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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-28-2019, 09:42 PM - Thread Starter
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Need inexpensive 2TB+ SSD recommendations

Hey guys. I'm getting a new Ultra SFF PC so I could actually preview 4K videos on it. My current thin Mini-ITX Ivy Bridge is woefully lacking on that front.

Need a new SSD, 2TB minimum capacity, either M.2 NVMe or 2.5" 7mm SATA (board doesn't support M.2 SATA and it's too small to fit 3.5" drives). I won't be able to install heatsinks or anything so if M.2, I need something that won't overheat even when ambient temps are like 32C/90F. Aiming for around 10 cents/GB. It should be available on Amazon or Newegg.

Intel 660p 2TB is $185 which is the lowest price I've seen for 2TB but QLC gives me pause. The workload is primarily mixed read/write converting from UHD/Blu-ray ISOs to MKV (no recompression) on same drive. It'll probably be normal to fill the drive close to full prior to offloading to NAS (although I'll probably do 10-15% manual OP). Anyone know what sustained sequential on the 660p 2TB is like? Tried to check to reviews but they all feature 1TB.

If the 660p is a no go, I'll probably go with a $200-220 2.5" 2TB MX500 unless there are other 2TB NVMe SSDs I should consider in the same price ballpark (~$250 inclusive of 10.25% CA sales tax).

Thanks!
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-29-2019, 08:07 AM
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The Intel 660P can in some use cases be slower than even a slow HDD which is one of the reasons why its so cheap so if low cost is a must a HDD is actually better and faster in some use cases
Samsung NVME drives are way overpriced but there are other options that are cheaper such as drives using the Toshiba E12 controller

The PNY XLR8 and the Corsair Force MP510 are just a few of such options
https://www.overclock.net/forum/355-...2-toshiba.html

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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-29-2019, 08:32 AM
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Consider one of these 2:
https://www.tomshardware.com/reviews...-ssd,5134.html

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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-29-2019, 08:45 AM
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Quote: Originally Posted by rui-no-onna View Post
Hey guys. I'm getting a new Ultra SFF PC so I could actually preview 4K videos on it. My current thin Mini-ITX Ivy Bridge is woefully lacking on that front.

Need a new SSD, 2TB minimum capacity, either M.2 NVMe or 2.5" 7mm SATA (board doesn't support M.2 SATA and it's too small to fit 3.5" drives). I won't be able to install heatsinks or anything so if M.2, I need something that won't overheat even when ambient temps are like 32C/90F. Aiming for around 10 cents/GB. It should be available on Amazon or Newegg.

Intel 660p 2TB is $185 which is the lowest price I've seen for 2TB but QLC gives me pause. The workload is primarily mixed read/write converting from UHD/Blu-ray ISOs to MKV (no recompression) on same drive. It'll probably be normal to fill the drive close to full prior to offloading to NAS (although I'll probably do 10-15% manual OP). Anyone know what sustained sequential on the 660p 2TB is like? Tried to check to reviews but they all feature 1TB.

If the 660p is a no go, I'll probably go with a $200-220 2.5" 2TB MX500 unless there are other 2TB NVMe SSDs I should consider in the same price ballpark (~$250 inclusive of 10.25% CA sales tax).

Thanks!
Sustained write on QLC such as 660p/P1 is worse than an HDD (which is not something on everyone's use case). So if you want to fill the drive full in one go, this is not a drive for you. It's all over decent reviews and user reports how these QLC tank in write speed and how they compare to other drives.
You have to carefully choose an SSD if you plan on doing full drive writes in one go.

There are the E12 drives in 2TB and maybe some of those SM2262EN. The rest probably doesn't come anywhere near close in value = performance/price. Only QLC drives are a little cheaper if you must have the most budget option.

https://www.tomshardware.com/reviews...sd,6180-2.html

A 2TB drive won't magically differ in how it's firmware runs. It's the same firmware.

SATA is dead, get an NVMe, they are often cheaper and 6x+ faster even for any shorter operations and 2x+ for long.
For full drive read in one go, I don't think there is any issue with any of the drives as you're going to be limited by network/NAS anyway.
Also how fast can you process the repacking to MKV, RAM and CPU wise. I don't like the QLC, that's why I didn't buy one but they can be usable if all you need is the cheapest option and don't care about speed or latency.

By now most reviews sites are hopefully more updated to list recent drives (last 1 year) and more actual lower prices (prices dropped a lot in last 1 year). If you look at old reviews and comparisons the drives and prices will seem very outdated.

