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Samsung 1TB 990 Pro PCIe 4.0 NVMe M.2 SSD – Review

You can never have enough storage in your PC, and my notebook was severely lacking with its 512GB SSD. Even though I almost never use it, it’d be handy to have some extra sneaky storage for when I’m away for work and fancy playing a game or two, and 512GB just doesn’t cut it these days, so when Samsung offered us their 1TB 990 Pro PCIe 4.0 NVMe M.2 SSD, you bet I jumped at the chance to pull my laptop apart and give it an upgrade.

While installing it into my desktop would have been the easier option, M.2 drives are really straightforward to install, so the slight hassle of pulling off the rear case of my notebook was negated when it was as simple as locating the free space on the motherboard, pushing it in and screwing it down. You don’t have to worry about making sure you have free power leads or SATA slots, and being the 2280 form factor, it’ll fit into pretty much any system, including your PS5.

Speaking of PlayStation, it requires a drive that can support 5500MB/s of sequential read speeds, and the Samsung 1TB 990 Pro PCIe 4.0 NVMe M.2 SSD has that in droves. It actually supports read speeds up to 7450MB/s while using less power, making it a perfect way to increase the storage capacity on a PS5, or in my case, a notebook. Sequential write speeds are also really impressive, boasting up to 6900MB/s across the range, and speeds are kept as stable as possible with nickel-coated controllers and a thermal control algorithm.

The Samsung 1TB 990 Pro PCIe 4.0 NVMe M.2 SSD is also completely compatible with Samsung’s Samsung Magician Software, which helps you monitor your SSD’s performance, download and quickly install firmware updates, and even enable a performance mode that helps boost your speeds. The software also contains its own Performance Benchmark, allowing you to run tests and see how your chosen settings are affecting your drives. I was also pleasantly surprised to see that it could run a test on the notebooks existing SSD, so running a comparison of the two was a breeze.

The standard 512GB SSD that came with my notebook is running at 2246MB/s for sequential reads, and 1491MB/s for sequential writes, whereas before I pushed it into performance mode, the Samsung 1TB 990 Pro PCIe 4.0 NVMe M.2 SSD was running at 3513MB/s and 3166MB/s respectively. Once I activated the performance modes, sequential reads on the Samsung 1TB 990 Pro PCIe 4.0 NVMe M.2 SSD climbed up to 3555MB/s, with writes jumping to 3360MB/s. Of course, these aren’t the speeds that Samsung boasts it is capable of, but that’s because it’s running on PCIe 3.0 system, so as you can see, it is backward compatible.

While I wasn’t able to make full use of the speeds the Samsung 1TB 990 Pro PCIe 4.0 NVMe M.2 SSD is capable of, it still provided me with a significant increase over the stock SSD my notebook came with, and should I happen to rebuild my PC in the near future, I know I already have one of the best SSDs on the market ready to go. On the other hand, should I happen to buy a PS5, I’m ready to go with some extra storage capacity anyway. Depending on where you shop, the Samsung 1TB 990 Pro PCIe 4.0 NVMe M.2 SSD retails for around $249, and having one really is a win-win situation, regardless of whether or not you’re running the most up-to-date system.


The Good

  • Easy to install
  • Samsung Magician is easy to use
  • Incredible transfer speeds
  • Suitable for PS5

The Bad

  • A bit pricey for a 1TB (but worth it)

Written by: Mathew Lindner


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