Closer Look: Samsung SSD 850 EVO mSATA
Solid state storage devices have gained quick popularity with performance-minded consumers because they work equally well in PC, Linux, or Apple computer systems. Likewise, these drives install quite easily into both desktop and notebook platforms without any modification necessary. The Samsung SSD 850 EVO is designed for the mainstream performance consumer segment, and gives personal computers a much faster response time that can help boost productivity. In this article Benchmark Reviews tests the 250GB Samsung SSD 850 EVO mSATA solid state drive.
Samsung SSD 850 EVO solid state drives are available in 2.5″ SATA, mSATA, and M.2 form factors, and are intended for the retail consumer market. Samsung Electronics offers the SSD 850 EVO series in four capacities for the SATA interface: 120, 250, 500GB and 1TB. Samsung’s 3D V-NAND technology is designed to sustain an 80GB daily workload in 500GB/1TB models, which equates to 150 Terabytes Written (TBW) over five years, and lends to Samsung’s industry-leading 5-year limited warranty.
Using in-house firmware to drive the Samsung 3-core MGX controller inside these Samsung SSD 850 EVO mSATA/M.2 drives, the 120/250/500GB/1TB models are all specified to reach 540 MB/s sequential read and 520 MB/s sequential writes. Although Samsung’s higher-capacity models offer the best random IOPS write-to performance, the 120/250GB models perform nearly as well.
The Samsung SSD 850 EVO mSATA edition measures 1.18″ W x 2″ L x 0.15″ H, and is labeled with a banding sticker at the top with product information label on the bottom. Internal NAND flash components are located beneath these labels, as this solid state drive lacks a metal enclosure for protection. As with all exposed electronics static discharge may cause damage to sensitive components, so handle with care!
The Samsung SSD 850 EVO M.2 edition measures 3.16″ L x 0.87″ W x 0.06″ H, and receives the same labels at the top and bottom of the drive. Although there are different M.2 interfaces, this SSD is a SATA 6Gb/s device.
Backwards compatible with SATA 1.5 GB/s and 3.0 GB/s interfaces, the SATA 6.0 GB/s Samsung 3-core MGX controller offers: TRIM support and active garbage collection for supported Operating Systems (such as Microsoft Windows 7/8), Microsoft eDrive compatibility, power loss protection, ECC (Error Correction Code), and basic Self-Monitoring, Analysis, and Reporting Technology (SMART) command set. All Samsung SSD 850 EVO drives are TCG/Opal V2.0 and IEEE 1667 compliant, and include a proprietary data integrity algorithm that provides a defense against data corruption with hardware-based AES-256 full data encryption and adaptive thermal monitoring and protection.
Samsung claims that 850 EVO provides the lowest “Device Sleep” (DEVSLP) mode of any 2.5” form-factor SSD, with idle power approximately the same as the 840 EVO while the average active write power has been reduced by up to 30% due to Samsung 3D V-NAND technology.
In the next few sections we’ll test the Samsung SSD 850 EVO mSATA, and compare this solid state drive to other retail storage products intended for notebook and desktop installations.