We've long touted Crucial's P1 as one of the best SSDs for gaming, for those who want decent speed at a comparatively affordable price. However, you should skip that drive for the time being. That's because Crucial's P5 is a must faster SSD, and is only $5 more at the moment.
You can find Crucial's P5 in 1TB form on sale for $109.99 at Best Buy and Amazon (there's a slight wait at the latter, with the listing indicating it will be in stock on March 12). The P1 in a 1TB capacity, meanwhile, goes for $104.99 at most places.
Crucial P5 1TB SSD |
$149.99 $109.99 at Best Buy (save $40)
The P5 is rated to deliver read speeds of up to 3,400MB/s, which is at the upper end of the PCIe 3.0 spectrum. This bargain nets you more speed than you would normally get in this price range.
This is a nice price drop. When the P5 series launched last July, I noted the specifications looked good if you're willing to a pay a premium for a fast SSD, because the 1TB model debuted at $179.99. That's out of whack in today's landscape.
Whereas the P1 sports quad-level cell (QLC) NAND flash memory chips, the P5 uses Micron's third-generation 96-layer triple-level cell (TLC) chips, paired with a proprietary six-core NVMe controller. The result, according to Crucial, is the ability to deliver up to 3,400MB/s of sequential read performance and up to 3,000MB/s of sequential write performance.
Those are on the higher end of the spectrum for a PCIe 3.0 drive—not the absolute fastest, but right up there, at least in terms of rated specifications (we have not tested the P5 ourselves). To go much higher, you'd have to look for a pricier PCIe 4.0 model, and the platform to take full advantage of it.