Best SSDs 2024: From Budget SATA to Blazing-Fast NVMe

Best SSDs: Reviewed and Benchmarked
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Of the key components in any PC, the storage drive is the slowest: transferring bits in a fraction of the time your CPU and GPU take to process it or your RAM takes to load it. A poor-performing storage drive often leads to a big bottleneck, forcing your processor (even if it's one of the best CPUs for gaming) to waste clock cycles as it waits for data to crunch.

Finding the best SSD or solid-state drive for your specific system and needs is key if you want the best gaming PC or laptop, or even if you just want a snappy productivity machine. To find the best SSDs for gaming and productivity, we test dozens of drives each year and highlight the best ones here. We have multiple categories, including the best SSD for NAS and the Best SSD for the Steam Deck listed below. For those on the hunt for the best SSD for the PS5, be sure to head to that link for our recommendations based on our exhaustive testing. If you're looking for the ultimate in cheap and deep storage, we also have a list of the best hard drives.

Prime Day SSD Savings

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Samsung 990 Pro (4TB) SSD: now $299 at Amazon

Samsung 990 Pro (4TB) SSD: now $299 at Amazon (was $464)
The top-rated PCIe 4 drive and our favorite SSD overall, the Samsung 990 Pro offers read and write speeds of 7,450 and 6,900 MB/s respectively. It showed impressive latency and sustained write performance in our tests. You can also get it at Newegg or B&H for the same price.

Picking the Best SSD for You

The newest budget NVMe SSDs have undercut the pricing of mainstream drives on the slower SATA interface (which was originally designed for hard drives), but we shouldn't expect to see the end of SATA SSDs any time soon.

The era of PCIe 5.0 SSDs is upon us, propelling us to new heights of stratospheric SSD performance. Blazing-fast PCIe 5.0 M.2 SSDs, which offer up to twice the sequential speeds of the older PCIe 4.0 standard, are now supported with Intel and AMD's current platforms, like Zen 4 Ryzen 7000 and 14th-Gen Raptor Lake Refresh.

It's great if your desktop system can handle a PCIe 5.0 drive, but they are still new and more expensive, so they aren't a requirement. For example, the PCIe 4.0 Samsung 990 Pro is our current choice for the best SSD overall, and the best SSD for gaming. This drive is rated for 7,450 / 6,900 MBps of sequential read/write throughput and 1.2 / 1.55 million read/write IOPS. That means less time waiting for game levels to load or videos to transcode, not to mention a snappier experience in Windows. 

PCIe 5.0 SSDs still have plenty to offer. The Crucial T705 is unquestionably the fastest consumer SSD in the world that you can actually buy, at least for now, delivering up to a blistering 14.5 GB/s of sequential throughput and 1.8 million random IOPS over the PCIe 5.0 interface. That's an amazing level of performance from an amazingly compact device. 

While the PCIe 5.0 drives are the fastest SSDs money can buy right now, believe it or not, raw speed isn't everything. In regular desktop tasks such as web browsing or light desktop work, you may not even notice the difference between a PCIe 3.0 SSD and one with a 4.0 interface, let alone a new bleeding-edge PCIe 5.0 model. The latest PCIe 5.0 SSDs also carry a heavy price premium for now, so you're probably best suited with a PCIe 4.0 model — unless you're after the fastest possible performance money can buy, of course. If that's the case and your system supports it, go for a new PCIe 5.0 SSD. 

Ultimately, the best SSD for you is one that provides enough capacity to hold your data at a price you can afford. Consider that a high-end, AAA game can use more than 100GB of data, and Windows 11 all by itself may need 60GB.

Best SSDs in 2024 at a glance (more info below):

Swipe to scroll horizontally
Best SSDsBest SSDAlternate
Best Overall / Best M.2 SSDSamsung 990 ProWD Black SN850X
Fastest SSDCrucial T705Sabrent Rocket 5
Best M.2 SSD for LaptopsCrucial T500Sabrent Rocket 4
Best Budget M.2 SSD Crucial P3Row 3 - Cell 2
Best SSD for PS5Addlink A93Row 4 - Cell 2
Best SSD for Steam Deck, MobileSabrent Rocket 2230 Row 5 - Cell 2

Here's the shortlist of our rankings, but we have deeper breakdowns for these drives below, along with far more picks for other categories, like PS5 SSDs, RGB SSDs, workstation SSDs, and SATA SSDs, among other categories. 

