The Samsung 840 Evo ruled the roost as the best SSD in the market for almost a year. Then, Samsung put out the 850 Pro. Now, Samsung have put out the 850 Evo, a model that is more attractively priced than the 850 Pro, but offering almost similar benefits.
Here’s a quick review of the 850 Evo.
Samsung 850 Evo – Quick specs
- Sequential read speed = 550 MB/s
- Sequential write speed = 520 MB/s
- Random read speed = 100 K
- Random write speed = 90 K
- Energy efficient with up to almost 1 hour in potentially extended battery life
- AES 256-bit encryption for added security
- 5 year limited warranty
- Available in 120 GB, 250 GB, 500 GB and 1 TB
To start off, what makes the 850 Evo special is its adoption of NAND technology, more specifically, V-NAND technology. V-NAND is quite special in the sense that it stacks memory panes vertically as opposed to horizontally. As a result, you get more stacks in the same real estate that would otherwise use horizontal stacking. You would think that is sort of basic stuff for engineers to think about, right? Well, it wasn’t that simple to implement.
In fact, it took almost two years for competitors to even attempt V-NAND, after Samsung first put out a disk that had that technology. It was that difficult to even copy!
Like the 850 Pro, the 850 Evo is loaded with security features. It is self-encrypting and is compatible with OPAL 2.0 as well as Micrsoft’s eDrive system.
The 850 Evo comes with software that allows you to customize the performance you get out of it, like how an expensive powerful SSD should. Called the Magician software, users can enable or disable a RAPID mode for extra performance levels. Use this RAPID mode at your own discretion though. If you are not very tech-savvy, it is best left disabled as there have been instances where users have experienced total freeze-ups of their operating system, after enabling RAPID mode and doing it without knowing what exactly they were doing.
Oh, a small drawback with the Magician software is that it only works with Windows Machines. It won’t work on Macs. The SSD itself will work on a Mac but you won’t be able to use Magician to tweak performance on a Mac.
Other than RAPID mode, you can use Magician to tweak buffer flushing patterns, file indexing, over provisioning and also write caching.
Like how car manufacturers list mileage stats with a *, implying that actual mileage can generally be slower, the actual write and read speeds that users will enjoy out of this SSD will be lower than the maximum of 520 MB/s and 550 MB/s.
On average, you can expect about 370 MB/s as the write speed and about 380 MB/s as the read speed.
In conclusion, the 850 Evo is a fantastic choice if you can’t quite afford the 850 Pro, the mother of all SSDs. Though it comes with only a 5 year warranty as opposed to the 10 year warranty that the 850 Pro has, it still is much more reliable than other branded SSDs that offer V-NAND technology, typically for just a couple of years.
If you can use the 850 Evo without twiddling with the RAPID mode, we would say that it is a very safe, reliable and fast SSD that will give you plenty of bang for your buck, though the price comes at a premium.