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Pci Express NVMe M.2 SSD - Is it worth it ?
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TobyGornow 27 Nov, 2020

Hi everyone,

Since it's Black Friday and my employer gave us some doe to spend for christmas, I'm leaning toward buying a brand new SSD for my christmas since I can't buy neither a 5900x nor a 6800 xt.

Actually, I'm booting on a SATA ssd, my steam library is on another SATA ssd and all in all my computer is responsive and I'm not feeling the need for more (...for speed), hence my question :

If I make the switch to a brand new and shiny PCI-e NVMe M.2 SSD ( Such as this one ) will I see a difference in my day to day usage ? Mainly gaming, browsing, Godoting & Ardouring (When I feel like it...)

Second question : Is PCI-e gen4 really useful vs Pci-e gen3 ? Almost half the price... But SAM could be around the corner for the 3x00 series + rx 5700...

I watched some YT videos about this subject but from what I saw it's either "Nah.. Not useful yet" or "Look at this speed ! It's awesome".

What's your Linux experience on this subject ?

Last edited by TobyGornow on 27 November 2020 at 3:23 pm UTC

whizse 27 Nov, 2020
  • Supporter

Might want to double check that the manufacturer supports firmware updates with non-Windows alternative. Bootable ISO usually.

Science 27 Nov, 2020

I recently bought a gen 3 ssd and I really noticed the difference, the loading times in most games decrease significantly and what surprised me the most was that my computer took about 1 minute to turn on with the ssd (sata), but with the new ssd it takes only 7 seconds. As I understand the 4.0 is relatively new and there are no applications that take advantage of it.

TobyGornow 27 Nov, 2020

Quoting: whizseMight want to double check that the manufacturer supports firmware updates with non-Windows alternative. Bootable ISO usually.

From your experience, any brand to avoid ?

Last edited by TobyGornow on 27 November 2020 at 8:10 pm UTC

Shmerl 27 Nov, 2020

Totally get one. No reason not to use NVMe SSDs for your system drive today.

Samsung is probably one of the best options. It supports updating firmware using a bootable OS independent image.

Last edited by Shmerl on 27 November 2020 at 8:13 pm UTC

whizse 27 Nov, 2020
  • Supporter

Quoting: TobyGornowFrom your experience, any brand to avoid ?
I'm actually planning for a similar upgrade. These brands seem ok firmware wise (but you should probably double check):

Samsung, Crucial, Intel

WD Black might be a possibility too, the support site mentions an iso image for Mac updates.

Sadly no manufacturer as far as I can tell supports upgrades using fwupd.

I'll probably go for one of the Samsung 970 EVO drives. A bit more expensive but the reviews are good. Of course nothing on my wishlists ever go on sale during these events...

denyasis 27 Nov, 2020

I got a Samsung EVO nvme drive in 2018 for pci3 when I was building my computer. Love it.

It takes longer for me to enter my password then for the whole boot process to complete.
I've also found that games load very fast compared to my older computers.

I honestly think it was one of the best picks.

Personally, I would not splurge for a PCIE4 one yet as I'm not sure the drive would saturate the bus.

Julius 28 Nov, 2020

Quoting: TobyGornow
Quoting: whizseMight want to double check that the manufacturer supports firmware updates with non-Windows alternative. Bootable ISO usually.

From your experience, any brand to avoid ?

Lexar

Just had this exact bad experience with a NVMe SSD on Linux. Would be recognized fine, but did not allow to be formated in ext4 for some reason. Got it replaced in the shop (where they actually managed to format it as ext4 under windows).
But I preferred getting a Samsung instead. Bit more expensive, but never had any issues with Linux.

Otherwise Toshiba should be a good choice as they have a Linux native firmware upgrade software, even with a GUI and all that. Was seriously impressed the first time I saw that.

LinuxGamesTV 28 Nov, 2020

I have this two:

System: ADATA XPG SX8200 Pro 512 GB
Home: WD Black SN750 Gaming 1000 GB

Both are NAND TLC NvMe PCI-E 3 SSD’s. They are great and fast, very fast. Faster as my old SATA SSD Crucial MX100.

JaimeeGarrison 28 Nov, 2020

For general use/gaming there's no discernible difference AFAIK. I used benchmarks from here when I was choosing mine.

Last edited by JaimeeGarrison on 30 November 2020 at 2:39 am UTC

TobyGornow 28 Nov, 2020

Ok guys, thanks for your inputs, I went ahead and ordered a Crucial P5 1TB because it was available and heavily discounted, no firmware update available at the time and Crucial is a renowned brand. I would've liked to go with Samsung but they were not discounted at the time and only available at third party reseller.

I will report my thoughts on the upgrade.

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