Samsung Ssd 850 Evo Review: Top Performance For A Low Price

Introduction Storage Bench - Heavy Storage Bench - Light Random Performance Sequential Performance Mixed Read/Write Performance Conclusion: It's a Good Option at 120GB

The lachạy thử entry cấp độ SSD from Samsung has no suffix andbears neither the PRO or EVO appellation. It is a new entry-màn chơi SATA SSD featuring Samsung's lademo 64-layer 3D TLC NAND, making it a very cthất bại relative sầu khổng lồ the 850 EVO line.

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The Samsung SSD 850 120GB Review: A Little TLC for SATA

The SSD 850 120GB uses the same MGX controller as the 850 EVO, but with a newer generation of 3D NAND. The drive sầu is intended to lớn fill a gap that has existed in Samsung's retail sản phẩm line since the 750 EVO was discontinued a little over a year ago, as it left Samsung with no 120GB-class retail SSD. So far, the SSD 850 120GB has only been officially released by Samsung's Chinese division, but it is available in other Asian markets including from some online retailers that will ship to lớn us in North America. The release it seems will be staggered across regions.

The Samsung 750 EVO was a stopgap sản phẩm, using 16nm planar TLC, while the 850 family transitioned from 32-layer khổng lồ 48-layer 3D NAND. That transition for the 850 series doubled the capathành phố per die, from 128Gb to lớn 256Gb. With half as many dies lớn use in parallel, the smallest capacities of the 850 PRO and EVO would no longer meet the same performance specifications. Changing components like this without renaming the sản phẩm can be controversial, but Samsung took the reasonable route of discontinuing the 128GB 850 PRO and 120GB 850 EVO. It was their hope that the 120GB capacity class would be rendered mostly obsolete by the price/GB improvements enabled by denser 3D NAND.


When Samsung's 48L 3 chiều NAND initially failed to lớn reach its production or price targets, it became clear that Samsung still needed an affordable 120GB-class drive sầu in its retail lineup. The 750 EVO was introduced to lớn fill that gap, using 16nm TLC but retaining the same top-notch SSD controller from the 850 series. The 750 EVO initially debuted with 120GB and 250GB capacities, but a 500GB version was added as SSD prices began lớn rise across the industry due khổng lồ a global shortage of NAND flash memory. (The disappointments of Samsung's 48L 3D NAND were one of the major supply-side factors leading lớn the shortage, but insatiable demvà for SSDs và the difficulties everyone else had bringing any kind of 3 chiều NAND to market were also very important contributors.) By the kết thúc of 2016, SSD prices were still rising but Samsung quietly discontinued the 750 EVO, again leaving them with a gap at the smallest end of the capađô thị range.

The Samsung SSD 850 120GB is a sản phẩm that Samsung never wanted khổng lồ release, and it may even never see a global release. The fundamental challenge of offering 850 EVO-class performance on a drive with just four NAND flash dies hasn't gone away. Samsung's 64L 3D NAND is claimed to lớn be a bit faster than the 48L NAND for writes, và power consumption is supposed to lớn be lower for both reads and writes. This won't vày much lớn offphối the effects of limited parallelism with only four NAND dies.

Samsung TLC SATA SSD Comparison
Drive850 120GB750 EVO 120GB850 EVO 120GB
LaunchChina: Nov 2017April 2016December 2014
ControllerSamsung MGXSamsung MGXSamsung MGX
NANDSamsung 256Gb 64L TLC V-NANDSamsung 128Gb 16nm TLCSamsung 128Gb 32L TLC V-NAND
DRAM256 MB256 MB256 MB
Sequential Read540 MB/s540 MB/s540 MB/s
Sequential Write5đôi mươi MB/s5trăng tròn MB/s5trăng tròn MB/s
4KB Random Read70k IOPS94k IOPS94k IOPS
4KB Random Write88k IOPS88k IOPS88k IOPS
4KB Random Read QD110k IOPS10k IOPS10k IOPS
4KB Random Write QD140k IOPS35k IOPS40k IOPS
EncryptionAES-256, TCG Opal 2.0, IEEE-1667 (eDrive)AES-256, TCG Opal 2.0, IEEE-1667 (eDrive)AES-256, TCG Opal 2.0, IEEE-1667 (eDrive)
Endurance75TB or 100TB35TB75TB
WarrantyThree yearsThree yearsFive sầu years

Like the 750 EVO, the Samsung SSD 850 120GB inherits all the 850 EVO's features like TCG Opal tư vấn thanks khổng lồ using the same controller, but the 850 120GB's three year warranty is shorter than the five sầu years on the 850 EVOs. The write endurance is thankfully on par with or better than the old 120GB 850 EVO (Samsung China's site is inconsistent about this specification), whereas the 750 EVO had less than half the write endurance. The only performance specification where the 850 120GB is slower than the old 850 EVO 120GB is for random reads at QD32, where it has lost 25% of the peak performance. However, performance numbers on the box lượt thích these vì chưng not tell the whole story.

A Lot of Empty Space

The Samsung S4LN062X01 "MGX" controller in the 850 120GB is old news. After three years on the market in the 850 EVO and related OEM and enterprise SSDs, it's still one of the top SATA SSD controllers with all the expected features và great performance and power management.

