Samsung unveils 970 series NVMe SSDs and narrows gap between PRO and EVO lineups

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Samsung has updated its enthusiast- and pro-focused SSD lineup with the introduction of the Samsung 970 EVO and PRO.

The M.2 form factor NVMe SSDs, which are compatible with most desktop and mobile workstations bought in the last year or so, offer groundbreaking performance, superior reliability and best-in-class capacity, according to Samsung’s Un-Soo Kim.

Samsung appears to be narrowing the gap between its PRO and EVO lineups. Both SSDs offers the same five-year warranty (previously, the warranty on the EVO was only three years) or up to 1,200 terabytes written – 50 per cent higher than the previous generation, though the latter is dependent on capacity.
The endurance rating of the 970 PRO is still twice that of the 970 EVO when comparing models directly. This is particularly important if you intend to use your SSD for out of memory processing of huge datasets, such as when solving a huge simulation problem.

Performance is also very similar. The 970 PRO enables sequential read speed of up to 3,500 MB/s and sequential write speed of up to 2,700 MB/s, while the EVO features sequential read speed of up to 3,500 MB/s and sequential write speed of up to 2,500 MB/s.

Samsung says this represents an enhancement of up to 30 percent over the previous generation Samsung 960 PRO and EVO and is thanks to Samsung’s latest V-NAND technology and the newly designed Phoenix controller.

The 970 EVO, in particular, utilises the Intelligent TurboWrite technology, which uses a large buffer size of up to 78GB to enable faster write speeds.

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These are impressive figures, but don’t expect to be opening CAD files any quicker.

High sequential write speeds like this are only likely to benefit workflows where huge datasets are used, especially when they exceed the workstation’s available system memory. For example, simulation, point cloud processing, high-end visualisation and video editing.

Both SSDs also feature Dynamic Thermal Guard technology which safeguards against overheating by automatically monitoring and maintaining optimal operating temperatures, while a heat spreader and new nickel-coated controller are designed to further lower the SSD temperatures.

The other notable differences between the EVO and PRO line ups are capacity and the type of V-NAND technology used.

The 970 PRO uses MLC NAND and offers just two capacities (512GB and 1TB), while the EVO uses TLC NAND and spans from 250GB up to 2TB.

The 970 PRO and EVO will be available for purchase worldwide starting 7 May 2018.

UK pricing is as follows: 970 PRO (512GB) £276, 970 PRO (1TB) £527, 970 EVO (250GB) £101, 970 EVO (500GB) £194, 970 EVO (1TB) £376 and 970 EVO (2TB) £710.