As far as I can tell this is cheaper than all the other times this has been posted recently
So this drive doesn't have DRAM Cache? (Unlike the popular Kingston A2000)
SN550 no Dram cache, SN750 has Dram cache … Hardware unboxed have a good video up on what to expect in gaming and its basically no difference,(in saying that i wouldn't be using it for boot drive).
Looks like WD has some workaround for the lack of DRAM.
"WD seems to have gotten around this hurdle with the addition of a much smaller SRAM chip ("static" RAM to DRAM's "dynamic" RAM). SRAM chips are faster than DRAM, though they can be more expensive to implement. WD also found a workaround for this, including just a few megabytes of SRAM on the in-house Western Digital controller, rather than the larger SRAM caches that you might see on other drives that implement a similar technique."
More info here
It's also now known that it does use HMB as well as the SRAM. For a while it was assumed that it did not use HMB as its predecessors don't.
No DRAM cache but performs just as well for consumer tasks, including in the scenarios that other DRAM-less SSDs fall on their face with. This one is a bit different, uses technology that SanDisk has patents on and with the whole package done in-house they can design/tune each component accordingly . That's what makes it different to other current DRAM-less SSDs that piece together different parts from different companies. Still a value drive but a good offering.
Red kinda sus
This or Kingston a2000
Yes, someone please recommend
I would pick A2000 for Boot Drive but either will work for GameDrive (see above comments from scud70).
So if you can afford one drive or only has one NVME slot then safe to stick with A2000
Does DRAM help as a boot drive?
@Yuri Lowell: If your workloads lean towards prosumer then you may see better consistency with DRAM, but in general you'll probably already know if your workloads are demanding enough to need more than a value tier SSD. For average use the SN550 will be absolutely fine as a boot drive and you won't notice a difference. The drive is tuned to perform well for normal consumer workloads. Any other DRAM-less SSD, usually best as a storage drive if you have the choice but most people could get away with using one as a boot drive too. DRAM is always ideal to have, but not crucial for the tasks the majority of people run. The SN550 in particular mitigates some of the disadvantages that come without having DRAM well enough that if you actually need a better drive than it, you should probably consider something above the other value tier drives too.
For most people a more important difference would be in the size of SLC cache the drives provide - that's something that you can actually notice in normal use if you often transfer very large files. The SN550 has a fixed 12GB at full speeds, after which it writes direct to TLC at about 900MB/s. Other drives (eg. A2000) may have a larger dyanamic sized cache like 100GB to start with (dropping in size as the drive gets full) but write speeds drop more after that's full, eg. 450MB/s direct to TLC or lower if QLC. For me, the only time I write more than 12GB continuously (remember these writes get flushed from the SLC cache when there's downtime) is when I'm imaging the drive, which would be well over the size of any drive's SLC cache, so I value the direct to TLC write speed more than the large SLC cache. That part is personal preference, but something most people seem to overlook when they just compare the advertised max read/write speeds. In general, read reviews of the drives you're interested in and the more important things than what the manufacturer advertises like SLC cache design or lack of DRAM will be covered.
@ethan961: Thanks for the informative post.
There is very little in it. SN550 performs better in some benchmarks, A2000 higher in others. For real world use I don't think you would see any difference between the two. I'd just go for whichever I could get cheapest (I went the SN550 awhile ago and it has been great).
As others have rightly pointed out, there's basically no practical performance difference.
I personally went with the SN550 because of the A2000 stability issues, but those have pretty much been resolved now from what I can find.
Picked up. Thanks OP
If no Dram, it would be great for games … maybe in the PS5?
The PS5 will use PCIe Gen4 m.2 SSDs which means it will require much higher speeds than this one can provide. Best to wait for Sony to release a list of compatible m.2 drives to use for the PS5.
I'm hanging out for the first OzB deal for a compatible PS5 drive.
I've taken a punt on the gigabyte one, will decide by 15th November to go ahead or not
Remember not all SSD speeds are the same. Just because the Gigabyte AORUS drive is Gen4 doesn't necessarily mean it will meet the PS5 requirements.
The PS5's SSD is rated at 5.5GB/s, the Gigabyte is rated at 5.0GB/s.
The only drives at the moment I can think of that might be compatible are the Samsung 980 pro and WD SN850 which are both rated at 7GB/s read speeds.
Nothing is confirmed yet so it's best to wait until either Sony release a list or people get their hands on the PS5 and test drive performance themselves.
@greeny mang: I don't believe they'll disallow any SSDs that's slower than the onboard, I suspect they'll say it'll work but not at optimal speeds which is OK for me. if in the rare case they physically disallow it, then I can simply return it for a refund. Certainly not going to pay $400+ for an "optimal" ssd for the ps5 if this one still ends up working even as extra storage if not optimally to run games off.
Doesn’t work with the ryzen thinkpads? Read somewhere that people were having compatibility issues.
I've read reports both ways. It's peculiar because the SN530 is listed as an approved drive by Lenovo.
I'm not buying Western Digital after their branding of drives without SMR in the range that really should have had it. Then changing branding to Red, Red Plus and Red Pro making it even harder for all consumers to understand.
If this is the company's attitude I'm passing on their products.
Can any one comment on this NVMe vs the Cruical p5 for ~$175 ($37 more). Is it worth the 37$ for the p5?
Anyone still waiting for Amazon UK to ship it? Actually all but 1 of my Amazon UK Prime deals are still waiting for shipment.