Model: Samsung SSD 850 PRO 256GB Solid State Drive
Manufacturer: Samsung Electronics
Provided By: Samsung America

Samsung Electronics has been a leader in the electronics industry for more than 30 years. Since the introduction of their first television in 1970, this Korean company has grown to become one of the world's leading electronics manufacturers, offering everything from tiny semiconductors to large home appliances. Samsung is no stranger to the storage industry either. Along with an assortment of DVD and Blu-ray Disc drives, the company offers both hard drive and flash based storage solutions for the portable and desktop computer markets.

Samsung is also one of the world's leaders in advanced memory technology. Last fall, the company began mass producing the industry’s first three-dimensional (3D) Vertical NAND (V-NAND) flash memory. To break through the scaling limit for existing NAND flash technology, 3D V-NAND utilizes Samsung’s proprietary vertical cell structure based on 3D Charge Trap Flash (CTF) technology and vertical interconnect process technology to link the 3D cell array. By applying both of these technologies, Samsung’s 3D V-NAND offers anywhere from two to ten times the reliability and twice the write performance of conventional 10nm-class floating gate NAND flash memory.

One of the first consumer-oriented products to take advantage of 3D V-NAND is Samsung's new 850 PRO SSD. First unveiled at the 2014 Samsung SSD Global Summit in Seoul, the 850 PRO is ideal for use in high-end PCs and workstations. The drive is powered by Samsung's own 3-core MEX controller and is available with up to 1TB of their second generation, 32-layer 3D V-NAND flash. The 850 PRO also supports Device Sleep (DEVSLP) for lower power consumption as well as self-encrypting drive (SED) technology that is TCG Opal 2.0 and IEEE-1667 compliant. To top it all off, it supports Samsung's RAPID (Real-time Accelerated Processing of I/O Data) technology. By using free PC memory as a cache, RAPID can push the performance of the SSD beyond the limits of the current SATA specification.

The 850 PRO is available in a wide range of capacities from 128GB up to a massive 1TB. For this review, Samsung sent us the 256GB version of the drive which is capable of delivering up to 550 MB/s sequential read and 520 MB/s sequential write speeds as well as up to 100,000 random read and 90,000 random write IOPS.

   Samsung SSD 850 PRO 256GB Solid State Drive
General Specifications
Model Number MZ-7KE256BW
Capacity 256GB
Flash Type Samsung Samsung 32 layer 3D V-NAND
Controller Samsung MEX S4LN045X01-8030
Form Factor 2.5-inch
Interface SATA III 6Gb/s

Sequential Read 550 MB/s Max
Sequential Write 520 MB/s Max
4K Random Read (QD1) 10,000 IOPS
4K Random Write (QD1) 36,000 IOPS
4K Random Read (QD32) 100,000 IOPS
4K Random Write (QD32) 90,000 IOPS

MTBF 2 million hours
Endurance 150TBW (30,000 P/E Cycles)

Power Consumption
Active Read (Average) 3.3 Watt
Active Write (Average) 3.0 Watt
Idle 0.4 Watt
Device Sleep 2 mW

Temperature (Operating) 0 ºC to 70 ºC
Temperature (Non-Operating) -40 ºC to 85 ºC
Humidity 5% to 95%, non-condensing
Shock 1500G & 0.5ms (Half sine)
Vibration (Non-operating) 20~2000Hz, 20G

Dimensions and Weight
Dimensions 100 x 69.85 x 6.8 mm
Weight 66g

Other Features
Supports RAPID technology
Includes SSD Magician and Data Migration software
AES 256-bit full disk encryption
TCG Opal and eDrive IEEE 1667 standards compliant
Supports TRIM, SMART and Garbage Collection
DEVSLP power mode
10 year warranty

Needless to say, this is only a taste of what the 850 PRO has to offer. To give you an idea of what to expect, we'll take a closer look at Samsung's new SSD and then see how well it performs. Does the 850 PRO have what it takes? Can it deliver the performance and features that we've come to expect from Samsung? Keep reading as we find out.

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