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Samsung has just announced the 980 NVMe M.2 SSD. This will be Samsung’s first SSD drive that lacks onboard DRAM. Instead, the 980 SSD relies on the CPU’s DRAM via the PCIe. The approach of utilizing a DRAMless controller still provides NVMe speeds via PCIe 3.0 x4 while reducing overall costs. With rated sequential read and write speeds of 3500 MB/s and 3000 MB/s, the 980 isn’t a slouch. While these drives will not be at the bleeding edge of performance, they will be some of the most affordable based on the performance you receive.
The 980 is available in three capacities, 250 GB, 500 GB, and 1 TB, and can be purchased directly from Samsung or any vendor that normally carries Samsung products. Pricing will start at $50 for the 250 GB model, $70 for the 500 GB, and $130 for the 1 TB. Here is the press release from Samsung.
Samsung’s 980 NVMe SSD Combines Speed and Affordability to Set a New Standard in Consumer SSD Performance
Samsung’s first DRAM-less SSD enables more users to experience
NVMe speeds at affordable price points
Samsung Electronics, the world leader in advanced memory technology, today announced the 980 NVMe SSD,1 the company’s first consumer drive without DRAM. Delivering the highest performance among DRAM-less SSDs,2 the new 980 makes blazing NVMe speeds more accessible to a wider range of users.
“Through both hardware and software innovations, our new 980 SSD brings greater value without compromising the high-end NVMe performance,” said KyuYoung Lee, vice president of Memory Brand Product Biz team at Samsung Electronics. “The 980 offers an excellent blend of speed, power efficiency and reliability, making it suitable for everyday PC users and gamers as well as content creators.”
Previously, DRAM-less designs have presented a disadvantage in speed without the short-term memory at hand for fast access to data. Samsung’s 980 utilizes Host Memory Buffer (HMB) technology, which links the drive directly to the host processor’s DRAM to overcome any performance drawbacks. This technology, coupled with the company’s latest sixth-generation V-NAND as well as optimized controller and firmware, enables the 980 to provide NVMe performance with six times the speed of SATA SSDs. Sequential read and write speeds come in at up to 3,500 and 3,000 MB/s, while random read and write performances are rated as high as 500K IOPS and 480K IOPS,3 respectively.
The newly upgraded Intelligent TurboWrite 2.0 also offers significantly enhanced sustained performance over the previous iteration4 by allocating a much larger buffer storage area inside the drive.
For users working with extremely large files or running graphics-heavy games, the new ‘Full Power Mode’ added to Samsung’s Magician 6.3 software allows the drive to continuously run at peak performance for uninterrupted work and play.
Additionally, consumers will no longer have to worry about their drive overheating, thanks to its advanced thermal designs. With Dynamic Thermal Guard technology, nickel-coated controller and heat spreader label solutions available in Samsung’s high-end 980 series, users can enjoy stable and reliable performance even during prolonged use.
The SSD further features improved power efficiency of up to 56% when compared to the previous 970 EVO,5 allowing laptop users to better manage power usage.
The Samsung 980 SSD is available for a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of $49.99 for the 250GB, $69.99 for the 500GB and $129.99 for the 1TB. For more information, please visit samsung.com/SSD or samsungssd.com.
Category Samsung 980 NVMe SSD Interface PCIe Gen.3.0 x4, NVMe 1.4 Form Factor M.2 (2280) Capacity 1TB, 500GB, 250GB Sequential Read/Write Speed Up to 3,500 / 3,000 MB/s Random Read/Write Speed (QD32) Up to 500K IOPS / 480K IOPS Management Software Samsung Magician Data Encryption AES 256-bit Full Disk Encryption, TCG/Opal V2.0, Encrypted Drive (IEEE1667) Total Bytes Written
Warranty6 Five-year Limited Warranty7
1 The NVM Express® design mark is a registered trademark of NVM Express, Inc.
2 PCIe 3.0 NVMe DRAM-less SSDs, as of March 2021
3 Performance may vary depending on the SSD’s firmware version and the system hardware & system configuration. Performance measurements are based on IOmeter 1.1.0. Sequential and random write performance were measured with Intelligent TurboWrite technology activated. Intelligent TurboWrite operates only within a specific data transfer size. For detailed information, please contact your local service center
* Test system configuration: Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-6700K CPU @ 4.00GHz, DDR4 2133MHz 8GBx2 OS-Windows 10 Pro 64bit Asrock Z-170 Extreme7+
4 TurboWrite region has been increased significantly, from up to 42GB in the 970 EVO to up to 160GB in the NVMe SSD 980
5 Power efficiency (measured as IOPs/watts) improvement determined in comparison to the 970 EVO 1TB. Power consumption measured with IOmeter1.1.0 version with AMD Ryzen 7 3700X 8 Core @3.6GHz, DDR4 8GBx2, OS-Windows 10 Pro 64bit Chipset-GIGABYTE-X570-AORUS MASTER
6 Samsung Electronics will not be responsible for any damages not covered by the limited warranty, including but not limited to any loss of data or other information stored on Samsung Electronics product or any loss of profit or revenue which may be incurred by user due to loss of data. For more information on the limited warranty, please visit samsung.com/ssd.
7 Product covered for five years or until fulfillment of the TBW rating, whichever comes first. For more information on the warranty, please see the warranty document enclosed in the package.