Storage Drives

Intel Optane Memory System Accelerators

Intel Optane Memory is an caching device for HDDs that intelligently learns which applications and games you run most frequently and over time speeds up how quickly they load. Available in two different capacities, these are M.2 form factor devices, and require either a B250, Q250, H270, Q270 or Z270 motherboard plus a 7th gen Kaby Lake Core i3, i5 or i7 processor to work.

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280GB to 480GB 2.5" & AIC Intel Optane SSDs

These new super-fast SSDs use cutting-edge 3D XPoint memory instead of the more usual NAND flash memory. Joint developed by Intel and Micron, 3D XPoint has around 10x less latency than NAND, so Optane drives can start reading and writing much faster than traditional SSDs. They also perform much better at low queue depths, resulting in much snappier performance.

Intel Optane SSDs using 3D XPoint memory are available as 2.5in drives which use a U.2 cable to connect to the motherboard or as expansion cards that slot directly into a spare PCI-E slot on the motherboard.

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120GB to 260GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSDs

M.2 replaced the older mSATA standard. Available in 120, 128, 240, 250 and 256GB 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

270GB to 550GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSDs

M.2 replaced the older mSATA standard. Available in 480, 500 and 512GB 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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600GB to 2TB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSDs

M.2 replaced the older mSATA standard. Available in 960GB, 1TB and 2TB 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

120GB to 260GB M.2 SATA SSDs

While the M.2 connector can be used for PCIe SSDs, the ones here are SATA 6Gb/s only, so the benefits over standard 2.5" SATA drives are to do with space-saving, not speed. Available in 120, 128, 240, 250, and 256GB sizes they're perfect for small form factor systems and laptops, but make sure your M.2 slot works with SATA devices, and that it supports the SSD's size, both in length (2280 means 80mm long) and thickness.

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Tekspek An in-depth guide into tech: SSD Form Factors
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270GB to 550GB M.2 SATA SSDs

While the M.2 connector can be used for PCIe SSDs, the ones here are SATA 6Gb/s only, so the benefits over standard 2.5" SATA drives are to do with space-saving, not speed. Available in 275, 500 and 525GB sizes they're perfect for small form factor systems and laptops, but make sure your M.2 slot works with SATA devices, and that it supports the SSD's size, both in length (2280 means 80mm long) and thickness.

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600GB to 2TB M.2 SATA SSDs

While the M.2 connector can be used for PCIe SSDs, the ones here are SATA 6Gb/s only, so the benefits over standard 2.5" SATA drives are to do with space-saving, not speed. Available in 1TB and 2TB sizes they're perfect for small form factor systems and laptops, but make sure your M.2 slot works with SATA devices, and that it supports the SSD's size, both in length (2280 means 80mm long) and thickness.

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240GB to 1.6TB AIC (Add-in-Card) PCIe NVMe SSDs

The current pinnacle of SSD performance, PCIe SSDs are capable of reaching far greater speeds than the SATA SSDs limited to 6Gb/s. These particular SSDs are of the HHHL (Half Height Half Length)/ FHHL (Full Height Half Length) AIC (Add In Card) Form Factor, slotting into an available PCIe Slot on your motherboard in the same way as you would with a graphics card or other expansion card. Offering capacities of 240, 400, 480, 960, 800GB, 1.2TB, & now even a mind-blowing 1.6 Terabytes, with the higher bandwidth provided by the PCIe Interface, these models feature much higher speeds than other Solid State Drives. Although these SSDs come as a single-slot PCIe expansion card, they are aimed at larger high-end desktop PCs, so ensure your motherboard has an appropriately sized slot spare with the Correct PCIe Bridge and Port Version to get optimum performance.

