TeamGroup MP34 | 4TB | NVMe | PCIe 3.0 | 3,500MB/s read | 2,900MB/s write |
$199.99 $159.99 at Amazon
4TB of proper TLC flash memory and a slug of DRAM cache for $159. What more do you need? Sure, this is a Gen 3 drive delivering around 3GB/s of raw throughput, but you'll barely notice the difference in the real world versus faster drives and it comes complete with a five-year warranty. This, in other words, is your storage sorted.
How much storage do you need for a proper game library? 4TB surely gets the job done for most of us. So, here's a 4TB SSD for just $159 thanks to Amazon's Prime Day SSD deals, the TeamGroup MP34 4TB. That works out to just four cents per GB. Wow.
And this isn't any old SSD. It's not the ultimate in cutting-edge solid state storage, to be sure, but this is a proper M.2 NVMe drive running TLC NAND memory, not some budget horror with QLC memory that falls off a performance cliff once you exhaust the SLC cache. It even has a Phison controller and some DRAM cache, though we can't quite work out how much.
The point is, however, that for a proper SSD, one you might want to use for your main boot drive and not just bulk storage, you definitely want both TLC memory rather than QLC, plus some DRAM. And this drive delivers on both counts.
The catch? It's very much an older model with a quad-lane PCIe Gen 3 interface and Phison's rather elderly E12 controller chip. The upshot is that peak throughput is relatively modest at 3.5GB/s reads and 2.9GB/s writes.
But it also has decent IOPS performance around the 450K mark and comes with a five year warranty and 2,400TB of write endurance.
So, here's the thing. Most of the time, there is no way you'd feel the difference between this drive and the latest 12GB/s PCIe Gen 5 monster costing three times as much. Compared to any SATA SSD, this thing flies. And it absolutely annihilates an old school HDD.
We haven't reviewed this particular TeamGroup SSD, but the Reddit hivemind indicates it's a decent drive from a reliability perspective.
WD Black SN850X | 4TB | NVMe | PCIe 4.0 | 7,300MB/s read | 6,600MB/s write |
$699.99 $229.99 at Walmart (save $470)
This is the highest-capacity version of our most beloved gaming SSD. Sadly it doesn't come with a heatsink for the price, but it's not required for use in a PC, and this SSD runs pretty cool. It's still a great deal for zippy read/writes and uber-high-capacity storage. PS, the discount of $470 is a little bloated—it's down from more like a $360 RRP—but it was $70 more expensive earlier in this sale, so this is a real saving.
Price check: Amazon $229.99 | Walmart $229.99
To put this all into context, the 4TB version of our favourite current SSD, the WD SN850X is on sale right now on Prime for $229.99. If you're not terribly price sensitive, that's probably the safer bet. And, really, it's a steal for such a big version of such a great drive.
But, honestly, we'd have no quals about pulling the $159 trigger on this TeamGroup drive. It's plenty well enough specified and has that five-year cover.