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 Post subject: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Wed Feb 12, 2014 8:35 pm 
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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2014 10:26 am 
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The 840 Pro or Evo would would be my current upgrade choice if I were in the market for an SSD right now, although I am still exceptionally happy with my 240GB 830.


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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2014 12:24 pm 
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I got the 128GB version a little over a year ago after I became fed up with my Vertex 2 breaking every time I put my PC to sleep. One of the main reasons I chose it was that Samsung use their own controller and firmware, as opposed to the numerous Sandforce-based drives of dubious reliability. It's still working, so I guess I chose correctly.

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2014 3:30 pm 
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I've gone through a few SSDs of various types and sizes and when I upgraded to a 256 GB 840 pro it was the only time I noticed the speed jump when the old drive was already an SSD. It was not nearly the jump from HD->SSD, but it was noticeable even outside of benchmarks.


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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2014 3:58 pm 
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I think the only competitors for Samsung drives are other Samsungs, because other manufacturers' offerings are simply less reliable. (My source for this being review site feedback.) The big competitor for this particular drive is the 840 EVO, which is a budget drive with many good power and performance characteristics. I will give an honours mention to the new Crucial M500 drives which are said to have extra reliability measures, and priced even better than the 840 EVOs, but unfortunately draw a lot more power than the Samsungs.


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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sun Feb 16, 2014 8:49 pm 
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It's nice to see my Samsung 830 isn't a boat anchor. Yet.

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Mon Feb 17, 2014 5:08 am 
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I'd like to see more 5 year warranties like this. There's just no reason not to have one for a mid-to-high budget drive. The only other consumer-oriented drive with one I know of is the Sandisk Extreme II - incidentally it's very close (depending on what you test for) in price and performance, Anandtech has a review up on the drive for anyone that's interested in alternatives. For example a Seagate 600 Pro is double the money.

Still very satisfied with my m4 for the time being, consistent and lightning-quick compared to HDDs, just getting a bit small as I cram more on there. No performance drop with fill rate though, and no hiccups. It's a staple in SSD charts with the 830, but the m4's job is to hold that bottom position for comparison's sake. :mrgreen:

PS. I highly symphatise with the notion that in-house dev and hardware (like what Samsung, Micron/Crucial do) is more reliable. Someone building a drive out of outsourced pieces just doesn't have the same interest in guaranteeing the product will be as optimised and as reliable as it can be, nor do they have the same level of oversight and control as someone who develops, manufactures, and assembles those bits.

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Mon Feb 17, 2014 6:59 am 
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Das_Saunamies wrote:
PS. I highly symphatise with the notion that in-house dev and hardware (like what Samsung, Micron/Crucial do) is more reliable. Someone building a drive out of outsourced pieces just doesn't have the same interest in guaranteeing the product will be as optimised and as reliable as it can be, nor do they have the same level of oversight and control as someone who develops, manufactures, and assembles those bits.


Look at OCZ's rise and fall as an example of being on the pointy end of that particular spear.

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Mon Feb 17, 2014 7:53 am 
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CA_Steve wrote:
Das_Saunamies wrote:
PS. I highly symphatise with the notion that in-house dev and hardware (like what Samsung, Micron/Crucial do) is more reliable. Someone building a drive out of outsourced pieces just doesn't have the same interest in guaranteeing the product will be as optimised and as reliable as it can be, nor do they have the same level of oversight and control as someone who develops, manufactures, and assembles those bits.


Look at OCZ's rise and fall as an example of being on the pointy end of that particular spear.

Indeed I have, though it came as a big surprise to me, seeing how popular their products were regardless of the occasional technical troubles and their sales model. They could even afford to acquire Indilinx - or maybe they could not, after all.

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Mon Feb 17, 2014 8:48 am 
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Das_Saunamies wrote:
For example a Seagate 600 Pro is double the money.


The Seagate 600 Pro is an enterprise-class SSD, and it's priced accordingly (i.e. it cannot be in the same league of Sandisk/Samsung).

On the contrary it's true that the Sandisk is the first Marvell-based SSD to well address some of the usual annoyances of consumer SSD (performance consistency & steady state performance), and that it behave more probably that not better than the similarly-priced Seagate 600 (personally I prefer the Corsair Neutron to both).

Among alternatives I would look also to latest Toshibas.

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Mon Feb 17, 2014 11:07 am 
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quest_for_silence wrote:
Das_Saunamies wrote:
For example a Seagate 600 Pro is double the money.


