Puget Systems publishes "Samsung 950 Pro M.2 Additional Cooling Testing"

Available now on Amazon in 256GB and 512GB sizes, 1TB was originally expected to arrive early '16.

I've certainly spend a fair bit of time with my Xeon D-1540 and now Xeon D-1541 based Supermicro SuperServers, the model SYS-5028D-TN4T. One key feature for my home lab was making the best use of that M.2 slot possible, with PCIe 3.0 x 4 capabilities that allow the beloved Samsung 950 PRO to perform to its fullest, see:

Check out these "fun" results on Hyper-V just a couple of days ago:


For synthetic benchmarks that excert a lot of stress on reads and writes, way beyond day-to-day usage, Samsung's self protection mechanism that throttles speeds can mess up such quick and easy benchmarks, with performance reduced by about 30% on this particular system. No big deal, especially at room temperatures around 70°F/21°C, where the best benchmark results can be obtained by simply using the Web UI to get into IPMI, then change the Fan Mode Setting from the default Standard Speed to Full Speed as pictured at right.

Or, add supplemental cooling:

See also alternative approaches I'm still experimenting with:

in conjunction with my FLIR One thermal camera:

At rest, the Samsung 950 PRO uses just 70mW (0.07 watts). Under load, about 7 watts. All that energy heats up about a relatively small portion of this 2280 length chip, about 1cm square. Testing the impact of ambient temperatures and various cooling devices on these tiny M.2 chips is complicated stuff, and it you don't wish to void your Samsung warranty by removing those stickers that make cooling these harder, you're likely just looking at figuring out a way to get some air moving across your M.2 slot area of your motherboard.

Which brings me to an update from June 6, 2016. A big step forward, with a heaping dose of science and understanding, from the same folks at Puget Systems that were featured in this article:

that featured this popular video:

Yes, a wonderful new article just arrived:

It's in depth, and a good read. Enjoy!


See also at TinkerTry

For roughly 5% more performance gain with the Supermicro SuperServer SYS-5028D-TN4T based on the X10SDV-TLN4F motherboard, you can tweak the BIOS to favor benchmarking versus the TinkerTry'd Bundle hypervisor-ready BIOS settings.

See also

As for me, I have the Samsung 950 PRO 512GB and use it all the time. I'm waiting for the Samsung 950 PRO 1TB for my next storage purchase. But there is a competitor arriving soon as well, and competition tends to be good for consumers from a pricing perspective. Uses roughly the same watts. Still not in stock on Amazon for a month or two:


Meanwhile, you can read all about this newcomer here:

  • Toshiba OCZ RD400 512GB PCIe NVMe SSD Full Review - M.2 RevoDrive
    May 24 2016 by Allyn Manlventano at PC Perspective

    May 27, 2016 | 04:33 AM - Posted by Allyn Malventano
    It draws ~the same power as a 950 Pro (~6 watts). With such a small draw with such a small surface area, temperatures vary wildly based on installation. If airflow is an issue, a single thermal pad to any adjacent component is more than enough to prevent possible thermal throttling.

    Higher temps impact retention, but higher temps also make flash programming less damaging, meaning it is actually better to run your SSDs on the warmer side (to minimize wear effects) and store them at cool temperatures (to minimize leakage).

  • The Toshiba OCZ RD400 (256GB, 512GB, 1TB) M.2 PCIe SSD Review
    May 25 2016 by Billy Tallis at AnandTech