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Samsung 970 Pro 512 GB

W1zzard

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Samsung's 970 Pro flagship SSD offers incredible performance, especially when it comes to writes, where it tops the charts with up to 2.4 GB/s because of MLC flash. Reads are even faster at 3.5 GB/s. If only the SSD was more affordable: $200 for 512 GB is not exactly cheap.

Show full review
 
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As usual, TPU doesn't publish the most important metric: random 4k reads. Looking at the included graph, at QD1 it looks like this drive can do ~30k IOPS which would translate to over 100MB/s. Is that right? Because if it is, it's pretty amazing. I mean, still seriously lagging behind other numbers, but seriously impressive compared to every other SSD I know.
 

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it looks like this drive can do ~30k IOPS which would translate to over 100MB/s. Is that right?
yup, not sure why you say we dont publish it, it's right there

 
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My 960 PRO died and Samsung sent me - to my surprise - 970 one, this exact model (edit: no, I'm dumb, it's 1TB). It's awesome. The temperatures can get really freakish though, and I'm wondering whether to try one of those cooling minienclosures. The SSD has a sort of a thermal tape on it though, and I'm not sure it would work well with another thermal pad you're supposed to use with one of those coolers.
 
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My 960 PRO died and Samsung sent me - to my surprise - 970 one, this exact model (edit: no, I'm dumb, it's 1TB). It's awesome. The temperatures can get really freakish though, and I'm wondering whether to try one of those cooling minienclosures. The SSD has a sort of a thermal tape on it though, and I'm not sure it would work well with another thermal pad you're supposed to use with one of those coolers.


It will, I am doing that with my 960EVO and it Works fine.

And kinda off topic:
W1zzard how do you get those stickers off the drives ?
 

bug

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yup, not sure why you say we dont publish it, it's right there

You think anyone can tell the difference from mixed and 100% writes at QD1 looking at that thing? The graph only lets us approximate performance. Nevermind comparing it to any other drive. I'd much prefer you publish actual numbers (as a table, if needed).
And to nitpick some more, would it be possible to mark AHCI and NVMe drives in your graphs? Perhaps using different shades of grey or something like that. Most of the time, I can tell them apart just by the numbers they put out. But sometimes I can't ;)
 

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You think anyone can tell the difference from mixed and 100% writes at QD1 looking at that thing? The graph only lets us approximate performance. Nevermind comparing it to any other drive. I'd much prefer you publish actual numbers (as a table, if needed).
Maybe we could add another bar graph chart at low QD ? QD1..QD3, with QD1=45% weight, QD2=35%, QD3=20% ?
 
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Been using this for a while as I retired my 850 Evo from system drive to working drive (photos/vids). Don't know if CrystalDiskInfo reports the correct temps but it never gets over 55C here since I keep a 120mm fan pointed at the 970 Pro. Only bought it since I'm somewhat expecting this to be one of the last MLC drives (or at least until Samsung comes out with a new one).
 

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Maybe we could add another bar graph chart at low QD ? QD1..QD3, with QD1=45% weight, QD2=35%, QD3=20% ?
Nope, if it's not easy to publish exact numbers, don't waste your time.
 
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Benchmark Scores Always only ever very fast
Concerning:
"The hottest part reached 102°C, which is significantly higher than what the drive's own SMART temperature monitoring reports."

Is Samsung pulling a Volkswagen?
 
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I have a 960 EVO and it works great. Im always looking for more speed though. Wondering why you didn't test Intel's Optane pcie drive in this group. Id like to see where it ends up even if its prohibitively expensive.
 
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I have 970pro 512 gb a 900p and hp ex920
The 900p is by far the fastest i can backup steam game and make virus scan and install office and use the camputer and i dont feel that it is doing anything. However the shock was that the ex920 open office faster it feels some times faster than 970pro but mostly they feel the same if by real world use if some one asked me ill tell them take the 920 over the 970pro. I still want to see i real world application where the 970pro beets the ex920. I think it all has to do with random 4k read. In my office matherboard the ex920 has 10mb more 4k speed than 970 pro
 
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It would be interesting to have the 960 Pro in the mix, too, so we can see generational improvements.
 
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As usual, TPU doesn't publish the most important metric: random 4k reads. Looking at the included graph, at QD1 it looks like this drive can do ~30k IOPS which would translate to over 100MB/s. Is that right? Because if it is, it's pretty amazing. I mean, still seriously lagging behind other numbers, but seriously impressive compared to every other SSD I know.