The Seagate 600 Pro is an enterprise-class SSD, and it's priced accordingly (i.e. it cannot be in the same league of Sandisk/Samsung).

I would argue it is a direct peer of these drives. It is an entry-level enterprise drive, set apart only by a couple cheap and negligible tweaks.

Just to get this out of the way first: in performance it's in the same category as the Extreme II, the Neutron GTX (which even uses the same LAMD controller, same as the vanilla-Neutron), and the 840 Pro (the 840 EVO can also challenge it), and it uses the same sort of flash memory (MLC, Toggle, 20-ish nm) chips from the same makers as those drives (bar Neutron vanilla and 840 EVO, present only as side notes). The 600 Pro chips may or may not come from better bins, but you would more than likely have to have some really extreme data centre scenarios in mind - and years upon years to spare - to discover the difference.

The first cheap trick up the 600 Pro's sleeve, hard overprovisioning, is just a nice way of saying you've got a bit more memory, maybe more chips. Good for a gradual performance boost (but not enough to set the drive apart from competition, apparently) and longevity, but not super effective when you can't readily use that memory space for storage. This does not lift the drive above and beyond high-performance consumer-oriented drives, especially at 240 GB capacity (versus 256).

The second cheap trick, power loss protection (which essentially consists of adding capacitors and a firmware tweak, cheap as dirt), is a negligible fail-safe. In consumer (or even enterprise) operation, using a UPS or a battery-powered device (like a laptop, which are prime candidates for entry-level SSD use) can protect you in the majority of likely power loss scenarios where data loss might occur. To me it is a feature that should be on every drive as standard, like power loss head parking in HDDs - but how would they sell these enterprise drives and inflate profit margins if it was! :lol:

So that just leaves the 5-year warranty, which is also offered by the Sandisk Extreme II and the Neutrons GTX and vanilla both (woo!), all arguably consumer-oriented drives, and the 840 Pro, arguably an enterprise drive.

Right now the Seagate 600 Pro 240 GB is about £220, the Sandisk Extreme II 240 GB is £130, and the Samsung 840 Pro 256 GB and Corsair Neutron GTX 240 GB are £160 each on Amazon.co.uk (best deals for my locale at the moment). Curiously the Neutron vanilla at 256 GB is £145, way close to the GTX, and pricier than the Sandisk.

I brought the 600 Pro up as a contrast for a reason - you can get the same level of use out of all these drives with the same level of service (warranty), but the price on one is double just because they slapped an ENTERPRISE label on it.

PS. Toshiba is definitely on the table as well, being another big, all-in-house powerhouse.

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Mon Feb 17, 2014 5:44 pm 
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Das_Saunamies wrote:
I would argue it is a direct peer of these drives. It is an entry-level enterprise drive, set apart only by a couple cheap and negligible tweaks.


You may want to get rid of any artificial market segmentation, nonetheless there are no consumer drive with power loss protections, and any SSD with a so-called "super cap" (just a cap) nowadays costs much more than a consumer counterpart.


Das_Saunamies wrote:
So that just leaves the 5-year warranty, which is also offered by the Sandisk Extreme II and the Neutrons GTX and vanilla both (woo!), all arguably consumer-oriented drives, and the 840 Pro, arguably an enterprise drive.


The 840 Pro isn't an enterprise drive, it's still a consumer drive: the Samsung enterprise-class (to be fair, the Samsung's entry level ones in that class) are called SM843 and SM1625, and they cost usually noticeable more than the regular 840 Pro.


Das_Saunamies wrote:
the price on one is double just because they slapped an ENTERPRISE label on it.


Even the Intel S3700 isn't a stellar performer, or the Micron (Crucial) P400e, compared to the various Marvell, LAMD, Samsung or Toshiba offerings (not to mention OCZ/Indilinx: those Vertex 460 and Vector 150 are probably among the fastest drive available), but they cost more than any S3500/335/530 or M500 drive.

As said, they (the industry) call it "market segmentation", and even if it's not wrong to think that any consumer SSD should sport a protection cap, the IT industry doesn't offer it up to now.

Here in Italy a Mercedes Class A cost about twice an Alfa Romeo Giulietta: do you really think that Mercedes is two times "better" than the Alfa? And do you think that those two cars are purchased by the same-class people?