Quick Shopping Tips

  • Pick a compatible interface (M.2 PCIe, SATA, Add-in Card): Look at your user manual or a database like the Crucial Memory Finder to determine what types of SSD your computer supports.
  • 500GB to 2TB: 1TB is the practical minimum for any PC build that costs more than $500 (perhaps one of the best PC builds). 2TB is the best SSD capacity for anyone that can spend $200+ on a drive. 500GB is the bare minimum anyone should consider at any price. 4TB drives have also plummeted recently, so good deals abound.
  • M.2 SSDs are the fastest: M.2 PCIe NVMe SSDs are the most common type of SSD on modern systems. These small, rectangular drives look like sticks of RAM, only smaller. They are usually 80mm long by 22mm wide, described as size 2280, but some may be shorter or longer, so make sure you get one that matches your slot.
  • SATA is the slowest: SATA isn't as fast as an M.2 SSD, but the majority of desktops and many laptops support 2.5-inch SATA drives.

Below, you'll find our list of the best SSDs. For even more information, check out our SSD Buyer's Guide. Iif you're looking for an external SSD, you can check out our Best External Hard Drives and SSD page, or learn how to save some money by building your own external SSD

Best SSDs You Can Buy Today

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Best Overall / Best M.2 SSD

Specifications

Capacities: 1TB, 2TB, 4TB (2023)
Form Factor: M.2 2280
Transfer Interface/Protocol: PCIe 4.0 x4 / NVMe
Sequential Reads/Writes: Up to 7,450 MBps / 6,900 MBps
Warranty/Endurance: 5 Years / Up to 2400 TBW

Reasons to buy

+
The  fastest PCIe 4.0 drive we’ve tested to date
+
Samsung software and support
+
Heatsink and RGB options
+
Consistent, efficient, and cool-running

Reasons to avoid

-
High pricing

Samsung hit back at its competitors with this impressive update to the 980 Pro. New hardware and new options, including a heatsink with RGB and a 4TB variant, have allowed Samsung to retake the M.2 SSD crown. Performance is excellent across the board, setting a few new performance records, such as with 4K random read performance. In our testing, the drive was consistent, power-efficient, and cool. Samsung has also updated its software for this drive, giving it the best SSD toolbox available, and the drive is backed by a competent warranty and decent support.

$20 extra for a heatsink and RGB is a good deal, and Samsung will likely discount this drive over time. Competing PCIe 5.0 drives on the market offer faster performance, but they still carry a premium. 

Read: Samsung 990 Pro Review 

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Best M.2 SSD Alternative

Specifications

Capacities: 1TB, 2TB, 4TB
Form Factor: M.2 2280
Transfer Interface/Protocol: PCIe 4.0 x4 / NVMe
Sequential Reads/Writes: Up to 7,300 / 6,600 MBps
Warranty/Endurance: 5 Years / Up to 2400 TBW

Reasons to buy

+
Top-tier performance
+
Large, consistent SLC cache
+
Strong warranty and software toolbox
+
Optional heatsink and RGB

Reasons to avoid

-
Pricing

WD has taken its popular Black SN850 SSD and turned it up to 11. The Black SN850X leverages an improved controller and newer flash to get the most out of the PCIe 4.0 interface. Performance is improved across the board, and the drive rivals most of the top contenders in the PCIe 4.0 market. There's also a heatsink option that comes with RGB at 1TB and 2TB. WD also supports the SSD with its decent Dashboard application and a respectable five-year warranty.

The M.2 Black SN850X was a bit pricey at launch, however, with a daunting MSRP, but those prices have largely come down. The touted Game Mode 2.0 feature felt incomplete in our testing, although WD ensures us that this will improve with future firmware updates. All-in-all, this is a good compromise if you can’t find the Samsung 990 Pro. 

Read: WD Black SN850X Review

Fastest Best SSDs 2024

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Fastest SSD

Specifications

Capacities: 1TB, 2TB, 4TB
Form Factor: M.2 2280
Transfer Interface/Protocol: PCIe 5.0 x4 / NVMe 2.0
Sequential Reads/Writes: Up to 14,500 / 12,700 MB/s
Warranty/Endurance: 5 years / Up to 2,400 TBW

Reasons to buy

+
Fastest drive to date with great all-around performance
+
Optional passive heatsink
+
DirectStorage-optimized firmware
+
Crucial software and encryption support

Reasons to avoid

-
High price
-
Real world gains are sometimes questionable
-
Power-hungry with a lot of heat output

The Crucial T705 is the fastest drive we have tested to date, finally breaking the 14 GB/s barrier. Careful work with Phison’s Max14um reference SSD design has led Crucial to eke out even more performance, taking the excellent T700 - a previous Fastest SSD position holder - up a notch. The optional heatsink design remains passive, which is a bonus, and you can also purchase the drive bare. Aside from the solid sequential performance, the T705 also has good sustained performance and can reach an incredible 1,550K / 1,800K random read and write IOPS at 2TB.

