Expand your PC storage the speedy way
Adding extra storage to your PC is a great way to get a bit more space, and this doesn’t necessarily require a big financial outlay.
Some of the simplest and quickest options out there are SATA-powered 2.5-inch internal SSDs, which have the advantage of being significantly faster than traditional hard drives, as well as being silent and more reliable. These SATA SSDs are really easy to install (see our guide for help) and only need a couple of connections in order to work. They’re also compact and so will fit in most PC cases with ease. These sorts of SSDs are generally more affordable than NVMe options and offer a lot of storage space for your money as well.
Testing these 2.5-inch drives is an involved task that involves slotting them into our team’s PCs and testing their raw speed and transfer mettle, as well as working out which represents the best value in relation to their quality, and it’s a process that we undertake carefully.
We’ve gathered some of the very best SSD options on the market for you, including options at various price points.
- Which parts of your gaming PC should you upgrade first?
Our Top Pick: Best 2.5-inch SSD
Samsung 870 EVO
1. Best overall SSD
A solid and reliable SDD
$49.99 $89.99 Save $40
For speed and value, it’s hard to beat this Samsung option. An excellent option for most users.
- Great speeds
- Reliable lifespan
- Not the cheapest
$50 at Amazon $49.99 at Best Buy $49.99 at Samsung
Samsung is one of the most well-respected names in the SSD business and has been putting out superb internal SATA drives for years now.
One of our most highly recommended 2.5-inch SSDs is the superb 870 EVO, which boasts impressive read and write speeds that both exceed 500MB/s.
It’s a great option regardless of what use you’re planning for it, gaming, professional or otherwise, and also represents really solid value, which is impressive given its freshness on the market.
The Samsung 870 EVO SSD is available in sizes up to 4TB so you’ll have plenty of storage space for your favourite PC games, video files, photos or whatever else you’re planning on storing on it. Samsung’s Magician SSD management software is also superb for monitoring the drive and ensuring it’s in top-notch shape throughout its lifespan. It comes with a five-year warranty too, so that should give you peace of mind.
2. Runner Up SSD
An affordable SATA SSD option
$30 $30 Save $0
A long-term classic, and for good reason. This SSD provides superb speed and is a solid alternative for those on a budget.
- Outstanding value
- Solid speeds
- Slightly ageing now
$30 at Amazon $34.99 at Best Buy $29.99 at Crucial
Crucial’s MX500 SSD has been a mainstay in this industry for years, and that sort of loyalty doesn’t just come out of nowhere. It’s a well-made, well-performing 2.5-inch SATA drive that doesn’t cost the earth and will get the job done.
If you’re looking for solid speed and a reasonable price, this SSD is a great bet. It might not be a spring chicken, but it’s still a great value option.
This Crucial 2.5-inch SSD is one of the faster drives around with read/write speeds up to 560MB/s but it’s also reliable and energy efficient. You can also rely on it too as it’s backed by a five-year warranty. The smallest capacity versions of this drive cost less than a modern AAA game, though we’d recommend opting for a larger 1TB, 2TB or 4TB model to avoid filling it up too quickly and even at the top end these drives are remarkably affordable.
SanDisk SSD Plus
3. A top SSD option
Superb value SSD
$44 $110 Save $66
Another superb low-cost option, which can offer an instant upgrade to your PC without the typical outlay.
- Again superb value
- Fast enough for the average user
- Not the quickest
$44 at Amazon $49. 99 at Western Digital $49.99 at NewEgg
If finding value is your absolute top priority, you might want to go straight for this great drive from SanDisk, which is super affordable and an easy way to upgrade your PC without spending too much.
That doesn’t make it a slouch, though – this is a drive that can still reach very impressive speeds, and it’s more than enough to impress if you’re moving from older HDD tech.
Unlike some of the other 2.5-inch SSDs on this list, it’s only available in sizes up to 2TB but with an affordable price tag and up to 545MB/s read speed it’s still worth a look.
4. Strong SSD contender
Simple upgrade for your system
$40 $65 Save $25
If you need something basic to boost the storage size of your computer, this is a good option to consider.
- Small-size options are available
- Can be super cheap
- Limited speeds
$40 at Amazon $48. 31 at NewEgg $39.99 at B&H Photo
If you’re looking for a cut-price way to get more storage, this might be the ultimate option. The cost of this version of the drive is almost bafflingly low, meaning you could get it to move your OS files onto and hugely speed up your PC while spending a really small amount.
That’s a powerful option, and it’s one that’s really unlocked by the pricing. Still, performance is also really solid, so it’s a potent combination all around.
