For upgrading users that don’t have a fast M.2 connection(PCI-E), Samsung is launching the SSD 860 series for the SATA 3 interface. What is the difference between the 860 Evo and the 850 EVO, is it worth upgrading and buying the newer version of the older Samsung 850 EVO.
Last year the new and fast Samsung NVMe SSDs – the 960 Evo and 960 Pro for the M.2 interface(PCI-E) were tested. Now the manufacturer launched the new SATA 3 models 860 Evo and 860 Pro. M.2 PCI-E SSDs with NVMe protocol offer significantly higher transfer data than SATA-3 SSDs with AHCI protocol, at least on paper. But still the M.2 interface is not integrated into every PC and even if it is integrated into many notebooks, it is just a regular M.2 with the slower SATA connection instead of the fastest NVMe connection.
Unlike the 960 series, the new 860 series from Samsung still uses the old interface, offering all mainstream users without an NVMe-M.2 connection a quick upgrade option, as the new data carriers make the most of the interface. Compared to conventional hard drives, they also bring a tremendous speed advantage and the difference to the faster NVMe models is more likely to be measurable than noticeable unless you transfer large amounts of data every day.
The Samsung 860 EVO model includes sizes from 250 GB to 4 TB. For Samsung 850 EVO there wasn’t a 4TB model, so this is a good news for those who need higher storage capacity.
TurboWrite buffer upgrade from 850 EVO model
We’re happy to see that the SLC memory buffer was upgraded as well. We are not sure if the performance of the cache itself is better; however, the capacity is increased from 12GB to 78GB. This means 860 EVO provides more consistent sequential write speeds. Using SLC cache is an important technology that allows getting high write speed of MLC or TLC type cells.
Samsung 860 EVO vs 850 EVO specifications:
|Samsung 860 EVO||Samsung 850 EVO|
|Interface||6 Gbps SATA 3 (compatible with SATA 3Gb/s & SATA 1.5Gb/s)||6 Gbps SATA 3 (compatible with SATA 3Gb/s & SATA 1.5Gb/s)|
|Form Factor||Msata/M.2 2280/2.5″||Msata/M.2 2280/2.5″|
|Controller||Samsung MJX||Samsung MGX/MEX|
|NAND||Samsung 64-layer 3D TLC V-NAND||Samsung 128Gbit 40nm TLC V-NAND|
|Type of RAM||LPDDR4 DRAM||LPDDR2/LDDR3|
|Ram Capacity for models with 250GB-500GB||512MB||512MB|
|Ram Capacity for models with 1TB||1GB||1GB|
|Sequential Read||up to 560 MB/s||540MB/s|
|Sequential Write||up to 520 MB/s||up to 520MB/s|
|4KB Random Read||98K IOPS||up to 100k IOPS|
|4KB Random Write||up to 90K IOPS||up to 90k IOPS|
|DevSleep Power||2.5 mW – 7 mW||50mW|
|Endurance for 250GB model||150TB (82GB/day)||75TB (41GB/day)|
|Endurance for 500GB model||300TB (164GB/day)||150TB (82GB/day)|
|Warranty||5 years||5 years|
Samsung 860 EVO with it’s new Samsung MJX controller offers much better compatibility for Linux/OSx operating systems. Trim support was improved as well. We’re happy to know that Samsung is working hard to supporting platforms besides Windows. Linux support is improved as well.
860 EVO specifications detailed
|Samsung 860 Evo|
|Capacity||250 GB||500 GB||1 TB||2 TB||4 TB|
|Technology||TLC, 64-lags V-NAND|
|Formfactor||2,5″, M.2, mSATA||2,5″, M.2, mSATA||2,5″, M.2, mSATA||2,5″, M.2||2,5″|
|DRAM, capacity||512 MB||512 MB||1 GB||2 GB||4 GB|
|TurboWrite, STC cache, standard/total||3/12 GB||4/22 GB||6/42 GB||6/42 GB||6/78 GB|
|Seqencial read||550 MB/s / 520 MB/s|
|IOPS, 1||10k/42k IOPS|
|IOPS, 32||98k/90k IOPS|
|DevSleep Power||2,2 W / 50 mW / 2 mW||2,5 W / 50 mW / 2 mW||3,0 W / 50 mW / 2,6 mW||3,0 W / 50 mW / 5 mW||3,0 W / 50 mW / 8 mW|
|TBW||150 TB||300 TB||600 TB||1200 TB||2400 TB|
Double endurance(TBW) over the older 850 EVO model
Samsung claims up to 8x higher TBW; however, on specifications provided we definitely see a 2x improvement for 860 EVO model over 850 EVO. 150TB instead of 75TB on 250GB model, and 600TB over 300TB on the 1TB model. Anyway, that’s more than enough for any workstation or personal PC. 860 EVO even might be used for servers, although, there are more professional models recommended for those applications.
As expected, the new Samsung models deliver good performance, at least for the SATA 3 interface. The two successful and popular predecessor models can beat older models without further ado. Where the sequential read and write values have not actually improved significantly. Nevertheless, especially the general reading score for the respective test software increases. This is especially due to the improved 4K (-64) values.
In addition, the access times have been optimized once again, so that the new Evo even slightly overtake the old Pro. The new Pro is here once again a bit better, in terms of accessibility cuts the actually much better M.2 SSD 960 Pro at the worst.
Otherwise, the differences between the two new 860 models are extremely low. Again, it is clear that the performance margin is extremely limited upwards. In the 850 series, Evo still separated about 30% from the pro, in the 860 series they are in terms of overall valuation technology with about 3% difference almost equal.
|Samsung SSD 860 Pro 1TB||Samsung SSD 860 EVO 1TB||Samsung SSD 850 EVO 1TB||Samsung SSD 850 Pro 1TB|
|Access Time Write *|
|Access Time Read *|
|Write 4k QD32|
|Read 4k QD32|
The new 860 series comes in the test at very good values within their class and can outdo the popular, direct predecessor again. Above all, the 4K values and access times have been further optimized. This makes Samsung’s 860 Evo ideal for any notebook or desktop PC that only has the SATA interface. Of course, the new storage drives are the perfect way to make the long-overdue transition from a conventional hard drive or HDD. The speed gain is particularly noticeable here and definitely worth it.
However, the test results also illustrate that manufacturers are reaching the performance limits of the SATA interface and the speed gain is decreasing. Efforts to push the limits even further are praiseworthy, but big leaps in a performance like M.2 SSDs with NVMe connectivity are not nearly to be expected.
Despite improvement to its predecessor, the switch is hardly worth it. Only the difference to the 850 Evo is still relevant, but even the mainstream user will hardly feel this in practice. For users who have an M.2 slot with fast PCIe connection and NVMe protocol, the SATA models are no longer an option anyway. All others, however, can purchase the new 860 EVO series without hesitation, the purchase of the Pro model makes only sense for enthusiasts, the differences to the new Evo fall for the price difference too small.
The difference between 860 EVO and 850 EVO, although not significant, can be measured and noticed during the day to day operations. So we definitely recommend purchasing 860 EVO instead 850 EVO, especially considering the price. With 860 EVO you get a new better controller Samsung MJX, and LDDR4 memory instead of DDR3/DDR2. Also, endurance has been increased twice the previous model’s endurance, definitely an improvement here.
The new model provides the maximum performance you can get now on SATA3. Even 860 Pro doesn’t shine here, as it’s only marginally better than 850 EVO.
Launch prices for 850 EVO available on Amazon
|250GB 860 EVO||500GB 860 EVO||1TB 860 EVO||2TB 860 EVO||4TB 860 EVO|