Samsung announces 960 PRO, 960 EVO, and SM961 NVMe M.2 SSDs in up to 1TB capacity

Posted by Paul Braren on Jun 22 2016 (updated on Oct 18 2016) in
  • Storage
  • Virtualization
  • HomeServer
  • HomeLab
  • If you've followed TinkerTry for a while, you'll know that I'm kind of a speed freak. I strive to squeeze every last bit of performance out of my careful investments. I tinker with settings to get the best speeds because I enjoy being productive and creating content without having to wait for my system to catch up. I save my pennies for years, shop very carefully, then I pounce.

    It really appears the long wait for a Samsung 950 1TB NVMe M.2 SSD is finally nearly over. Turns out it won't be arriving in the promised early 2016 time frame. It won't be arriving at all.

    Yesterday, news of the OEM Samsung SM961 arrived:

    For me, I'd rather have a full warranty, and the ability to run Samsung Magician, combined with the new Polaris controller, thank you. So I waited...


    Didn't take long. Late yesterday and today, news of the Samsung 960 PRO and Samsung 960 EVO arrived.

    Read these 2 articles

    They're must reads, if:

    1. you care about getting a >5X speed boost over your 2.5" SATA3 SSDs,
      at something less than twice the cost-per-gigabyte
    2. you realize how easy boot-from-NVMe can be
    3. you realize how easy using NVMe for VMware or Hyper-V VMs can be


    • Brace Yourselves, Samsung SM961, PM961, 960 PRO and 960 EVO SSDs Are Coming!
      Jun 21 2016 by Allyn Malventano at PC Perspective:

      The SM961 has already been spotted for pre-order over at Ram City. Note that they currently list the 1TB, 512GB, and 256GB models, but at the time of this writing, all three product titles (incorrectly) state 1TB. That said, pricing appears to be well below the current 950 PRO retail for equivalent capacities.

    • Samsung Ready to Reassert SSD Leadership With Soon-to-be-released SM961, PM961, 960 PRO and EVO SSDs
      June 22 2016 by Scot Strong at The SSD Review:

      Also reportedly in the upcoming product pipeline are 960 PRO and 960 EVO models. While many awaited a 1TB version of the 950 PRO series, it would appear that Samsung has chosen to instead utilize the new 48-layer V-NAND to make a 1TB version as the 960 PRO. A logical extension of this would be a 960 EVO, which would represent Samsung’s first retail M.2 PCIe 3.0 X 4 SSD utilizing TLC NAND. One would expect a price point similar to that of the 850 EVO, yet with a significant performance boost via the faster PCIe interface.

    Watch the video

    Allyn is actually about to talk about these Samsung SSD updates on the Live Stream tonight, June 22nd, around 11:15pm EDT.


    Jun 22 2016 Update 11:14pm EDT

    Click to visit PC Perspective Podcast episode #405.

    Allyn mentioned on air that the Samsung 960 PRO's Polaris controller might be more efficient, and theorized that the increased efficiency might be enough to avoid thermal throttling.

    Jun 23 2016 Update

    If you're looking for early mentions of the SM961/960 PRO, check this article out:

    The PC Perspective podcast episode #405 is also available in audio form here:

    As for when we can get a 960 PRO or EVO into our PCIe 3.0 x 4 systems, the more recent articles give a vague 2H2016 estimate. RamCity seems to already have some pre-orders on the SM961:

    RAMCity screenshot June 23 2016: Samsung SM961 1TB NVMe M.2 PCIe 3.0 x4 80mm SSD - OEM

    Jun 27 2016 Update

    RAMCity screenshot June 27 2016: Samsung SM961 1TB NVMe M.2 PCIe 3.0 x4 80mm SSD - OEM

    Oct 17 2016 Update

    New article to check out:

    See also at TinkerTry

    See also