Wrap Up: Great Value, But There's a Small Catch
Samsung upped the ante and took the performance crown with the SSD 850 Pro six months ago and in that time no one has been able to take it away. To be fair however, no real attempts have been made to do so either, in part because we are at the end of the line for SATA 6Gb/s performance oriented SSDs.
As we said back then, the Samsung SSD 850 Pro is the 'last hoorah' for SATA 6Gb/s leaving virtually no room left to exploit out of the interface. But because SATA remains the mainstream interface and it won't go away anytime soon, the logical step is to take that maxed out performance and make it cheaper. Samsung has achieved the feat with the 850 Evo.
The SSD 850 Evo isn't far behind its Pro counterpart and with up to a 28% savings per gigabyte, the Evo makes a lot of sense.
The most formidable rival the new SSD 850 Evo currently faces is Crucial's MX100 (read our review), and surprisingly in many cases we found the MX100 to be the slightly faster product. Although there isn't a 1TB version of the MX100, the 512GB version sells for $210. That's ~20% cheaper than the current $256 asking price of the 500GB 850 Evo.
Clearly, if you want a 1TB drive, Samsung has the better answer. The older 840 Evo 1TB has been pushed down to $420 making it cheaper than the Crucial M550 ($440). At $0.41 per gigabyte the 840 Evo 1TB is a serious bargain. That said, for slightly more at $0.47 per gigabyte the 850 Evo 1TB is a superior product, offering better performance and endurance.
Another key difference between the two companies' offerings is the bundled software and warranty. Crucial gives a 3-year warranty and no utility software with the MX100, Samsung offers a 5-year warranty and the highly refined Magician software. Whether this means something to you or not, it should be considered nonetheless.
Bottom line, if you are looking for the best bang for your buck SSD, choose between the Crucial MX100 and the Samsung SSD 850 Evo series no matter the capacity. You can't go wrong with either, but if you don't mind barebones performance, the MX100 is just as good and a slightly better value than the new SSD 850 Evo at current prices.
Pros: Great performance and value. From a consumer standpoint, there's little not to like about the new 850 Evo, improving upon its predecessor and reaching close to more expensives drives.
Cons: Samsung's SSD Evo series is not the slamdunk it was a year ago because it's met formidable competition that is also selling for less.