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Samsung 840 EVO AMD Issues?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hi, planning to get the 250G but when i read thru the review, this caught my eyes. LINK

It was saying that the 840 have compactible issues from AMD? And it was confirmed by Samsung support?
Not sure if anyone have similiar issues? If yes then i will avoid this SDD as i have a ASUS M3A79-T Deluxe board, AMD Chipset.

Thanks
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post #2 of 7
That is a good question, which is at least partially true, and deserves some more research.

If you check this thread: http://www.overclock.net/t/1190026/official-samsung-ssd830-840-owners-club

... starting from the last page and working backwards, you will find a few benchmarks and general posts about 840 Evo's on AMD systems.

I cannot say those reviews on Newegg are all false, but I see a couple mistakes those users have made:P

The review dated 9/25/13 mentions the Marvell SATA chipset used on the author's AMD board. That SATA chipset is not the standard AMD SATA interface, it is an additional one added for more SATA ports. Assuming that user was using the Marvell SATA chipset, which is also used on many Intel mother boards, then that is not the AMD SATA interface causing the problem.

The review dated 8/27/13 mentions the Magician software provided for Samsung SSDs. It is true that the software does not work correctly with the AMD SATA chipset and AMD SATA driver combination, but it does work when the native Windows 7 AHCI driver, msahci, is used instead. Samsung states that in the Magician version 4.2.1 installation manual.

SSD benchmarks done on AMD boards, as can be found in this forum, show that the AMD SATA interfaces produce lower scores than Intel SATA interfaces. That is comparing both on their SATA III ports. Why this is the case is not understood. I've read that the newest AMD chipsets, the 900 series, are basically updated to support the latest AMD CPUs, but the SATA interface is unchanged. AMD's SATA chipsets seem to have a more complex setup in the board's BIOS, and it can be confusing to get everything right. Some users make mistakes, and their drives then perform poorly.

Why the AMD SATA interface is not compatible with the 840 Evos, if that is true (I just don't know, that statement in the review supposedly from Samsung support saying that they are not compatible is the first one I've ever heard of) is a good question. The SATA interface is a standard, although voluntary, but is definitely used in the PC industry. It does evolve over time, with new standards released, which are normally backwards compatible. A manufacture that did not follow the SATA standard is either crazy or stupid.

But it can happen, for example there is a standard format for software-type RAID defined by the SNIA organization. Intel uses that standard for their PC SATA chipsets RAID support, and if another company also used that standard on their SATA PC chipsets, you could move a SATA array from one manufactures board to another. Does AMD use the SNIA RAID format? No.

Does Samsung exclude AMD on purpose? I highly doubt that. Intel has many models of SSDs, and manufactures the main component used in SSDs (NAND chips) that it sells to other manufactures. That makes Intel one of Samsung's main competitors. AMD manufactures nothing used in SSDs.
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks Parsec for your details analysis. I will definitely go read thru the 840 owner thread. The 840 Evo is quite a good price and reviews have been quite good, so thinking is time for me to upgrade from normal HDD to a SSD. Of cause i won't expect to have the same performance on read/write on those reviews since i only have SATA2 motherboard. But i reckon it will still be big improve over normal HDD to give window 7 a boost.
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post #4 of 7
I've got a 120GB 840 in a SATA II laptop. That's basically the worst combination: TLC NAND is slower, SATA II is obviously slow, and small SSDs are also slow. But the real benefits are in near-zero access times and random speeds increasing a hundred-fold. Some of the earlier SSDs (the $3400 128GB SATA I drives) were comparatively awful when it came to sequentials but the reason they caught on was for the random speeds, what really matters for OS drives (which aren't limited by SATA speeds yet). I doubt this is a widespread issue to be honest, otherwise we would have heard more than conjecture and a few one-star reviews.
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post #5 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by CynicalUnicorn View Post

I've got a 120GB 840 in a SATA II laptop. That's basically the worst combination: TLC NAND is slower, SATA II is obviously slow, and small SSDs are also slow.

