Finest M.2 SSDs in 2023


Putting in a brand new solid-state drive (SSD) for the primary time or changing an older one, is the one handiest improve you may make to a PC. An SSD improve will not price you an excessive amount of, does not take lengthy to put in, and considerably improves your computing expertise. It is a tried-and-tested methodology to breathe new life into a pc.

Choosing the right SSD, nevertheless, could be a little sophisticated. M.2 drives are broadly obtainable, with capacities starting from 250GB to 8TB. Moreover, M.2 is the shape issue for NVMe, the high-speed connection that has virtually completely changed SATA, which is current on some M.2 drives and a pair of.5-inch SSDs. Though SATA drives usually present the perfect worth for capability, we’re solely recommending NVMe M.2 drives since they’re the perfect for internet hosting working programs and usually have a lot better efficiency.


These are the perfect M.2 SSDs in 2023

The WD Black SN850X SSD.

WD Black SN850X PCIe 4.0 SSD

Finest total M.2 SSD

Prime-end efficiency with out a big price ticket

$100 $160 Save $60

The WD Black SN850X is a barely upgraded model of the common SN850. It is the most effective PCIe 4.0 SSDs available on the market, and it may be utilized in a gaming PC or a PS5.


  • Probably the greatest performing NVMe SSDs
  • Is available in 1TB, 2TB, and 4TB sizes
  • Comparatively cheap

  • Additional efficiency is not vital for all customers

The Western Digital Black SN850X is our choose for the perfect SSD you should buy proper now. It is principally a barely improved SN850 with a PCIe 4.0 interface to make the most of double the theoretical bandwidth restrict of different PCIe 3.0 drives. The SN850 can hit 7,300MB/s reads and 6,300MB/s writes in sequential transfers to face out from the group. The drive is available in an M.2 2280 single-side type issue with an NVMe controller, a DRAM chip, and two flash packages.

The SN850X drive is accessible in 1TB, 2TB, and 4TB capacities with or with out heatsinks. Excessive-performance drives are identified to run slightly sizzling, particularly when underneath load, so we advocate utilizing a heatsink to maintain your drive temperature in examine, whether or not it is from WD or included in your motherboard.

The drive can be rated to endure as much as 300TBW (terabytes written) for the 500GB capability, or as much as 1,200TBW on the 2TB variant. The corporate additionally backs the Black SN850X with a five-year guarantee. These guarantee claims are extra in step with what most producers provide for his or her SSDs, in order that’s nice.

PCIe 4.0 is all about speeds and the Western Digital Black SN850 is nice in that regard. That is arguably the perfect M.2 SSD to purchase proper now, and we count on it to remain on high of the checklist not less than till next-gen PCIe 5.0 drives arrive. Even after PCIe 5.0 SSDs come out, they’re going to in all probability be so costly that the SN850X nonetheless stays the perfect total alternative.


Samsung 990 Professional SSD

One other nice SSD

Samsung’s various to the SN850X

$100 $150 Save $50

Samsung’s latest and quickest SSD, the 990 Professional, is actually pushing the bounds of what PCIe 4.0 storage can provide. It gives the quickest switch speeds we have seen up to now for a Gen 4 drive whereas not costing far more than slower SSDs.


  • Prime-end efficiency
  • 1TB, 2TB, and 4TB sizes
  • Heatsink variants

  • Firmware must be up to date as quickly because it’s put in

Samsung’s 990 Professional is the corporate’s newest high-end NVMe SSD, changing the older 980 Professional. With sequential reads as much as 7,450MB/s and writes as much as 6,900MB/s, it is the quickest SSD on this total assortment, and it is often dearer than the SN850X. Nevertheless, we have discovered it on sale for round $100, similar to the SN850X and plenty of different SSDs.

Technologically, the 990 Professional is much like the 980 Professional however options a number of enhancements. Most significantly, it is 50% extra environment friendly than the 980 Professional, which is extraordinarily necessary for laptops since much less energy consumption means extra battery life. The 990 Professional can be optimized for Microsoft’s DirectStorage API, which goals to decrease the loading occasions in video games.