This is the fastest drive for now, but there will be others. The Sabrent Rocket 5 is not too far behind, and there are drives built on non-Phison controllers - like the InnoGrit IG5666-based Teamgroup T-Force GE Pro - that also promise over 14 GB/s of potential throughput. PCIe 5.0 drives remain an enthusiast product due to cost and availability concerns, and so far, they have proven inefficient and unwise for laptops and the PS5. Still, if you want the fastest consumer storage you can buy, the T705 is the fastest drive on the market.

Read: Crucial T705 Review

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Fastest SSD Alternative

Specifications

Capacities: 1TB, 2TB, 4TB
Form Factor: M.2 2280
Transfer Interface/Protocol: PCIe 5.0 x4 / NVMe 2.0
Sequential Reads/Writes: 14,000 / 12,000 MB/s
Warranty/Endurance: 5 years / Up to 2,400 TBW

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent all-around performance
+
Exceptional steady state performance

Reasons to avoid

-
High power consumption, low power efficiency 

The Sabrent Rocket 5 has the distinction of providing the fastest direct-to-TLC write performance we have ever seen. During the longest of workloads, it can average write speeds of 4.45 GB/s, outclassing any PCIe 3.0 drive in existence and beating our previous high points with TLC flash with either 4.0 or 5.0 SSDs. It’s otherwise similar to other drives based on the Phison E26 controller, but it’s at the upper end of those, too. This allows it to provide excellent all-around performance with DirectStorage-optimized firmware for future-proofing.

It has the same downsides as other ultra-fast drives - namely, high power consumption and poor power efficiency. Idle power consumption in a desktop PC, which is the most likely destination for the drive, remains quite high. The Rocket 5 can also put out a lot of heat when it’s pushed. If you can provide an ample heatsink, though, this drive will run cool enough even under sustained workloads without any throttling. This makes it one of the fastest overall drives on the market, and the absolute fastest in extended heavy workloads.  

Read: Sabrent Rocket 5 Review

Best Laptop SSDs 2024

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Best M.2 SSD for Laptops

Specifications

Capacities: 500GB, 1TB, 2TB, 4TB (2024)
Form Factor: M.2 2280 (Single-Sided)
Transfer Interface/Protocol: x4 PCIe 4.0 / NVMe 2.0
Sequential Reads/Writes: 7,400 / 7,000 MB/s
Warranty/Endurance: 5 years / 1,200 TBW (2TB)

Reasons to buy

+
Decent power efficiency
+
Has DRAM
+
Single-sided
+
Optional heatsink (for desktop, PS5)
+
Software and encryption support

Reasons to avoid

-
Price still finding its balance
-
Inconsistent sustained performance

The Crucial T500 combines cutting-edge flash with a customized controller that manages to be power-efficient with just four channels but also squeezes in the coveted performance-boosting DRAM cache. The T500 is also a single-sided drive with TCG Opal support, making it perfect for professional laptop use.

Many laptops are still stuck with PCIe 3.0 slots, and that’s fine. The T500 will be even more efficient when run at 3.0, and its benefits, aside from bandwidth potential, do not disappear. While the T500 does offer a heatsinked version, which we have in our all-around best SSD category, you’ll be going bare for a laptop. In this respect, it can even be better than DRAM-less drives, as the T500’s controller has more surface area and a metal IHS to prevent controller overheating. It’s simply the finest drive for laptops at this time unless you really want more horsepower. That’s on the menu, too, especially once the 4TB version arrives.

Read: Crucial T500 Review

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6. Sabrent Rocket 4

Alternative Best Laptop M.2 SSD

Specifications

Capacities: 1TB, 2TB
Form Factor: M.2 2280 (Single-Sided)
Transfer Interface/Protocol: x4 PCIe 4.0 / NVMe 2.0
Sequential Reads/Writes: 7,400 / 6,400 MB/s
Warranty/Endurance: 5 years / 1,200 TBW (2TB)

Reasons to buy

+
Good all-around and sustained performance
+
Power-efficient

Reasons to avoid

-
No 4TB option

 The Sabrent Rocket 4 replaces the original Rocket 4 with a faster, more power-efficient design. Although this is a DRAM-less drive, the performance is excellent, and the drive’s single-sided nature makes it great for laptops. This is an easy drop-in part that falls short of the T500 only in its omission of DRAM, but luckily, DRAM isn’t as much of a requirement as it once used to be. The Rocket 4 also tops out at only 2TB of capacity - the T500 promises 4TB this year, and there are some good 4TB options like the Lexar NM790 already available. 

