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WD's blindingly-fast SN850x PCIe 4.0 SSD is down to $100 for 1TB

Or $160 for 2TB.

The WD Black SN850X SSD.
Image credit: Rock Paper Shotgun

Earlier today we looked at the most affordable PCIe 4.0 SSD, with the Solidigm P41 Plus 2TB at $99.99, and now it's time to look at one of the very fastest PCIe 4.0 SSDs, the WD SN850x. It's down to $99.99 for a 1TB model and $159.99 for a 2TB size, a new low price for each capacity and a great deal for our top PCIe 4.0 SSD recommendation.

This SSD is only really rivalled by the more expensive Samsung 990 Pro, our overall 'fastest SSD' recipient, with both options offering random write performance well over 1M IOPS and sequential read speeds of up to 7300MB/s, at the very limit of the PCIe 4.0 standard.

In his writeup of the WD SN850x, James was impressed with the performance of the drive compared to the previous-gen SN850 and more or less every other SSD we've tested, stating:

...the SN850X is much faster in games [than the last-gen SN850], and faster than every other SSD we've tried outside of the Samsung 990 Pro... Taking only 6.7 seconds to load a Shadow of the Tomb Raider save, it shaves nearly three seconds off the Black SN850's time, and clearly beats other premium PCIe 4.0 SSDs like the Kingston Fury Renegade (9.6 seconds) and PNY XLR8 CS3140 (7.3 seconds). In the CrystalDiskMark benchmark, its 3187MB/s random read speed and 4261MB/s random write speed results show an outstanding suitability for games and general PC usage alike.

With fancy (heatsink-encrusted) PCIe 5.0 SSDs on the way - eventually - this is likely to be one of the best drives you can plunk into a PCIe 4.0 spec system - and even in PCIe 5.0 compatible machines, you're likely to only have one PCIe 5.0 slot and you may even lose out on PCIe lanes for your graphics card if you're on the Intel side of things... so picking up an extremely fast PCIe 4.0 drive while it's discounted makes a lot of sense!

But what do you make of it? Is it worth waiting for PCIe 5.0 or are you in the market for a new PCIe 4.0 SSD now? Let me know in the comments and come back next week for more tech deals!

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Will Judd

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Will Judd is a journeyman from the forges of Digital Foundry, here to spread the good word about hardware deals and StarCraft.
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