The Kingston a400 SSD comes in a surprisingly compact frame and is easy to install in most cases. This storage option tops out at a maximum of 960GB but the smallest model 120GB version is perfect if you want something cheap or a drive just for installing Windows 11 and nothing else.
HP S700 Pro
5. An SSD worth considering
$45 $45 Save $0
A great option if you want an SSD for the long term.
- Huge longevity
- Reliable for longer storage
- Pricier than most
$45 at Amazon
If you’re getting more into the detail of comparisons between drives you might start to notice that they’re rated to last through certain amounts of use. All of the numbers touted are generally sky-high, but still – if you want a drive that’s going to last for years and years, through multiple computers, this option from HP is a potent one.
It’s rated to last for 2 million hours of use, which is a couple of centuries, so we don’t see it failing any time soon. That means you can pick it up in confidence that it’ll stand the test of time.
How to choose a 2.5-inch SSD
There are a fair few questions you’ll want to consider before you commit to buying a particular SATA SSD for your PC – here are some of the key ones.
How fast do you need your internal storage to be?
One of the key determinants of how expensive an SSD drive becomes is down to how fast it is – both for reading and writing files. This is what you’ll actually notice as you drag and drop files between drives, or transfer things off external memory, so it plays a big role in your usage.
You’ll want to work out what speeds will work for you, perhaps in comparison to what your computer or laptop’s current drive can manage, to get a sense of where to pitch yourself.
How many can you fit in your system?
Another consideration when buying an SSD might be how many you can actually fit in your PC. Many modern PC cases have room for several drives. You might find it’s possible to install as many as six or more 2.5-inch SSDs in a mid-tower PC case, but you also need to think about whether your PSU can handle the extra drives and if you have enough SATA connections on your motherboard.
If you can fit more than one drive though, you could buy several and use them for different things – one for your Windows installation, another for games and another for backing up important files. It might be cheaper to buy two smaller drives and a single large-capacity drive.
Can you buy a faster NVMe drive instead?
If you have a modern PC then the chances are that you might be able to use NVMe storage in your system instead. These sorts of drives are actually a lot easier to install than 2.5-inch SSDs as they connect straight to your motherboard without any cables or fuss. These drives are also a lot faster as well, with the newest models running at well over 10,000 MB/s. They are more expensive, but the benefits are definitely worth considering.
How much storage space do you need?
Another big question, and also important on the value front, is how much space you need. Are you looking to install chunky games to your SSD? Or is it really just for some extra folders of spreadsheets? Whether you need 128GB or 2TB will have a huge impact on your purchase.
What are you happy to spend?
On the flip side of the two questions above, and related to them as we’ve pointed out, is your budget. If you want to spend less than £50 or $50, you’re going to be constrained by what you can find in that price range, but if you’re happy to stretch the budget a bit more you should find that things open up and there are more options.
How to Upgrade to an SSD
If you’ve noticed problems with your computer starting up slowly, taking a long time to load programs and movies, or if you’re tired of the upkeep of a hard disk drive, defragmenting and being careful not to bump it while it’s running, it might be time to upgrade to a solid state drive.
SSDs start up more quickly and load games, applications, and movies faster. They’re also more durable, use less energy, and produce less heat than an HDD.
Upgrading to a solid state drive is not hard. Use the Crucial® Advisor™ tool or System Scanner tool to determine the SSD to order, then follow the instructions below to install your drive in a Microsoft® Windows® computer. For instructions on how to install an SSD in a Mac®, click here.
You can watch this video of the steps or read below for instructions on how to install a solid state drive.
- Static electricity can damage the components in your system. To protect your system’s components from static damage during the installation process, touch any of the unpainted metal surfaces on your computer’s frame or wear an ESD wrist strap before touching or handling internal components. Either method will safely discharge static electricity that’s naturally present in your body.
- To protect your new SSD, do not touch the connectors on the drive.
- Do not open the SSD. Doing so will void your warranty.
- Be sure to move any data you want from your existing drive to the new drive before you install the new drive.
1. Make sure you’re working in a static-safe environment
Remove any plastic bags or papers from your work space.
2. Gather supplies
· 2.5-inch Crucial® SSD
· Your computer’s owner’s manual (which will specify the type of screwdriver you need)
3. Shut down your system
When your system has been powered off, unplug the power cable.
4. Hold down the power button for 5 seconds to discharge residual electricity
5. Open the computer case
Refer to your system’s owner’s manual for how to do this.