Most if not all of the NVMe drives will heat up to a point where they could use a tiny heatsink or airflow over them if you do sustained long writes (to avoid controller throttling). Other than that they are fine temperature wise. Heatsinks can fit under a GPU plugged over the NVMe.

The rest is in my thread Shilka already linked, added to my signature too now. There is a list of all E12 drives I could find and their code, so you can search shops with those names and codes, see what you can get and for how much. Not all E12 are in 2TB but some are. Prices vary greatly but good deals are below SATA prices and close to QLC even.

Cheapest... yes that's the 660p. There are no 4TB to recommend. 2TB is the most you can get at an acceptable price.

Last edited by JackCY; 08-29-2019 at 08:51 AM.
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-29-2019, 10:20 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote: Originally Posted by shilka View Post
The Intel 660P can in some use cases be slower than even a slow HDD which is one of the reasons why its so cheap so if low cost is a must a HDD is actually better and faster in some use cases
HDD would be 2.5", quite possibly shingled magnetic recording (SMR) as I don't think they make 7mm in perpendicular. Honestly, even finding 9.5mm PMR nowadays seems iffy. Besides, simultaneous read/write is much worse on HDD. Iirc, it reduces sequential throughput to around 1/3 and that's before factoring in workload as OS drive. In this particular case, I highly doubt HDD's gonna be better.

Quote: Originally Posted by shilka View Post
Samsung NVME drives are way overpriced but there are other options that are cheaper such as drives using the Toshiba E12 controller

The PNY XLR8 and the Corsair Force MP510 are just a few of such options
https://www.overclock.net/forum/355-...2-toshiba.html
Unfortunately, both those drives are gonna cost ~$330 after tax. That's 62% more than the 660p and way more than I'd like to spend on 2TB.



Quote: Originally Posted by briank View Post
Thanks! The 2TB WD Blue 3D looks like a good/better similarly priced alternative to the MX500.



Quote: Originally Posted by JackCY View Post
Sustained write on QLC such as 660p/P1 is worse than an HDD (which is not something on everyone's use case). So if you want to fill the drive full in one go, this is not a drive for you. It's all over decent reviews and user reports how these QLC tank in write speed and how they compare to other drives.
You have to carefully choose an SSD if you plan on doing full drive writes in one go.

A 2TB drive won't magically differ in how it's firmware runs. It's the same firmware.
It doesn't but with increased parallelism, the performance floor would be higher and there's longer leeway before performance drops. Haven't found the numbers yet for the 660p but for example, the 2TB 860 QVO has double the sustained sequential write speed of the 1TB version.

Quote: Originally Posted by JackCY View Post
There are the E12 drives in 2TB and maybe some of those SM2262EN. The rest probably doesn't come anywhere near close in value = performance/price. Only QLC drives are a little cheaper if you must have the most budget option.

https://www.tomshardware.com/reviews...sd,6180-2.html

By now most reviews sites are hopefully more updated to list recent drives (last 1 year) and more actual lower prices (prices dropped a lot in last 1 year). If you look at old reviews and comparisons the drives and prices will seem very outdated.

Most if not all of the NVMe drives will heat up to a point where they could use a tiny heatsink or airflow over them if you do sustained long writes (to avoid controller throttling). Other than that they are fine temperature wise. Heatsinks can fit under a GPU plugged over the NVMe.

The rest is in my thread Shilka already linked, added to my signature too now. There is a list of all E12 drives I could find and their code, so you can search shops with those names and codes, see what you can get and for how much. Not all E12 are in 2TB but some are. Prices vary greatly but good deals are below SATA prices and close to QLC even.
While there are plenty of deals on 1TB, situation appears to be different on 2TB. Found the Silicon Power P34A80 for $245 and the Sabrent Rocket SB-ROCKET-2TB for $250. Costs more than SATA options but I'm willing to stretch to around that. How bad does throttling get? Could throttling make these NVMe SSDs slower than SATA? As mentioned earlier, installing a heatsink is NOT an option. I'm okay even if they drop to sub-1GB/s as long as they don't BSOD on me or die prematurely because of high temps.

