Question Nvme drives for OS and game storage

Bob1nba

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Aug 10, 2019
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I am currently building a new PC and I already bought a 1tb Samsung 970 evo plus. I was thinking about getting another nvme since my mobo has 2 slots. I was thinking of buying maybe a 500gb nvme, one that would hold my OS and maybe some applications such as steam, discord, Google Chrome and other game launchers and use the 1tb one for some of my games that would take advantage of the fast drive speed.

I've heard that you don't want to fill up nvmes completely as they tend to slow down so thats why I figured maybe a separate drive for my OS would be nice. Do i really need to worry that much if put a game or two on my OS nvme as long as there's still a decent amount of space left?
 

Eximo

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That is fine. The reason you don't want to fill the drives is simulated SLC and space for TRIM functions, when you are low on space SLC mode will be unavailable (no empty cells) and TRIM will take longer to achieve since it will mean more shuffling between cache/ram to move bits around.
 

Bob1nba

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Aug 10, 2019
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That is fine. The reason you don't want to fill the drives is simulated SLC and space for TRIM functions, when you are low on space SLC mode will be unavailable (no empty cells) and TRIM will take longer to achieve since it will mean more shuffling between cache/ram to move bits around.
So since i already have a 970 evo plus, would you recommend a 970 pro or even a 980 pro (pcie 4.0) drive for my OS or should I just stick with another evo plus? Would the Os be much faster with a drive that's a step up from that?
 

Eximo

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If that is a brand you like/trust, no reason not to. Won't make a huge difference. Pro drives are really about endurance and massive read/write jobs. The OS won't really need that, should be pretty static. Even a slower drive will not make a huge difference.
 
The important thing is to have a ssd. ANY ssd.
The big value of a ssd is the minimal latency, and that is similar among all ssd types, 2.5", m2 in sata or pcie varieties.
Most of what windows does is small random I/O , perhaps 90% of all activities.
When a ssd nears full, say above 90% it has more difficulty in finding a free nand block to do an update.
In time performance and endurance suffer a bit.

The value of the pcie m.2 drives is faster sequential benchmark performance.
But that does not show up much because processing times from your cpu do not change.
If you have no budget restrictions, by all means buy a m.2 pcie ssd. Even a pcie 4.0 version like the samsung 980 pro. Of course, your cpu and motherboard must be pcie 4.0 capable.
But as a practical matter such things as game load times are within a second or two for a simple sata 2.5" drive and a pcie 4.0 drive. There are some videos showing this.
The improvement over a HDD is massive.

So, what to do?
Buy yourself a ssd of some sort that is large enough to replace your HDD and allow for growth.
It matters little what type of ssd you use for windows.
If given a choice, I would put the more capable 970 evo plus as my C drive.
Buy a 1 or 2tb ssd for your games and expansion.
a 1tb samsung QVO 2.5" ssd is about $100.
 

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