Read: Sabrent Rocket 4 Review

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Best 4TB SSD

Specifications

Capacities: 1TB, 2TB, 4TB (2023)
Form Factor: M.2 2280
Transfer Interface/Protocol: PCIe 4.0 x4 / NVMe
Sequential Reads/Writes: Up to 7,450 MBps / 6,900 MBps
Warranty/Endurance: 5 Years / Up to 2400 TBW

Reasons to buy

+
Fastest Gen 4 SSD to date
+
Samsung software and support
+
Heatsink/RGB option
+
Single-sided

Reasons to avoid

-
Pricing

4TB has become a more attractive capacity point for SSDs as time has gone on. While there are now many options available, most come with compromises of one sort or another. You may have to settle for QLC, a weaker controller, no DRAM, unreliable hardware, etc. This is not always a big deal, especially if the drive is intended to be a secondary gaming drive. In the PlayStation 5, however, extra cooling is beneficial, so it’s convenient to have a heatsink option available. At the same time, laptops favor bare drives and especially single-sided drives, the latter of which have been very rare with TLC until recently.

Samsung has managed all of this with its high-performing 990 Pro SSD. You have a powerful controller with DRAM, cutting-edge TLC flash, and a single-sided drive with or without heatsink even at 4TB. WD’s SN850X has been out a while at 4TB but has no heatsink option and is double-sided, with the SN850P being a latter heatsinked version for the PS5. There has been an increasing amount of 4TB TLC drives, including the Lexar NM790 and Addlink A93, but these cannot compare to the power and brand power of Samsung’s 990 Pro. You do have to pay for that privilege given the high MSRP, but at this time there is no substitute.

Read: Samsung 990 Pro Review

Best 4TB SSD Alternative

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Best 4TB SSD Alternative

Specifications

Capacities: 1TB, 2TB, 4TB
Form Factor: M.2 2280
Transfer Interface/Protocol: PCIe 5.0 x4 / NVMe 2.0
Sequential Reads/Writes: 12,400 / 11,800 MB/s
Warranty/Endurance: 5 years / Up to 2,400 TBW

Reasons to buy

+
High all-around performance
+
Optional heatsink
+
DirectStorage-optimized firmware
+
4TB availability

Reasons to avoid

-
High price
-
Poor power efficiency
-
Faster drives becoming available

The Crucial T700 was the first 12 GB/s drive we reviewed, and it still remains one of the fastest drives we’ve ever tested. It’s also the first and only 4TB drive of its caliber that we tested. It’s been challenging to get 4TB of flash to maintain this level of performance, and 1TB isn’t enough to really get the most out of a Gen 5 SSD like this. That leaves 2TB as the only real solution, but there is a lot of demand for higher capacities as part of a storage upgrade. At this time, the T700 can best meet that role for PCIe 5.0 SSDs, given its relatively affordable price at the 4TB capacity.

The T700 won’t be the very fastest drive possible as we begin to see more 14+ GB/s options roll out. But it is still very fast, and faster than all Gen 4 and many Gen 5 SSDs. It has a nice passive heatsink option and the warranty you would expect, so no real compromises there. You’re paying a lot extra for the PCIe 5.0 bandwidth, though, but if you want a drive that will hang around a while - with its DirectStorage-optimized firmware - then the T700 is the best option. If you don’t need that much bandwidth, stick with the excellent Samsung 990 Pro for top 4TB performance.

Read: Crucial T700 4TB Review

Best Budget M.2 SSD 2024

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Best Budget M.2 SSD

Specifications

Capacities: 512GB, 1TB, 2TB, 4TB, 8TB
Form Factor: M.2 2280 (SS up to 4TB)
Transfer Interface/Protocol: PCIe 4.0 x4 / NVMe 2.0
Sequential Reads/Writes: 7,400 / 6,900 MB/s
Warranty/Endurance: 5-Year / Up to 6,000 TBW

Reasons to buy

+
Good all-around performance
+
Wide capacity range
+
Power-efficient
+
High TBW
+
Good pricing

Reasons to avoid

-
Competition at <4TB 

The Teamgroup MP44 is one of those drives that remains a value champion just for being in the right place at the right time. It feels like a natural successor to the Teamgroup MP34, a drive that was once the most popular 4TB choice among budget PCIe 3.0 drives. The MP44 is even better than that, though, as it has a more reliable controller with up-to-date flash. As such, performance is good everywhere it matters and the drive is power-efficient, too.

