Tuesday, June 8th 2021

PNY Quietly Reduces XLR8 CS3030 M.2 NVMe SSD Endurance by Almost 80%

(Update May 6: Added PNY's official word on the endurance changes)

PNY has quietly reduced the endurance rating (TBW - TeraBytes Written) for its XLR8 CS3030 M.2 NVMe SSD by almost 80%. The "quietly" comes from the fact that the company only deemed it necessary to update the product specifications on their website, and didn't announce any such changes via press release or any other means. Hence, prospective buyers who might look to launch reviews of this NVMe SSD so as to make a decision regarding its purchase may be led astray by the (then) quoted TBW ratings, which are actually no longer relevant for samples of this SSD - at the very least for any model manufactured post-specifications change on their website.

There are no other changes to specifications - neither in capacity, nor in Read/Write speeds. However, endurance has taken an almost 80% dive in the worst case scenarios - those of the 2 TB and 500 GB capacities, which saw reductions from their respective 3,115 TBW and 800 TBW down to 660 TBW and 170 TBW - or 78.8%. The 1 TB capacity takes a 78.4% dive in endurance (1665 TBW down to 360 TBW) and the 250 GB model is the least affected one, whilst still losing out 55.3% of its rated endurance (380 TBW down to 170 TBW).

There are various reasons why manufacturers would change specifications on their products - such as the current semiconductor shortages, which might make them opt for components based more on their availability than actual specs. This isn't the first case, and likely won't be the last - companies such as ADATA and Kingston have also made changes to product components which changed their specifications. However, it sounds reasonable that manufacturers would at the very least issue a press release when these component changes actually impact product performance, instead of simply changing the values displayed on their product pages. Below, you can check out the product specifications - original on the left, revised on the right.
Original XLR8 CS3030 Specifications Revised XLR8 CS3030 Specifications
The changes PNY made to its XLR8 CS3030 SSD's warranty policy were driven by two factors, the uptick in demand for using high-speed, consumer-grade SSDs for Chia farming, and the industry-wide shortage of NAND. These changes were published and made public on the company's website in both the warranty section as well as the CS3030 product spec sheet on May 17, 2021.

Why TBW was added to PNY's CS3030 SSD warranty:

The onset of Chia farming has many PC component brands rethinking their warranties, as consumer-grade hardware is not typically under the type of intense write use that is synonymous with Chia farming. The write activity required to farm Chia coin can wear out typical consumer-grade SSDs in a matter of weeks. Because of this, PNY, like others, introduced a Terabytes Written (TBW) policy to its SSD warranty. For consumers using these SSDs as intended, the warranty time (years) period will likely run out before they hit the TBW thresholds.
Source: https://www.tomshardware.com/news/galax-kills-warranty-ssd-mining.

Why the CS3030 TBW rating was reduced:

Due to an industry-wide shortage of NAND, PNY qualified additional NAND options for the XLR8 CS3030 SSD. While the read/write performances met or exceeded published specs, some of the TBW endurance was lower thus PNY set its warranty threshold and updated the sell sheet based on the lowest TBW rating of those qualified options. For consumers using these SSDs as intended, the warranty time (years) period will likely run out before they hit the TBW thresholds.

PNY's SSD warranty coverage:

Drives sold prior to May 17, 2021, correspond to the previously posted warranty, whereas drives sold on May 17, 2021, and later correspond to the latest warranty and TBW thresholds. Again, most consumers that use these drives as intended will likely exceed the warranty time (years) period before crossing the TBW threshold.
Source: Tom's Hardware
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29 Comments on PNY Quietly Reduces XLR8 CS3030 M.2 NVMe SSD Endurance by Almost 80%

#26
R0H1T
Chia is just another scam, like the (combined) $2T ones before it:nutkick:
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#27
watzupken
R0H1TThere's a reason why Samsung isn't cheap, & yet a lost of posters here pan them for it :laugh:

I guess it's PNY, Kingston, ADATA et al for them :ohwell:
I think there is no reason why Samsung SSDs are more expensive to be honest. If they produce every component on their SSD, it should be cheaper than someone buying components off the shelf to create their own SSD. There are certainly benefits to buying SSDs from Samsung because of the vertical integration though, and we can probably see it more clearly now.
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#28
R0H1T
Brand name, better quality (i.e. reliability) sometimes better performance & definitely better after sales service? You're short selling after sales support if you think it's not what drives prices up, you think Chinese smartphones cost less just because they're cheaper to make? Among the reasons listed only the first one is where you can blame them to an extent.
Posted on Reply
#29
watzupken
R0H1TChia is just another scam, like the (combined) $2T ones before it:nutkick:
I feel this applies to all cryptocurrencies. Crypto has no fundamentals, and as exhibited in the last month or 2, it is purely based on speculation, and feel good news, that moves the value upwards. Any positive news, like some company is accepting crypto, will strangely move the price upwards. Crypto is expected to be an alternative to fiat money, but if a currency is widely accepted in every single shop and nation, won't that make it worth even more than crypto? And yet, 1 Bitcoin can be worth tens of thousands of USD is just mind boggling. The volatility also ironically pushes the value higher because people chasing the market will continue to pour in money with the hope that it continues its crazy appreciation.
R0H1TBrand name, better quality (i.e. reliability) sometimes better performance & definitely better after sales service? You're short selling after sales support if you think it's not what drives prices up, you think Chinese smartphones cost less just because they're cheaper to make? Among the reasons listed only the first one is where you can blame them to an extent.
I think its mostly brand name. I've used Samsung after sales service before, and quite frankly, I don't think it is any special compared to other brands. So if the likes of WD is offering a drive that is just as good, I don't see the point of the Samsung tax. It is also clear that Samsung have realized this problem since their current 980 Pro are more in line with offerings from other major brand.
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