Quote: Originally Posted by JackCY View Post
SATA is dead, get an NVMe, they are often cheaper and 6x+ faster even for any shorter operations and 2x+ for long.
For full drive read in one go, I don't think there is any issue with any of the drives as you're going to be limited by network/NAS anyway.
Also how fast can you process the repacking to MKV, RAM and CPU wise. I don't like the QLC, that's why I didn't buy one but they can be usable if all you need is the cheapest option and don't care about speed or latency.
In a couple of years, I expect I'll be buying new, higher capacity SSDs so I don't really care if "SATA is dead" given it's still a much faster option than HDD for the intended workload. It's actually easier/cheaper to convert SATA to external USB 3.0 drives than NVMe (that's how I pretty much use my old SSDs - as large, fast flash drives).

I'm not re-encoding videos so not horribly CPU-bound. Just remuxing to MKV and adding secondary audio streams (5.1 channel AC3 and stereo AAC). New CPU will either be Ryzen 3 3200G or i5-8259U/i7-8259U (using integrated graphics) so these aren't power houses by any stretch of the imagination. I'm upgrading purely for 4K HEVC 10-bit hardware decode (ultra SFF so can't just add a GPU).

Apart from NAS offload, it's not really super long continuous writes either. More like bursts of 40-100GB at a time with a couple minutes idle time in between (reviewing and selecting tracks, etc).

Blu-ray ISO rip to USB HDD/SSD (ImgBurn)
- ~25MB/s ave, ~35MB/s max (limited by optical media)
I rip like 1-2 discs at night during weekdays for later processing.

Blu-ray ISO to MKV (MakeMKV)
- without audio conversion: ~200MB/s (SATA to USB 3.0 adapter or bus limited?)
- with 5.1ch AC3+2ch AAC conversion: ~100MB/s (CPU limited on i5-3450S, no idea how much improvement, if any, a 3200G or i5-8259U will bring)
This I occasionally do multiple times for the same movie trying to get the tracks and settings correct. That's why I rip to ISO first otherwise, I'd probably damage the disc. I've built up a bit of a back log so I'll probably do like 10-20 ISOs on a weekend.

Transfer to NAS
- ~100-125MB/s (gigabit limited)

Quote: Originally Posted by JackCY View Post
Cheapest... yes that's the 660p. There are no 4TB to recommend. 2TB is the most you can get at an acceptable price.
I actually was able to buy a 4TB 2.5" Micron 5100 ECO for like $350-ish on clearance from OWC. Really, really regret not buying extra now.
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-05-2019, 07:00 PM
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Yeah but those are 2.5" SATA if you want more acceptable 4TB+.

Actually found it, sold out: https://eshop.macsales.com/item/Micr...d301490a1c0e10

Sadly these enterprise drives are hard to find at all anywhere, most shops only sell Samsung SSDs at high capacities with their consumer models.
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-05-2019, 07:14 PM
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you probably have two choices at best, HP EX950 or ADATA XPG SX8200 Pro.
https://pcpartpicker.com/products/co...xM97YJ,kQZzK8/

they're however close to $300 in price, HP is cheaper if you have access to newegg.

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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-05-2019, 08:15 PM
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Quote: Originally Posted by JackCY View Post
...SATA is dead...
SATA is not dead; far from it, in fact. Right now, consumer SSDs top out at 4TB for SATA SSDs (Samsung only; for others, it's 2TB; consumer NVMe drives top out at 2TB. HDDs available to consumers are available as high as 16TB and are increasing in capacity far faster than SSDs are.

NVMe is great for speed but, unless frequently moving around huge files, the speed increase over SATA is not likely to be noticeable. For storage, speed isn't even that much of a factor. As long as HDDs are considerably less expensive than SSDs and their capacity continues to far exceed the capacity of SSDs, SATA isn't going anywhere soon.

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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-05-2019, 08:38 PM
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well unless SAS takes over, SAS ports would allow 2.5" SSDs to double it's theoretical speed too.
although SAS ports are backwards compatible with SATA drives, one SAS port can support 4 SATA drives natively.

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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 09-05-2019, 08:59 PM
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There is always PCIe, the connector and drive size doesn't matter, the protocol does. No one is stopping them from launching 100TB 5.25" drives with PCIe/NVMe connection does it.

SATA is dead for SSDs on desktop computers, there is no question about that. You get even 3x NVMe M.2 on new boards and if you need more there are plenty lanes on PCIe to get even more of these fast connections.
For an HDD farm... sure just farm those SATA connectors and get PCIe to SATA etc. But that's not a typical desktop machine. That's a NAS/server.

Last edited by JackCY; 09-06-2019 at 11:07 AM.
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