Samsung 850 EVO mSATA & M.2 SSD Review
OverviewHardware: Storage, HDs & SSDs
WHAT WE LIKED:Fast, Even FASTER! Magician Software
WHAT WE DISLIKED:none
Closer Look: 850 EVO mSATA 250GB
As you may have guessed by now the EVO mSATA and M.2 drives follow in the footsteps of the standard sized 850 EVO released at the end of 2014. Both of these new drives take advantage of Samsung’s 32 layer 3D V-NAND Technology. This new way of stacking chips increases the endurance and drops power usage during writes by 20 percent versus previous planar based models. Even more important to everyday consumers is the increase in density and overall drive performance. We saw first hand what the 850 EVO can do in a previous review and expect very similar results from these models because they are still operating on the same SATA interface.
Samsung keeps things very simple and easy to understand with even a passing glance. Make, model, size and interface can be located within a matter of seconds when deciding if this is the correct drive for your needs.
The drive comes nestled into a plastic preform with the instructions and warranty info tucked underneath.
Don’t let the picture fool you, mSATA drives are tiny with a standard dimension of only 51 x 30 x 0.8mm, compared to the diameter of a US quarter at 24.26mm. The 850 EVO SSD is able to fit in even the thinnest of notebooks, mini PCs and portable device while only consuming a max of 3.5w. At idle only 50mW is used and an even lower 2mW is used during sleep mode. These power savings goes to keeping you entertained for longer periods before recharging is required.
The Samsung MGX controller is used for the 150, 250 and 500GB models and a Samsung MEX controller for the 1TB model, both achieving the same estimated read/write of 540/520MB/s. Unlike most drives there isn’t a variance from size to size, or device to device with the 850 EVOs. Even the M.2 almost identical specs. This is may be due to Samsung reaching a ceiling on the SATA 6Gbps interface. I really don’t think we will see drives perform much faster using SATA. Time to move over to PCIe.
After the label is removed you can see the Samsung controller and V-NANDs. Surprisingly the older technology (mSATA) comes in higher capacities(1TB) at this point than the newer and sought after M.2 drives(512GB). I am sure this will only be temporary as M.2 is positioned to take the lead in small form factor and performance boot drives in desktops.