Adata XPG Spectrix S40G M.2 NVMe SSD Review: Bright Lights, Big Capacity

Adata brings the bling with the XPG Spectrix S40G

Adata XPG Spectrix S40G
(Image: © Tom's Hardware)

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Adata’s XPG Spectrix S40G delivered mixed performance results. On one hand, it outperformed the MX500, one of the best SATA SSDs available, and destroyed the HDD. But its performance wasn’t quite up to par with its mainstream SSD competitors. Mind you, this is with the drive being tested with 50% of its capacity filled.

The Realtek controller seems to need some further firmware work to truly be on the same level as Silicon Motion, Phison, and Samsung. Although it delivered top-notch game load time performance and did fairly well with copying data and reading it back, as we saw in ATTO, sequential performance lags with small files. This led to the slower-than-average application scores in PCMark 8 and SPECworkstation 3.

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

The drive features a large and speedy dynamic write cache, but direct-to-TLC write speeds are very inconsistent and averaged lower than a SATA SSD. For those who may be cloning 700GB+ of data, things may fly for the first few hundred GB, but will tank after the cache fills. The cache shrinks as the drive fills, too.

Fortunately, that type of write workload doesn’t occur very often, so it shouldn't be a cause for alarm unless you write large files daily. Even then, the large write cache should be enough for most.

The S40G's mixed and inconsistent performance is why it doesn’t rank up there with the best SSDs like the company’s Adata SX8200 Pro or Samsung’s 970 EVO Plus, but its aesthetics are very alluring.

The LEDs are very bright and the lighting control is straightforward, making it easy to match whatever color scheme you chose. But without the RGB software, your profile doesn’t always stick during shutdowns or reboots. In those cases, it defaults to a rainbow effect.

The drives' sleek plastic and metal light diffuser adds a touch of class to its looks. The heatsink also keeps the drive under 80C when doing multiple 100GB file transfers simultaneously with very little to no airflow, and 60C with airflow in our 25C environment.

With competitive endurance ratings, a five-year warranty, and capacities up to 2TB, the S40G is a decent pick if you want to add some more RGB goodness to your build. Not to mention that it has hardware accelerated AES-256-bit encryption to keep your data secure. It may not be the fastest drive, but it delivers an acceptable level of performance and it shines bright while doing so.


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Sean Webster
Storage Reviewer

Sean is a Contributing Editor at Tom’s Hardware US, covering storage hardware.