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While the 750 EVO put the controller and DRAM in the same BGA package, the 850 uses the original controller packaging with the DRAM next to lớn it on the circuit board. The Samsung SSD 850 120GB uses the same PCB as current 850 EVOs up khổng lồ 500GB, with one of the two NAND package spots populated, and the case is Samsung's standard matte black metal secured with three pentalobe screws.


Samsung's NAND flash part numbers don't directly encode the manufacturing process used. The sole NAND package on the 850 120GB is marked K9CKGY8H5A. The "CKG" portion identifies this as a TLC package with four dies and a total capađô thị of 128GB, implying the use of 256Gb (32GB) dies. The "A" at the kết thúc of the part number designates this as Samsung's second generation of 256Gb TLC parts. The first generation of 256Gb TLC dies from Samsung was manufactured with their 48-layer V-NAND process, making this new part their 64-layer thiết kế. When Samsung gets around to shipping their 512Gb 64L TLC dies, they'll be marked with a "M" at the kết thúc of the part number because they are Samsung's first generation 512Gb TLC parts.

This isn't our first encounter with Samsung's 64-layer fourth-generation 3D NAND. The Samsung Portable SSD T5 launched earlier this year as the first product lớn feature the 64L TLC V-NAND. Samsung used a portable SSD as the trial run for their preceding 48-layer 3D NAND as well, followed by a gradual migration of the rest of the hàng hóa line. Samsung hasn't stated whether they plan lớn migrate the 850 EVO line over to lớn 64L TLC in the same manner as they transitioned it from 32L to 48L, but I suspect they will. SATA SSDs aren't going away any time soon, and the current 850 EVOs are already competitive with the 64L 3 chiều TLC SSDs from Western Digital/SanDisk and Hãng Intel. Updating the 850 EVO with 64L 3D TLC won't hurt the small capathành phố models because the capathành phố per die remains 256Gb.

The future of the 850 PRO line and MLC drives in general is less clear. Samsung has said nothing about 64L MLC và even their enterprise SSDs are all on TLC now (except for the Z-NAND based SZ985). The 850 PRO has very little reason khổng lồ continue existing now that NVMe drives are the high-performance option, so Samsung may over up discontinuing it & simplifying their retail SATA line khổng lồ just a range of TLC-based 850s, starting with this 120GB Mã Sản Phẩm. In the NVMe space they will probably keep a MLC Mã Sản Phẩm around for enthusiasts unless their next generation of TLC-based NVMe SSDs can deliver huge performance increases. We expect Samsung to officially disclose some of their plans early next year, either at CES or shortly thereafter.

There isn't much competition in the 120GB capathành phố class of SSDs. Other manufacturers have sầu also largely abandoned this segment as they transition to lớn 3D NAND with per-die capacities of 256Gb and larger. The only recent SSDs we have sầu to lớn compare against are a few drives using Micron's 384Gb 32L 3D TLC NAND. The first two, theADATA Ultimate SU800 và the HPhường S700 Pro,pair that Micron NAND with the Silibé Motion SM2258 controller, while the other thành viên of the mix is the HPhường S700, whichadopts the DRAMless SM2258XT controller. The rest of the 120GB-class drives we have tested are all discontinued: the Samsung 850 PRO 128GB, the Samsung 850 EVO 120GB, the Samsung750 EVO 120GB, the ADATA SP550 using planar TLC, the PNY CS1311 also using planar TLC, & the ADATA XPG SX930 which uses planar MLC and a JMicron controller.

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The glaring omission from this đánh giá is the Crucial BX300. Micron used their 3 chiều MLC for this Mã Sản Phẩm specifically designed lớn persize well at low capacities, but then they only sampled us the largest form size khổng lồ test. The 120GB BX300 is currently priced very well for a 120GB drive even before taking inkhổng lồ trương mục that it uses 3 chiều MLC instead of TLC. It's also readily available for purchase in most markets. Based on the results at higher capacities, we expect the 120GB BX300 to be slightly below 2017 SSD Testbed
CPUIntel Xeon E3 1240 v5
MotherboardASRock Fatal1ty E3V5 Performance Gaming/OC
ChipsetHãng sản xuất Intel C232
Memory4x 8GB G.SKILL Ripjaws DDR4-2400 CL15
GraphicsAMD Radeon HD 5450, 1920x1200
SoftwareWindows 10 x64, version 1703
Linux kernel version 4.12, fio version 2.21

Not all of our regular benchmarks are performed in this đánh giá to lớn begin with. Our test called 'The Destroyer' is slightly delayed - on the first run through, the SSD 850 returned suspiciously low scores, so it is currently being re-run. ATSB on the 2017 testbed for a few other 120GB drives were also not at hvà due the drives being in service as boot drives on other testing machines. The page of results for The Destroyer will be added later today (11/27). Storage Bench - Heavy Introduction Storage Bench - Heavy Storage Bench - Light Random Performance Sequential Performance Mixed Read/Write Performance Conclusion: It's a Good Option at 120GB