[SOLVED] Can I use a diferent second M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD on my Asus Prime Z 390-a motherboard ?

Violett

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Hello guys. I have a brand new I9 9900-k desktop with Asus Prime Z 390-a motherboard. The OS is already installed in the first M.2 socket- a SSD Intel 760p 512Gb NVMe PCIe wich is the boot drive. For storage, I have a 2 Tb HDD. But I already bought a second M.2 NVMe PCIe drive - a Samsung 970 Evo 2Tb, and I want to install in the second M.2 socket. Excuse me for such a stupid question, but it is my first build and I want now to improve the the storage space . I’m wondering is is posibile to use the second M.2 drive, wich is obviously a different brand, have a diferent speed and stoarce capacity without affecting the stability of the system and maybe more important, without minimazing the speed or the space of the Samsung drive. In fact, I don’t know is posibile to run the Samsung M.2 SSD drive separately from Intel M.2 SSD without a RAID 0 configuration, because I don’t want a RAID configuration. Another possibility is to return the Samsung M.2 PCIe and change to a Samsung 860 Evo or Pro, but I don’t know if that way is worse for my Intel boot drive, because of the slower speed of the SATA connection. My Asus manual says:
M.2 sockets (M.2_1 (Socket 3); M.2_2 (Socket 3))
These sockets allow you to install M.2 SSD module.
M.2_1 socket supports PCIe 3.0 x4 and SATA mode M Key design and type 2242 / 2260 / 2280 PCIe and SATA storage devices.
M.2_2 socket supports PCIe 3.0 x4 M Key design and type 2242 / 2260 / 2280 / 22110 PCIe storage devices.
These sockets support IRST (Intel® Rapid Storage Technology).
When the M.2_1(Socket 3) is operating in SATA mode, SATA port 2 (SATA6G_2) will be disabled.
The M.2 SSD module is purchased separately.
Thank YOU and apreciate.
 
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USAFRet

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For a game only machine?
The greater GB per $ of a SATA III SSD trumps the speed difference of NVMe over SATA.

You gain exactly zero FPS increase with an NVMe drive, and a very minimal increase (if any) in level loading speed.

Now...if you were doing a lot of video or photo editing, a second NVMe drive might be indicated.
For a game machine? No. A larger SATA III drive would work better.


I would send the 970 back and get a larger 860 EVO for the same $$.


NOTE: This is an opinion in early 2019. Reading this in 2021, for instance, might well result in a different choice.
 

USAFRet

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Both of your M.2 ports support the drives you choose.
And will act independently, no RAID or IRST needed or wanted. Different make/model/size is no problem.

If you wish to use an 860 EVO m.2 drive (SATA III), only the M.2_1 port supprts that type of drive. Again, will have no impact on your current Intel NVMe drive.
Use of that M.2_1 port with a SATA drive disables the SATA port #2 on the motherboard, so if your HDD is connected to that specific port, you'd have to move it to a different one.
 
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Violett

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Both of your M.2 ports support the drives you choose.
And will act independently, no RAID or IRST needed or wanted. Different make/model/size is no problem.

If you wish to use an 860 EVO m.2 drive (SATA III), only the M.2_1 port supprts that type of drive. Again, will have no impact on your current Intel NVMe drive.
Use of that M.2_1 port with a SATA drive disables the SATA port #2 on the motherboard, so if your HDD is connected to that specific port, you'd have to move it to a different one.
Thank you very much for your rapid and competent answer. I am now much clearified about the cappabilities of my motherboard, and I will follow your advise. But one more question is still remain for me, considering the very high speeds of both of my M.2 SSD PCIe NVMe have - Intel 760p and Samsung 970 Evo, and I am affraid that SSD combo will have sooner or later a bottleneck finality, I don’t know. My GPU is an MSI RTX 2080 TI Ventus 11 Gb, and my RAM memory is a Corsair Vengeance RGB Pro 2x16 Gb 3200 MHz CL16. My CPU is an Intel 9900k. I appologise if my second question exceed this thread, but I don’t wanted to start another thread in another section. Do you know if this combo SSD works properly in my configuration ? Thank you again.
 
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USAFRet

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and I am affraid that SSD combo will have sooner or later a bottleneck finality
No, that will not be an issue.
I do question the need for a second NVMe drive. Of course, this depends on what you use the system for.

A SATA III drive like the 860 EVO might work better. More space for the same money, and little real performance difference for it being the second drive
 
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Violett

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No, that will not be an issue.
I do question the need for a second NVMe drive. Of course, this depends on what you use the system for.

