What is a Solid-State Drive (SSD) and How to Choose it?

Solid-State Drive or SSD in short is getting mainstream in personal computer. It is light and it is fast. Unlike Hard Disk Drive or HDD, it uses NAND flash chip rather than spinning disk. Other than these obvious advantages, there are more things that you should know before you spend money on upgrading your personal computer to a SSD or adding secondary storage for your personal computer.

What is a Solid-State Drive (SSD)?

SSD works differently than HDD as there are no spinning disk required for data storage. It uses NAND flash chip that similar to memory chips that found on smartphone, USB drive or tablet. With the usage of NAND flash chip, SSD is generally more durable and reliable as there are no moving parts to damage and there are no drive motor to break. This also makes SSD much portable and reliable than HDD.


What makes SSD an increasingly popular choice is their speed. Across the board, SSD outpace HDD because SSD uses NAND flash chip and do not have physical moving parts. This allow for faster response time when you are booting your personal computer or even transferring files. A SSD is able to provide up to 10x faster read speeds and up to 20x faster write speeds than any midrange HDD, which only offers data transfer speed of up to 140MB/s. Speed is mainly influenced by the interface used in an SSD vs HDD that connects to the personal computer.

Types of SSD

There are two SSD form factors that are commonly being offered in Malaysia market: 2.5” and M.2. The most familiar form factor and it is currently the most affordable form factor is the 2.5” SSD. Unlike the 2.5” HDD, 2.5” SSD is enclosed in a lightweight shell and will require SATA connectors for power and data transfer. SanDisk SSD Plus is being offered in 120GB, 240GB, 480GB and also 1TB.

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Next up is M.2 SSD. It is commonly be found with 22mm wide and 80mm long, which it is labelled as M.2 2280. M.2 SSD can be found with SATA and NVMe protocol. The size of M.2 SSD is much smaller when compared to 2.5” SSD. M.2 SATA SSD read and write speed is very similar to 2.5” SSD as both uses same connector. WD Green is being offered in 2.5” and M.2 form factor. The storage size is being offered in 120GB, 240GB and 480GB.

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M.2 SSD is able to support NVMe which able to provide much faster read and write speed when compared with M.2 SATA SSD. Premium M.2 NVMe SSD can provide up to 3000MB/s read speed while affordable M.2 NVME SSD can provide up to 2000MB/s read speed.  WD Blue SN550 NVMe SSD is able to provide up to 2600MB/s read speed and up to 1800MB/s write speed. It is being offered in 250GB, 500GB and 1TB.

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Choosing The Right SSD for You

Upgrading to a SSD drive or choosing a SSD drive will not change the load time of your Facebook but it will be able to enhance the boot time, file saving time and most important your game load time. If your daily tasks consist of web browsing or Microsoft Office, most NVMe SSDs are not going to be noticeably faster than expensive SATA models. If your daily tasks consist of heavier work, like large file transfers, videos or high-end photo editing, transcoding, gaming or compression/decompression, then you might want to consider choosing NVMe SSD.

Eager to upgrade your personal computer to a SSD? Find the TMT store near you or purchase it through tmt.my.

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