn’t revealed much about any of it, but among its key challenges will be ensuring performance is up to snuff regardless of the proceed to larger-capacity dies. Normally, having fewer, larger-capacity dies helps it be more challenging to maintain performance, as there’s less possibility to distribute the workload, but evidently Samsung has found a means around this problem.
We say clearly, as Samsung’s performance claims are healthy enough. Sequential speeds of 560MB/sec read and 520MB/sec write, and random speeds of 100K IOPS read and 90K IOPS write, are faster than any those of any other competing drive.
What’s more, you get the same speeds for each and every capacity and form factor. Of course, much like all TLC-based SSDs, the sequential write performance is bolstered by the utilization of a cache of SLC NAND. If you fill the drive, the cache runs out at around the 50GB mark, and performance then drops to 290MB/sec.
Meanwhile, with regards to longevity, Samsung offers a five-year warrantee and the drives are rated to last between 150TB and 2,400TB, according to capacity. The 500GB drive is rated to 300TB, which puts it at the bigger end for a mainstream TLC drive.
Firing up our benchmarks saw the 860 Evo deliver specifically what we expected, with it either topping the charts or really missing out to only the Samsung 860 Pro in every our tests. Essentially, it’s as fast as a SATA SSD since you can get. Which is well and good, but this drive can be comparatively expensive, so for most users, the tiny extra amount of performance over a drive including the MX500 won’t justify the excess spend.
Samsung 860 Evo 500GB review: Verdict
Samsung retains its crown as the maker of the greatest mainstream, TLC-based SATA SSD available to buy. However, the competition is currently higher than in the 850 Evo’s heyday, and for many people, the premium demanded by the 860 Evo simply won’t be worthwhile, as the SATA interface simply holds back pe