A SATA III drive like the 860 EVO might work better. More space for the same money, and little real performance difference for it being the second drive
I will use my rig only for gaming and I thought that such a second NVMe drive with a faster speed, will offer a better loading performance in gaming, although the most opinion of some people is using an NVMe drive only for storage games is useless, because such an NVMe driver is almost with nothing better than a SATA drive, considering that in reality, the difference in uploading games is just a few seconds, if they are right. So, in my case, returning in a way to the innitial point of my dilema, what is the best choise excluding price, to send back to the store the M.2 NVMe Samsung 970 Evo and change with a SATA III 860 EVO 2,5 inch, or to keep the NVMe that I already bought ? Thank you a lot.
 
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USAFRet

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For a game only machine?
The greater GB per $ of a SATA III SSD trumps the speed difference of NVMe over SATA.

You gain exactly zero FPS increase with an NVMe drive, and a very minimal increase (if any) in level loading speed.

Now...if you were doing a lot of video or photo editing, a second NVMe drive might be indicated.
For a game machine? No. A larger SATA III drive would work better.


I would send the 970 back and get a larger 860 EVO for the same $$.


NOTE: This is an opinion in early 2019. Reading this in 2021, for instance, might well result in a different choice.
 

Violett

Great
Mar 17, 2019
106
6
95
3
For a game only machine?
The greater GB per $ of a SATA III SSD trumps the speed difference of NVMe over SATA.

You gain exactly zero FPS increase with an NVMe drive, and a very minimal increase (if any) in level loading speed.

Now...if you were doing a lot of video or photo editing, a second NVMe drive might be indicated.
For a game machine? No. A larger SATA III drive would work better.


I would send the 970 back and get a larger 860 EVO for the same $$.


NOTE: This is an opinion in early 2019. Reading this in 2021, for instance, might well result in a different choice.
Haha, cool ! Now I am convinced to return the 970 EVO and change with SATA. For my knoledge, what meens a SATA III drive would work better ? Thanks.
 

Violett

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Hello guys. I deffinitly changed my mind, and because initialy I wanted to build my rig based on an Asus Prime Z390-a motherboard ( wihch I already have), after I had read some diffrent compared benchmarks between this mobo and Gigabyte Z390 Aorus Master, and saw that Asus in generaly speaking, works on higher temperatures than Gigabyte, wich have better VRM’s, I decided to swap for the second motherboard, wich I already ordered. I choose that way, because my goal is to build a good overclocked system, and I think based on the experiences of other veteran builders, that I have choose right. Of course, you can say that Asus Prime do it maybe the same, but it seeems to do it in a hot way. Now, with my appologise for my unconsecvence, I dare to ask the same thing, not just for me, and for other unexperienced builders too, wich want to know, if it is possible to use two M.2 SSD NVMe PCIe on the Gigabyte Z390 Aorus Master, without RAID or IRST and without interacting or influence between them. I ask this, because Aorus Master have three M.2 sockets not two like Asus Prime have, and the limitations of the M.2 sockets are slightly different. Thank you very much and appreciate.
 

USAFRet

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From the specs:
https://www.gigabyte.com/us/Motherboard/Z390-AORUS-MASTER-rev-10#sp

  • 1 x M.2 connector (Socket 3, M key, type 2242/2260/2280/22110 SATA and PCIe x4/x2 SSD support) (M2M)
  • 1 x M.2 connector (Socket 3, M key, type 2242/2260/2280/22110 SATA and PCIe x4/x2 SSD support) (M2A)
  • 1 x M.2 connector (Socket 3, M key, type 2242/2260/2280 PCIe x4/x2 SSD support) (M2P)
Yes.
You use them as two individual drives and drive letters.
 

Violett

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Mar 17, 2019
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Hello guys ! Finally, I bought all the components for my new PC, and now I am thinking how to build it. I have three SSDs and one HDD for my Gigabyte Z390 Aorus Master.
  1. M.2 SSD NVMe Samsung 970 PRO 512 Gb for the OS
  2. M.2 SSD NVMe Samsung 970 EVO 2 Tb for storage
  3. SATA III Samsung 860 EVO 2 Tb for storage
  4. HDD 2Tb for storage. 🤒
My question is wich M.2 slots is indicated to use in this configuration ( without RAID) ? I think to install the 970 PRO with the OS in M2M slot ( near the CPU socket) and the 970 EVO in M2A slot.
My manual says:
“Installation Notices for the PCIEX4, M.2 and SATA Connectors:
Due to the limited number of lanes provided by the Chipset, the availability of the SATA connectors may be affected by the type of device installed in the M2. sockets. The M2M connector shares bandwidth with the SATA3 4, 5 connectors. The M2A connector shares bandwidth with the SATA3 1; the M2P connector shares bandwidth with the PCIEX4 connector.”
Seems that in this configuration, the only disponible SATA 3 connector for the HDD is SATA 3.2. Am I correct with this configuration ? Is something wrong with the PCIe lanes about this ? Many thanks.
 
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