Samsung 980 NVMe SSD
(credit: Samsung)

Samsung has announced the newest solid state drive (SSD) to its ever-growing storage lineup, the 980 NVMe SSD. The company’s first DRAM-less consumer SSD, it’s an M.2 PCIe 3.0 drive that enters the market as one of Samsung’s most affordable lineup of SSDs ever.

The new drive comes in three sizes: 250GB, 500GB, and 1TB. The pricing for each ranges from as low as $49.99 for 250GB to just $129.99 for 1TB.

As far as speeds are concerned, the 980 NVMe SSD offers up to 3,500 MBs and 3,000 MBs sequential read and write speeds, respectively. That top speed, however, is for the larger 1TB drive. As you move to the lower capacity drives, the speeds start to fall off. The 250GB version hits a max sequential read speed of 2,900 MBs and write speed of just 1,300 MBs. The 500GB drive has up to 3,100 MBs in sequential read speed, and up to 2,600 MBs sequential write speeds.

Samsung’s bold decision

The low price isn’t an accident for Samsung. Samsung decided to take a cost-cutting measure with its new SSD lineup by removing dynamic random access memory. Though in the past, removing DRAM would significantly reduce possible speeds on the drive, Samsung believes it has found a way to make the drives both affordable while being fast enough for most consumers.

The 980 NVMe SSD will utilize up to 64MB of your CPU’s DRAM to fill in the gap left by leaving it off the drive itself. To also help with performance, Samsung is utilizing its Intelligent TurboWrite 2.0 feature. TurboWrite 2.0 increases the maximum allocated bugger region to as much as 160GB, a nearly 4 times increase over the 970.

Samsung NVMe 980 SSD
Interface PCIe 3.0 x4, NVMe 1.4
Form Factor M.2 (2280)
Capacity 250GB, 500GB, 1TB
Sequential Read/Write Speeds Up to 3,500 / 3,000 MBs
Random Read/Write Speeds Up to 500K IOPS/ 480K IOPS
Data Encryption AES 256-bit Full Disk Encryption
Price 250GB – $49.99
500GB – $69.99
1 TB – $129.99
Total Bytes Written (TBW) 250GB – 150 TBW
500GB – 300 TBW
1 TB – 600 TBW

Should this decision payoff for Samsung, we could see more and more DRAM-less SSDs from them in the coming months and years ahead. The Samsung 980 NVMe SSD is available now.

Mike Straw
Michael Straw is a gamer who just happens to be an experienced journalist. In his near decade-long career, Mike has covered some of the biggest events in the world from E3 to the NFL Draft. He was once the second-ranked player in the world in NHL 09 on Xbox Live, and is a trained professional wrestler. In addition to being the Hardware Editor of PCI, Mike is also the Managing Editor of Sports Gamers Online.

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