PCIe SSDs Will Overtake SATA in 2019

AlphaAtlas

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A recent report from Digitimes claims that PCIe SSDs could finally overtake SATA SSD shipments in 2019. Unit prices for 512GB PCIe SSDs have supposedly fallen 11% sequentially, down to a price of $55 in Q1 2019, while SATA SSD prices only dropped 9%. The price gap between the different SSDs was around 30% in 2018, and according to the publication's market sources, that gap is only going to shrink as time goes on.

Meanwhile, thanks to the rapidly falling prices of NAND flash memory chips, total SSD shipments are expected to rise dramatically. Digitimes expects shipments to increase "20-25%" in 2019, while a separate report claims that changes in enterprise market shipments could be even more dramatic. Relatively low prices for high performance drives with capacities of up to 16TB are apparently tempting many companies away from HDDs. Meanwhile, laptop makers are starting to ship lower-cost devices with SSDs by default, and according to PCPartPicker's latest charts, retail prices for standalone consumer drives have been dropping as well. Overall, it looks like 2019 will be a great year for anyone who's looking for more speedy storage, but the big flash manufacturer's efforts to slow production could stop the tumbling prices by 2020.

Falling average selling prices for consumer Gen 3.0x2 PCIe SSDs fitted in notebooks will accelerate the adoption of such SSDs by OEMs. This, coupled with demand for ever-higher storage capacity and speed to support cloud computing, 5G and autonomous driving applications, will further stimulate market demand for PCIe SSDs and inspire brand vendors to gear up production of such lucrative storage devices and related chips, the sources indicated. For instance, Taiwan-based IC designers Silicon Motion Technology, Phison Electronics, and Silicon Integrated Systems are racing to roll out enhanced version of PCI SSD controller chips, while major brand vendors such as Kingston Technology, Adata Technology, Transcend Information, Seagate and Micron have also listed PCIe SSDs as their mainstream product lines.
 

Armenius

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Good news all around. These days even the cheapest NVME drives offer twice the speed for a similar cost compared to SATA drives on the consumer end. The increased shipments should hopefully make prices fall even faster.
 

AlphaAtlas

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Good news all around. These days even the cheapest NVME drives offer twice the speed for a similar cost compared to SATA drives on the consumer end. The increased shipments should hopefully make prices fall even faster.
The effect is further multiplied by chip manufacturer competition, I think. The flash memory market is fairly oligopolistic, yes, but everyone and their mother is coming out with a PCIe SSD controller these days. There used to only be a handful of PCIe SSD controllers to choose from, and many of them were limited to enterprise drives, but that's no longer the case.
 

God whale

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... there's not a lot of real world gain by going to nvme from sata though. There's even a less of a reason for the huge price difference between sata ssds and nvme m.2 ssds as well. Saying that the prices have been dropping is just normal. There's still a premium on total storage capacity on ssds. That needs to change. 1tb ssds are the bare minimum needed when applications/games/oses keep on taking up more and more space. 2tb m.2 are expensive and rare.
 

singe_101

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With the speed cap on SATA they barely even heat up at all, right? You could use a velcro strap stack of 4, direct contact and they'll be fine? It's nice to take that for granted and having more SATA ports/USB adapter.
 

bigdogchris

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Been on PCIe SSD since 2015. SATA SSD's are still great though for everyday use. The low latency alone is worth it for day to day operations.
 

Aireoth

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I love it, I can't fit anymore SATA drives in my case so next one is a PCIe.
 

Armenius

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With the speed cap on SATA they barely even heat up at all, right? You could use a velcro strap stack of 4, direct contact and they'll be fine? It's nice to take that for granted and having more SATA ports/USB adapter.
I mean, a NVME drive can typically use up to 6W while a SATA tops out at 2W, so that's technically triple the amount of power. But given the interface you're not going to be able to stack M.2 drives on top of each other, anyway. You could get USB enclosures for them, I guess, but then you're limited to 1250 MB/s on 3.1 Gen 2 while some NVME drives can go up to 4000 MB/s. Or you could get something like this:
https://www.amazon.com/Asus-Hyper-M-2-x16-Card/dp/B0753JTJTG
 

Comixbooks

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Loading games sata nvme makes next to no difference what drive you get currently but could change down the road.
 

nutzo

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Already decided the next laptop upgrade cycle at the office will use NVME drives.
Went with Sata drives 3 years ago since NVME drives where too expensive, and I was able to reuse the 1TB Sata drives from the previous laptops.
(Bought laptops with a 500GB spinner, and replaced it with a 1TB SSD). Dell didn't even offer a 1TB SSD as an option at the time.

