2. M.2 SATA SSD
The M.2 type of SSD is newer, and its format is lighter and smaller than the SATA type SSD. M.2 SSDs consist of a small printed circuit board with chips, somewhat reminiscent of a RAM bar shape.
Most M.2 drives are 22mm in width and 80mm in length with NAND chips on both sides. M.2 SATA drives are simply more convenient, as they are installed in a slot on the motherboard and do not require wires, but on the motherboard of the PC or laptop must have an appropriate M.2 slot
Another advantage of the M.2 is its format flexibility, making this drive used on small laptops and desktops. These devices are very similar to small plaques, 22 mm wide but with different lengths: 22 mmx60 mm, 22 mmx80 mm, and 22 mmx110 mm. Thus, M.2 SSDs are specified as 2230, 2242, 2260, 2280, and 22110.
Here is a summary of the various most common M.2 formats and their respective sizes:
M.2 22110 : 110 x 22 mm
M.2 2280 : 80 x 22 mm (perhaps the most common)
M.2 2260 : 60 x 22 mm
M.2 2242 : 42 x 22 mm
And the speed of the M.2 SATA SSD is the same as the regular SATA SSD has, i.e. up to 600 MB/s.
Important Note: The M.2 slot on some motherboards of Desktops and laptops can accept either the SATA bus or the PCI-E bus, i.e. such devices have either M.2 SATA slot or M.2 PCI-E slot. But on separate motherboards, M.2 slots can serve only one of them; either M.2 SATA mode or M.2 PCI-E mode. That’s is why you need to find out; is your computer is compatible or not for M.2 SATA SSDs.
And, accordingly, you can connect either M.2 SATA drives or M.2 PCI-E drives to such motherboards.
The connectivity of M.2 type SSDs is more complicated, but it can be done in 3 ways, depending on the type of socket on the motherboard.
The M.2 interface can have three key variations:
- Switch B
- Switch M
- Switch B&M
If you purchase an M.2 SATA (B&M) SSD and the motherboard supports M.2 PCI-Express (B&M), the SSD will not work! The M.2 slot keys on the motherboard and laptop must match the M.2 SATA slot as well as the size of the drive.
When buying a drive with an M.2 connection, it is essential to understand very accurately what kind of slot we have on the motherboard of a PC or laptop – what interface it is for, what key it has, and what sizes of drives it supports.
3. mSATA SSD
An mSATA SSD is the mini version of SATA. It has a smaller form factor mainly used in ultra-compact computers, laptops, and mobile devices (tablets) with an mSATA slot, in which the installation of an extended size SATA SSD Drive is impossible.
The latest mSATA has a capacity of up to 1TB and a read/write speed of up to 6gbps. mSATA has lower power consumption. The performance is not lesser than SATA SSD; however, the price is very economical.
Drives of this format represent a small card with soldered microcircuits installed in unique slots of some devices. The main advantage of mSATA is its miniature; however, it is the same SATA SSD in all other aspects. Experts recommend purchasing such drives only for upgrading those devices in which the mSATA connector is provided.
The mSATA connector on laptops is now virtually ousted from the market by the M.2 connector. Yet there are very few mSATA drives themselves on the market.
4. M.2 PCI-E SSD
PCIe is one of the solid-state drives type connected to a computer system using a PCIe interface, which has become a new way to increase the speed of servers and storage devices.
PCIe-shaped SSDs fit into ports on your motherboard graphic card, the same way you install internal audio or network cards/components. And when you use NVMe SSD using PCIe SSD, you get the fastest computational speed. Its max read/write bandwidth is 2000mbps and can support up to 32gbps.
PCI Express SSDs are often costly, which is why they are usually only used in high-performance applications. You can also find other types of smaller SSDs that use the PCI Express (PCIe) connection, allowing a data transfer rate up to 4 times higher than the SATA 3 SSD.
For installing PCIe SSDs, you need PCIe M.2 slots on your motherboard. The M.2 slot keys on the motherboard must match the keys, as well as the size of the M.2 slot, and the M.2 drive must be the same size.
5. M.2 NVMe SSD Drive
NVMe is a type of SSD that stands for Non-Volatile Memory Express (NVMe) is five times faster than SATA SSDs due to its protocol for SSD that allows data exchange speeds up to 2600mbps. NVMe SSDs came later than SATA ones, and these slots were initially designed for graphics cards, so they are incredibly fast.
The objective here is to increase the unit’s performance. An M.2 NVMe SSD can have more data transfer speed (compared to a SATA SSD) due to the connection of this protocol with PCI Express, the latest and fastest technology.
They are more expensive than SATA and consume more power. High-scale businesses, intensive functioning computers, and large servers use NVMe. It also works with flash memory as well as reducing I/O Bridge and latency.
Speeds on NVMe drives can reach an interface rate of 32 Gb/s with 3.9 GB/s throughputs. That can be very useful if you’re doing something that requires a lot of disk performance, like gaming or high-resolution video editing. It has a storage capacity of up to 4TB.
For installing PCIe NVMe, you need a motherboard with the form factor of PCIe, M.2, U.2.
As fast as it is, NVMs have some drawbacks:
If the latest and greatest speeds and efficiencies that come with an NVMe SSD are a must, then there are a couple of things to keep in mind.