Question WD Black SN850 NVMe disappointing benchmarks

dwl99

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Apr 17, 2020
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I have a Dell Optiplex 5050 with an Intel Core i7-7700 CPU. I upgraded my Samsung PM961 NVMe boot drive to a WD Black SM850 but the benchmarks aren't very different comparing the two. I was expecting sequential reads of around 7000MB/s and have around half that. The Samsung drive was installed when the UEFI was in AHCI mode. I restored it to the WD Black with Acronis True Image, changed the UEFI from AHCI to RAID, booted Windows 10 into safe mode and then rebooted into normal mode. Would a fresh install make any difference? The UEFI is still set to RAID but I can't see any RAID devices listed in Device Manager.

My benchmarks are:

-----------------------------------------------------------------------
CrystalDiskMark 6.0.2 x64 (C) 2007-2018 hiyohiyo
Crystal Dew World : https://crystalmark.info/
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
  • MB/s = 1,000,000 bytes/s [SATA/600 = 600,000,000 bytes/s]
  • KB = 1000 bytes, KiB = 1024 bytes
Sequential Read (Q= 32,T= 1) : 3436.340 MB/s
Sequential Write (Q= 32,T= 1) : 3058.780 MB/s
Random Read 4KiB (Q= 8,T= 8) : 1424.261 MB/s [ 347720.0 IOPS]
Random Write 4KiB (Q= 8,T= 8) : 997.545 MB/s [ 243541.3 IOPS]
Random Read 4KiB (Q= 32,T= 1) : 306.066 MB/s [ 74723.1 IOPS]
Random Write 4KiB (Q= 32,T= 1) : 227.758 MB/s [ 55605.0 IOPS]
Random Read 4KiB (Q= 1,T= 1) : 63.294 MB/s [ 15452.6 IOPS]
Random Write 4KiB (Q= 1,T= 1) : 111.719 MB/s [ 27275.1 IOPS]

Test : 1024 MiB [C: 21.2% (93.2/439.3 GiB)] (x5) [Interval=5 sec]
Date : 2021/06/12 13:34:46
OS : Windows 10 Professional [10.0 Build 19043] (x64)
 

USAFRet

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Mar 16, 2013
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What motherboard?
What are the specs for the M.2 port?

With a i7-7700 CPU, likely that M.2 port is Gen3 x4.
In which case, the benchmark you're seeing is just about exactly what it should be. You will not get that advertised 7,000.

That WD drive is a Gen 4. But, as with all storage devices...the slowest item in the chain dictates performance.
Here, the capabilities of the M.2 port.
 

dwl99

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Apr 17, 2020
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Cheers, according to Belarc Advisor, the motherboard is a Dell 0WWJRX A00 https://linux-hardware.org/index.php?probe=b3b453b4dc but I cannot see any info about the M.2 port. That's disappointing news to say the least. The only bus adapters listed are:
Intel(R) Chipset SATA/PCIe RST Premium Controller
Microsoft Storage Spaces Controller
Intel(R) USB 3.0 eXtensible Host Controller - 1.0 (Microsoft)

Is there likely to be a PCIE to M.2 NVMe adapter that would allow me to utilise the full performance of the WD Black as a boot drive?
 
Last edited:

Bob.B

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Feb 8, 2021
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I have a Dell Optiplex 5050 with an Intel Core i7-7700 CPU. I upgraded my Samsung PM961 NVMe boot drive to a WD Black SM850 but the benchmarks aren't very different comparing the two. I was expecting sequential reads of around 7000MB/s and have around half that. The Samsung drive was installed when the UEFI was in AHCI mode. I restored it to the WD Black with Acronis True Image, changed the UEFI from AHCI to RAID, booted Windows 10 into safe mode and then rebooted into normal mode. Would a fresh install make any difference? The UEFI is still set to RAID but I can't see any RAID devices listed in Device Manager.

My benchmarks are:

-----------------------------------------------------------------------
CrystalDiskMark 6.0.2 x64 (C) 2007-2018 hiyohiyo
Crystal Dew World : https://crystalmark.info/
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
  • MB/s = 1,000,000 bytes/s [SATA/600 = 600,000,000 bytes/s]
  • KB = 1000 bytes, KiB = 1024 bytes
Sequential Read (Q= 32,T= 1) : 3436.340 MB/s
Sequential Write (Q= 32,T= 1) : 3058.780 MB/s
Random Read 4KiB (Q= 8,T= 8) : 1424.261 MB/s [ 347720.0 IOPS]
Random Write 4KiB (Q= 8,T= 8) : 997.545 MB/s [ 243541.3 IOPS]
Random Read 4KiB (Q= 32,T= 1) : 306.066 MB/s [ 74723.1 IOPS]
Random Write 4KiB (Q= 32,T= 1) : 227.758 MB/s [ 55605.0 IOPS]
Random Read 4KiB (Q= 1,T= 1) : 63.294 MB/s [ 15452.6 IOPS]
Random Write 4KiB (Q= 1,T= 1) : 111.719 MB/s [ 27275.1 IOPS]

Test : 1024 MiB [C: 21.2% (93.2/439.3 GiB)] (x5) [Interval=5 sec]
Date : 2021/06/12 13:34:46
OS : Windows 10 Professional [10.0 Build 19043] (x64)
As others have said your m.2 is pcie3x4.
Even if you could change that to pcie4x4 it's unlikely you would see any difference unless your moving very large amounts of data.
 
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