Corsair is caught in the middle of a really bad storm with no choice but to shelter in place. Financial reports from several companies indicate that the NAND shortage is just as bad as we've predicted for the last several months. Corsair doesn't have a birthright to flash like Samsung, Crucial, Intel, Toshiba, or Sk Hynix, which produce their own NAND. We would much rather see Corsair reduce MP500 pricing closer to the Patriot Hellfire M.2 and MyDigitalSSD BPX, but all signs point to rising prices across the board. I don't want to hit Corsair too hard on the Force Series MP500 pricing because there is a very good chance the price of other E7-based products will also increase as the shortage continues.
Corsair may have waited too long to bring the MP500 to market and missed an opportunity to sell drives at a lower price (and have this review fall into that window). With such a late launch for a PS5007-E7 product, we're really not sure why Corsair didn't make this a double-DDR version to separate the MP500 from the lower priced products already on the market. We know double-DDR products are in the works because of Patriot's public comments at Flash Memory Summit in August 2016. Based on the current market, the MP500 is too little, too late, and for too much. However, we are not in a standard SSD/NAND market. I covered memory prices when DDR and DDR2 prices doubled, and we also experienced a near-doubling of DDR3 just a few years ago. Unfortunately, all signs point to a higher price trajectory in the SSD market as well.
The Force Series MP500 has two advantages over the existing PS5007-E7 products and two disadvantages. If you care about the color, the black printed circuit board may be more appealing than the standard green fare. The copper strip technology is also present, just like the new Samsung 960 Series. That may have led to some of the increased write performance we observed in our testing. For those willing to work to pull every last drop of performance from the drive, I don't see the technology being more effective than a low-cost aluminum heatsink attached to the E7 controller. The two negative points revolve around the limited three-year warranty. Patriot also has a three-year warranty on the Hellfire M.2, but the MyDigitalSSD BPX provides a five-year warranty. The BPX also gives you more wiggle room with the warranty-limiting endurance threshold.
If prices drop, the Corsair Force Series MP500 will make an excellent choice for a high-performance desktop or gaming system. The 15nm MLC flash delivers high sustained write performance for transferring files over a network or backing up other high-speed devices. Your games will load faster with this drive compared to SATA products, as well. The big obstacle is pricing, but Corsair is in a better position than I am to predict what we'll see at Newegg in three months’ time.
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