Plextor’s latest NVMe SSD family is the M9 and as with the previous generation M8 drive series, the M9 comes in three versions, two M.2 drives and the HHHL version we are reviewing here.
The two M.2 versions are the M9Pe(G) which comes with a black and red design heatsink on it and the M9PeGN, a bare drive without the heatsink. The M9Pe(Y) HHHL (Half Height Half Length) drive we are reviewing has the same red and black design heatsink as the M9PeGN only much larger obviously. Capacity wise there are just three for all three versions of the M9; 256GB, 512GB and the flagship 1TB drives.
The drives use Toshiba BiCS3 64-layer 3D TLC NAND looked after by a Marvell 88SS1093 8-channel controller. The 88SS1093 uses 3rd-genaration Marvell LDPC technology for reliability enhancement and endurance boost for 3D TLC NAND.
Official performance figures for the drive are the same per capacity across the range. The 256GB drive is up to 3,000MB/s & 1,000MB/s for Sequential reads and writes respectively, the 512GB and 1TB drives are rated at up to 3,200MB/s for Sequential reads while Sequential writes come in at up 2,000MB/s for the 512GB drive and 2,100MB/s for the 1TB model.
Random read performance is quoted as up to 180,000 IOPS for the 256GB drive, up 340,000 IOPS for the 512GB drive and 400,000 for the 1TB drive. The 256GB drive is rated as up to 160,000 IOPS for random reads, the 512GB drive 280,000 IOPS and the 1TB drive 300,000 IOPS.
The M9Pe(Y) has another trick up its sleeve or heatsink, it’s an RGB design, the first RGB SSD. Power it up and displays Red and then when in standby it slowly cycles through its range of colours. Once the drive is actively reading or writing then you get the full RGB effect. It your’re not a fan of RGB then tough because at the time this review was written there is no way of turning it off. Hopefully some kind of control for it will be built into a future version of Plextor’s Plextool management software.
Plextor quote endurance figures for the 512GB drive at 320 TBW and back the drive with a five year warranty.
NAND Components: Toshiba BiCS3 64-layer 3D TLC NAND.
NAND Controller: Marvell 88ss1093
Cache: 512MB LPDDR3
Interface: PCIe Gen 3 x4 NVMe
Form Factor: HHHL
Dimensions: 176.33 x 121.04 x 22.39mm
Drive Weight: 200g
Firmware Version: 1.03