Frankly I don't find any of the metrics particularly valuable. I mean if two items are the same cost, fine take the faster one.... but gotta wonder if all the time saved in its life is more of less than time saved picking which on to buy. That's no knock on the article or the author but how many of the tests are relative to things that people a) actually relative to something most users do each and every day. Every once and a while, say even every other year, I'd love to see a test that says ... here's the measured ROI on adding an SSD.... for average PC enthusiast.

Windows Start Up - Best / Worst = 17.5 / 19.0 (I'm on Win 7 but for me when I built it was 15.6 for my old Samsung pro and 16.5 for SSHD to Password Window). But in any case, it's gotta be said, why do we care ? Will anyone accomplish anything in that 1.5 seconds time. The automatic response is Well 1.5 seconds x 365 days x 3 years = 1,642.5 seconds ... in other words, 27 minutes. More often that not, you'll spend more than that selecting, unboxing, reading, installing and testing the thing. And the reality is... well I only reboot once every 2 weeks so I'll save < 2 minutes. Did I accomplish anything ?... not really cause whether it's 17 seconds or 60 seconds is irrelevant as while it's booting, I'm listening to phone messages for 5 minutes and calling those folks back for 15 more.

Uncompress WinRAR - Not something I imagine folks do more times than I figure they have fingers on 1 hand in a box's lifetime. But while it's Uncomprressing, I'm alt-tabbed out doing something else so why do I care ?

Importing 1000 MP3 songs into Music Library - Never done that, and if I did, not as if a) Wouldn't waste SSD space on a music library, b) might do it once every 4 years and c) would like to say I'd be be alt-tabbing out to multi-task while it's happening but by the time I exhaust that 0.7 seconds I'd be done.

ISO Copy / Paste - Again, a) Wouldn't waste SSD space on a ISO, b) might do it once every 4 years and c) would be alt-tabbing out to multi-task while it's happening.

MS Office - See ISO

Virus Scan - Happens every day, I don't even know it's happening so no impact

Apple iTunes - a) might do it once every 4 years and b) would like to say I'd be be alt-tabbing out to multi-task while it's happening but by the time I exhaust that 2.1 seconds I'd be done.

Google Chrome - a) might do it once every 4 years and b) would like to say I'd be be alt-tabbing out to multi-task while it's happening but by the time I exhaust that1.6 seconds I'd be done.

Adobe Reader- a) might do it once every 4 years and b) would like to say I'd be be alt-tabbing out to multi-task while it's happening but by the time I exhaust that 2.6 seconds I'd be done.

Adobe PhotoShop - a) might do it once every 4 years and b) would like to say I'd be be alt-tabbing out to multi-task while it's happening but by the time I exhaust that 0.5 seconds I'd be done. Better approach here might be to double click on a 8 MB AutoCAD 2019 file and time how long it takes to start editing.

PhotoShop Editing - here we fall outside the realm of the average PC user and for all CS things Adobe, SSDs are almost an automatic for scratch files. Here we are seeing 10 50 MB images files go thru 4 operations ... looking at each image individually = 0.875 seconds difference per image. What about user time ? No one is going to look at the results ? So is it really thet big a time save if one is looking at Image 2 while 1 is being processed.

Gaming Level Loading - We are looking at 2.9 and 0.4 seconds. Now when I complete a level and i see the fade out, I'm using the break for a bio, snackie, feed the cats, check my scores, let the dog out, unflatten my butt cheeks, straighten my legs, check my phone.

Now I'm as nerdy as the next geek and yes if I was doing a build today, it would likely have more than one 970 in it. What I hate to see however is users pushed to add a SSD at the cost of a GFX card tier. If build w/ 970 Pro SSD and HD or SSHD for bulk storage with a 1080 hits the users budget limit, then dropping the SSD to grab a 1080 Ti with a 33% increase in performance to my eyes is the proverbial no brainer. Anyone will notice 33%. But running dual boot desktops and laptops with SSD + HD/SSD versus SSHD over 6 weeks with 5 users .... no one noticed.

I recall paying $1,000 for a SCSI 1 GB Hard Drive. I don't think it will be along ti me before 2 TB od SSD is only marginally more expensive than a 2 TB SSHD ... when that difference is < $100it will be something no one has to think about.