Only issue I see, is that some users are going to need 2TB SSD's. Might still be something Dell doesn't offer.
 

Advil

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Some M.2 SATA style interface or even NVME x2 drives now have price parity with 2.5" SATA SSD drives.

As of now it makes sense to use the flush mount M.2 drives even if you don't get the x4 versions.

And there are x4 versions that are within $20-30 now also...

Very soon the M.2 NVME x4 will be the standard desktop and laptop SSD.

The real question still remains though... when will we get hybrid drive/memory capability that can hold up to real use and be affordable? We were supposed to be entering that zone after Optane launched but that seems to have dropped off the radar again.
 

zkostik

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Been on PCIe SSD since 2015. SATA SSD's are still great though for everyday use. The low latency alone is worth it for day to day operations.
I've been on since 2015 but to be honest I haven't found any difference in gaming. In fact, I think I could hardly tell the difference. However for workstation purposes it is absolutely worth it. Same as if you're into video editing. I wouldn't say that until recently it was particularly wroth going to PCIe but now that prices are nearly the same, I see no reason why not (unless you need a ton of drives or setting up a RAID). My only gripe with these are in business use as they are a pain in the ass getting data off and enclosures are still expensive. Not convenient like connecting a SATA drive or USB dock.
 

MyNameIsAlex

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... there's not a lot of real world gain by going to nvme from sata though. There's even a less of a reason for the huge price difference between sata ssds and nvme m.2 ssds as well. Saying that the prices have been dropping is just normal. There's still a premium on total storage capacity on ssds. That needs to change. 1tb ssds are the bare minimum needed when applications/games/oses keep on taking up more and more space. 2tb m.2 are expensive and rare.
I dunno how much the price difference is now, the sata drives went down not at all basically

on the second hand market they are the same exact price because people know and trust sata drives and it looks a lot safer and easier to instal for newbs than some scary green PCB covered in fragile circuruity
 

Flogger23m

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The effect is further multiplied by chip manufacturer competition, I think. The flash memory market is fairly oligopolistic, yes, but everyone and their mother is coming out with a PCIe SSD controller these days. There used to only be a handful of PCIe SSD controllers to choose from, and many of them were limited to enterprise drives, but that's no longer the case.
Good. I cannot wait for the day I replace my HDDs. Of course for pure back up drives I'll keep them around. Otherwise, SSDs for daily use.

I'm running out of space on my 3TB Toshiba. In the coming month or two I will upgrade to an extra 4TB HDD I have unopened. I think that will be my last HDD that isn't purely for back up. This 3TB Toshiba is actually fairly fast and makes practically no noise. Excellent drive all things considered. But even a lower performing SSD will blow it out of the water. Looking forward to having SSDs only.
 

Nobu

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I'm just trying to figure out a good place to buy new 2.5" wd red drives (or equivalent). I'd get SSDs, but they're the same price per GB or more unless I get multi-TB drives (which are stupid expensive or nonexistent in the 2.5" form factor).
 

Furious_Styles

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I almost bought one of those $100 intel 660p drives but I just don't need it. Maybe get the 2tb if/when it comes down to 150.
 

God whale

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I almost bought one of those $100 intel 660p drives but I just don't need it. Maybe get the 2tb if/when it comes down to 150.
660p is a shitty drive though. those 4 bit style memory chips are much worse than slc or tlc chips in terms of durability. Price wise it's great though... but is it just me but m.2 drives are usually used for boot since it's on the motherboard itself (and lets face it, the u.2 drives never really got off the ground) so it would make more sense to spend a bit more for a faster/more durable m.2 drive than a cheaper one and just get a qlc style sata ssd.
 

Furious_Styles

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660p is a shitty drive though. those 4 bit style memory chips are much worse than slc or tlc chips in terms of durability. Price wise it's great though... but is it just me but m.2 drives are usually used for boot since it's on the motherboard itself (and lets face it, the u.2 drives never really got off the ground) so it would make more sense to spend a bit more for a faster/more durable m.2 drive than a cheaper one and just get a qlc style sata ssd.
I'll be watching but if you're just using them for a games drive they seem to work great. And that's all I'd use them for, that or storage.
 

deaedius

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I am surprised to see PCIe drives overtake as there are either fewer available M.2 slots or maybe mobo's that do not have many available PCIe slots compared to some mobos with 6+ SATA ports. Unless I am missing something.
 

