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SK Hynix Gold S31 SATA SSD Review: SK Hynix Barrels Into US Market

SK Hynix barrels into the U.S. SSD market

Editor's Choice
(Image: © SK Hynix)

SK Hynix hit a homerun with the Gold S31, so while the company is late to enter the retail consumer SSD market in the USA, it apparently spent its time tweaking and tuning its new design to perform alongside the best. 

The Gold S31 delivers stellar performance for a SATA SSD: It consistently traded blows with the mainstream competition and proved itself a worthy adversary. The drive responded quickly to requests, and performance was still solid even after saturating the write cache. It was also rather efficient during file transfers, and at idle, too.

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

The Gold S31 isn’t quite as flashy as some SSDs we have reviewed, but it holds its own with what seems like an Onigiri or rice ball-inspired label on the top of the silver case. It’s 2.5” 7mm form factor is large compared to M.2 options like Adata’s XPG SX8200 Pro. Because it uses the SATA interface, it requires an extra cable that might detract from a clean-looking build, but that's par for the course with SATA drives.

The Gold S31 isn't quite as fast as NVMe options, but SK Hynix outfitted the S31 Gold with competitive endurance ratings and a five-year warranty. It's also priced very competitively, making it a top value at the time of writing and earning our recommendation. Overall, the Gold S31 is a good choice for the budget gamer or overclocker just as much as it is for those looking for an affordable and simple upgrade for their laptop or desktop.


MORE: How We Test HDDs And SSDs

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  • mdd1963
    Impressive results...

    (I rarely use a SATA SSD larger than 500 GB or 1 TB anyway)

    However, with pricing roughly equal to Crucial's MX500, I'm not sure I'm willing to make the leap without someone else first taking the risk on reliability/endurance testing, etc...

    Given a need for a SATA drive, when someone else is paying, I'll take Samsung's 860 EVO

    When I am paying , it's Crucial MX500... :)

    Given a year's worth of history of lots of samples tested with few to no failures noted, I'll gladly try this Hynix unit, but, they will have to undercut Crucial by more than $3 or so.... Given equal pricing (which seems to be the case based on 1 TB unit current prices), I'd stick with Crucial at this point....
  • computerprogrammer2028
    Currently I have a WD VelociRaptor 500 GB Workstation Hard drive: 3.5 inch/10000 RPM. The speed of which was blazing for a HDD. But is aging since I got it back in 2013 (7 years ago). So I decided to take a dive into the world of SSD's. I ran across the SK Hynix Gold and was impressed with the price for a 500GB SSD and the speed. I'm not so much concerned about reliability since I'm keep my old Raptor HDD and use it to backup the SSD. But with the review + a 5 year warranty, how can you lose here? The price is competitive as well with provided friendly migration tools. I'll miss using my Raptor, but no more noisy HDD mechanical drive, and welcome to the world of quiet and fast HDD's. One day I'll replace my Raptor HDD backup probably with a 1TB WS Blue drive(7200RPM) to take over backup chores, but at least it won't be due to a failed drive and lost data.