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Samsung 970 PRO 1TB SSD Review

Rating: 9.0.

Launched at the same time as the 970 EVO, the 970 PRO is Samsung’s 3rd generation flagship NVMe consumer drive, taking over the mantle from the legend that is the 960 PRO. Coming in at £599.99 it is certainly not cheap, but can the performance justify that hefty price tag?

At its launch the 970 PRO comes in just two capacities: 512GB and 1TB, and instead of the TLC NAND that the 970 EVO uses, the 970 PRO comes equipped with Samsung’s latest 64-layer MLC V-NAND (3D NAND). The drive uses Samsung’s latest 5 core controller called Phoenix. Samsung hasn’t released much in the way of info about the new controller apart from one of its five cores is dedicated to communications between the controller and the system host and that the clock speeds are faster than the Polaris controller of the previous generation SSD 960 series.

Official sequential performance figures for the 1TB drive are 3,500MB/s for reads and 2,700MB/s for writes. The 512GB drive has the same read figure with writes dropping to 2,300MB/s. Random 4K performance is quoted at 15,000 IOPS and 55,000 IOPS for reads and writes respectively at a queue depth of one and using a single thread. At a queue depth of 32 and using 4 threads, the reads and writes are both quoted as 500,000 IOPS. The 512GB drive has the same figures as the 1TB drive with the exception of the QD32 4 thread read figure which drops to 370,000 IOPS.

Although the 970 PRO has the same 5 year warranty as the 960 PRO, the endurance of the new drive has been improved. The 1TB 960 PRO model had a TBW figure of 800TB, whereas the 1TB 970 PRO is rated at 1,200TB, the same figure as the 2TB 960 PRO.

Physical Specifications:

  • Usable Capacities: 1TB
  • NAND Components: Samsung 64-layer MLC V-NAND
  • NAND Controller: Samsung Phoenix
  • Cache: 1GB LPDDR4
  • Interface: PCIe Gen3.0 x4 NVMe 1.3
  • Form Factor: 2280 M.2
  • Dimensions: 80 x 22 x 2.38mm
  • Drive Weight: 8g

Firmware Version: 1B2QEXE7

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