bigdogchris

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I've been on since 2015 but to be honest I haven't found any difference in gaming. In fact, I think I could hardly tell the difference. However for workstation purposes it is absolutely worth it. Same as if you're into video editing. I wouldn't say that until recently it was particularly wroth going to PCIe but now that prices are nearly the same, I see no reason why not (unless you need a ton of drives or setting up a RAID). My only gripe with these are in business use as they are a pain in the ass getting data off and enclosures are still expensive. Not convenient like connecting a SATA drive or USB dock.
For certain. I would include gaming as a "general workload" that benefits from SATA SSD but wouldn't necessarily benefit from NVMe.
 

zehoo

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Maybe now intel will allow us peasants more pcie lanes. *hint* *hint* I forgot how annoying so few lanes were until I regressed back to the consumer z370 platform. One of the many reasons I’ll probably switch to an amd system eventually.
 

andrewaggb

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I would have bought m.2 pci-e drives several times the last few years but the price premium didn't seem worth it over sata drives.
 

westrock2000

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but is it just me but m.2 drives are usually used for boot since it's on the motherboard itself
At these prices no, SSD's are moving into "mass storage" zone. I typically use a smallish drive for the operating system and applications drive (128-512GB) and then add SSD's together (usually using Microsoft Storage Spaces) for mass storage of games, media, and stuff.

I just bought the $100 660p to pair up as cache for a big platter drive. A couple months ago I bought that same drive for $130 to put in my Mac Book Air. And with Storage Spaces (Windows 10) I can keep adding SSD's as need to the pool (and replacing older ones).
 

mord

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I am surprised to see PCIe drives overtake as there are either fewer available M.2 slots or maybe mobo's that do not have many available PCIe slots compared to some mobos with 6+ SATA ports. Unless I am missing something.
I agree, but how many average consumers have even two hard drives much less 4+.
 

westrock2000

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I am surprised to see PCIe drives overtake as there are either fewer available M.2 slots or maybe mobo's that do not have many available PCIe slots compared to some mobos with 6+ SATA ports. Unless I am missing something.
I was surprised to see these X1 adapters, still faster than 2.5" SSD on Gen 3 PCI, and gives you something to use on all those X1 slots that motherboards seem to have now-a-days.

2018-9-17-11-4-23.jpg


vjiav.jpg
 

/dev/null

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I love NVME drives but what kills them is lack of PCIE lanes on motherboards. Even when you have PCIE lanes they are (in most cases) not hanging off the CPU. I'm not paying $300-$1000 for a HEDT cpu + another $250+ for a motherboard just to have more pcie-lanes and most likely a worse gaming experience.

GIVE ME PCI-E LANES and I'll buy more NVME drives. In the meanwhile I'm sticking with sata most of the time. I'll snag 1 nvme for boot and the rest will most likely be sata. That 2nd NVME slot often replaces 2 sata slots on normal $80-$150 non-HEDT motherboards.

Manufacturers: Can we PLEASE stop shipping spinners in $500+ machines? There is NO REASON for it. Even cheap machines should be able to spend $30 on a 240GB ssd.
 
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zkostik

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For certain. I would include gaming as a "general workload" that benefits from SATA SSD but wouldn't necessarily benefit from NVMe.
Well, some games take a while to load but as I've found out it apparently was not a storage issue. For instance Metro Exodus is now a good example of that. Who would have figured right? Back then I was into MMO's and it did seem like it helped with faster load to a degree but it could be one of these things like washing your car and then it feels like it is going faster.
 

WBurchnall

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Relatively low prices for high performance drives with capacities of up to 16TB
Say what? Relatively low prices for 16TB drives? Umm, whereabouts are these hiding and does relatively low mean relative to the cost of a new Tesla?
 

Zareek

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I love NVME drives but what kills them is lack of PCIE lanes on motherboards. Even when you have PCIE lanes they are (in most cases) not hanging off the CPU. I'm not paying $300-$1000 for a HEDT cpu + another $250+ for a motherboard just to have more pcie-lanes and most likely a worse gaming experience.

GIVE ME PCI-E LANES and I'll buy more NVME drives. In the meanwhile I'm sticking with sata most of the time. I'll snag 1 nvme for boot and the rest will most likely be sata. That 2nd NVME slot often replaces 2 sata slots on normal $80-$150 non-HEDT motherboards.

Manufacturers: Can we PLEASE stop shipping spinners in $500+ machines? There is NO REASON for it. Even cheap machines should be able to spend $30 on a 240GB ssd.
I was just thinking, this is probably the reason for nvme to be overtaking SATA. As consumers embrace smaller form factors more and more OEMs are too. It's the only reason I can see because in real world usage, the fastest nvme drives deliver almost nothing over a SATA SSD. Sure I can bench an nvme drive and see the difference. In actual usage, Windows will boot a second faster at the most, game load times are second or two faster. When I bought my current game drive 1TB Samsung 860EVO, I considered making the plunge but it was basically a $20 more for half the capacity to go nvme. That was 4 months ago are we going to see another massive price drop this time mostly for nvme drives?
 

