Review of the Samsung SSD 840 PRO

Review of the Samsung SSD 840 PRO

Last year we revived the Samsung SSD 830 series and it was our favourite SSD. Now a year later Samsung have released the 840 series and we have been testing the PRO model.

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Unrivaled Performance

Samsung’s SSD 840 PRO Series is a high-performance SSD, capable of delivering up to 100,000 IOPS Random Read Speed and 540MB/s Sequential Read Speed—an SSD of unrivaled high performance. Built with an advanced MDX controller, Samsung’s SSD delivers high speeds regardless of data type, unlike competing controllers that greatly favor compressible data.

Superior Reliability

As the world’s #1 DRAM, NAND Flash, and SSD supplier; Samsung SSDs are designed and built completely in-house. The Samsung SSD 840 Series is optimized for exceptional, sustained performance and unrivaled reliability through its specially-engineered wear-leveling and garbage collection algorithms backed by a generous 5-year limited warranty.

Performance Sustainability

The Samsung SSD 840 PRO Series provides the same excellent performance throughout its entire lifetime even under extremely heavy workloads. In fact, the sophisticated MDX controller is capable of maintaining peak performances under punishing conditions for more than twice as long the nearest competitor.

Business Friendly Features

The 840 SSD 840 PRO Series introduces three important hardware features for businesses: Worldwide Name (WWN), LED Indicator support, and AES 256-bit Full Disk Encryption (FDE). The first two features make it easier to integrate the 840 PRO SSD into server and storage systems while the AES Encryption helps safeguard data against attack. By encrypting all information on the disk at the hardware level, there is no detrimental effect on performance.
Plus, Samsung’s Magician software has been completely redesigned and includes several business-friendly features including Drive Health Status, Total Bytes Written (TBW), and Disk Scan & Error Reporting functionality. This allows IT managers to monitor drive health and plan hardware replacement cycles.

SSDs

Solid State Drives, or SSDs, are innovative data storage devices that deliver high performance, reliability, and quality by using NAND Flash memory instead of the magnetic disks used in traditional Hard Disk Drives (HDDs). SSDs provide very fast PC booting and application loading speeds and perform exceptionally well in multi-tasking environments – all while consuming less power, emitting very little heat, producing no noise, and offering outstanding stability compared to conventional HDDs.

Specifications

Specs

A Closer Look

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Using the 840 Series

The 840 Series SSD is easy to install and use. It comes with Samsung’s SSD Magician software (see Final Thoughts for more on this).

Magician

Performance Testing

Here is our usual suite of performance testing – all testing was conducted via a SATA III 6Gb connection.

The spec of the machine used to do the testing is as follows:

  • Windows 8 Pro, 64-bit version
  • 16GB RAM
  • Intel Core i7-2600K CPU @ 3.40GHz

Windows 8

This gave me a Primary hard disk rating of 8.1, which is the highest I have ever had this rating. The 830 series gave me a 7.7 rating.

Windows 8

HD Tune Pro

The average Read speed was 299.8 MB/s (the 830 scored 259.6 MB/s).

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The average Write speed was 265.3 MB/s (the 830 scored 246.9 MB/s).

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File benchmarking was as follows:

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CrystalDiskMark

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Samsung Magician

The Samsung Magician Software has an option that enables you to run some benchmarks and perform tweaks.

This is before:

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And after:

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What’s interesting to note is that my Read’s are faster, but my Seq. Write is slower afterwards.

Final Thoughts

The 840 PRO comes in three different sizes – 128GB, 256GB and 512GB. For this review we had the 256GB model.

The drive is fast, very fast and work’s very well indeed. There are a number of really great features with the drive too!

Unfortunately at the time of writing this review, Samsung had yet to release the updated version of their Magician software (at the time of writing they had just released version 3.2 which does support the 840 but not all of the features), meaning that certain features cannot yet be tested. Rest assured though, when version 4.0 is released (and it should be later this year) we will test it and let you know. I am eager to test out the full disk encryption (FDE) functionality.

I was very impressed to see that Samsung are pushing the reliability of the 840 as they did with the 830. My 830 was used constantly for over a year and I didn’t have a single problem with it.

Price wise, the 128GB starts around £120 and goes up from there.

It is also nice to see that the pricing is very similar depending on which kit you go for – so for only a few extra pounds you can get the cables and either the mounting brackets or spacer.

The warranty period on the series 840 PRO drives are 5 years, which in a most cases increases the warranty period by 2 years over it’s competitors, so well done Samsung!

So I cannot rate this SSD highly enough – it is fantastic! It is the best SSD I have ever tested and now is my main drive!

The Series 840 PRO SSD is available now.

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