During its Global SSD Summit, Samsung today announced the 950 Pro series SSDs which are the first Samsung consumer SSDs with a PCI-Express interface. Samsung promises a performance increase of up to 4x compared to SATA-3 based SSDs.
The Samsung 950 Pro SSDs come in a M.2 form factor and using an adapter they can also fit in a PCI Express expansion slot. The drives are built around a controller that’s called UBX which is combined with Samsung’s 2nd generation 3D V-NAND. The 3D V-NAND consists of 32 layers with 2 bits per cell (MLC). The UBX controller is able to transfer data over 4 PCI-Express 3.0 lanes using the NVMe protocol.
Samsung will start shipping the 950 Pro SSDs in capacities of 256GB and 512GB. The combination of NVMe, the four PCIe lanes, the new controller and the 3D V-NAND should be able to achieve 2500 MB/s when reading data sequentially and 1500 MB/s when writing sequentially. When it comes to random reads and writes, Samsung promises 300,000 and 110,000 IOPS respectively.
Besides the improved performance the drives should also be energy efficient. The maximum usage of the SSDs is specified at 5.7W and idle power consumption is specified at less than 2 milliwatt, which according to Samsung is less than half of the most power efficient SATA SSDs in DEVSLP mode. We hope to test that when the drives arrive in our lab using our Quarch power testing tools.
The 256GB drive will hit the market in October with an MSRP of $200 and $350 for the 512GB drive. Both come with a 5 year warranty and Samsumg promises an edurance of 200TB for the 256GB model and 400TB for the 512GB drive.