It’s probably not the best SSD for laptops as the controller can act as a hotspot, but otherwise it’s a good choice at any capacity. However, it faces more competition below 4TB. There are faster drives either way, but it’s difficult to argue about the MP44’s price. Its most direct rivals would be the Patriot Viper VP4300 Lite, the Lexar NM790, and the Addlink A93, but it generally beats them all with its lower cost, particularly at the coveted 4TB.

Read: Teamgroup MP44 Review

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Best PS5 SSD

Specifications

Capacities: 1TB, 2TB, 4TB
Form Factor: M.2 2280
Transfer Interface/Protocol: PCIe 4.0 x4 / NVMe
Sequential Reads/Writes: Up to 7,300 / 6,600 MBps
Warranty/Endurance: 5 Years / Up to 2400 TBW

Reasons to buy

+
Top-tier performance
+
Large, consistent SLC cache
+
Strong warranty and software toolbox
+
Optional heatsink and RGB

Reasons to avoid

-
Prices going up

WD took its popular Black SN850 SSD and turned it up to 11, but luckily for value seekers, the price isn't nearly as extreme. The current $156 price on Amazon for the 2TB model is a great deal, even if it's now $25 more than it cost last year. The Black SN850X uses an improved controller and newer flash to get the most out of the PCIe 4.0 interface, thus delivering excellent performance with the Sony PlayStation 5. WD improved performance across the board, and the drive comes with a heatsink option at 1TB and 2TB capacity points.

WD also supports the SSD with a solid five-year warranty that will let you game with peace of mind. This drive is made for the PlayStation 5, and while it can be a bit pricier than budget options, overall, it's still our top pick for the PS5. It's also fast for gaming on a PC, particularly with DirectStorage starting to become useful, so this drive is plenty attractive.

WD has taken the course of releasing an officially licensed SN850P SSD. That drive is a glorified heatsinked SN850X and you should only pick it if you want the heatsink at 4TB. Even then, it's far cheaper to get a bare SN850X and add your own heatsink.

Read: WD Black SN850X Review

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Best PS5 SSD alternate pick

Specifications

Capacities: 512GB, 1TB, 2TB, 4TB
Form Factor: M.2 2280
Transfer Interface/Protocol: x4 PCIe 4.0 / NVMe 1.4
Sequential Reads/Writes: 7,000 / 7,000 MB/s
Warranty/Endurance: 5 years / Up to 3,200 TBW (4TB)

Reasons to buy

+
Solid all-around performance
+
Wide range of capacities
+
Well-known, trusted brand

Reasons to avoid

-
Not the fastest drive possible
-
Not as power-efficient as newer drives
-
More expensive than similar SSDs

When it first launched in late 2021, the Kingston KC3000 was one of the fastest SSDs around. Today, it doesn’t necessarily stand out on its own, using common hardware that’s been a PCIe 4.0 SSD staple for quite some time. Today, it doesn’t necessarily stand out on its own, using standard hardware that’s been a PCIe 4.0 SSD staple for quite some time — it has a Phison E18 SSD controller paired with 176-layer Micron TLC NAND. However, this mature platform performs very well in the PS5, but you'll likely want to add your own heatsink.

The KC3000 comes in a wide range of capacities, from 512GB (why bother?) to a beefy 4TB model. That should be enough for most gamers, though if you want an 8TB drive, we suggest looking into the Inland Gaming Performance Plus that comes in that capacity — and costs $859, ouch! The KC3000 may not sparkle and shine like the newest PCIe 4.0 SSDs, this drive is a good value for PS5 and desktop gaming. The SN850X and 990 Pro might be slightly faster in some metrics, with the SN850X getting the edge thanks to slightly lower pricing.

There are a lot of other drives with the same hardware combination that we've tested under Windows 11, but we haven't yet tested most of these with the PS5. These include the Corsair MP600 Pro LPX, Corsair MP600 Pro XT, Inland Gaming Performance Plus, Kingston Fury Renegade, Netac NV7000, PNY CS3140, Sabrent Rocket 4 Plus-G, Seagate FireCuda 530, Silicon Power XPower XS70, and Teamgroup A440 Pro. Of these, the Inland Gaming Performance Plus 2TB at $139 and the Silicon Power XS70 2TB at $139 currently have a slightly lower price, though we haven't tested those with the PS5 due to no longer having the SSDs in our inventory, which is why the KC3000 gets the nod — but the drives are all basically the same.