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400GB to 1.2TB 2.5" U.2 PCIe NVMe SSDs

These particular U.2 SSDs of the 2.5" Form Factor can be fitted into your PC chassis in the same way as a regular SSD or HDD, but connect up to your system using a U.2 cable (formerly known as SFF-8639) to either an available U.2 connector on your motherboard or to a M.2 to U.2 adaptor board. Offering capacities of 400GB, 800GB & 1.2TB, the U.2 connection provides up to a four-lanes of Gen3 PCI Express allowing for more bandwidth and enabling these drives to feature much higher speeds than other Solid State Drives. Although these SSDs will affix to the vast majority of computer cases, the U.2 connector is usually only found on high-end, enthusiast-grade desktop PCs & motherboards, so ensure your motherboard has an on-board U.2 port, or supports U.2 via an adapter.

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120GB to 480GB 2.5" SATA3 Hard Drives

Available in 120, 128, 240, 250, 256, 275 and 480GB 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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500GB to 1TB 2.5" SATA3 SSDs

Available in 500, 512, 525, 960GB and 1TB 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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1.5TB to 5TB 2.5" SATA3 Hard Drives

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

120GB to 1TB mSATA SSDs

mSATA SSDs easily fit in the palm of your hand, yet are available in capacities of 120GB, 128GB, 240GB 250GB, 500GB, even 1TB, often without any performance hit over using a 2.5" model. While newer laptops are shifting to the M.2 connector, mSATA slots are still found on previous generation motherboards and laptops. These SSDs are great for providing such systems with a fast, silent storage upgrade.

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500GB to 2TB 2.5" SATA SSHDs (Solid State Hybrid Drives)

Hybrid hard drives combine a traditional, high capacity mechanical HDD section with a smaller, flash-based SSD section that acts as a cache, giving your system a boost in responsiveness. They won't be as fast as a pure SSD, but they're a great compromise between speed and capacity.

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1TB to 2TB 3.5" SATA SSHDs (Solid State Hybrid Drives)

Hybrid hard drives combine a traditional, high capacity mechanical HDD section with a smaller, flash-based SSD section that acts as a cache, giving your system a boost in responsiveness. They won't be as fast as a pure SSD, but they're a great compromise between speed and capacity.

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500GB to 1TB 3.5" SATA Hard Drives

These 3.5" hard drives are available in 500GB, 750GB, and 1TB sizes and mostly utilise the newer SATA III 6Gb/s interface, ensuring as high speeds as possible with their mechanical technology, especially when using them in RAID. They're the most popular drives for today's desktop PCs, thanks to high spindle speeds, lots of cache and huge capacities.

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2TB to 4TB 3.5" SATA Hard Drives

These 3.5" hard drives are available in 2TB, 3TB, and 4TB sizes. They utilise the newer SATA III 6Gb/s interface, ensuring as high speeds as possible with their mechanical technology, especially when using them in RAID. They're the most popular drives for today's desktop PCs, thanks to high spindle speeds, lots of cache and huge capacities.

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5TB to 12TB 3.5" SATA Hard Drives

These 3.5" hard drives are available in 5TB, 6TB, 8TB, 10TB and 12TB sizes. They utilise the newer SATA III 6Gb/s interface, ensuring as high speeds as possible with their mechanical technology, especially when using them in RAID. They're the most popular drives for today's desktop PCs, thanks to high spindle speeds, lots of cache and huge capacities.

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500GB to 1TB 2.5" SATA Hard Drives

2.5" drives are significantly smaller than standard 3.5" ones, making them great candidates for upgrading the storage of your laptop or games console, especially as they're available in capacities of 500GB, 750GB and 1TB. Remember to check the height of the drives, as most portable or console systems only have bays which support 9.5mm drives or less. Also pay attention to the spin speed in rpm; while most drives here use the latest SATA III 6Gbps interface, faster spinning drives will read and write data faster.

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2TB to 5TB 2.5" SATA Hard Drives

2.5" drives are significantly smaller than standard 3.5" ones, making them great candidates for upgrading the storage of your laptop or games console, especially as they're available in capacities of 2TB, 3TB, 4TB and 5TB. Remember to check the height of the drives, as most portable or console systems only have bays which support 9.5mm drives or less. Also pay attention to the spin speed in rpm; while all drives here use the latest SATA III 6Gbps interface, faster spinning drives will read and write data faster.

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