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Best SSDs (Solid-State Drives) of 2021: Your PC / Server Deserves One Today!

This post includes the best SSDs I’ve reviewed.

Migrating your computer from a hard drive to a solid-state drive (SSD) or from a SATA SSD to an NVMe is by far the most gratifying upgrade. So, getting the right drive is naturally an important task. Pick one today!

Dong’s note: I last updated this frequently revised post on November 24, 2021.

Best SSDs : Internal SSDs come in different shapes and sizes.
Best SSDs: Solid-state drives generally comes in 2.5-inch (SATA) and M.2 (NVMe) designs

Best SSDs of 2021: The lists

You’ll find here standard SATA and NVMe drives, divided into two lists in reviewed order with the latest on top.

NVMe and SATA are two different internal storage types — more about them in this post on SSD basics.


Best NVMe SSDs of 2021: A must for a top performing computer

Newer and much faster NVMe SSDs require a host that has an M.2 slot. Most computers released in the past five years have this slot built-in, but you can upgrade to one on almost all desktop computers via a PCIe adapter.

9. WD Blue SN570 Review: An Affordable Entry-Level PCIe 3.0 NVMe SSD

WD Blue SN570 NVMe SSD
Best SSDs: The WD Blue SN570

WD Blue SN570's Rating

8 out of 10
WD Blue SN570 NVMe SSD
Performance
7.5/10
Features
7.5/10
Value
9/10

Pros

Fast (read) performance for casual computing

Affordable

Excellent Dashboard software

5-year warranty

Cons

Low random access performance and slow write copy speed in extended tasks

No security or user-accessible overprovisioning features

Capacities cap at just 1TB


8. Seagate IronWolf 525: An excellent NVMe upgrade for NAS servers and PCs

Seagate IronWolf 525 SSD
Best SSDs: The Seagate IronWolf 525

Seagate IronWolf 525's Rating

8.2 out of 10
$0
Seagate IronWolf 525 SSD 3
Performance
8/10
Features
8.5/10
Value
8/10

Pros

High endurance

Excellent real-world, including RAID, performance

Three years of data rescue services included

5-year warranty

Cons

Slower than PCIe 4.0 rivals

Limited NAS use


7. Micron Crucial P5 Plus: Arguably the best PCIe 4.0 NVMe deal to date

Micron Crucial P5 Plus PCIe Gen 4.0 NVMe SSD
Best SSDs: The Micron Crucial P5 Plus PCIe Gen 4.0 NVMe SSD

Micron Crucial P5 Plus' Rating

9.2 out of 10
Micron Crucial P Plus PCIe Gen 4.0 NVMe SSD
Performance
9.5/10
Features
9/10
Value
9/10

Pros

Excellent performance

Affordable

PCIe 4.0 support, backward compatible with PCIe Gen 3

Helpful Storage Executive software

5-year warranty

Cons

Comparatively modest endurance

Capacities cap at 2TB


6. Samsung 980: An interesting and valuable NVMe SSD

Samsung 980 SSD on hand
Best SSDs: The Samsung 980 NVMe SSD

Samsung 980 NVMe SSD's Rating

9 out of 10
Samsung SSD 980 Pro 1
Performance
9/10
Features
9.5/10
Value
8.5/10

Pros

Excellent performance

Affordable

Exciting features and helpful software

5-year warranty

Cons

No larger capacity than 1TB

Comparatively low endurance


5. SK hynix Gold P31: Arguably the PCIe 3.0 NVMe drive of the best value

SK hynix Gold P31
Best SSDs: The SK hynix Gold P31 NVMe SSD

SK Hynix Gold S31 SSD's Rating

7.7 out of 10
SK Hynix Gold S31
Performance
8.5/10
Features
6/10
Value
8.5/10

Pros

Relatively affordable

Fast performance

Longevity

Cons

Storage caps at 1TB

No user-accessible features


4. Samsung 980 PRO: First PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSD

Samsung SSD 980 Pro 1
Best SSDs: The Samsung 980 PRO is the very first PCIe 4.0-based NVMe SSD.

