Samsung will be releasing their new entry level Solid State Drives using QLC NAND. This entry level SSD will be a level below the 860 Pro and EVO line of Samsung SDD’s. The Samsung 860 QVO will be one of the first QLC SSD’s on the market which will drive the market prices for SSD’s down to HDD levels. Currently the price for a 1TB Western Digital Blue 7200 RPM drive is $0.04495 per gigabyte, whereas Samsung QVO 1TB will start at $149.99, $0.14999 per gigabyte. Samsung will also release a 2TB and a 4TB variant of the 860 QVO at $299.99 and $599.99.
The 860 QVO will also share the MJX SSD controller and 64-layer 3D NAND from the 860 EVO and 860 PRO. The write endurance will be approximately 0.3 Drive Writes Per Day, or 300GB per day for the 1TB which is more than enough for most consumers.
QLC NAND is an improvement of the TLC NAND, writing four bits per cell. However, with this increase, performance and endurance are negatively impacted and SSD’s need to be more careful to correctly discriminate between voltage levels, now up to 16 for QLC NAND. Unlike TLC NAND, QLC NAND is not expected to overcome disadvantages TLC had over MLC. QLC will be a general-purpose storage device and will require careful treatment with workload. The main issues with QLC NAND compared to TLC NAND are in write performance and write endurance. To throw a solution into this problem is to use more NAND in total, allowing write data to be spread across more NAND dies in parallel.
The 860 QVO at 1TB has a write speed of 80MB/s which is much lower than traditional 7200 RPM Hard Drives. To overcome this obstacle, 860 QVO has SLC Cache which has a Sequential Write speed of 520MB/s. The SLC Cache is nothing of a new technology; they have been used in drives such as the 860 EVO with varying levels of capacity from 6GB to 42GB on the 1TB 860 EVO. The performance for the 860 QVO will be typical of mainstream SATA SSD until the cache is full, after that performance drops to levels below hard drives. For a typical consumer or for light office tasks the 860 QVO is perfect for providing great performance at a lower price. In scenarios such as video editing, post-production, and VFX workloads, the 860 EVO or even the 860 PRO is better choice.
Power consumption has also been improved on the new SSD’s. A typical hard drive may use anywhere from 3W to 9W compared to SSD’s 2W or less. The 1TB 860 QVO will have a peak power draw of 2W and other larger capacity SSD’s will require 3W. Samsung will have a three year warranty for the 1TB QVO which would be the typical write endurance rating for 360 full drive writes or 0.3 drive writes Per Day. Compared to Intel 660p and Crucial P1 QLC SSD’s the 860 QVO has an 80% rating for total bytes written although the Crucial and Intel drives have five year warranties.