The 990 Professional solely is available in 1TB, 2TB, and 4TB capacities, however every capability has a variant with or with out a heatsink. The fashions with the heatsink price $20 greater than these with out, however you in all probability will not want it if the gadget you are putting in this SSD into already has a heatsink for SSDs. Because of its five-year guarantee and endurance of 600TBW per TB of capability (which implies a most of two,400TBW for the 4TB mannequin), this SSD will final for a really very long time and if it does not, you can ask Samsung for a substitute.

That is the quickest SSD you will discover, but it surely does not get the final word advice from us for 2 causes. Firstly, we’re unsure if it will stick at $100 because it launched at $150 and has solely come right down to $100 lately. Secondly, early firmware on the 990 Professional causes main well being degradation points, which implies it’s essential replace the 990 Professional as quickly as you put in it. We’re certain Samsung has mounted the 990 Professional, however the entire firmware factor nonetheless has us spooked.

The Sabrent Rocket 4 Plus SSD.

Sabrent Rocket 4 Plus

Finest high-capacity SSD

A nicely performing SSD with a ton of capability

$1100 $1500 Save $400

The Sabrent Rocket 4 Plus is a midrange PCIe 4.0 SSD with a steadiness of worth and pace. Moreover, it gives as much as 8TB of capability, one of many few M.2 drives to take action.


  • 8TB when most drives go as much as 4TB
  • Good efficiency
  • Separate heatsink for PS5

The Sabrent Rocket 4 Plus M.2 SSD is almost nearly as good because the chief of the pack. It is only a contact slower than the WD Black SN850X with peak reads of seven,100MB/s and writes of 6,600MB/s, but it surely has one factor the SN850X cannot match: capability. Sabrent gives an 8TB mannequin of the Rocket 4 Plus, making it one of many densest SSDs you will discover proper now.

The Sabrent Rocket 4 Plus makes use of the brand new Phison E18 controller. It’s a follow-up to the favored Phison E16 controller that runs the present on first-gen PCIe 4.0 drives. It’s obtainable in 1TB, 2TB, 4TB, and 8TB capacities, with a five-year guarantee that’s good for 700TBW, 1,400TBW, 3,000TBW, and 5,600TBW endurance, respectively. Each the capability and the guarantee choices are extra in step with what most different M.2 SSDs on the market provide available on the market. The drive additionally has Micron NAND flash and SK Hynix RAM for the cache.

Sabrent can even offer you a duplicate of Acronis True Picture to assist switch your present set up throughout. The drive additionally comes with a customized heatsink in order that it might carry out nicely, and there is additionally a separate thinner heatsink for individuals who need to set up it inside a PS5.

We’re primarily recommending the 8TB mannequin right here, however that’ll price over $1,000. That is not a terrific worth however having a lot density is a promoting level by itself. The smaller capability fashions are additionally good, simply not wonderful.


Essential P5 Plus SSD

Finest worth PCIe 4.0 SSD

PCIe 4.0 efficiency for much less

$81 $99 Save $18

The Essential P5 Plus is not the quickest PCIe 4.0 SSD available on the market, but it surely’s priced nicely for the efficiency & options it brings to the desk. It is best for customers who need one thing clearly sooner than older PCIe 3.0 whereas getting an excellent deal.


  • Lower than $90 for the 1TB mannequin
  • Ok efficiency

  • Quicker drives are barely dearer

The Essential P5 Plus banks on the promise of worth reasonably than flat-out efficiency. It is optimized for particular workloads and reliability than making an attempt to excel at the whole lot directly. Whereas it might not provide the perfect efficiency, it nonetheless retains up with demanding workloads for dependable and constant throughput. Essential is utilizing the in-house Essential NVMe Structure controller, with an eight-channel design that leverages LPDDR4 DRAM to speed up FTL administration. The 500GB and the 1TB mannequin use 1GB of DRAM, and the 2TB mannequin makes use of 2GB.

The Essential P5 Plus is rated for sequential reads and write speeds of 6,600MB/s and 4,000MB/s, respectively. It’s not in the identical ballpark as another drives on the checklist, sitting between the perfect of PCIe 3.0 and newer PCIe 4.0 drives, but it surely’s going to be helpful to energy high-end gaming programs. The P5 Plus sticks include a five-year guarantee and an honest endurance of as much as 1,200 TBW for the 2TB variant. The endurance halves for the lower-capacity sticks. That is not essentially a difficulty and is often seen in most M.2 SSDs.

