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Samsung 850 Pro 512GB SSD

100% Positive Reviews
Rated #15 in SSD
Cons:
“Price”

Posted

Pros: Fastest SSD on the market, 3d V-NAND, RAPID mode, Low power usage, Long lasting

Cons: Price

Samsung's new 850 Pro line of SSDs are easily the fastest on the market at the time of publishing. They offer all the newest features in one single package. Samsung's 3D V-NANA, RAPID Mode, and the huge 150TBW make this drive stand out from the crown.

First we will start with an unboxing and physical overview. The box isn't overwhelming like some products are. It only actual features, not useless marketing terms


Inside all we get is an SSD and an installation guide. There are no cables or accessories.


The unit features the same color scheme as the 840 Pro series. The design is very minimalistic with only an orange accent.


The back lists some specifications as well as standard disclaimers.


The unit is very thin. It is thinner than a pencil.


Other than that there isn't too much else. It is a metal box. The magic is on the inside and for that, we will move on to the product's features.


The most notable feature is Samsung's new 3D-VNAND. It is a new manufacturing technique in which 32 cell layers are stacked on top of each other allowing for higher density and performance. This performance boost is carried throughout all of the models.

The next big feature is RAPID mode. It uses extra RAM as a high speed cache for the SSD. This generates insane speeds on synthetic benchmarks where the same data are written over and over, but less so in real world applications. For mission critical or workstation applications, I would not recommend RAPID. The performance gain is not worth the risk as RAM is volatile. There are definitely tangible performance gains visible in my benchmarks. For the average home user with RAM to spare, RAPID Mode is great.

The final big feature is the longer lifespan. The 850 Pro is designed to endure 150TB of writes over its lifespan. This may not seem like a lot compared to the size of the drive, but it is actually unheard of. It is more than double that of the 840 Pro. I personally used an 840 Pro as my boot drive everyday for over a year. It that time I wrote less than 10TB to the drive. That should give a good idea of how insane these numbers are. There are even stories of drives that have more than 1PB TBW.


Now moving on to benchmarks. I tested the 850 Pro 512GB against an 840 Pro 128GB (Note: write speed is lower than 256GB and 512GB models), a Kingston HyperX 3K 256GB, and a standard 512GB mechanical HDD. Starting with synthetic benchmarks we have AS SSD. The light blue and green bars are with RAPID enabled. They are physically scaled down as they would not fit on the chart otherwise. We can see the 850 Pro as the clear winner. Its overall score is 200+ points higher than the 840 Pro which is widely believed to be the previous fastest SATA III drive.


Next up on the synthetic benchmarks is Crystal Disk Mark. The 850 Pro is again in the lead. It does extremely well in the 4K tests compared to other drives.


The final synthetic benchmark I ran was ATTO. I reported on a wide spectrum of transfer sizes. It appears that ATTO didn't like RAPID mode so much on the reads. The results are pretty close between the 3 SSDs, but the 850 Pro pulls out in front again.



Now moving on to real world benchmarks. Synthetics only tell one side of the story. They write very similar data over and over which SSDs are great at doing. Real world benchmarks test situations that a user would actually face. First up is boot times. These numbers may seem high compared to other review sites, but those sites only test the time the Windows logo is displayed. That will give the raw boot time, but not how long it takes for the computer to actually be usable. Why would a user care about an 8 second boot time if they can't actually open a program until 30 seconds. That is why I believe my test is more representative of real world applications. For the test I started the timer when Windows started loading and stopped it when all my standard icons loaded and a startup program loaded. This is the full boot time and the computer is fully usable. For anyone still worried, I still got the same sub 8 second boot time other sites may report when using their testing methods.


Finally we have program load times. Loading a single web browser or document was so quick that I had to expand the test. These results are from loading 10 instances each of Firefox, Excel, and Word, and a single instance of a media player. The percent on the side is the speed difference compared to the standard 850 Pro. A higher percent indicates a faster drive.


Moving on the the software. Samsung offers great data migration software as well as their SSD Magician. SSD Magician allows you to turn on RAPID mode, update firmware, encrypt the drive, and much more. It is one of the best SSDs suites on the market.


The software includes some basic optimization. This can help you get the most out of your SSD.


Here is where RAPID mode is enabled. It requires the 840 Pro or later and at least 2GB of free RAM.


Next are data security options. Samsung includes many enterprise grade security modes.



Finally my only complaint: the price. The 512GB unit I tested comes in at $400. The price has come down but it is still very expensive compared to other models. However, when you look at models in the same performance range, it isn't too bad. As a final conclusion, Samsung's 850 Pro line of SSDs are undoubtedly the fastest on the market. They represent the next generation in manufacturing, but one of the last generations of Sata III SSDs. If you are looking for the fastest no compromise SSD, this it the answer hands down. If you can afford it, buy it. You will be glad you did.
Samsung 850 Pro 512GB SSD
Description:

The world's first 3D Vertical NAND Samsung SSD 850 PRO Samsung's flash memory is fabricated using an innovative 3D V-NAND architecture, which stacks 32 cell layers on top of one another rather than trying to decrease the cells' length and width to fit today's shrinking form factors. The result is higher density and higher performance using a smaller footprint and a breakthrough in overcoming the density limits of conventional planar NAND architecture. Powered by Samsung's cutting-edge 3D V-NAND technology, the NAND flash memory delivers the ultimate in read and write performance in both sequential and random aspects. This is especially impressive in the 128 GB model* that outperforms similar models on the market by more than 100 MB/s in write speed. You can kick up the read/write performance on every capacity when you need it with the RAPID mode. Just like shifting gears in a car, Magician software gives you the option to enhance performance by processing data on a system level using free PC memory (DRAM) as a cache, providing 1.8 times faster performance in the RAPID mode. With twice the endurance of the previous model*, the 850 PRO will keep working as long as you do. Samsung's V-NAND technology is built to handle 150 Terabytes Written (TBW) which equates to a 40 GB daily read/write workload over a 10-year period. Plus, it comes with the industry's top-level ten-year limited warranty. The efficient, power management components in the 850 PRO enable you work longer and more productively. Boasting the lowest power consumption of any SSD when in full use, the 850 PRO expends less energy while maintaining market-leading performance. The 850 PRO fully supports the sleep mode on the Ultrabook™, consuming only 2 m watts of power. Plus, its LPDDR2 cache memory provides higher performance while consuming 30 percent less power when active and 93 percent less power when idle than typical DDR2 or DDR3 memory. Protect your PC's hardware and personal data when you take your laptop on the road with the 850 PRO's SED technology. The drive includes an AES-256-bit hardware-based, full disk encryption engine that secures your data without performance degradation, often experienced with software-based encryption. The 850 PRO's advanced security complies with the TCG™ Opal v2.0 standards, protecting PSID, and is compatible with the Microsoft® eDrive IEEE® 1667 protocol. Plus, you can erase or initialize data with the crypto erase service.

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