We’ve been writing a lot about solid state drives lately. To be fair, so has everyone else. SSDs have been gradually ascending the rungs of technological relevance for over ten years now, culminating in their current status as the greatest threat to the overthrow of the hard drive throne.
They offer better performance in smaller dimensions and have less chance of failing than HDDs, along with all the other fanfare that is typical of these SSD-praising articles.
Most of our readers likely know their way around an SSD so we won’t waste more time talking about how great they are. No, the focus of today’s article is to walk through the different form factors available to consider when purchasing a solid state drive.
Whether it’s the reliable SATA 6Gbps SSD, offering modest performance at the most affordable prices, to PCI Express drives (AHCI or NVMe) offering blistering speeds at the questionable cost of an arm and a leg, to the newest M.2 SSD that nobody even seems to know exist, there is a drive to fit everyone’s needs.
If you’re not sure what some of these drives are, nor what they are best suited for, we’ve drafted a buyer’s guide to cover the bases on these four SSD form factors.
Some may think that discussing AHCI and NVMe protocols separately is just splitting hairs, but they offer different advantages and affect both the performance and compatibility of PCI Express drives, so this guide treats them as two separate entities.
We encourage you to read up on these different form factors so you can more confidently make SSD purchases in the future. In addition to providing information on the strengths and weaknesses of each form factor, this guide includes some background information on each drive as well as example prices and speeds to aid in making an informed decision.
It took a lot of hard work and love to create, so we hope it serves as a guiding light when attempting to find the right solid state drive to fit your needs.
Thank you for reading and we hope you enjoy our SSD Form Factor Buyer’s Guide.