Question Buy high or low end M.2 SSD for my dated MB?

Littlelio

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This is quite unusual case in 'upgrading' scenario:

I have been using Asus Z97-A for more than 5 years. Since all my SATA ports are occupied, I am trying to add M.2 storage. The slot is pcie 2.0 spec, with latest bios, it supports nvme.

So my question is: should I buy a low-end m.2 pcie ssd or buy the fresh new one?

Yes the new one will be more expensive, such as Samsung EVO, but buying an dated one will get obsolete during my next coming upgrading? Also, the new SSD has much better durance index as well.

The price is not that different. Even for the new HP EX950, the 500G is only a bit expensive than a crucial counterpart. And, it is difficult to buy dated m.2 ssd anyway...

Yes within years I definitely will get upgrade. I am using this PC to work on lots of photo/video jobs, so workload is high.

I don't think pcie 4.0 SSD is necessary, but yes I have to check if pcie 3.0 nvme 1.3 will work on Z97...

Any input is appreciated. Thanks!
 

Darkbreeze

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The newer one is the much better idea if there is an upgrade somewhere on the horizon. If you buy an older, period correct M.2 NVME drive and then try to use that with a newer platform, you are not only likely going to see a reduction in performance but also a loss of longevity as well because these drives weren't particularly long lived when they were first becoming popular.

Plus, they're all backward compatible now for the most part and you'd be hard pressed to find an older model, new, anyway. If you did, it would likely be somebody's new old stock (NOS) and may or may not still be eligible for any kind of warranty if they are a third party seller.

Makes no sense to buy anything other than what is common right now. Yes, it will work, it is backwards compatible.

I just installed a brand new Samsung 970 Evo Plus 500gb M.2 NVME drive in a customers older Hero VII which is same gen as your Z97-A, last week.

I recommend sticking to Samsung, Crucial, Sandisk, Intel or Western digital.
 
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As you would be limited to the PCI-e 2.0 speeds (half speed compared to PCI-e 3.0), even the fastest drives would be limited to 1600 MB/sec sequential reads/writes or so...

Although this might shave a second off of boot/shutdown times, it will not be nearly as noticeable as the jump from spinning drive to SATA3 spec SSD....(it should be bootable in the correct PCI-e adapter, however, as I know Z97's had BIOS versions that supported it, as long as you don't mind the half-speed hit....; I'd look hard at Intel's astoundingly excellent but very low priced 660P drive, available in 2 TB for $195 or so...)

Samsung 860 EVOs are great, but, Crucial's MX500 is about as fast and usually 20-35% less expensive..
 

USAFRet

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For my Z97 board, I bought an Intel 660p, with an PCIe adapter to go in a PCIe slot.
It works. Already having 6 SATA III SSD's, pretty much the only reason I bought it was $88 for 1TB.

Do you actually need this M.2 NVMe thing?
In my normal Lightroom workflow, I literally cannot tell the difference between the 1TB 660p and a 1TB 860 EVO.
 

Littlelio

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For my Z97 board, I bought an Intel 660p, with an PCIe adapter to go in a PCIe slot.
It works. Already having 6 SATA III SSD's, pretty much the only reason I bought it was $88 for 1TB.

Do you actually need this M.2 NVMe thing?
In my normal Lightroom workflow, I literally cannot tell the difference between the 1TB 660p and a 1TB 860 EVO.
No I don't care too much about the NVME, because the PCI-e 2.0 will limit the performance. However, now the problem is it is very hard to buy a non-NVME ssd...

The price is the main point I am posting this thread. Now HP EX950 is only a little bit more expensive than intel 660P, at 500G size range. Also, the durance and future-proof factors may also bring latest SSD in advantage. IF, the new SSD is compatible with the MB.

But thank you for the comment. I think 660P falls right in the my scope. Will check further!
 

Darkbreeze

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Your motherboard ONLY supports PCIe NVME M.2 drives. It does not support SATA M.2 drives. Any 2260 or 2280 form factor PCIe NVME M.2 drive SHOULD work fine with your Z97-A, AND with any new platform you care to use it with if you upgrade. Unfortunately, unlike many modern motherboards that motherboard does not have dual compatibility with both SATA and NVME PCIe M.2 drives, so you must use an NVME M.2 PCI drive with your board.
 

USAFRet

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No I don't care too much about the NVME, because the PCI-e 2.0 will limit the performance. However, now the problem is it is very hard to buy a non-NVME ssd...

The price is the main point I am posting this thread. Now HP EX950 is only a little bit more expensive than intel 660P, at 500G size range. Also, the durance and future-proof factors may also bring latest SSD in advantage. IF, the new SSD is compatible with the MB.

But thank you for the comment. I think 660P falls right in the my scope. Will check further!
If you're already using ALL the SATA ports on your motherboard, use of an M.2 drive in that port will almost certainly disable one or more SATA ports.
On my ASRock Z97, SATA 4 & 5 are disabled if I were to plug that 660p in the M.2 port.

So, use an adapter for a PCIe slot. But don't expect any magical performance gain over a regular SATA III SSD.
 

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