Plextor S3C SSD Review

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It seems that no one but Samsung is really looking to improve performance. New SSD's come out and none seem to come close to dethroning the 850 EVO, which has been out for a while now. I'm not complaining, my 850 EVO is great, but I'd think that, as in other markets (like CPU's) new generations would bring more performance...on some level.

Is it just laziness, stagnation, or companies just don't want to put the money into R&D?


Jul 12, 2009
I'm guessing that big advantage the EVO has over the competition is the flash memory, combined with a controller that is good enough that it isn't a bottleneck.

I don't think that the continued dominance of Samsung it the result of other companies not investing in R&D. Other companies are spending money on R&D; they just aren't getting the same kind of results as Samsung is. In particular, Micron/Intel, Toshiba/Western Digital, and SK Hynix have all spent heavily to develop 3D NAND flash. The point is that you can spend a lot of money on R&D and end up with something like the AMD Bulldozer design--which worked, but didn't offer much in the way of competition to Intel.
You also have to contend with both sata and nvme / pci-express having products that are near the theoretical ceiling of what they can offer.

Sata 3.0 = 6 gigabits per second or 600 megabytes due to unit conversions and taking 8b/10b encoding into account
Samsung 850 Pro has 550 MB/s read and 520 MB/s write

Nvme / pci-express 3.0 x4 link = 3.94 GB/s
For comparison the read speed of the Samsung 960 Pro is 3.5 GB/s

And so the race is to spend millions in research and development to get closer to closing the gap between what you have and the theoretical limit so you can proclaim your product is the fastest.

Or to spend millions in research and development to make the cheapest dollar / gigabyte product in order to saturate your product as the goto SSD for the OEM so the OEM can say their computer is "Powered By A Solid State Drive" allowing them to place bar charts on the box.
QLC would be the best example of this, but really all of the NAND after SLC are examples.

Even a 300 megabyte/s read and write ssd getting 5000 IOPS at a queue depth of 1 can still claim to be 50 times faster more responsive than a 7200 rpm hard drive.

Or they can be even sneakier and compare their 5000 IOPS ssd at a queue depth of 1 and compare it to a 5400 rpm hard drive "in small print of course" and say it is "100 TIMES MORE RESPONSIVE THAN A SPINNING HARD DRIVE DISK" in big bold letters just like that.

They never quote actual speed due to only being able to say 5+ times faster.
50 or 100 times are much better numbers for marketing.

I'd be perfectly content with a 10 Terabyte SSD with 6000 IOPS at a QD of 1 and 300 MB/s read and write at lets say $300.
Even if that was QLC at 500 DWPD that is still 5000 terabytes or 5 petabytes of data.
Allowing me to ditch hard drives forever.


Jul 14, 2007
I would add that in going from a 550MBps SSD to a 3500MBps Samsung NVMe, in day to day stuff...I cannot tell the difference. There is a limit to the speed benefits. But cheaper and bigger is always nice.

You are absolutely correct.

If your goal is starting a game then games in general don't really load much data to start.

They load alot of small files that need to be processed by the cpu.

Tom's had an article a few years ago that illustrates this beautifully.,2991-11.html

629 megabytes of data needed for Civ5 to start.

Civilization V took 38 seconds to launch but of those 38 seconds the ssd was only busy for 2.15 seconds

Note they used a Sata based ssd, OCZ Vertex 3 240 GB.

With a 3500MBps Samsung NVMe, assuming 960 Pro, the game start time would not be affected by much if any.

The disk busy time would only be 1 second or less followed by 30+ more seconds of waiting for the cpu to catch up.

The only way to really see the difference would be to transfer a multi-gigabyte file between 2 ssd through an interface with a higher than 540 megabytes a second bandwidth, like 10 gigabit ethernet.

540 megabytes a second being the read speed of an 850 Pro.

10 gigabit (1.25 gigabytes a second) would be about 50% saturated from a sata based ssd, like an 850 Pro.

Due to the 10 gigabit limit a Samsung 960 Pro would only appear to be twice as fast as an 850 Pro due to completely saturating the 10 gigabit link.


Mar 1, 2017
either way it paves the way for future speeds and connections when we start seeing 100gbs=(10%) actual throughput we shall start getting even more CPU and chipset bottleneck. CPU's need to start pushing passed 5ghz base clock @ 8-cores, but question is who will actually push that and the ability to utilize the next phase of DDR5/DDR6 and PCI-E 4.0 and 5.0 slots.


Sep 18, 2011
When one considers that the 850evo was released in December of 2014 and still dominates the price segment. It's remarkable that the others are still trying to catch up!
I bought one(250gb) shortly after release for a lot more than they cost now but have no regrets at all.
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