When choosing a new SSD drive, ordinary users are increasingly turning their attention to high-speed models with a PCI Express connection interface and support for the NVMe protocol. Such drives are much faster in working with linear data and in addition do not require the use of extra wires during installation. The only factor that until recently held back potential buyers was the high price of such models.
To correct the situation, and at the same time to increase their share of sales in an actively developing market, several eminent manufacturers decided at once. Last year we got acquainted with the WD Black PCIe SSD, most recently Samsung announced a relatively affordable line of SSD 970 Evo, and today we will test Kingston’s mainstream NVMe SSD – A1000 NVMe PCIe SSD.
If we talk about the newcomer’s passport characteristics, they do not reach the ceiling of the PCI Express interface – the maximum data transfer rate is declared at the level of 1500/1000 MB / s. But, the main feature of the A1000 is not its peak performance. The main interest of the A1000 line is its retail price, which at the start of sales is $200-210 for a modification of 480 GB. This is comparable, for example, with the Samsung 860 EVO 2.5 500GB (MZ-76E500BW) drive. That is, for a similar cost, the user can get a performance increase of approximately 2.5-3 times compared to solutions based on the SATA 6 Gb / s interface. It is also worth noting that in Ukraine Kingston quite often carries out additional price adjustments for its SSDs and the SA1000M8/480G modification provided to us for testing in some online stores can already be purchased for $185–190.
|Sequential read speed, MB/s||1500||1500||1500|
|Sequential write speed, MB/s||800||900||1000|
|Maximum random read speed (blocks of 4 KB)||100K||100K||120K|
|Maximum random write speed (blocks of 4 KB)||80K||90K||100K|
|Memory type||Toshiba, 3D TLC NAND|
|Total Bytes Written (TBW), TB||150||300||600|
|Mean time between failures (MTBF)||1 000 000|
|Connection interface||PCI Express 3.0 x2 (NVMe)|
|Power consumption (read / write), W||0,458 / 0,908|
|Form factor||M.2 2280|
|Dimensions, mm||80 x 22 x 3,5|
* – at the time of writing the review
Kingston A1000 NVMe PCIe SSD 480GB (SA1000M8/480G)
The Kingston A1000 NVMe PCIe SSD comes in a small plastic packaging that is typical for OEM solutions.
Despite the apparent budget in terms of additional “goodies”, inside the blister, in addition to the disk, there was a place for the activation code for the very useful Acronis True Image HD utility.
Externally, the drive is made in the M.2 2280 form factor. The exact dimensions of the case are 80x22x3.5 mm. The maximum weight does not exceed 7.6 grams. All memory chips, as well as the controller and buffer, are soldered on one side of the printed circuit board and covered with a warranty sticker on top.
The design of the connection connector looks somewhat non-standard, where you can observe the simultaneous presence of the keys “B” and “M”. Most modern PCIe SSDs are only equipped with an “M” key, as four PCI Express lanes are often used for data transfer. At the same time, the hero of the review operates only two PCI Express lines during his work, which explains the external difference of the connector. In terms of connecting or using a drive, this difference does not affect in any way – the Kingston A1000 NVMe PCIe SSD can be installed in any standard M.2 slot.
480 gigabytes of available space is provided by four Toshiba 256GbBiCS 3D TLC NAND memory chips. Despite the fact that we are talking about TLC type memory, the declared warranty disk life is from 150 TB of recording for the younger model to 600 TB of recording in the top 960 GB modification (or from 82 GB to 327 GB of data rewriting daily). The warranty period of service is 5 years, which is a significant bonus, given the low price of the disk.
The Phison PS5008-E8 4-channel controller works with standard DDR3L buffer support.