I'd say that's actually pretty well matched. tongue.gif It's useless to pay an arm and a leg for an 840 PRO or similar if your system's not fast enough to benefit from it. As for "future-proofing", while an 840 PRO can no doubt be used in future builds, by that time, I'd expect faster and less expensive (per GB) SSD's will have been released likely using a new standard. Unless it's something you'll benefit from now, the price premium for "high end" SSD's just isn't worth it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CynicalUnicorn View Post

I doubt this is a widespread issue to be honest, otherwise we would have heard more than conjecture and a few one-star reviews.

The latest firmware update for the 840 EVO shows the following:
Quote:
EXT0BB0Q

- Fixed compatibility issue with a certain program(PC doctor)
- Optimized the noise immunity across the internal memory interfaces
- Addressed the detection issue on certain systems

Perhaps that may be related? That said, I fully expect parsec is correct in his analysis. Frankly, I wouldn't trust any of the things "customer support" says. I don't understand why they won't just say "I'm sorry, I don't know. I'll have to forward your concern/complaint to our engineering department." instead of making stuff up.
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post #6 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by rui-no-onna View Post

I'd say that's actually pretty well matched. tongue.gif It's useless to pay an arm and a leg for an 840 PRO or similar if your system's not fast enough to benefit from it. As for "future-proofing", while an 840 PRO can no doubt be used in future builds, by that time, I'd expect faster and less expensive (per GB) SSD's will have been released likely using a new standard. Unless it's something you'll benefit from now, the price premium for "high end" SSD's just isn't worth it.

The laptop is also AMD, because that just compounds the issue. tongue.gif I'll take capacity over performance any day, and I don't think I would see any difference between a 512GB 840 Pro and the limited 840 I have.
Quote:
Frankly, I wouldn't trust any of the things "customer support" says. I don't understand why they won't just say "I'm sorry, I don't know. I'll have to forward your concern/complaint to our engineering department." instead of making stuff up.

I think we can all agree that PR is a load of crap. Engineers solve problems, but marketers just talk around them.

Something I just remembered that may be of significance: a couple months ago, I installed some of the drivers that came on the motherboard's CD, one of which was a SATA III driver. I did tests before and after in Samsung's utility and found slight decreases in sequential speeds and a massive 60-70% drop in random IOPS. This was on a 250GB 840, though I have not felt any difference in performance at all. Plus I got the audio drivers that let Star Wars: Battlefront II work properly so it's a net win. I haven't updated firmware at all since my purchase in early June.
Edited by CynicalUnicorn - 10/12/13 at 7:21pm
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post #7 of 7
Quote:
Originally Posted by winderic View Post

Thanks Parsec for your details analysis. I will definitely go read thru the 840 owner thread. The 840 Evo is quite a good price and reviews have been quite good, so thinking is time for me to upgrade from normal HDD to a SSD. Of cause i won't expect to have the same performance on read/write on those reviews since i only have SATA2 motherboard. But i reckon it will still be big improve over normal HDD to give window 7 a boost.

Thank you for that.

I should have thought of this earlier, the Samsung Magician software, a utility program for maintaining and monitoring your Samsung SSD, does not always work right on AMD mother boards. That is, the latest version (4.2.1) when used with an AMD SATA chipset and AMD driver. That is noted in the Magician software 4.2.1 installation manual. But if you use the Windows msahci driver (and Windows 8 storahci?) instead, it supposedly works fine.

That problem, which is actually known, might be what the support person was referring to, in a confused way. As others have said, we are not seeing many posts about problems with Evo's in this forum, actually the opposite it true, they are so far great.

Don't worry about SATA II being slower, it really isn't much slower in actual usage. All the "500 MB/s" specs only apply to large files, ~1MB and larger. A SSD's speed is not 500MB/s on every read or write it does.

Check the AS SSD benchmark thread, and look at the "4K" read speeds, small 4096 Byte files read one at a time. You'll see most SSDs in the 20MB/s - 30MB/s range for 4K read speeds. That spec is actually more important than the large file read speed that looks so great. The 4K read speed is not affected to much by using SATA II.

Plus, a HDD does ~0.5MB/s 4K read, so a "slow" SSD on SATA II doing 20MB/s is 40 times faster.
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