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Tue Feb 18, 2014 3:48 am 
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Let's not get into cars (especially MB and AR, now there's some polarising brands right there); I went off on a bit of a tangent with the drives already. I just felt like exploring why I didn't like the whole drive and comparison getting discarded off-hand like that.

On a side note, Sandisk employs pseudo power loss protection by having the faster nCache mode enabled on part of the drive's capacity. The idea is faster operation will commit more to writes so there is less risk of data loss. Everyone else just seems to feel like putting their hands up and going "well you bought MLC, what did you expect" (now pay us double for what should reasonably be a standard feature for little to no technical gain).

I'm just glad we're finally clawing in "enterprise" features like 5-year warranties. Now the rest need to follow (except SLC, encryption, remote control and such).

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 12:55 am 
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Can you make a test in the case of black-out? I red a round-up of 15 different SSDs subjected to interruption of energy supply: after this test only 3 of them were fully workibg while the others lost data stored or had a breakdown. I hope I wrote in a correct English.
Thanks in advance.


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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 2:56 am 
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I agree it'd be worth testing because contrary to this post...
quest_for_silence wrote:
there are no consumer drive with power loss protections

... there are significant differences in this respect between consumer drives.


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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 6:13 am 
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HFat wrote:
I agree it'd be worth testing because contrary to this post...
quest_for_silence wrote:
there are no consumer drive with power loss protections

... there are significant differences in this respect between consumer drives.


To be precise, I'm not aware of so-called "super caps" protected consumer drives.

But as your note may suggest, I'm not aware also of any alternative protection systems built into consumer drives: so, if you may add something more clarifying, it might be helpful to me, but to lots of people I guess.

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 7:27 am 
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Ever tried one of these? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Web_search_engine

Here's a famous recent test result: http://lkcl.net/reports/ssd_analysis.html
I don't agree with the general conclusion (I also buy Samsung and Crucial/Micron) but see how it mentions the 320? Now Intel made a lot of noise about the fact that it fixed the power loss problem the X25 had back in the day. If you like marketing (like "super-caps"), you may be interested in Intel's claims: http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/ ... brief.html

Obviously you can't have high-performance, cheap and reliable drives.
Lots of consumers (including some who post here) are obsessed by benchmarks and do not like drives which limit performance in order to improve reliability. I've even seen a SPCR regular argue that a firmware feature throttling a drive when it overheats was a reason not to buy that drive. Which is why a lot of consumer drives are unsafe. But not every single one. If you want reliable drives, check out the ones this crowd doesn't like.


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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 7:58 am 
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Or, you could buy a UPS and call it a day.

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 8:21 am 
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FWIW;
ive accidentally tripped the powerstrip on a few of my sammy ssd's (830 and 840, not pro's) and never had an issue.

ive also have a few older minipcie ssd's from asus netbooks and those also lost power while running a few times.... never an issue.

maybe im just lucky. ?

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 8:36 am 
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It's not a problem that's supposed to happen all that frequently unless the drive is used intensively. Which is why people use contrived tests to demonstrate the problem.
And it's not only a problem with SSDs. Hard-drive caches have long been a problem (with well-known solutions of course).


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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 8:37 am 
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HFat wrote:


TBH, I just wanted to give you an opportunity to show how much you love to be the most constructive regular forum contributor.


HFat wrote:
If you like marketing (like "super-caps"), you may be interested in Intel's claims: http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/ ... brief.html


Despite it originated from an unknown marketing rep, you may know that the expression "super cap SSD" is often used nowadays right to point out those enterprise-class, power loss protected SSDs.

But terminology set aside, it may worth to mention that a similar fault-tolerant scheme is now also seen on the Crucial M500 (albeit not every web-reviewer emphasized that aspect in their own tests).
There are a small row of capacitors which should flush all data in transit to the NAND in the event of a power loss, and as the M500 doesn't have a large DRAM cache to flush either, those caps should suffice.
I don't know how effective those (Intel, Micron, whatever) strategies are, I merely point out that very recently (about a week ago) someone stated that the M500 drives failed the test of their flush ability (he used the DriveMaster 2012) in all capacity sizes (I think you should be able to find out the original source using the above quoted Wikipedia page).


HFat wrote:
I've even seen a SPCR regular argue that a firmware feature throttling a drive when it overheats was a reason not to buy that drive. Which is why a lot of consumer drives are unsafe. But not every single one. If you want reliable drives, check out the ones this crowd doesn't like.


Thanks for warning, I'll try the forum search facility in order to evaluate such a crowd.


xan_user wrote:
maybe im just lucky. ?