Newer drives are more power efficient, like the Lexar NM790 and Crucial T500. Those also come in heatsink-optional flavors, though we think it’s worth investing in cooling for the PS5 for long-term use. While it's not our top pick, the Kingston KC3000 hardware provides solid pricing, great performance consistency, it's readily available, and it has good support.

Read: Kingston KC3000 SSD Review

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Best SSD for Steam Deck, Mobile

Specifications

Capacities: 256GB, 512GB, 1TB
Form Factor: M.2 2230 Single-sided
Transfer Interface/Protocol: PCIe 4.0 x4 / NVMe
Sequential Reads/Writes: Up to 5,000 MBps / 4,300 MBps
Warranty/Endurance: 2-Year (5-Year with registration)

Reasons to buy

+
Retail PCIe M.2 2230 SSD
+
Good all-around and sustained performance
+
Very efficient
+
Known brand with support and registered warranty

Reasons to avoid

-
Pricey
-
No 2TB option yet
-
Full warranty requires registration

The Sabrent Rocket 2230 is a fast and efficient M.2 2230 drive designed for devices that need smaller PCIe SSDs, like the Steam Deck or Microsoft’s Surface Pro series. Such smaller drives are usually sold only with pre-built OEM machines. A retail option like the Rocket 2230 means that you can avoid second-hand drives that may lack reliable support and a warranty.

Retail 2TB M.2 2230 drives use slower QLC flash, although this is not all that detrimental in the Deck. It’s also possible to get the OEM WD SN740 with TLC up to 2TB, but it has a higher power draw and costs more than some QLC alternatives. This leaves the Rocket 2230 as the best overall drive for this segment, with good performance, efficiency, and capacity options, but make sure to compare pricing when buying.

The Rocket 2230 has good all-around performance and maintains a solid level of performance in sustained workloads. It is also quite efficient in our tests thanks to its blend of a newer PCIe 4.0 controller and 176-Layer NAND flash. You can get the same results with many M.2 2280 drives at a much lower cost, however. The drive is also currently limited to a peak capacity of 1TB, and product registration is required to get the full warranty. Still, it’s the best choice for certain machines, particularly the popular Steam Deck.


Read: Sabrent Rocket 2230 SSD Review

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Alternative Best SSD for Steam Deck/ROG Ally

Specifications

Capacities: 500GB, 1TB, 2TB
Form Factor: M.2 2230
Transfer Interface/Protocol: PCIe 4.0 x4 / NVMe 1.4
Sequential Reads/Writes: 5,150 / 4,900 MB/s
Warranty/Endurance: 5 years / Up to 1,200 TBW

Reasons to buy

+
2TB TLC in single-sided M.2 2230
+
Good performance

Reasons to avoid

-
Runs hotter with more power draw
-
Somewhat more expensive than QLC options

The WD Black SN770M is unique in that it offers 2TB of TLC NAND flash in the tiny M.2 2230 form factor in a single-sided design. This makes it optimal for use in the Steam Deck, ASUS ROG Ally, and other portable gaming/computing devices. Some of these can take double-sided drives or longer drives, but the most popular of them all - the Deck and Deck OLED - work best with this form factor. For a long time, it was only possible to get a drive with less-desirable QLC if you wanted 2TB, but with the SN770M, that compromise is no longer required.

This comes at a cost as the older hardware on the SN770M - which is the same as the popular M.2 2280 Black SN770 - pulls more power and puts out more heat. For regular gaming use, this wasn’t an issue in our testing. The difference in battery life is essentially negligible, and the drive is usually not pushed enough for its direct heat output to be an issue. Therefore, it offers the best baseline performance in this form factor for now, but QLC-based alternatives may be more affordable.

Read: WD Black SN770M Review

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Best RGB M.2 SSD

Specifications

Capacities: 1TB, 2TB
Form Factor: M.2 2280
Transfer Interface/Protocol: PCIe 5.0 x4 / NVMe 2.0
Sequential Reads/Writes: 12,000 / 11,000 MB/s
Warranty/Endurance: 5 years / Up to 1,400 TBW

Reasons to buy

+
Good all-around and sustained performance
+
Excellent cooling
+
RGB and fan control

Reasons to avoid

-
Pricing and availability

PNY had its heart set on producing a very fast RGB-capable SSD, and with the CS3150 XLR8, or CS3150, it succeeded. This PCIe 5.0 SSD also has a heatsink with dual fans to ensure it never overheats. PNY’s software allows control over the RGB and fans, with synchronization possible for the former if you have other PNY RGB products. The warranty is standard, but the drive does support hardware encryption via the TCG Opal 2.0 specification, which may be a selling point for some.

