Ever since the release of the Samsung 970 PRO, the Samsung PRO series NVME M.2 SSDs has held on to the unofficial title of “King of NVME” for years. Both the 970 PRO and 980 was well known for being the fastest NVME during their launch and was later proven to be one of the most robust and reliable brands in the market.
On the 30th of November, Samsung have officially announced the availability of the Samsung 990 PRO in Malaysia. The Samsung 990 PRO will be available in 1TB and 2TB sizes, and each size will come with a heatsink included variant. As of writing this review, Samsung have yet to announce the official retail price for this NVME.
|Samsung 990 PRO|
|SIZES AND VARIANTS||1 TB (with and without heatsink), 2TB (with and without heatsink)|
|APPLICATION||PCs, Game Consoles|
|FORM FACTOR||M.2 (2280)|
|INTERFACE||PCIe Gen 4.0 x4, NVMe 2.0|
|STORAGE MEMORY||Samsung V-NAND 3-bit MLC|
|CONTROLLER||Samsung in-house Controller|
|CACHE MEMORY||Samsung 1GB Low Power DDR4 SDRAM (1TB) , Samsung 2GB Low Power DDR4 SDRAM(2TB)|
|SEQUENTIAL READ||Up to 7,450 MB/s|
|SEQUENTIAL WRITE||Up to 6.900 MB/s|
|RANDOM READ (4KB, QD32)||1TB: Up to 1,200,000 IOPS , 2TB: Up to 1,400,000 IOPS|
|RANDOM WRITE (4KB, QD32)||Up to 1,550,000 IOPS|
|RANDOM READ (4KB, QD1)||Up to 22,000 IOPS|
|RANDOM WRITE (4KB, QD1)||Up to 80,000 IOPS|
|AVERAGE POWER CONSUMPTION (SYSTEM LEVEL)||1TB: Average 5.4 W Maximum 7.8 W (Burst mode) , 2TB: Average 5.5 W Maximum 8.5 W (Burst mode)|
|AVERAGE POWER CONSUMPTION (IDLE)||1TB: Max. 50 mW , 2TB: Max. 55 mW|
|AVERAGE POWER CONSUMPTION (DEVICE SLEEP)||Max. 5 mW|
|RELIABILITY (MTBF)||1.5 Million Hours Reliability (MTBF)|
|ENCRYPTION SUPPORT||AES 256-bit Encryption (Class 0) TCG/Opal , IEEE1667 (Encrypted drive)|
|WARRANTY||1 TB : 5-Year Limited Warranty or 600 TBW Limited Warranty , 2 TB : 5-Year Limited Warranty or 1200 TBW Limited Warranty|
The Samsung 990 PRO features an updated in-house controller and Samsung’s latest V-NAND 3-Bit MLC NAND Flash Memory. The theoretical read and write speed is not only significantly faster than its predecessor, and possibly one of the fastest in the market today. The reported 7450/6900 MBs read and write speed, if achievable on a general use case scenario makes it a highly desirable NVME for both PC and console owners.
In terms of warranty, the Samsung 990 PRO comes with a 5-year limited warranty for both versions, under the condition of 600TBW for the 1TB version and 1200TBW for the 2TB version. For comparison purposes, 600TBW in 5 years is equivalent to writing 336GB of data per day for 5 years – which is plenty even for most active users.
While lifespan reliability takes time to be proven, speed is not. In this review, our benchmarks will be focused on daily use case and synthetic loading speed of the 2TB Samsung 990 PRO.
|Motherboard||ASRock X670E Taichi Carrara|
|CPU||AMD Ryzen 7900x|
|RAM||2 x 16GB G.Skill Trident Z5 RGB 5200 DDR5|
|PSU||1000W 80+ Gold|
|GPU||NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3070|
To replicate a daily use case environment for benchmarking, I’ve cloned a copy of Windows 10 from my gaming and work PC that has all the necessary processes running in the background.
The Samsung 990 PRO was subjected to 5 rounds of benchmarking on CrystalDiskMark 8.0, and the graph above is the average score from the tabulated data.
While the results are slightly lower than the theoretical read and write speeds reported by Samsung, the Samsung 990 PRO is indeed capable of performing at 7450/6900 MBs read and write speeds if we are to consider in factors such as different software and hardware benchmark environments. We have also factored in slight manufacturing deviations as it may sometimes perform slightly better or worse than the others within the same product line, but well within an acceptable range in quality control requirements.
3DMark Storage Benchmark
In 3DMark Storage Benchmark, the Samsung 990 PRO has performed remarkably well in comparison to both its predecessor and other competitors in the market. Based on the results, the Samsung 990 is a great fit for most users including gamers and streamers.
PS5 Console Testing
|Games||PS5 Built-in||Samsung 990 PRO||Samsung 980 PRO|
|Gran Turismo 7||40.49||22.67||23.62|
|Horizon Forbidden |
|Marvel Guardians |
Of The Galaxy
|No Man’s Sky||18.07||16.75||17.82|
|Far Changing Tides||10.50||9.57||10.30|
|The Last Remnant |
For console environment, I’ve replicated the same benchmark that was used to test the Samsung 980 PRO previously. The newer Samsung 990 PRO performed considerably faster than its predecessor for all games and some with a significant difference.
The most noticeable difference was on Elden Ring. The Samsung 990 Pro managed to cut down an additional 8% of loading time for Elden Ring in comparison to its predecessor. Grand Turismo 7 and Far Changing Tides also saw a quicker loading time with a 7% difference in comparison.
The result from our testing confirms that it does perform as reported by Samsung and that itself is enough to put it on the top bracket of performance NVMEs. The 7450/6900 MBs read and write speed is by far one of the fastest in the market right now and it is a significant upgrade over its predecessor.
For both console and pc gamers, the Samsung 990 PRO will be a great addition to your arsenal for faster loading speeds and will have a slight increment in gaming performance as well. As for normal users who requires high volume data processing, this NVME will also be a great fit as the read and write speed will contribute to shorten the time needed to process your tasks.