Following on from my recent TerraMaster upgrade posts, I have been looking at the best SSDs to use in a NAS.
Due to the configuration of the TerraMaster F4-422, I was specifically looking for a 2.5-inch SATA SSD to be used on the 5th bay as a cache drive, and that is what I will focus on with this post.
However, if you have built a NAS / server with off the shelf component or have a higher spec NAS from the likes of Synology, you may have the choice to use an NVMe drive for even better performance. I will do another post for those drives later.
When it comes to servers and storage, the overall read/write throughput is not necessarily the most important, but the drive endurance and warranty.
To keep things simple, I have looked at the price of drives with a capacity of 500GB and 1TB (thereabouts) and their endurance ratings.
Best SATA SSDs for Cache & Storage
- Pricing is taken from Amazon mid-February 2022
- Some drives have a smaller capacity, such as 480GB instead of 512GB.
- Most drives have the very similar IOPs, so I removed them from the list
- Read/Write speeds may not be 100% accurate as they change depending on capacity
What about data centre drives? Consider the Samsung PM893
Used data centre drives are frequently recommended on Reddit, and it is a good choice. For example, 1TB WD Gold doesn’t even use TBW, they just up to Petabytes Written with this one handling 1.4PBW or 1400TBW, but it costs over £250 new.
The Samsung PM893 is one semi-affordable option worth considering, it has a 3-year warranty with a 1.3 DWPD giving it a 683TBW which you can pick up for around £100 from Scan. The more expensive PM897 has a 2628 TBW but costs £150.
Highlights – The best consumer SSDs for cache
Basically, you get what you pay for.
Probably the best choice overall is the 500GB WD Red SA500 with 350TBW endurance at a surprisingly attractive £62. The 1TB model is more than twice the price so much less appealing than the are the Kingston KC600 and Samsung 870 EVO.
At the time of writing, the Samsung 870 EVO drives are more attractively priced vs Kingston. As always, Amazon prices vary a lot, and the Kingston drives have been cheaper.
The Samsung 870 EVO is, therefore, the best 1TB with its 600TBW and priced under £100
|Samsung 870 EVO 1TB SATA 2.5" Internal Solid State Drive...||£61.00||Buy on Amazon|
If those are too expensive, the WD Blue SSD is perhaps the stand out option for the affordable drives. You get 200TB/400TB TBW endurance and a 5-year warranty. Under £50 for 500GB is a bit of a bargain with that spec.
|Western Digital WDS500G2B0A WD Blue 3D NAND Internal SSD 2.5...||54,048 Reviews||£40.31||Buy on Amazon|
The dark horse is the Lexar NS100, it costs a touch more than the WB, and the warranty is less, but the TBW endurance is 20% higher.
|Lexar NS100 2.5” SATA III (6Gb/s) 480GB Solid-State Drive||£54.95||Buy on Amazon|
Options to avoid are the PNY and SanDisk. These do not state a TBW and only have a 3-year warranty. They will be perfectly suitable for normal SSD drives and light usage but best avoided for things like a cache which will have high read/writes.
SATA SSDs Comparison Table
|SSD||500GB / 1TB Price||Read/Write||TBW Endurance||Warranty|
|Kingston KC600||£70/£120||550MB/s read|
|512GB — 300TB|
1024GB — 600TB
|Kingston A400||£41 / £81||500MB/s read|
|Crucial MX500||£47 / £75||560MB/s read|
|512GB — 180TB|
1024GB — 360TB
|Crucial BX500||£38 / £65||540MB/s read|
|480GB — 120TB|
1000GB — 360TB
|Samsung SSD 870 EVO||£63 / £97||560MB/s read|
|512GB — 300TB|
1024GB — 600TB
|Samsung 870 QVO||NA / £84||560MB/s read|
|1024GB — 360TB||3|
|Western Digital WD Blue||£47 / £83||560MB/s read|
|500GB — 200TB|
1000GB — 400TB
|WD Red SA500||£62 / £135||560MB/s read|
|512GB — 350TB|
1024GB — 600TB
|Integral V Series 2||£37 / £78||520MB/s read|
|PNY CS900||£48 / £72||550MB/s read|
|SanDisk SSD PLUS||£56 / £86||540MB/s read|
|Lexar NS100||£52 / £95||550MB/s read||512GB — 240TB|
1000GB — 480TB
I am a UK tech blogger and have been in the industry for over ten years now, running Mighty Gadget and its sister sites and contributing to other sites around the web. I am passionate about all tech, including computers/networking, mobile, wearables, and smart homes. I am also a fitness fanatic, being both a keen runner and cyclist, so I cover as much fitness tech as possible.
Last update on 2023-09-17 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API