6. Ground yourself by touching an unpainted metal surface
This is an extra safeguard that protects your drive and components from static damage during the installation process.
7. Locate the storage bay
Refer to your owner’s manual for the exact location and note the size of the bays.
Some storage bays and existing hard drives are significantly larger than a standard size SSD. If this is the case in your system, you’ll need a 2.5-inch to 3.5-inch converter to make the SSD fit snugly. Remove your old drive and disconnect any cables and brackets attached to it.
8. Plug the SSD into your system
Don’t force the connection – it should plug in easily and fit snugly.
To install the SSD as a secondary drive (not your primary or boot drive), use a SATA cable and attach one end of the cable to the SATA connector on your motherboard. Attach the other end of the SATA cable to your Crucial SSD. Then, use an available SATA power cable coming from your system’s power supply and connect the cable to your Crucial SSD. For either type of install, consult your owner’s manual for how to remove an existing drive (if necessary), and how to handle the cables.
9. Reassemble your computer
10. Power on your computer
You will notice faster boot-up times and loading, less heat and power consumption, and an overall improvement in performance.
©2018 Micron Technology, Inc. All rights reserved. Information, products, and/or specifications are subject to change without notice. Neither Crucial nor Micron Technology, Inc. is responsible for omissions or errors in typography or photography. Micron, the Micron logo, Crucial, and the Crucial logo are trademarks or registered trademarks of Micron Technology, Inc. Mac is a trademark of Apple, Inc., registered in the United States and/or other countries. Microsoft and Windows are trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the U.S. and/or other countries. All other trademarks and service marks are the property of their respective owners.
5 Benefits of Solid State Drives – Kingston Technology
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There is no doubt that Solid State Drives (SSDs) are gaining popularity and are being used in laptops, desktops and servers. You can speed up your old desktop PC or laptop by replacing your hard disk drive (HDD) with a solid state drive. With their speed and reliability, SSDs are a great option for new PC builds, servers, and system builders.
An SSD is a storage medium that, unlike a hard disk, uses non-volatile (flash) memory to store and access data. In other words, there are no moving mechanical parts, and this is a very important factor.
These are just a few of the many benefits of SSDs over spinning hard drives. Among other things, SSDs can greatly improve the performance of your system with a simple upgrade. Here are five benefits that upgrading your computer with an SSD can provide.
1. Solid State Drive Durability and Reliability
High temperatures are the main cause of hard drive failure. The continuous movement of the moving parts of a hard drive generates enough heat to destroy it over time. Because SSDs don’t have these parts, they can maintain cooler temperatures and much higher performance. SSDs are also better protected from drops, shocks, bumps, and everyday wear and tear, reducing the chance of data loss.
2. SSDs are faster than HDDs
SSDs are hundreds of times faster than HDDs. SSDs make your computer boot faster, transfer data faster, and increase bandwidth. The increased speed means that SSDs can process data at the ultra-fast speeds required in today’s business world, especially when running programs such as the operating system that access large amounts of data. In addition, SSDs are very stable, which guarantees the safety of stored data.
- SATA SSDs: HDDs can only achieve write speeds of 50-120 MB/s. In comparison, SSDs load the SATA bus up to 550 MB/s. Despite the bus limitation, there is typically a 10- to 15-fold improvement in overall system performance when using SATA-based SSDs instead of legacy hard drives.
- NVMe SSDs: NVMe technology uses the PCIe bus instead of the SATA bus, unlocking huge bandwidth potential for storage devices. PCIe 4.0 (current version) provides up to 32 lanes and can theoretically transfer data at up to 64,000 MB/s, compared to the SATA III specification limit of 600 MB/s.
3. Power Efficiency
Since SSDs have no moving parts, they require less power to operate than HDDs with magnetic spinning platters. Energy efficiency provides a big advantage when using SSDs when it comes to PCs and mobile devices, where battery longevity is a highly requested feature.
Lighter and quieter
Smaller size means that SSDs weigh less than larger hard drives that contain magnetic heads and metal platters. With a compact design, SSDs are ideal for laptops, tablets and other small electronic devices. The lack of moving parts means that SSDs are much quieter than hard drives, whose noise and vibration can be very distracting.
5. More practical size/form factor
Since their inception, hard drives have been limited to large sizes. On the other hand, different sizes of SSDs are available; the smallest of these has a 2.5-inch form factor.
These are the most common SSD form factors.
- Most common 2.5-inch form factor; provides the best price per GB; closed structure.
- mSATA has a very small form factor; another type of connection; frameless circuit board; Great option for limited space.
