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October 14, 2023

Samsung 950 Pro SSD Review

If you are in the market for a high-end SSD this one should be on your short list. The 950 pro is the fastest consumer SSD to date, it also supports NVMe which bypasses a lot of external bottlenecks for blistering performance. This is also Samsung's first drive designed specifically for client use and with Intel's Skylake platform bringing plentiful I/O bandwidth it can stretch the capabilities of the NVMe protocol to it's full potential.

Samsung is releasing this drive in two capacity levels initially, 256GB and 512GB. The 256GB model is a direct replacement for the very popular SM951 drives, while the 512GB drive is meant to be a premium offering targeting the newer generation of PCs that are being sold today. The drive is based on the same controller and interface as the 850 Evo, Trion 150 and MX200 drives but uses the much faster PCIe 3.0 x4 standard rather than the older SATA interface.

Samsung is using their 2nd generation V-NAND here with both the 256GB and 512GB models getting 200TBW and 400TBW write endurance ratings respectively, up from the 86Gbit die capacity used in last year's 850 Pro drives. The higher density does have a small impact on IOPS but overall the 950 Pro is still a very balanced drive for sequential and random reads and writes. As a bonus, the drive comes with a nice black PCB and has a proper Samsung-backed five year warranty instead of the halved ten years that was offered with the 850 Pro.