Choosing the correct M.2 SSD for your Laptop | How to check whether your laptop support NVMe or SATA PCIe - Different types of SSDs explained
In this era, everyone expects great performance from his/her machine (i.e. laptop or PC). You may hear about different types of SSD memories. Yes, you are on the right way if you have decided to purchase an SSD to enhance your laptop/PC performance /speed. There are mainly 2 types of M.2 SSDs PCIe i.e. "SATA" & "NVMe" (categorized on the basis of B & M keys).
This is the main point of this tutorial. Some people don't know which M.2 SSD is supported by their machine's hardware. You may find several youtube videos or blogs about these SSDs, but many of them only discuss about the types of M.2 SSDs. No one is talking about how to check whether your Laptop/PC supports NVMe or SATA.
I will keep things as simple as possible & try to explain the whole method to check whether your laptop/PC supports NVMe or SATA.
First of all, you have to check your hardware i.e. whether your laptop/PC has an M.2 SSD slot or not. Just remove the necessary screws and look for an M.2 slot on your motherboard or hardware.
Here are some images of SATA and NVMe SSDs PCIs, just analyze your hardware port to take an understanding overview of which type of SSD is going to support your hardware. You can decide easily the type of PCIe Port just by taking a look.
Now install "HWiNFO64" software to check which type of M.2 SSD is supported by your PCIe express.
1. Run the software.
2. Go to the "Bus" Directory.
3. Go to "PCIe Bus".
4. Go to "PCIe Express Root Port #9".
5. Check "version" & "Maximum link width".
If your "Version" is greater than or equal to 3.0 & "Maximum link width" is greater than or equal to 2x then, you can use "M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD" on your hardware. On the other hand, if the above condition is not true, please don't buy "NVMe" because the NVMe may not be supported or if the hardware supports it you will not get that much speed. So don't waste your money if your Laptop/PC does not support this PCIe SSD.
Difference between SATA & NVMe
Serial ATA (SATA) was introduced in the year 2000 as a successor to the (PATA) Parallel Advanced Technology Attachment. SATA uses (AHCI) the Advanced Host Controller Interface to access data. One of the most significant features brought by AHCI is NCQ (Native Command Queuing).
AHCI can process one queue at a time, and store up to 32 pending commands/instructions. The maximum theoretical top speed of a good-quality solid-state drive over AHCI (in real-world, top off at 550 MB/s).
M.2 connects without any cable, and the bus itself powers the hard drive. M.2 is compatible with SATA/AHCI, and some M.2 ports support SATA only. Most commercially available NVMe drives use the M.2 port.
What is NVMe?
NVMe (Non-Volatile Memory Express), is a host controller interface designed explicitly for PCIe SSDs. In simple terms, non-volatile memory does not lose its data when it is powered off.
NVMe makes use of 4 PCI express lanes for data transfer, allowing speeds up to 4000 MB/s (making it five times faster than SATA flash drives).
NVMe can perform up to 440,000 random read IOPS (IOPS stands for inputs/outputs per second) and 360,000 random write IOPS performance at a queue depth of 32.
NVMe allows up to 64000 queues and each queue can have up to 64000 commands at the same time.
This means NVMe needs fewer CPU cycles as compared to SATA or SAS. NVMe chunks up a task into smaller actions and processes them in parallel, which results in speeding up the process.
Which One To Buy?
Here are some PCIe SSDs which are personally selected by me. I have listed these SSDs after reading reviews. So just think about your required size and boom...purchase it by clicking the link.
1. Kingston 250GB M.2 Nvme PCIe Speed Up to 2000MB/S
2. WD Blue 250GB M.2 SATA-300
3. Samsung 250GB PCIe NVMe M.2
4. XPG S40G 256GB RGB 3D NAND PCIe Gen3x4 NVMe 1.3 M.2
5. CRUCIAL 500GB NVMe PCIe M.2
6. Western Digital Blue 500GB SATA M.2
7. Crucial 1TB NVMe PCIe M.2
So these are the top 7 SSD i.e. SATA as well as NVME internal SSDs. Just check your device compatibility (i.e whether it supports NVME or SATA) and Get one for your device
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