The CS3150 isn’t perfect, though. It’s expensive and can be difficult to find. It’s only available at 1TB and 2TB capacities, needing 2TB to hit its maximum performance numbers. There are also other drives equal or faster to it, although for many workloads this isn’t particularly relevant. If RGB isn’t your thing, this drive also comes without the RGB in both white and black variants. Regardless of the model you go for, the drive can operate without throttling, and its performance is good across the board.

Read: PNY CS3150 Review

Best Workstation SSDs 2024

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Best Workstation SSD

Specifications

Capacities: 500GB, 1TB, 2TB, 4TB, 8TB
Form Factor: M.2 2280
Transfer Interface/Protocol: PCIe 4.0 x4 / NVMe 1.4
Sequential Reads/Writes: 7,100 MBps / 6,800 MBps
Warranty/Endurance: 5 Years / Up to 6,000 TBW

Reasons to buy

+
Good all-around performance
+
Wide capacity range
+
Heatsink included (white or black)
+
DRAM-equipped

Reasons to avoid

-
Its hardware is fairly ubiquitous
-
Not particularly power-efficient

The Corsair MP600 Pro LPX has come a long way since our original review. Its performance has been straightened out and Corsair has also added an 8TB SKU. The drive has good availability and fair pricing, which is what helps it stand out in this category. While there are many drives similar to it, including our original pick - the Seagate FireCuda 530, which is now hard to find, Corsair has focused more on simply having the drive available. Throw in a heatsink - in black or white, to match your decor - and you have an attractive and very consistent all-around performer.

What makes this drive good for workstations is that it has a powerful, eight-channel controller with DRAM, in an era when four-channel DRAM-less drives are becoming more popular. PCIe 5.0 SSDs still carry too much of a premium. The MP600 Pro LPX also has tried-and-tested hardware that’s mature and reliable, which isn’t the case with some IG5236-based drives like some Silicon Power XS70s. Corsair also offers this drive from 500GB up to 8TB, which gives a ton of flexibility to suit your needs. It’s not power-efficient by today’s standards, but this isn’t a huge factor for workstations and HEDTs, making it a safe choice.

Read: Corsair MP600 Pro LPX Review

Best NAS SSDs 2024

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
Best NAS M.2 SSD

Specifications

Capacities: 1TB, 2TB, 4TB
Form Factor: M.2 2280
Transfer Interface/Protocol: PCIe 4.0 x4 / NVMe 1.4
Sequential Reads/Writes: 7,400 / 6,800 MB/s
Warranty/Endurance: 5-Year / Up to 3,120 TBW

Reasons to buy

+
Good sustained performance
+
Runs cool
+
Acceptable pricing for DRAM

Reasons to avoid

-
No real stand-out qualities 

At first glance, the Adata Legend 960 Max seems like just another drive among many. That’s true, as there are better drives in almost every category. There’s faster drives, drives with more IOPS, more efficient drives, etc. What the Legend 960 Max does right is typically of little interest to desktop users: it has good sustained performance and runs cool while maintaining that speed. It also has DRAM, living in a world where DRAM-less drives are becoming more popular and are affordable but aren’t always ideal for heavier workloads.

The fact is, this drive is quite consistent, which is potentially useful for NAS and even workstation use. Its warranty doesn’t lag behind and the addition of a heatsink means it’s ready to go right out of the box - or you can get the regular Legend 960 without a heatsink. It’s also pretty much the least expensive drive of this type, with DRAM, at 4TB, when ignoring drives with problematic hardware like the Silicon Power XS70 or Adata S70 Blade. It’s one of those drives that goes unnoticed which means at the right price it could be a niche solution for a tucked-away server.

Read: Adata Legend 960 Max Review

Best SATA SSDs 2024

You can get a SATA drive in the M.2 form factor, but most SATA drives are 2.5-inch models, which allows them to drop into the same bays that hold laptop hard drives. SATA drives are the cheapest.