Maybe, but I can confirm those experiences too, with Samsung, Crucial and Intel drives, and even with some old OCZ Vertex 2 (34nm) and Synapse (25nm) ones.
At any rate, as it is said shit happens: so, beware. :wink:

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 8:52 am 
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quest_for_silence wrote:
There are a small row of capacitors which should flush all data in transit to the NAND in the event of a power loss, and as the M500 doesn't have a large DRAM cache to flush either, those caps should suffice.
I don't know how effective those (Intel, Micron, whatever) strategies are, I merely point out that very recently (about a week ago) someone stated that the M500 drives failed the test of their flush ability (he used the DriveMaster 2012) in all capacity sizes (I think you should be able to find out the original source using the above quoted Wikipedia page).

Such caps aren't uncommon but the M500 indeed advertises features that usually come in so-called enterprise drives. And you've got to wonder at how they can offer them at that price... maybe they've cut corners on the caps.
I've not noticed the caps on my M500 but then I bought it for a laptop so power loss is not much of an issue. If it was, I'd probably have bought a used 320 or one of those surprisingly affordable S3500 (never tried them yet). Such is the power of Intel's marketing over cowards such as myself.


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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 9:37 am 
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quest_for_silence wrote:
...so-called "super cap" (just a cap)...

Supercapacitors are not just normal capacitors. It's a specific technical term for a type of capacitor which has significantly higher energy density than "just a cap".

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 1:47 pm 
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Mr Evil wrote:
Supercapacitors are not just normal capacitors. It's a specific technical term for a type of capacitor which has significantly higher energy density than "just a cap".


Thank you for the link: so supercapacitor (formerly electric double-layer capacitor or ultracapacitors) is the generic term for a family of electrochemical capacitors, and not just a marketing hype.
Now I see a tad more clearly some technical differences with reference to Intel/Crucial strategies on consumer drives.

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sat Mar 08, 2014 4:49 pm 
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I thought they wore capes.

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 9:28 am 
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CA_Steve wrote:
I thought they wore capes.

IKR, why should usb's have all the fun?

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 11:11 am 
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CA_Steve wrote:
Or, you could buy a UPS and call it a day.
I had a black-out and my APC with aged batteries keep the current for a very short period... anyway my system had a black-out due to the sudden break of the UPS and recovery the system was a true nightmare. I was very lucky and after a lot of attempts I gained a regular boot with no data loss on my Crucial M4 256 GB... An UPS is a big help but it's not the final solution. There are too many variables playing in these situations (UPS integrity, battery age, UPS manager software, seriousness of the current shock...) to trust on an UPS only...


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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 11:43 am 
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osmium76 wrote:
CA_Steve wrote:
Or, you could buy a UPS and call it a day.
I had a black-out and my APC with aged batteries keep the current for a very short period... anyway my system had a black-out due to the sudden break of the UPS and recovery the system was a true nightmare. I was very lucky and after a lot of attempts I gained a regular boot with no data loss on my Crucial M4 256 GB... An UPS is a big help but it's not the final solution. There are too many variables playing in these situations (UPS integrity, battery age, UPS manager software, seriousness of the current shock...) to trust on an UPS only...

As much as I like UPS', I have to agree - the parts should be ready for the worst-case scenario if at all possible. And with SSDs, it's apparently really simple, or would be.

Side note: I've now dared to move my work files over to the SSD (after years of use without a hitch), but not yet the OS. :wink:

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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 12:53 pm 
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Das_Saunamies wrote:
As much as I like UPS', I have to agree - the parts should be ready for the worst-case scenario if at all possible. And with SSDs, it's apparently really simple, or would be.

I don't know about "really simple" but I agree it would be more practical to safeguard the average client SSD against blackouts or UPS failures than the average client hard drive. Reliability still involves a substantial cost most people are unwilling to pay however...


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 Post subject: Re: Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD
PostPosted: Sun Mar 09, 2014 1:02 pm 
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Ain't that the truth. Too many pick the cheap(est) options - no UPS, cheap PSU etc. - but one can hope. The thing about cheap PSUs is that even if you have a UPS, the PSU cannot maintain stability during the UPS backup power switch and will cause a sudden shutdown.

I base my assessment of "really simple" on how little engineering it seems to have taken to make drives "blackout-safe". Just some extra power buffer (and probably firmware tweaks) so the drive can commit writes to flash before the power runs out.

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