Best SSDs of 2024: Reviews and Buying Recommendations

The best solid-state drives (SSDs) can provide your computer with powerful performance.

Switching to an SSD is one of the best upgrades you can make to your PC. These marvelous devices can speed up boot times, improve responsiveness in programs and games, and generally make your computer feel snappy. However, not all SSDs are created equal. You can spend a fortune to achieve another level of read/write speeds, or you can find top-tier SSDs that offer stable performance without breaking the bank.

Many SSDs come in the 2.5-inch form factor and connect to your PC via SATA ports, just like traditional hard disk drives. But mini NVMe (Non-Volatile Memory Express) “gumstick” SSDs for modern motherboards’ M.2 connectors and ultra-fast PCIe 4.0 (now 5.0) solid-state drives for PC compatibility are becoming increasingly common; you’ll even find SSDs on PCIe adapters, plugging into the motherboard like graphics or sound cards. No, choosing the perfect SSD isn’t as straightforward as it used to be.


Why You Should Trust Us:

Our storage assessments are comprehensive and rigorous, testing each product’s limits—from performance benchmarks to practicality in everyday use. As PC users, we know what makes products stand out. Only the best SSDs make it onto this list. For more information about our testing process, please scroll to the bottom of this article.


Samsung 870 EVO – Best SATA SSD

Samsung 870 EVO - Best SATA SSD

Advantages:

  • Excellent performance, especially in small file operations.
  • Long writes don’t slow down like with QVO.

Disadvantages:

  • A bit pricey.

Best Price Today: $59.99 for Samsung.

If you’re looking to add some storage through a traditional 2.5-inch SATA drive rather than a tiny M.2 “gumstick,” then Samsung’s eye-catching 870 EVO is your best bet. It’s the fastest SATA SSD we’ve tested, with capacities up to 4TB, and considering its speed, it’s very reasonably priced. That said, Samsung’s killer Magician SSD management software and super-long warranty are also praiseworthy. There’s a reason the EVO series has become a legend among SSDs.

That said, the SK Hynix Gold S31 is also worth considering. It trails the 870 EVO by just a bit in benchmark testing, and the 1TB version is $12 cheaper at $98. However, SK drives are currently only available in 1TB versions, whereas the 870 EVO ranges from a $60 250GB model to a hefty $450 4TB model. Samsung’s 1TB product sells for $110.


Crucial BX500 – Best Budget SATA SSD

Crucial BX500 - Best budget SATA SSD

Advantages

  • Good daily performance
  • Low cost per gigabyte

Disadvantages

  • Speed drops significantly when secondary cache is exhausted

Best deal today: Amazon $69.99

While the Samsung 870 EVO offers intoxicating performance and an affordable price, if you want to get as much capacity as possible for the lowest price, consider the Crucial BX500. The 1TB model is priced at $41.99, more than $50 cheaper than the equivalent EVO, while the 480GB version is only $24.99. It also comes in 240GB and 2TB versions.

“For those looking for good daily performance at a budget price, we recommend this larger capacity QLC drive,” we said in our review. “Smaller capacities may encounter more slowdowns during heavy writes.”


Crucial P3 – Best PCIe 3.0 SSD

Crucial P3 - Best PCIe 3.0 SSD

Advantages

  • Excellent daily PCIe 3 performance
  • Extremely low price per GB

Disadvantages

  • Very low TBW rating
  • Slow non-cached QLC write speeds

Best Price Today: $51.20 on Amazon

While PCIe 4.0 SSDs might scream during large file transfers, upgrading to an NVMe SSD can still bring significant benefits to the speed and overall responsiveness of your PC if you’re still on an older system with PCIe 3.0. Better yet, you don’t have to break the bank to take advantage of it. The Crucial P3 offers excellent daily performance, with the 500GB model priced at just $44 and the 1TB model at $84. While it lacks the top-tier PCIe 4 performance and has a relatively low TBW rating, the P3 does deliver excellent real-world write times, and you won’t notice too much of a difference unless you’re really pushing the drive.

Overall, this drive is a great choice for those looking to purchase a solid daily SSD at an affordable price.


WD Blue SN580 SSD – Best Budget PCIe 4.0 SSD

WD Blue SN580 SSD - Best budget PCIe 4.0 SSD

Advantages

  • Very affordable
  • Extremely fast real-world transfers
  • Single-sided for laptop upgrades

Disadvantages

  • Slows down to below 300MBps when caching is disabled
  • Slightly lower endurance rating

Today’s Best Price: $59.99 on Amazon

Cutting-edge PCIe 4.0 SSDs aren’t as cheap as SATA or PCIe 3.0 NVMe drives, but as the technology matures, we’re starting to see a variety of attractively priced models. The best bang for your buck? The WD Blue SN580 NVMe SSD—and by a considerable margin. The 1TB model is priced at just $50, and you won’t find any PCIe 4.0 drive offering this much storage at such a low price. In our testing, the SN580 delivered impressive benchmark results and real-world performance. It did slow down significantly in our large file transfer test at 450GB, but considering that nobody writes that much continuous data, this may not be a significant concern. Overall, the SN580 is a high-performing PCIe 4.0 SSD that significantly reduces the cost barrier for its competitors. At this price point, it’s simply unbeatable.


