CHINESE SSD PRODUCTS

So far the studio only has two brands in the collection of M.2 SSDs from China. KingDian and Vasekey are the two SSD vendors represented. GoldenFir, Orico and WeiJinTo are some other known brands. Once more SSD products are procured a table of relative performance for the low end of the market can be assembled.

TEST PLATFORM

The MSI B350M Bazooka is one up from the bottom of the line A320. This motherboard has 4 DDR4 slots and extra SATA ports. There is a single M.2 slot which is being used for testing entry level SSD products. The Athlon 3000G CPU has Vega 3 integrated graphics and there is 8GB of DDR4-2400 RAM.

PRODUCTS IN THE STUDIO NOW

240GB to 256GB SSD products are now mainstream. There is plenty of capacity for Windows or Linux along with a lot of applications. Prices for 480GB to 512GB SSD products are falling which is bringing them increasingly into mainstream markets.

The KingDian NV480 SSD is a 240GB M.2 NVMe model that uses 2 PCIe lanes. This matches the AMD AM4 Athlons which only has 2 lanes for the SSD.

The Vasekey SSD is a 240GB M.2 SATA model that can be used with all AM4 motherboards. SATA SSD performance is slower than PCIe however at the entry level of the market it is still markedly better than a hard disk. Vasekey also offers NVMe SSD products.

THE INDUSTRY

On the whole, changes in how SSDs are made are likely to turn this into a permanent condition. The industry is moving away from 32-layer and 64-layer NAND manufacturing into the newer 96-layer production process. A 96-layer process technology, among other advances, allows companies to fit more storage in a smaller space, decreasing the cost of materials and passing on savings to consumers. 128-layer production is expected for 2021.

World wide there are many semiconductor foundries making astronomical amounts of NAND flash chips. At present 240GB capacity is now extremely affordable with prices as low as ¥20. The 480GB capacity has also fallen substantially placing it squarely in the mainstream.

Some sites reviews are poorly written and compare a entry level 64GB SATA SSD with an expensive 500GB NVMe SSD. The correct way to review SSD is to assemble similar components and compare them. SSD products are made for various markets globally. Global import taxes vary which does impact the local markets somewhat.

MORE RAM NEEDED

RAM prices have fallen through the floor. DDR3 4GB sticks are slightly less expensive than DDR4 4GB sticks at under $20. Windows 10 runs well with 8GB of RAM and it does even better with 16GB. With more RAM there is far less wear and tear on any SSD which all have a limit to the TB written.

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