- M.2 is an unpackaged circuit board; available with SATA and PCIe NVMe interface; small form factor; the size of a stick of chewing gum.
Cost has the final say
Solid state drives can be more expensive than hard drives. Because SSD technology is much newer than HDD technology, and their development costs are higher compared to HDDs. Overall, however, the gap is narrowing, and the dollar per GB price of SSDs has come down significantly over the past few years. Upgrading your PC by installing a solid state drive and adding more RAM are two simple and cost-effective options to improve the performance of your computer or laptop. By replacing a conventional hard drive with an SSD, you can achieve significant performance improvements even on relatively new systems. Pages will load faster and apps will launch faster. With that in mind, the benefits of switching to an SSD outweigh the costs.
Yak vibrati SSD storage: SATA, 2.5″, NVMe, M.2, PCIe, U.2
Also, it is necessary to significantly increase the speed of the robotic computer for the account of the SSD-accumulator. Ale yak vibrati?
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HDD, SSD and NVMe: Disk Systems and Interfaces Comparison
There are two types of drives: HDD (hard disk drive) and SSD (solid-state drive) and NVMe (Non-Volatile Memory Express) drives.
HDDs are found in most personal computers and laptops. Inside the disc are several aluminum plates. Read and write operations occur due to the rotation of the plates and the read head located a few nanometers away. The speed of the plates reaches 15,000 rpm, hence the usual noise and high temperature during the operation of the discs. Such drives have become popular due to the large amount of disk space (up to 16 TB on one HDD), high reliability, read and write stability.
Disadvantages of HDDs relative to SSDs:
- slow read/write operations
- high power consumption
- high noise level
HDDs are suitable for operations that do not require frequent reading and writing of information: organizing a data warehouse, a backup system, a mail server, organizing streaming video, and organizing a server for virtual machines.
SSD drives use memory chips, and due to the absence of rotating elements, such drives are completely silent, consume less power and are smaller than HDD drives in size.
SSD reads and writes are faster (files open, save, and delete faster).
The ratio of data transfer rate to the size of the transferred block is determined by the IOPS (Input / Output Operations Per Second) indicator. IOPS shows how many blocks can be written / read per second. For comparison, in HDDs this figure is about 80-100 IOPS, and in SSDs it is more than 8000 IOPS.
However, each overwrite cycle gradually “burns” the disc, which reduces its life.
SSD drives are suitable for high-load projects that are sensitive to the speed of write and read processes. SSD drives increase the speed of a site developed on any modern CMS.
Use the disk interface to connect disks to the server.
NVMe is the same drive of the SSD family, but using a specially developed access protocol and connected via the PCI Express bus.
The NVMe interface is designed specifically to increase the performance of SSDs, it allows you to remove the limitations of the SATA standard, which was once developed for HDDs. Such a drive develops speeds up to 3.5 GB / s.
NVMe has similar advantages and disadvantages of an SSD drive, we recommend using it for demanding CMS, for example, 1C-Bitrix, transferring “heavy” files and when SSD performance is no longer enough for your projects.
SATA (Serial Advanced Technology Attachment) is a serial drive interface. The SATA interface works with large amounts of data at low speeds, thanks to this factor and low cost, it has become widespread among PCs and server equipment. The speed of the SATA interface is up to 600 Mbps, with a bandwidth of 6 Gbps. SATA HDD suitable for:
- streaming operation such as video encoding
- data warehouse organization
- backup systems
- large, but not loaded file servers
Drives can be connected via SATA interface on any Intel Xeon E3/Xeon E5, 2 x Xeon E5, Intel Core i7/i9, AMD Ryzen server.
SAS (Serial Attached SCSI) is a serial hard drive interface based on SCSI command sets. The SAS interface operates at speeds up to 1.2 Gbps. with bandwidth up to 12 Gbps. HDDs connected via a SAS interface are suitable for high-speed operations with a large number of write cycles.
The disadvantage of SAS is the high price of this interface and less reliability compared to SATA, consider SSD drives for better performance.
Interface for connecting SSD drives
SSD drives are also connected via the SATA interface. SSD drives connected via SATA interface transfer data at speeds up to 6 Gb / s.
SSD drives are also connected on Intel Xeon E3/Xeon E5, 2 x Xeon E5, Intel Core i7/i9, AMD Ryzen servers.
Interface for connecting NVMe drives
PCI Express (Peripheral Component Interconnect Express) or PCIe – a serial I / O bus for connecting peripherals to the motherboard, uses a bidirectional serial connection and there can be several connections.