Best SATA SSD: Crucial MX500
Best SATA SSD

Specifications

Capacities: 250GB, 500GB, 1TB, 2TB
Form Factor: 2.5” 7mm
Transfer Interface/Protocol: SATA 3 / AHCI
Sequential Reads/Writes: Up to 560 MBps / 510 MBps
Warranty/Endurance: 5 Years / Up to 700 TBW

Reasons to buy

+
Mainstream performance
+
Competitive pricing
+
SSD Toolbox and cloning software included
+
Host power failure protection• Hardware AES-256 Encryption
+
TCG Opal 2.0 SED Support

Reasons to avoid

-
Smaller capacities slightly slower than larger
-
The design could use a makeover

If you don’t want to dish out big bucks on something in the NVMe flavor but still want strong SATA performance, the MX500 is a great choice. As an alternative to the Samsung 860 EVO, it offers similar performance and has a strong history of reliability. Usually priced to sell, the MX500 is a top value at any capacity you need. 

Read: Crucial MX500 Review

Best Prosumer SATA SSD: Samsung 860 Pro
Best Prosumer SATA SSD

Specifications

Capacities: 256GB, 512GB, 1TB, 2TB, 4TB
Form Factor: 2.5” 7mm
Transfer Interface/Protocol: SATA 3 / AHCI
Sequential Reads/Writes: 560 MBps / 530 MBps
Warranty/Endurance: 5 Years / Up to 4,800 TBW

Reasons to buy

+
Highest SATA performance for sustained workloads
+
High endurance
+
Consistent performance
+
SSD Toolbox and cloning software included TCG Opal, eDrive encryption support

Reasons to avoid

-
Extremely high cost

Restrained by the SATA interface, but still need the absolute highest endurance and performance you can get? As the pinnacle of SATA performance inside and out, Samsung’s 860 PRO is the SSD to buy.

Like the Samsung 970 PRO, the 860 PRO uses Samsung’s 64L MLC V-NAND, which helps propel it to the top of the charts in our rounds of benchmarking and makes for some incredible endurance figures. You can get capacities up to 4TB, and endurance figures can be as high as 4,800 TBW. But with prices that are triple that of your typical mainstream SATA SSD, the 860 PRO is mainly for businesses with deep pockets.

Read: Samsung 860 Pro Review

Finding Discounts on the Best SSDs in 2024

Whether you're shopping for one of the best SSDs or one that didn't quite make our list, you may find savings by checking out the latest Crucial promo codes, Newegg promo codes, Amazon promo codes, Corsair coupon codes, Samsung promo codes or Micro Center coupons.

MORE: Best External SSDs and Hard Drives

MORE: How We Test HDDs And SSDs

MORE: All SSD Content

Paul Alcorn
Managing Editor: News and Emerging Tech

Paul Alcorn is the Managing Editor: News and Emerging Tech for Tom's Hardware US. He also writes news and reviews on CPUs, storage, and enterprise hardware.

With contributions from
  • abryant
    Archived comments are found here: http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/id-3711120/ssds.html
    Reply
  • LordConrad
    About the MX500... "but the 500GB looks really good at just $139.99"

    You might want to double check prices when cutting and pasting.
    Reply
  • Peter Martin
    i can get an mx500 500GB for 90 bucks on amazon, they are fantastic ssd, the larger the better, get all that you can afford
    Reply
  • dannyboy3210
    SX8200 480GB looks unbelievably expensive in the states. It goes for $150 CAD up here: https://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=179_1229_1296&item_id=123218
    Reply
  • Peter Martin
    I can get that drive for 124 at Amazon
    Reply
  • WildCard999
    I would think the Samsung 860 EVO 500gb would have grabbed the spot for best SATA as you can get it for $99 (500gb) and it's quite fast. I doubt the pro is fast enough to justify the cost over the EVO version.

    http://ssd.userbenchmark.com/Compare/Samsung-860-Evo-1TB-vs-Samsung-860-Pro-1TB/m423831vsm434505
    Reply
  • Jsimenhoff
    Thanks for bringing this to our attention. It looks like the wires got crossed on our pricing widget. We're implementing a fix. Stand by.
    Reply
  • rapidwolve
    Dannyboy3210 Actually that SX8200 is now only $130CDN @ Canada Computers
    https://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=179_1229_1296&item_id=123218
    Reply
  • Onus
    I recently ordered a 1TB 2.5" WD Blue SSD for ~$139 on a Shellshocker. Hopefully it arrives soon!
    Reply
  • WildCard999
    21394321 said:
    I recently ordered a 1TB 2.5" WD Blue SSD for ~$139 on a Shellshocker. Hopefully it arrives soon!

    Was that the M.2 or the SATA version?
    Reply