Solid State Drives

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Solid-state drives (SSDs) are currently the fastest form of storage available, and can give your system a massive boost in application and OS load times, data-transfer speeds and overall system responsiveness. Their lightning speed comes from using flash memory chips, which unlike traditional hard drives have no moving parts. This makes them more reliable, smaller, lighter and less power hungry, but they can cost significantly more and oftentimes have less capacity. Scan recommends that anyone in the market for a performance PC opts for an SSD.

1.5TB to 5TB 2.5" SATA3 SSDs

Available in 1.9TB, 2TB, 4TB and 5TB capacities these SATA III 6Gb/s SSDs may no longer be the fastest around thanks to emerging PCIe SSDs, but they're the most cost-effective and are still easily fast enough for most users. You'll need a spare SATA 6Gb/s port to get the most from them, and a 2.5" capable drive bay - an adaptor may need to be bought, but most cases have at least one. These drives are the highest capacity ones available, suitable for holding an operating system, as well as numerous programs and a healthy collection of media and games.

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Tekspek An in-depth guide into tech: SSD Form Factors

600GB to 4TB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSDs

M.2 replaced the older mSATA standard. Available in 960GB, 1TB, 2TB, 4TB & 8TB sizes the M.2 SSD Connects to your device via an M.2 Socket using the newer PCI Express NVMe (Non-Volatile Memory Express) controller variant designed to fully utilize the capability of high-speed PCI Express storage devices to perform many I/O (in/out) operations in parallel. These SSD's can achieve Read speeds in Excess of 3000MB/s and Write speeds over 2000MB/s making them the fastest available.

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Tekspek An in-depth guide into tech: SSD Form Factors

Enterprise 2.5" U.2 PCIe NVMe SSDs

Intended mainly for data centres, these SSDs are as good as it gets for high-speed storage. Using fast PCIe 3.0 lanes and the new Non-Volatile Memory Express (NVMe) interface, which is designed specifically to take advantage of SSDs, these drives smash through previous SATA limitations with throughput of 2GB/s or more in some cases and high sustained performance too. The 2.5” models here use the new SFF-8639 connection, sometimes called Express Bay, which means they can be hot-swapped.

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Enterprise M.2 PCIe NVMe SSDs

M.2 SSDs are compact small form drives that connect directly to a slot on the motherboard. Their small dimensions makes them an ideal choice for a boot drive, leaving the 2.5in or 3.5in bays on the front of your server free for bulk storage drives.

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Tekspek An in-depth guide into tech: INTEL Enterprise SSDs