Test Setup

Please read our SSD Storage Review Format and Methodology article for an explanation of our test system, procedures, and goals for SSD reviews.

Samsung 970 EVO Plus NVMe M.2 SSD 500GB System Setup

System Setup

We are using the motherboard default BIOS settings.  We have DOCP enabled.  We are running the latest motherboard BIOS.  We have Windows 10 Pro configured to run in the “High Performance” power profile.  Windows has the latest updates.  NVMe drivers are installed if present on the manufacturer’s webpage.

Note for SSD comparison in this review, we will be making comparisons to the original Samsung 970 EVO SSD, but we are using the 1TB model.  Here is how the rated read and write speeds compare:  970 EVO 3400MB/s Read, 2500MB/s Write, and 970 EVO Plus 3500MB/s Read, 3200MB/s Write. 

Therefore, in our comparison setup, the 970 EVO Plus has a slightly higher read, and a much higher write speed compared.

Brent Justice

Brent Justice has been reviewing computer components for 20+ years, educated in the art and method of the computer hardware review he brings experience, knowledge, and hands-on testing with a gamer oriented...

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3 Comments

  1. Not a bad little drive, and they have come down significantly in price.

    Right now I am struggling when it comes to what drive to use for an SSD cache drive on a server, where constant heavy writes are a factor.

    WAY back I would have had to pay big bucks for a tiny SLC drive for something like this. Can’t find those anymore.

    More recently Samsung’s Pro drives were MLC and had some pretty serious write endurance.

    The latest gen Pro drives (980 Pro) now appear to be TLC, and it has me a little concerned.

    That said, these things are so cheap now, so maybe I’ll just get a couple of 500GB or 1TB Inland Premium drives for $59.99 or $119.99 respectively, and just beat the crap out of them until they are worn out and replace them.

  2. The 860 Pro drives are MLC, and MLC is def the way to go for write endurance, they may be SATA, but if you are after that endurance prices are cheaper now on them. You are right, Samsung has gone a little backwards with the 980 Pro, being TLC, Pro to me always meant MLC on Samsung, not happy with that trend.
  3. The 860 Pro drives are MLC, and MLC is def the way to go for write endurance, they may be SATA, but if you are after that endurance prices are cheaper now on them. You are right, Samsung has gone a little backwards with the 980 Pro, being TLC, Pro to me always meant MLC on Samsung, not happy with that trend.

    Yeah, I am torn.

    The truth is, that with each generation of controller, NAND quality and whatever magic makes the controllers work (write amplification, wear balancing, DRAM cache’s etc.) improves. There is a reason you essentially can’t buy an SLC drive anymore. They just aren’t necessary. MLC got better to the point where it could fill that role.

    The question is, have we gotten to the point where TLC is really ready to supplant MLC in high write applications?

    My old 512GB Samsun 850 Pro SATA drives I have been using as write cache for years are MLC and are rated at 150TBW each. At 69,000 power on hours, and 317110382829 LBA’s (~147.6 TB) written they are both listed at a wear leveling count of 30%, so they are starting to get close. (well, I mean, if 70% wear came in 69000 hours, that means I have ~30,000 hours or 3.5 years left, but I don’t want to push it TOO far)

    The aforementioned Inland Premium drives are Phison E12 TLC drives. The 512GB model (to keep it as close to an "apples to apples" comparison as possible) is rated at over 5x the write endurance, at 780TBW.

    If these numbers are accurate, and measured the same way Samsung did on my old 850 Pro’s, maybe MLC really is no longer needed? I mean those old MLC 850 Pro’s are going to give me a projected final lifespan of 11.25 years in my high write environment. If the Inland Premiums truly get 5.2x longer life, that should give me 58.5 years. I don’t know if I’ll be around in 2080 (probably not unless we see some amazing medical progress!), but I suspect my current server build will be long obsolete…

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