It's easier to write about high-performance and entry-level SSDs than those in the middle. Up at the top of the food chain, enthusiasts don't mind spending big bucks on the best of the best. In contrast, value seekers building inexpensive machines want the SSD experience at the lowest price possible... but without sacrificing reliability. Between those two extremes, it's hard to know how much more you want to spend, or what a little extra speed is worth.
The SK Hynix Canvas SC300 512GB is definitely a mid-range performer, and its price lands between entry-level and mainstream. That's a good place for this SSD to be. However, Samsung's 850 EVO 500GB is priced similarly, and that's the benchmark by which all mainstream SSDs are measured. Under a few specific workloads, the Canvas SC300 does perform a bit better.
To be sure, the Canvas performs best against its competition when you hit it with heavier workloads. By definition, that means writing a lot of data to it in a short period of time. Unfortunately, SK Hynix hamstrings this usage model with a 72 TBW rating. The 500GB 850 EVO gives you 150 TBW, more than doubling the SC300 before its warranty lapses. As a result, we have a hard time recommending this drive over the current industry standard. You could argue that SSDs will write a lot more data than their ratings indicate and still be fine, but you're going to want warranty protection to back that assertion up.
SK Hynix is close to releasing its own 3D NAND. The company plans to start with a 36-layer implementation. But before production can begin on a large scale, factories are needed. SK Hynix forecasts aggressive expansion through new factories in South Korea. Existing facilities are being updated and expanded for planar flash. We expect SK Hynix to be more of a contender in the client SSD space moving forward. However, its existing offerings can't usurp our favorite storage devices just yet.