In recent years the capacity of SSD’s (Solid State Drives) has increased significantly and the cost has fallen, making the technology more affordable and accessible than ever before. Computer solid state drives now offer significantly faster performance than traditional hard drives, bringing reliable solid state storage to laptops and desktop computers. They are also smaller and contain no moving parts, making them more durable if you’re transporting your system around.
There are several SSD variations currently on the market, with each suited to a particular application. Below, we explain the differences and advise you on the right choice for your system.
SATA drives are the industry standard for laptop solid state storage as well as PC solid state storage. Available in 1.8″ and 2.5”, they are smaller than standard 3.5inch HDDs and so sometimes require a caddy to be used to fit the respective system. We stock brands from leading manufacturers in the industry, including Kingston, Intel, Innodisk, ATP, APRO and Novachips.
mSATA allows the installation of SSDs in laptops and other smaller netbooks where space is limited. In essence, mSATA solid state drives are 2.5” SSDs without the casing, saving even more space than usual. This type of SSD is connected through the PCI Express standard or the SATA standard, however, adapters are available to make use of any card through any port. Different form factors include; mini mSATA, slim SATA and mSATA
Pronounced m-dot-two and known previously as Next Generation Form Factor (NGFF), M.2 SSDs were designed to replace mSATA drives. A more flexible physical specification allows huge performance gains when compared with mSATA. Again, these SSDs are laptop ready but may also be used within desktop PCs where compatible. These solid state drives are connected via M.2 slot but use the PCI Express bus.
PCI Express SSDs
PCI Express SSDs are extremely powerful with high read/write speeds that connect directly to your PCI Express slot. These solid state drives are still relatively expensive but offer the best performance for both laptops and desktop computers where compatible.