Solidigm P44 Pro SSD – Best PCIe 4.0 SSD

Solidigm P44 Pro SSD - Best PCIe 4.0 SSD

Advantages

  • Exceptionally fast PCIe 4.0 SSD to date
  • DRAM contributes to outstanding random performance
  • Synergy Low-level Windows drivers further enhance random performance

Disadvantages

  • Inconsistent pricing among retailers

Today’s best price: $69 on Amazon

The Solidigm P44 Pro stands as the fastest PCIe 4.0 drive we’ve tested, bar none. In fact, it ranks among the top five fastest drives in our testing, trailing only three next-gen PCIe 5.0 drives. Moreover, it gets even faster when you install the Solidigm Windows drivers, further boosting small-file random performance.

Not only does the Solidigm P44 Pro deliver top-tier performance, but if you shop in the right place, it’s also reasonably priced—we found significant differences in online pricing among different retailers. It’s one of the best SSDs on the market, maintaining its lead despite stiff competition from other excellent PCIe 4.0 drives.


What to Consider with SSDs

Of course, capacity and price matter, and a longer warranty can ease concerns about data loss prematurely. Most SSD manufacturers offer a three-year warranty, while some top models provide five years. Unlike past SSDs, modern drives don’t wear out from normal consumer use, as Tech Report proved through rigorous durability testing years ago.

One thing to pay attention to is the technology used to connect the SSD to your PC. We detail which type of SSD you should buy in our guide, offering deeper insights and purchasing recommendations.

  1. SATA: This refers to the connection type and transfer protocol used to connect most 2.5-inch and 3.5-inch hard drives and SSDs to PCs. SATA III speeds can reach about 600MBps, and most (but not all) modern drives hit that maximum speed. (The next section will detail this further.)
  2. PCIe: This interface harnesses the computer’s four PCIe lanes to surpass SATA speeds, reaching close to 4GBps on PCIe gen 3. This staggering speed pairs perfectly with boosted NVMe drives. PCIe channels on the motherboard and M.2 slots on the board can both be connected to support PCIe interfaces, and you can purchase adapters to slot “gumstick” M.2 drives into PCIe channels. PCIe 4.0 drive speeds are significantly faster but require an AMD Ryzen 3000 series or Intel Core 11th Gen (or newer) processor, as well as a compatible PCIe 4.0 motherboard.
  3. NVMe: Non-Volatile Memory Express technology utilizes PCIe’s ample bandwidth to create lightning-fast SSDs that leave SATA-based drives in the dust.
  4. M.2: This is where things get tricky. Many people assume M.2 drives all use NVMe technology and PCIe speeds, but that’s not always the case. M.2 is just a form factor. While most M.2 SSDs do use NVMe, some still stick with SATA. Do your homework. Many modern ultrabooks rely on M.2 for storage.
  5. U.2 and mSATA: You may still occasionally come across mSATA and U.2 SSDs, but support for these formats and product availability are rare. Before M.2 became popular, some older ultrabooks included mSATA drives, and if you need them, the drives are still available.

Of course, speed matters, but as we mentioned, most modern SSDs saturate the SATA III interface. But not all of them.

SSD vs. Hard Drives

Do you need an SSD? “Need” is a strong word, but we strongly recommend everyone upgrade to an SSD. The speed of solid-state drives can even blow the fastest mechanical hard drives out of the water. Simply swapping out the old hard drive in a laptop or desktop for an SSD can make it feel like a brand-new system, and with lightning-fast speeds. Buying an SSD is undoubtedly the best upgrade you can make to a computer.

However, SSDs cost more per GB than mechanical hard drives, so they usually can’t provide ultra-high capacities. If you want speed and storage space, you can buy a space-limited SSD and use it as a boot drive, then set up a traditional hard drive as auxiliary storage in your PC. Put programs on the boot drive and store media and other files on the hard drive, and you’ll have the best of both worlds.

How We Test SSDs

We tested the current setup on Windows 11 (22H2) 64-bit, running on an X790 (PCIe 5.0) motherboard with an i5-12400 CPU and two Kingston Fury 32GB DDR5 modules (64GB total memory). Intel integrated graphics were used. The 48GB transfer test used ImDisk RAM disk, taking up 58GB out of 64GB total memory. The 450GB files were transferred from a Samsung 990 Pro 2TB, including the operating system.

Each test was performed on a freshly formatted and TRIMmed drive, so the results are optimal. Note that performance will degrade as any drive fills up due to less NAND used for caching and other factors.

The displayed performance data applies only to the drives we shipped and the tested capacities. SSD performance may vary by capacity, depending on the number of chips available for reading/writing and the amount of NAND available for caching (writing TLC/QLC as SLC). Vendors sometimes also swap components.

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