As spotted by AnandTech (opens in new tab), Samsung is showcasing the new 980 PRO M.2 NVMe SSD at its booth at CES 2020. The upcoming flagship SSD exploits all the goodness that the PCIe 4.0 interface has to offer.
Like previous PRO models, the Samsung 980 PRO adheres to the typical black PCB and M.2 2280 form factor. The addition of PCIe 4.0 support, however, will allow the drive to deliver higher performance than its predecessors.
Samsung rates the 980 PRO 1TB model with sequential read and write speeds up to 6,500 MB/s and 5,000 MB/s, respectively. This would put the 980 PRO ahead of rival PCIe 4.0 SSDs like Corsair's Force MP600 (opens in new tab) or Gigabyte's Aorus NVMe Gen4 SSD (opens in new tab).
|Model||Sequential Read||Sequential Write|
|Adata XPG Sage||7,000 MB/s||6,000 MB/s|
|Samsung 980 PRO 1TB||6,500 MB/s||5,000 MB/s|
|Gigabyte Aorus NVMe Gen4 SSD 1TB||5,000 MB/s||4,400 MB/s|
|Sabrent Rocket PCIe 4.0 1TB||5,000 MB/s||4,400 MB/s|
|Corsair Force MP600 1TB||4,950 MB/s||4,250 MB/s|
The common denominator between current PCIe 4.0 SSDs is the use of Phison's PS5016-E16 (opens in new tab) SSD controller, which maxes out at 5,000 MB/s reads and 4,400 MB/s writes. The next wave of PCIe 4.0 SSDs should leverage the new PS5018-E18 (opens in new tab) controller that promises sequential speeds up to 7,000 MB/s and 1 million IOPS.
Innogrit recently jumped into the scene with its Rainier IG5236 (opens in new tab) SSD controller that offers sequential read and write speeds over 7,000 MB/s and 6,000 MB/s, respectively. Samsung will really need to up its game if the company wants to the 980 PRO to be the fastest PCIe 4.0 SSD on the market.
The Samsung 980 PRO will reportedly be available in 250GB, 500GB and 1TB capacities. That's one more capacity to choose from than before - the previous Samsung 970 PRO (opens in new tab) only came in 512GB and 1TB flavors.
Samsung didn't specify what type of NAND the 980 PRO uses. Given that the brand's PRO line of SSDs traditionally use MLC (multi-level cell) chips, we don't expect the 980 PRO to break that mold. As a reminder, the Samsung 970 PRO utilizes the company's 2-bit MLC V-NAND. The company might use the same chips on the 980 PRO as well.
As for me I'll be waiting to see how a more affordable "980 Evo" performs.
According to the article:
So, that's 2 bits per cell, which is literally half the per-cell capacity you get from "QLC" (which is actually 4 bits per cell - 16 levels, not the 4 suggested by the name).
Eventually, size will increase and price per GB will fall.
(if that big sequential number is what we are keying on)