A number of the newer PCIe 4.0 drives just like the Sabrent Rocket 4 Plus are superior when it comes to uncooked efficiency. However Essential’s emphasis on longevity and relative affordability makes it a compelling possibility over the high-end drives available on the market. Total, the Essential P5 Plus has earned a spot in our assortment as a dependable possibility for individuals who need a PCIe 4.0 drive with out spending high {dollars} (although that is not a lot for SSDs lately). It undercuts many of the high-end efficiency drives relying on the capability you go for.

The Patriot Viper VPR400 NVMe SSD.

Patriot Viper Venom VPR400

Finest RGB M.2 SSD

It isn’t quick but it surely certain is fairly to take a look at

$78 $88 Save $10

Patriot’s Viper Venom VPR400 is among the few M.2 SSDs that holds the excellence of getting RGB lighting. Its efficiency is pretty unremarkable, however with RGB and a comparatively low worth, it manages to face out.


  • Very gradual for a PCIe 4.0 SSD
  • Solely two measurement choices obtainable

Contemplating that M.2 SSDs are sometimes stowed away, mendacity both underneath elements or on the opposite aspect of the board, you do not essentially must care about how they appear. However, RGB could be placed on principally something, and naturally, there are RGB SSDs you should buy, even within the M.2 type issue. There aren’t a ton of them on the market, however fortunately Patriot’s Viper VPR400 comes with RGB and does not make any essential compromises that will usually plague such a distinct segment product.

Solely 500GB and 1TB fashions can be found, and we undoubtedly advocate the 1TB mannequin right here. Its most sequential learn and write efficiency is 4,600MB/s and 4,400MB/s, respectively, although Patriot additionally says the RGB lighting reduces efficiency by 10%. That may imply with RGB on, you are taking a look at simply 4,100MB/s and 4,000MB/s reads and writes. No less than its rated endurance of 800TBW is sweet, and that is backed up by a five-year restricted guarantee.

In the case of efficiency, the VPR400 is completely outclassed by each different PCIe 4.0 drive and is simply reasonably sooner than top-end PCIe 3.0 SSDs. Nevertheless, it is unlikely that most individuals would discover or care about that decreased efficiency, and you are not even paying a ridiculous worth for the VPR400. On the time of writing, it prices about $80. Should you really need RGB in your M.2 SSD, the Viper VPR400 is an effective possibility and comes with surprisingly little baggage.

The Samsung 970 Evo Plus SSD.

Samsung 970 EVO Plus SSD

Finest PCIe 3.0 SSD

Nonetheless a quick SSD regardless of its age

$61 $70 Save $9

The Samsung 970 EVO Plus continues to be a unbelievable PCIe 3.0 SSD for individuals who’re not chasing cutting-edge SSD know-how. Its sequential reads and writes are subpar in comparison with PCIe 4.0 drives however its random efficiency is the same as even the 990 Professional.


  • Very low worth
  • Good random efficiency

  • Worse sequential efficiency than even gradual PCIe 4.0 drives

Whereas the last-gen PCIe 3.0 M.2 SSDs are not any match in opposition to the newer PCIe 4.0 drives, we expect they’re nonetheless value choosing up if you happen to’re not too fearful about top-tier efficiency. There isn’t any scarcity of PCIe 3.0-based SSDs, however the Samsung 970 EVO Plus is our high choose. The 970 EVO Plus changed the extremely common 970 EVO drive because the mainstream PCIe 3.0 SSD earlier than the new-gen drives arrived. It is outfitted with a V5 flash that gives a pleasant pace bump to three,500MB/s of sequential reads.

The Samsung 970 EVO Plus is accessible in 250GB, 500GB, 1TB, and 2TB capacities with an endurance ranking of 150 TBW, 300 TBW, 600 TBW, and 1,200 TBW, respectively. In our testing, the 970 EVO Plus is able to sequential learn and write speeds of round 3,400MB/s and three,150MB/s; random learn and write efficiency in the meantime is definitely on par with the 990 Professional, the corporate’s newest SSD. Because of the TurboWrite cache, the 970 EVO Plus SSD has various sequential write speeds, primarily based on how a lot information lands within the fingers of the cache reminiscence.

