Samsung Unveils Screaming-Fast 960 Pro And 960 EVO NVMe SSDs At Speeds Up To 3.5GB/s

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Samsung continues to advanced the company's very successful 900 series family of consumer class SSDs today, with the announcement of the Samsung 960 EVO and 960 Pro NVMe PCI Express M.2 Solid State Drives. Built on Samsung's 3D V-NAND technology and employing the new Samsung Polaris SSD controller, the 960 Pro is Samsung's highest performance, high endurance drive and the successor to last year's 950 Pro. The 960 EVO is the lower cost model and a follow-on to last year's Samsung 950 EVO drive. The 960 EVO is also powered by the same Samsung Polaris controller but employs more cost-efficient Samsung TLC NAND memory. Both drives arrive in standard M.2 gumstick form factors with PCI Express Gen 3 X4 interfaces and utilizing the NVMe (Non-Volatile Memory Express) protocol for lightning-fast speeds and low latency.

Earlier in March this year, Samsung introduced the SM961 and PM961 family of M.2 SSDs for the OEM channel, which brought the same Polaris controller, V-NAND and killer performance. However, availability has been limited it seems, both in 3rd party systems and through retail. Samsung's new 960 EVO and 960 Pro bring full volume ramp of the technology and mark a direct consumer retail offering with a refined and enhanced set of specifications, spectacular performance numbers and -- especially in the case of the 960 EVO -- fairly competitive pricing. 

Samsung SSD 960 Pro Specs

The Samsung SSD 960 Pro will come in three sizes and Samsung has done away with the 256GB capacity on this higher-end variant, instead opting to scale to an industry-first 2TB capacity for an M.2 NVMe SSD. At all capacities, the Samsung SSD 960 Pro offers copious amounts of both read and write bandwidth with 3.5GB/sec for sequential reads and 2.1GB/sec for sequential writes. Reportedly, Samsung achieves higher and longer sustained sequential performance via the new Polaris controller, which is a 5 core chip, with one core dedicated to host request communications and the other four cores handling Flash memory management duties. The 960 Pro offers serious endurance specs as well, at up to 1200 terabytes written and a full 5 year warranty. It's pricier than the 960 EVO at a little north of .60 per GiB but if you need both blinding speed and serious endurance, this is the drive you're looking for. The 960 EVO, on the other hand, is no slouch either... 
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Samsung 960 EVO Specs

The new Samsung SSD 960 EVO will also drop Samsung's lower capacity model from last year's 950 EVO family, starting now at 250GB, with 512GB and 1TB options. The EVO tops out at nearly the same throughput for reads as the 960 Pro, with 3.2GB/sec peak sequential throughput and 1.9GB/sec sequential write throughput. If you're astute, you'll notice that this still exceeds even Samsung's 950 Pro performance from the previous generation and by a significant margin (operative term "Pro" here). So this year's EVO is faster than last year's Pro drive, and Samsung achieves this via new a new technology called "Intelligent TurboWrite," which is a bit of SLC Flash caching mojo. Impressive; and at under .50 per GiB it's sure to be a very attractive option for enthusiasts, workstation pros and OEMs looking to maximize both cost and performance. The Samsung 960 EVO comes with a 3 year warranty and up to 400 terabytes written endurance. 

Both the Samsung SSD 960 Pro and Samsung 960 EVO employ Samsung's new Thermal Guard technology in the company's new Polaris controller, which again maximizes throughput and performance during extreme workloads and long sequential transfers especially. Thermal Guard technology allows the controller to maintain peak throughput 50 percent longer than Samsung's previous gen controller, before throttling, on sequential reads.

Samsung's 960 PRO and 960 EVO SSDs will be available worldwide starting October 2016, with MSRPs starting at $329.99 and $129.99 USD, respectively. For more information, including warranty details, please visit