Zarathustra[H]

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Does this include m.2 devices? If so, just based on my reading of forums, I thought they already had... Everyone is talking about ht e new m.2 SSD they bought for their new build. No one is talking about sata...
 

sirmonkey1985

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until laptop manufactures start using them instead of sata m.2 i don't see pcie ssd's surpassing sata SSD's in 2019.

I love NVME drives but what kills them is lack of PCIE lanes on motherboards. Even when you have PCIE lanes they are (in most cases) not hanging off the CPU. I'm not paying $300-$1000 for a HEDT cpu + another $250+ for a motherboard just to have more pcie-lanes and most likely a worse gaming experience.

GIVE ME PCI-E LANES and I'll buy more NVME drives. In the meanwhile I'm sticking with sata most of the time. I'll snag 1 nvme for boot and the rest will most likely be sata. That 2nd NVME slot often replaces 2 sata slots on normal $80-$150 non-HEDT motherboards.

Manufacturers: Can we PLEASE stop shipping spinners in $500+ machines? There is NO REASON for it. Even cheap machines should be able to spend $30 on a 240GB ssd.
these days most come with a 128GB SSD and 1TB mechanical drive. that being said though the SSD's a piece of junk and doesn't really matter.
 

Red Falcon

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I was just thinking, this is probably the reason for nvme to be overtaking SATA. As consumers embrace smaller form factors more and more OEMs are too. It's the only reason I can see because in real world usage, the fastest nvme drives deliver almost nothing over a SATA SSD. Sure I can bench an nvme drive and see the difference. In actual usage, Windows will boot a second faster at the most, game load times are second or two faster. When I bought my current game drive 1TB Samsung 860EVO, I considered making the plunge but it was basically a $20 more for half the capacity to go nvme. That was 4 months ago are we going to see another massive price drop this time mostly for nvme drives?
The real difference is felt with databases, large single/multiple transfers, VMs, and all of the above in enterprise.
SATA doesn't hold a candle to NVMe in these areas, assuming the CPU can keep up, but you are right, for consumers, there is little to no difference in general performance, save for device/app updates.
 

ManofGod

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At this rate, probably not. There are far more sata ports on most mainboards than there are M.2 sockets. Sata, even the best Sata drives, are still less expensive and larger than the cheapest M.2 NVMe drives available.
 

ManofGod

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until laptop manufactures start using them instead of sata m.2 i don't see pcie ssd's surpassing sata SSD's in 2019.



these days most come with a 128GB SSD and 1TB mechanical drive. that being said though the SSD's a piece of junk and doesn't really matter.
People still think a larger number means it is better, hence why hard drives are still sold in laptops.
 

Ranulfo

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I love NVME drives but what kills them is lack of PCIE lanes on motherboards. Even when you have PCIE lanes they are (in most cases) not hanging off the CPU. I'm not paying $300-$1000 for a HEDT cpu + another $250+ for a motherboard just to have more pcie-lanes and most likely a worse gaming experience.

GIVE ME PCI-E LANES and I'll buy more NVME drives. In the meanwhile I'm sticking with sata most of the time. I'll snag 1 nvme for boot and the rest will most likely be sata. That 2nd NVME slot often replaces 2 sata slots on normal $80-$150 non-HEDT motherboards.

Manufacturers: Can we PLEASE stop shipping spinners in $500+ machines? There is NO REASON for it. Even cheap machines should be able to spend $30 on a 240GB ssd.
Don't forget Sata-Express ports! The drives are everywhere! At least the stopped putting those on mobos what, last year? First gen Ryzen boards had them in 2017. Don't forget U.2 connectors too! Aka Intel optane only drives. I see there are $20-30 u.2 cables and a few adapters to take nvme m.2 to u.2 connectors though. Figure $50 on average extra to use that u.2 port.
 

Ihaveworms

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Give us more PCI-E lanes and then we can talk. The 16 lanes for regular ol' CPUs needs to be bumped up.
 

drescherjm

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PCIe 4.0 and 5.0 will reduce this need but needs to be supported on both sides to utilize this benefit.
 

ReaperX22

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Very happy with my NVME drives. The speed difference between my 840 Pro and 840 Evo vs my 970 Evo (x2) is barely noticable, but what IS noticable, is the severe lack of cables i need to use in my build! :p. For an ITX build, this form factor is amazing, and I welcome the day when they're even cheaper! I only have 8pin EPS, 24pin and 8pin PCIE cables coming from my PSU, no sata/molex etc cables. Simple, clean, love it!
 
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