But getting back to that biennial test. I know that there's no way I could possibly justify the purchase of a high end SSD. But I am going to by 2 of them anyway :). But I would enjoy laughing at myself a bit just to keep it real ... so it would be gteat if we could somehow measure the real daily impact and ROI. If we don't check ourselves a bit, I'll start trying to rationalize 3 new HDR Screens in one of these $6 k gaming chairs.
 

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960 pro wasnt included, so the “new guy” would shine, right?
I have no contact with Samsung, so I went out and bought the 970 Pro. I don't have a 960 Pro, not gonna waste money on buying one.

If you have one and want to send it over, I'd be happy to run it and include its results here.

I don't find any of the metrics particularly valuable
What kind of testing would you like to see?
 
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My 960 PRO died and Samsung sent me - to my surprise - 970 one, this exact model (edit: no, I'm dumb, it's 1TB). It's awesome. The temperatures can get really freakish though, and I'm wondering whether to try one of those cooling minienclosures. The SSD has a sort of a thermal tape on it though, and I'm not sure it would work well with another thermal pad you're supposed to use with one of those coolers.
I have a heatsink on my 950 pro, works great. Brought peak temperatures down from 65C to 40C. Came with the motherboard.

The 970 pro looks great, but is just stupid how hot it gets. 102C?!? That is just insane. Soon you will need waterblocks for your SSDs.
 

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I have a heatsink on my 950 pro, works great. Brought peak temperatures down from 65C to 40C. Came with the motherboard.

The 970 pro looks great, but is just stupid how hot it gets. 102C?!? That is just insane. Soon you will need waterblocks for your SSDs.
It's not stupid, it's just how electronics work.
 
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bug

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Yea, but it's better than having the SSD sitting in the case as it came from the box. There's always some airflow.
 

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Things could improve because when airflow is restricted, the heatsink will soak up some heat until it "fills up". If you do burst transfers rarely, that is enough. But otherwise, heat will remain trapped onto the heatsink until it dissipates naturally, as it will do in the absence of that heatsink.

The reason I'm bringing up air flow is because while there is some in every case, M2 slots tend to be squeezed between PCIe slots and if those are in use (usually by at least one heat generating video card)... well, you get the picture.
 
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Certainly beefier then mine. Should do great.

Keep in mind this is passive stuff. Won't do much if there's no air blowing over it.
Well, if you build your own machines, this isnt an issue unless you use the cheapest cases. Any decent PC desktop case has good airflow via various fans.

Mine's got 6, there is plenty of airflow over the motherboard, and most PC builders I'm sure are aware of how heatsinks work.

It's not stupid, it's just how electronics work.
It is rather stupid, considering the 970 pro isnt THAT much faster then a 960, yet easily hits 20C+ higher. Especially given that heat is the enemy of electronics, letting an SSD get that hot is, indeed, stupid. More importantly, the fact that the sensor was that far off from the actual temperature. The drive should have been throttling to cut heat before it got up to 100C, let alone exceeded it. That kind of sensor miscalibration, or that kind of heat being in an areas without a sensor, is not something that should be happening on premium drives.
 
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Certainly beefier then mine. Should do great.


Well, if you build your own machines, this isnt an issue unless you use the cheapest cases. Any decent PC desktop case has good airflow via various fans.

Mine's got 6, there is plenty of airflow over the motherboard, and most PC builders I'm sure are aware of how heatsinks work.


It is rather stupid, considering the 970 pro isnt THAT much faster then a 960, yet easily hits 20C+ higher. Especially given that heat is the enemy of electronics, letting an SSD get that hot is, indeed, stupid. More importantly, the fact that the sensor was that far off from the actual temperature. The drive should have been throttling to cut heat before it got up to 100C, let alone exceeded it. That kind of sensor miscalibration, or that kind of heat being in an areas without a sensor, is not something that should be happening on premium drives.
You do realize it's rather trivial for manufacturers to glue a heat sink on each and every SSD. Yet the moment they'd do this, you'd be complaining it doesn't fit your laptop. There's no way manufacturers can win this.
 

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You do realize it's rather trivial for manufacturers to glue a heat sink on each and every SSD. Yet the moment they'd do this, you'd be complaining it doesn't fit your laptop. There's no way manufacturers can win this.
Include a stick on heatsink separately like a data does
 
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