Samsung 980 PRO's Rating

9 out of 10
Samsung SSD 980 Pro 1
Performance
9.5/10
Features
9/10
Value
8.5/10

Pros

PCIe 4.0 support, excellent performance

Reasonably priced

Backward compatible with PCIe Gen 3

Helpful Samsung Magician software with lots of useful settings and features

5-year warranty

Cons

Half the endurance rating of the 970 PRO

No larger capacities than 2TB


3. Seagate IronWolf 510: A NAS NVMe that works well as a super-fast PC SSD

Seagate IronWolf 510 NVMe SSD 3
Best SSDs: The Seagate IronWolf 510

Seagate IronWolf 510's Rating

8.5 out of 10
Seagate IronWolf 510 NVMe SSD 11
Performance
8/10
Features
8.5/10
Value
9/10

Pros

Extremely high endurance

Excellent real-world performance

High capacity

2-year of data rescue services included

5-year warranty

Cons

The write speeds could use some improvement

Comparatively expensive

No SATA versions


2. WD Blue SN550: A Fast and affordable NVMe SSD

WD Blue SN550 SSD Hand
Best SSDs: The WD Blue SN550

WD Blue SN550's Rating

8.2 out of 10
WD Blue SN550 SSD BOX
Performance
8/10
Features
8/10
Value
8.5/10

Pros

Affordable

Fast performance for general usage

Useful dashboard software

High endurance

Cons

Capacity caps at 1TB

Relatively low performance in demanding tasks

No hardware encryption


1. Samsung 970 EVO Plus: The go-to PCIe 3.0 NVMe solid-state drive

Samsung 970 Evo Plus 3
Best SSDs: The Samsung 970 EVO Plus

Samsung 970 EVO Plus's Rating

8.3 out of 10
Samsung 970 Evo Plus 3
Performance
9/10
Features
8/10
Value
8/10

Pros

Fast performance at affordable pricing

High endurance

Easy to use with lots of features

Cons

Can't handle sustained sequential writes at high speed


Best SATA SSD of 2021: An easy upgrade

The SATA standard is much slower than the NVMe above but still significantly faster than any traditional hard drive.

A SATA SSD will fit in the place of any regular hard drive and therefore, will make an easy and satisfying upgrade in any computer that still runs on a hard drive.

6. Samsung SSD 870 EVO: Arguable the best SATA drive to date

Samsung 870 EVO SSD on Box
Best SSDs: The Samsung 870 EVO

Samsung 870 EVO's Rating

9 out of 10
Samsung 870 EVO SSD
Performance
9/10
Features
8.5/10
Value
9.5/10

Pros

Top-notch SATA performance

Useful software with an excellent feature set

Relatively affordable

5-year warranty

High endurance

Cons

No 8TB capacity

No M.2 version


5. Samsung SSD 870 QVO: A sizable and excellent SATA upgrade for a budget computer

Samsung SSD 870 QVO 5
Best SSDs: Samsung SSD 870 QV0

Samsung SSD 870 QVO's Rating

8.2 out of 10
Samsung SSD 870 QVO 4
Performance
8/10
Features
8/10
Value
8.5/10

Pros

Affordable

Excellent performance for daily tasks,

Useful software

Up to 8 TB of storage space

Cons

Sequential write speed is slow in extended tasks

Comparatively low endurance

Not available in M.2 design


4. WD Red SA500: A versatile SATA NAS SSD that’s also great for PCs

WD Red SA500 Hand
Best SSDs: The WD Red SA500

WD Red SA500's Rating

8.8 out of 10
WD Red SA500 Hand
Performance
9/10
Features
8.5/10
Value
9/10

Pros

Affordable with a long warranty

Excellent performance

2.5-inch and M.2 form factors

High capacity

Cons

Relatively low endurance when compared to competing drive

No NVMe version, 2.5-inch to 3.5-inch mounting bracket not included


3. SK hynix Gold S31: The nice new kid on the block

SK Hynix Gold S31 PORT
Best SSDs: The SK Hynix Gold S31

2. Seagate IronWolf 110: A standard SATA SSD with extreme endurance

Synology DS419slim SSD
Best SSDs: The Seagate IronWolf 110

Seagate IronWolf 110's Rating

8.3 out of 10
Seagate Ironwolf 110 Port
Performance
8.5/10
Features
8.5/10
Value
8/10