The Samsung 970 EVO Plus continues to be thought of to be the most effective to deal with robust workloads, which is why it is the most effective PCIe 3.0 M.2 SSD available on the market proper now. As a previous-generation product, the Samsung 970 EVO Plus can be not as costly because it as soon as was. It is nonetheless a very nice drive to make use of in one thing like a price range desktop construct or as an improve to your laptop computer.

The WD Blue SN550 SSD.

WD Blue SN550 NVMe M.2 SSD

Finest price range SSD

Once you need to play as little as attainable

$60 $90 Save $30

The Western Digital Blue SN550 SSD gives nice worth for cash and fairly nice efficiency, good for any price range construct. It is outclassed in uncooked horsepower by many drives, however not in a method that can matter for the informal person.


  • Respectable efficiency
  • When in inventory, has good worth

  • Do not get the 250GB possibility

The Western Digital Blue SN550 has its fair proportion of compromises, however we have determined so as to add it right here as a result of it delivers dependable efficiency at rock-bottom costs. As WD’s mainstream NVMe SSDs, the Blue SN550 gives unimaginable worth for economical customers. In truth, this was probably the most common M.2 drives on the time of its launch, and it is protected to say that it has managed to maintain its identify within the sport. It is obtainable in 250GB, 500GB, 1TB, and 2TB capacities, although you might have hassle discovering the 1TB mannequin at a worth that is sensible.

The Blue SN550 drives are rated to ship sequential learn and write speeds of as much as 2,400 MB/s and 1,750 MB/s respectively. One factor to remember is the 250GB capability drive can solely hit 950MB/s write speeds. So it is best to purchase both the 500GB or the 1TB variant to get the perfect worth. The Blue SN550 comes with a five-year guarantee and is rated to endure as much as 600TBW for the most important capability.

Western Digital has additionally cleverly separated the elements on the SSD to distribute and dissipate warmth extra effectively. It prevents warmth switch from one part to the opposite to make sure the drive retains operating easily, eliminating the necessity for a complicated heatsink. The temperatures are mentioned to be nicely underneath acceptable limits, even underneath load. WD’s Blue SN550 beats the QLC NAND drives like Intel’s SSD 665p and Essential’s P1. It even dominates the Corsair Group MP33, one other DRAM-less SSD that suffers significantly when pushed past its cache.

Total, the WD Blue SN550 is among the most constant M.2 SSDs the market has seen in a few years. It might not be the quickest SSD on the market, but it surely’s completely serviceable for use as the first storage on a price range PC construct. The Blue SN550 can be confirmed to reply sooner than the extra premium WD Black SN750 in some circumstances. It is a unbelievable SSD to work as your boot drive, or it may be used to dump much less continuously used information.

Finest M.2 SSDs in 2023: Ultimate ideas

The Western Digital Black SN850X is our high choose because it’s the perfect total PCIe 4.0 SSD round, succeeding the SN850 as our earlier favourite. It is the M.2 SSD we expect ought to go into your subsequent high-end PC since it isn’t solely comparatively cheap however boasts among the finest efficiency of any drive. Samsung’s 990 Professional is not a nasty various, nevertheless.

The WD Black SN850X SSD.

WD Black SN850X PCIe 4.0 SSD

Finest M.2 SSD

$100 $160 Save $60

The WD Black SN850X is a barely upgraded model of the common SN850. It is the most effective PCIe 4.0 SSDs available on the market, and can be utilized in a gaming PC or a PS5.

Should you’re leaning in the direction of a price range construct, you would possibly need to take into account shopping for the Samsung 970 EVO Plus. As a last-gen product, it isn’t as costly as the highest contenders in our assortment and can be appropriate with quite a lot of platforms. It will both function the proper boot drive possibility on a price range construct or can be utilized to retailer the less-frequently recordsdata in your system.

Constructing a brand new PC does not need to be a frightening process. You may make it simpler by tackling one part at a time. Simply be sure you’re not spending on a regular basis solely on the core elements just like the CPU, GPU, and motherboard. Even the peripherals like keyboards, displays, webcams, and so forth. play a significant position in making your computing expertise higher.

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