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Best in Storage: Solid State, HDD, Home NAS and More

By Jos · 14 replies
Dec 3, 2015
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  1. When it comes to storing data, there is no 'one-size-fits-all' solution. While cloud storage has become better and more accesible we’re still very much dependant on local storage and that’s not changing any time soon. With SSDs becoming much more affordable, consumers have a broad a mix of high-performance and high-capacity options to choose from, whether in the form of internal storage, external or network attached.

    We’ve gone through dozens of professional reviews and user opinions to bring you the best storage devices available right now divided into six categories: Best performance SSD, best budget SSD, best hard drive, best external hard drive, best home/SMB NAS, and a selection of the best thumb drive storage alternatives.

    Read on and check out the best in storage.

    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 3, 2015
  2. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 3,453   +1,732

    My current PC has 3 Samsung SSD Pro 840 drives, my previous one had 3 Intel X25-s.

    I haven't seen motherboards with multiple M.2-s yet. Do they even exist?

    As exciting as this new fast storage may be, relying on a single slot in the system is just not enough for many setups.
    Last edited: Dec 3, 2015
  3. Nitrotoxin

    Nitrotoxin TS Addict Posts: 108   +62

    RAID0 with 2 Samsung m.2 drives... oh my!!!
    Reehahs and Steve like this.
  4. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,262

    Yes, but you might want to see what lane assignments are allocated and what is disabled when using both. There is also the option of using a PCIE-to-M.2 adapter I guess.

    Asus Z170-WS
    MSI Z170A Gaming M5 and Gaming M7, Gaming M9 ACK, XPower Gaming Titanium, and the more budget minded G45
    Gigabyte's entire Z170X- Gaming range and the UD3/-UD5 and SOC boards
    ...and as usual, AsRock doing something OTT with storage with their 3 M.2 slot Z170 Extreme7+, and OC Formula

    EDIT: Some of Gigabyte's more budget orientated H170 chipset boards also feature dual M.2
    Burty117, Steve and VitalyT like this.
  5. Evernessince

    Evernessince TS Evangelist Posts: 1,783   +1,003

    You can have as many M.2 drives as you have PCIe Slots

  6. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 9,161   +3,259

    That's not completely true. There is a limit as to the number of PCIe lanes that are available for use.

  7. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 7,974   +2,869

    200 bucks is not bad for those Sammy 950 pros when you consider their performance and they're still relatively new with the latest tech. 2 or 3 years from now they'll be even cheaper than traditional SSD's are right now and they'll have higher capacities and be even faster. It bodes well for now.
    I picked up a pair of Samsung 850 Evo 512's this last Black Friday which were practically being given away. I'm still to figure our what to with them apart from the obvious, which I probably won't do.
    hahahanoobs likes this.
  8. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 1,905   +591

    I think I've come up with a replacement for MTBF. TWBF - Terabytes Written Before Failure.
  9. Viraf P Chinoy

    Viraf P Chinoy TS Enthusiast Posts: 37

    This article has confirmed my decisions that can be summed-up as under:-

    a. At present I'm using Samsung 850 EVO 500 GB SSD & till date have no problem with it. It has win-10 insider OS installed on it with all my apps.
    b. I was a die-hard WDC Black user & had 2TB & 3TB drives in my pc few years ago. They were the best of their class at that time but after Velociraptor came they were replaced by me. I'm surprised that you've not included raptor in this review. It is the best & the only 10k rpm HDD of its type even today.
    c. If I'm right then Asus z170 Deluxe is the only mobo that supports 2 x M.2 drives. other than this I dont know of any other mobo with 2 x M.2 support as on date.
    d. You've not included Plextor SSDs in your review that is really Bad. At least a mention of the same was necessary.
  10. madboyv1

    madboyv1 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,445   +349

    I'm sort of sad that I missed out getting the Mushkin Reactor 1TB drives when they were on sale on newegg before black friday. At $250 they were at parity with some 500GB drives which is nuts.
  11. dividebyzero

    dividebyzero trainee n00b Posts: 4,891   +1,262

    The Z170 Deluxe has a single M.2 slot. The second is provided via a PCIE add-in adapter (great for using the chipset PCIE lanes, not so great if you have an enthusiast graphics under it)
    As for boards with native 2 x M.2 support I suggest to quickly scroll up to post #4.
  12. gregzeng

    gregzeng TS Enthusiast Posts: 48

    USB flash drives have been tested in RAID0, on YouTube videos. Perhaps elsewhere too?

    Yet to try this myself ...
  13. theOS

    theOS TS Rookie

    3 Corsair USB flash drives , all gave me problems.
  14. ShadowDeath

    ShadowDeath TS Booster Posts: 92   +23

    Last edited: Dec 3, 2015
  15. deemon

    deemon TS Addict Posts: 243   +66

    What we got was best performance SSD m.2, best budget SSD, best Big Storage hdd FOR DESKTOP, best NAS station, even some external drives and your choices are good and some even obvious.

    However you did not give us any decent/best options for the storage HDD-s to use inside the NAS station really. You tested it with 500GB drives ... NOBODY does that. Normally people use 4-8TB drives in such stations - like 6TB WD Red-s for example. I mean seriously... why even bother with seriously poor $€£/GB small drives + costly NAS station itself if you could just buy 1x 6TB (external, if you using it with laptop) drive and be done with it? Costs probably far less than your 4x 500GB + station, uses less power, generates less noise, raid doesn't fail as there is none in single drive, etc. One good site for options: https://www.backblaze.com/blog/best-hard-drive/
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2015

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