Pros

Extremely high endurance

Fast performance

Long warranty and easy to use

Cons

A bit expensive

Runs hot

No M.2 or NVMe version


1. Micron Crucial BX500: The low-cost replacement SSD for a budget computer

The new Crucial BX500 SSD from Micron.
Best SSDs: The Crucial BX500

Crucial BX500's Rating

8 out of 10
Crucial BX500 3
Performance
7.5/10
Features
7.5/10
Value
9/10

Pros

Inexpensive

Good performance and endurance

Useful software and features

Cons

No encryption, bare-bone specs

Short 3-year warranty

No higher capacities than 960GB


Best SSDs of 2021: SATA vs. NVMe performance

When reviewing solid-state drives, I generally only stack drives of the same type (SATA or MVMe) against one another. Since this list includes both types, however, you’ll find below performance charts of all drives. So, you’ll see here how SATA drives stack up against NVMe counterparts.

Sequential (copy) performance

This chart shows how fast solid-state drives perform when copying a large amount of data from one place to another. It applies general data transferring tasks, such as when you want to backup your data or, recovering data from a backup

Best SSDs Copy Performance

Random access performance

Random access performance shows how a solid-state drive affects the host computer’s overall performance. It represents tasks like launching an application or editing a large data file.

Best SSDs Random Performance

Now that you have found out which drive you should get. Check out how you can migrate a hard drive to an SSD or do an MVMe upgrade on your Windows 10 machine.

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16 thoughts on “Best SSDs (Solid-State Drives) of 2021: Your PC / Server Deserves One Today!”

  1. I am surprised there was no mention or inclusion of a single Sabrent-branded SSDs. I’ve been using a couple 2TBs for well over a year and no problems. I have an unopened 2TB NVMe v4.0 ready to deploy when I get my Lenovo X1 Extreme Gen 4. You might want to check them out. Here’s one link to a Black Friday special at Amazon.

    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07TLYWMYW?tag=dongknows-20

    Reply
  2. Hi Dong,
    My daughter has a ThinkPad X1 Carbon laptop. About a year ago, I upgraded its SSD from Intel Pro 6000p 256GB (SSDPEKKF256G7) to Samsung 970 EVO Plus 1TB (MZ-V7S1T0B/AM).

    We found out that the 970 EVO Plus runs quite a bit hotter than the Intel Pro 6000p.

    I think it might be useful to your readers, if you could include some temperature measurements, especially in ultra-portable laptops.

    Thank you and Happy Thanksgiving!

    Reply
  3. When you need larger capacity drives, there is no competition for old mechanical hard drives. I would rather pay $200 for a 10TB mechanical drive than $1000+ for a SSD. Put 8 of them into a Synology DS1819+ and you really have a lot of $ put out in drives.

    Reply
    • That’s true, Steve. These mostly are for the boot drive of a computer. You can use SSDs with a NAS though, you’ll be amazed how much faster your system is especially when you want to run VMs. More in this review of the DS1621+.

      Reply
      • I know. I have an Alienware m17 r3 with 2x 2tb m.2 NVMe SSDs, and 1x 512GB m.2 NVMe SSD. On the 1819+. I have 8x 10tb HD (shucked WD EasyShares) and 2 Seagate Iron Wolf drives for caching

        Reply
  4. Maybe this is insensitive (or plain ole back woods ignorance), but are spindle/platter drives still common in everyday computing? I purchase computers semi-regularly (I work in IT) and don’t think you can configure devices with anything but SSD for the primary (the Dell models we buy anyway).

    I can’t even begin to fathom how long it must take for Windows 10 to do anything on a 7200RPM (or even 5400RPM, ouch!) drive.

    Reply
    • There are still a lot of new (cheap) computers that use HDD on the inside, Lance. Not to mention existing old computers. But SSDs are taking over for sure. And you can also upgrade to a larger one.

      Reply
  5. consider ADATA XPG SX8100 512GB 3D NAND NVMe Gen3x4 PCIe M.2 2280 Solid State Drive R/W 3500/3000MB/s SSD (ASX8100NP-512GT-C)

    Reply
  6. Why no SanDisk SSD? Great budget SSD and good performance options. I have two 960GB Ultra IIs that are going strong 4-5 years now.

    Reply

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