PCIe SSD: the heart of your next computer

SATA SSD drives are so yesterday. Next generation PCs and workstations will have PCIe SSDs, offering a significant performance increase over SATA SSDs.

PCIe SSD: the heart of your next computer

Building a future-ready system means using a PCIe SSD like the new WD Black PCIe SSD, available in 256 and 512GB, enough for a boot drive. Expect to seem them in future computer builds. I know I will explore the option on the next machine I build, during 2017.

Announced at CES 2017, the WD Black PCIe solid state drives (SSDs), the first WD-branded client PCIe SSDs, complement the recently announced WD Blue and WD Green SATA SSDs, as well as the company’s industry leading family of hard drives for PCs and workstations, providing a full portfolio of WD storage devices for virtually any application.

“Products like the WD Black PCIe SSD, with a broad ecosystem and compatibility testing, should give customers a significant performance increase over SATA SSDs and offer a straightforward solution for customers to update to or build future-ready systems.”

The WD Black PCIe SSD is a performance PCIe Gen3 x4 NVMe-based SSD that delivers more than three times the sequential read speeds of current SATA SSDs. The 256GB and 512GB capacities make it ideal as a boot drive when paired with a high-capacity hard drive, or as primary storage when building a future-ready PC. Consumers who are using the new WD Black PCIe SSD to boot up, load read-intensive games or applications, or shut down a system may realize a performance improvement of more than 10 seconds when compared to SATA SSDs.

“NVMe PCIe-based SSD adoption is poised to accelerate in 2017 and the years to follow,” said Jeff Janukowicz, vice president, IDC. “Products like the WD Black PCIe SSD, with a broad ecosystem and compatibility testing, should give customers a significant performance increase over SATA SSDs and offer a straightforward solution for customers to update to or build future-ready systems.”

As a compatible and reliable solution to ramp up newer PC configurations with PCIe performance, the WD Black PCIe SSD is the ideal storage solution for the performance PC enthusiast and for more demanding gaming and VR-focused applications. The WD Black PCIe SSD delivers more than three times the sequential read performance of SATA SSDs, an industry-leading 1.75M hours MTTF, and WD Functional Integrity Testing (F.I.T.) Lab certification. The WD Black PCIe SSD has been designed with thermal and power management algorithms beyond the NVMe specification to help with consistent performance as well as low power consumption.

Like all WD SSDs, the WD Black PCIe SSDs include free, downloadable, WD SSD Dashboard software, which allows continuous performance, capacity monitoring, and firmware updates.

“We are in the midst of a once-in-a-generation interface change,” says Eyal Bek, senior director of client SSD, Devices Business Unit, Western Digital. “The WD Black PCIe SSD ramps up performance while delivering worry-free reliability for our customers worldwide. We believe that this will accelerate the transition that is already occurring from SATA to PCIe. Western Digital is uniquely positioned to offer customers a complete storage portfolio—HDD or SSD, and SATA or PCIe form factors for every segment of the market.”

“ASUS is dedicated to advancing technologies and leading innovation. WD and ASUS worked closely together to ensure that the WD Black PCIe SSD delivers performance that our customers expect with hassle-free installation and use. With the latest ASUS motherboards and WD Black PCIe SSDs, gamers can focus on winning rather than the distraction of waiting for games or levels to load,” said Joe Hsieh, corporate vice president and general manager, Motherboard Business Unit and New Product Planning Division, ASUS.

WD Black PCIe SSDs will be available in 256GB and 512GB capacities in a single-sided M.2 2280 form factor. The WD Black PCIe SSD boasts up to 2050MB/s and 800MB/s sequential read and write speeds, a 5-year limited warranty and WD F.I.T. Lab certification for compatibility with many leading platforms. Manufacturers Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) for the WD Black PCIe SSD start at $109.00 USD for the 256GB and $199.99 for the 512GB. The WD Black PCIe SSD will be available worldwide and on www.wd.com during the first half of 2017.


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Jose Antunes

I am a writer and photographer living on the West Coast of Portugal, a place I tend to call the Atlantic Realm. An area of rugged cliffs and sandy beaches overlooking the sea, a coastal area sitting between the Atlantic Ocean waves and hills and forests with some of the most magical palaces, castles and prehistorical sites for you to visit and photograph. Little hamlets, vast fields, inviting you to a contemplative state of mind. That’s where I live, and the landscape surely makes you what you are.

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2 Comments on "PCIe SSD: the heart of your next computer"

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Alex Rus
Alex Rus

The problem is most of modern CPUs (except extreme editions) don’t support more than 16x pci-e lines so installing a pci-e SSD limits the GPU bandwidth

Jose Antunes
Jose Antunes
Thanks for your comment. I am not a specialist, although I build my own machines – and so I am always looking for the best solutions at an acceptable price – but from what I read, the performance hit on modern CPUs – and so on GPU bandwidth – is negligible. According to a comment in Nvidia: “There is currently no single GPU, not even the Titan X or OC’d 980ti, that can fully saturate PCIe 3.0 x8. TPU did a PCIe scaling test using the GTX 980. Here were the results (I’m linking to the averaged results, but click… Read more »
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