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Samsung 850 EVO Review: 3D NAND and insane endurance for the masses

Jon L. Jacobi | Dec. 9, 2014
It's been only a few short months since Samsung's 850 Pro delivered the company's long-lasting 32-bit 3D NAND to the high-end/corporate market. Now it's available to mainstream consumers in the form of the 850 EVO. The EVO is cheaper, and its warranty is only half that of the Pro's, but that's still a hefty five years--what most vendors provide only for their premium drives.

The 500GB 850 EVO that Samsung sent us proved a capable, if not blazing-fast, performer without its RAPID caching software enabled. It averaged around 380MBps reading and 370MBps writing in CrystalDiskMark. CDM also rated the drive as reading small 4KB files at 244MBps and writing them at 223MBps (that's with a queue depth of 32). ATTO rated the drive at around 390MBps. With the RAPID caching software fired up, CrystalDiskMark's sequential read and write times were anywhere from a ridiculous 7.6GBps to a slightly less ridiculous 2.9GBps. ATTO was similar in rating the drive anywhere from 2GBps to 4GBps.

One caveat: The amount of data written by CrystalDiskMark and ATTO don't come close to stressing RAPID. With larger files, you'll get better performance with RAPID, but hardly twenty times faster. If the files are long enough, say 5GB or more, RAPID's impact disappears completely. 

Note: Performance of the 1TB 850 EVO with its MEX controller should be similar to the 850 Pro's.

The 850 EVO is a nicely affordable SSD, highly recommended if longevity is your major concern. We were hoping to see some of that large drop in price that 3D NAND should eventually deliver, but we'll take the 850 EVO as-is.


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