Crucial P3 Plus 2TB

Back in May Crucial announced two of their latest NVMe-based M.2 SSDs with their P3 and P3 Plus. These drives continue their P lineup which has had the P1 and the P5 as their budget and flagship drives and later the P2 replaced the P1 and they introduced the P5 Plus to push things farther being their first PCIe 4.0 drive. Well the P3 and P3 Plus drop in the middle of the lineup as a cheaper PCIe 4.0 option behind the P5 Plus and today I have the P3 Plus in the office to test to see how it performs. Crucial is normally great at offering a good value in this part of their lineup so I’m excited to see if the P3 Plus continues that so let’s dig in.

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Viper Gaming VPR400 1TB RGB PCIe Gen 4x4 SSD

As SSD manufacturers have been slowly filling out their PCIe Gen 4 SSD options one of the trends that some of them did with past M.2 drives was sprinkle in a little RGB lighting into the mix and so far except for the WD SN850 which had a small light no one has done that with their new 4th Gen drives. Viper Gaming which is the gaming brand of Patriot just introduced their new Viper Gaming VPR400 which does exactly that by mixing their Viper Gaming VPR100 design that I previously reviewed with a new Innogrit Gen 4x4 controller. Today I’m going to take a closer look at the VPR400 and then put it through our test suite to see how it performs, lets's go!

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Qnap TS-233

When it comes to protecting your data it is very easy to ignore things until you have a problem and frankly that is what most people do. But it doesn’t have to be that hard, at least to get basic protections in place. But for me protecting my data isn’t just backing things up. Protecting your data can also be about not opening your files up to the possibility of someone accessing them online, especially these days with everything having its own cloud. In addition to a NAS in your home giving you a central place to store important files, I’ve found that some brands have options that can give you similar features to many cloud-based services without monthly fees and without you uploading your files onto someone else’s servers. Qnap is one of those companies and one of their newest NAS the Qnap TS-233 is a compact 2-drive NAS for personal use that has the potential to allow you to do that at a lower cost and I’m curious to see how it compares to other options to today I’m going to check out the TS-233 and then put it through a few tests.

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MSI Spatium M480 Play 2TB

I’ve talked about it a few times now, but a few of the bigger PC component companies have been expanding out as far as what they make for the past 10+ years. They started off with each company having a small focus, but we have now gotten to the point where you can build almost an entire system sticking to the same brand. MSI is one of those companies and MSI and Gigabyte, unlike Asus, have both gotten into the SSD market but up until now, I haven’t had the chance to check out what they had going on. MSI recently introduced their Spatium M480 which is a PC or PS5 design which means it does have the heatsink needed to fit in the PS5 and today I’m going to see what the M480 is all about. We know it is a PCIe 4.0 NVMe drive with some crazy performance numbers promised so I’m excited to see what makes it tick and how it performs, let’s go check it out. 

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SanDisk Extreme PRO Portable SSD V2 4TB

Portable storage needs cover a wide range of situations. For some content creators, and I’ve seen this a LOT with YouTubers, it might be normal to regularly pick up large external hard drives to fill up and to store away like they are old video tapes. Or maybe you travel or take your data with you to places like work. Well, there is a point in drive size where even just getting the data on or off of your drive is going to take far too long to get it done with a spinning disk. There are standard flash solutions and SATA-based SSD options. But if you are moving a lot of data around the only real solution is an NVMe based external. The Extreme Pro Portable SSD V2 that SanDisk sent over fits in that category. With an impressive 4TB capacity, it is up in the same range as a portable hard drive but you aren’t going to spend all day getting your data off of it. Today I’m going to check out how the drive compares to the last few SanDisk drives we have had in the office and then check out its performance as well.

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WD Black SN770 1TB

In part of our catching up with WD’s product lineup, I took a look at the WD Blue SN570. Well, last month they also introduced their newest WD Black SSD, the WD Black SN770. The SN770 slots in above the SN750 SE which came out last year and the older PCIe 3.0 SN750 and behind last year's SN850 Flagship SSD which is also from the WD Black line. It’s still weird thinking of a SN700 series drive not being the top drive but what is more interesting is the WD Black lineup expanding out with multiple gaming options in the M.2 SSD market now. Today I’m going to check out what makes the SN770 tick and check out the performance of the 1TB model that WD sent over. Let’s dive in.

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WD Blue SN570 1TB

It’s easy to get excited about some of the faster high-end SSDs, like Western Digitals Black line of drives. But for a lot of people those are overkill or out of budget and the Blue line better fits things. The WD Blue lineup started off with the SN500 as their creative and budget-focused drive and they eventually replaced that with the WD Blue SN550. Well, late last year they introduced the SN570 and I’m excited to finally see how the new drive performs and to see pricing wise how it fits in the market. So today I’m going to check out the new drive and see how it compares to the previous model. Let’s check it out!

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Patriot P400 1TB

While we have had the chance to check out a few different Patriot SSDs that have performed well over the years. Their recently introduced P400 is Patriot's first PCIe 4.0 SSD which opens up new performance possibilities. When PCIe 4.0 was introduced only a few companies had compatible drives at that time and it makes sense. At that time only one chipset from AMD supported the new platform, but now Intel and AMD have had options available on both sides for over a year and even longer on the AMD side of things. The odds of people having PCs that support them are much higher now. So today I’m going to dig into the P400 and see what it has going behind the curtain then we can run it through our test suite to see how it performs compared to a few older PCIe 3.0 drives and a whole stack of 4.0 drives on the new Intel Z690 chipset.

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TerraMaster D5-300

So for someone like me with a lot of PCs in the house, storage on the network is the way to go. But it’s easy to forget that a lot of people may only have one PC and when that is the case you don’t need to overcomplicate things with networked storage. You can rely on internal or external storage options depending on how much space you need. When it comes to editing video you will see a lot of people with stacks of external hard drives but those don’t offer any redundancy or protection. Something with RAID as a possibility is always going to be the safer bet and TerraMaster has the network and external options covered. I’ve taken a look at a few of their options in the past and they sent over their D5-300 which is a 5 bay USB 3.1 option that just about any PC is going to support. Today I’m going to check out what the D5-300 is all about and see how it performs in a best-case scenario when packed with SSDs. Let’s check it out!

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Kingston FURY Renegade PCIe 4.0 NVMe M.2 SSD

The big news earlier this year was the sale of HyperX which has been Kingston’s long time gaming lineup to HP. With that brand gone, they did need to make a new gaming brand for their memory and SSD product lines and they went with one of the model names of their past memory kits for something short and sweet, the new brand is called FURY. With that, they have slowly been introducing new products under the brand including their latest gaming-focused M.2 SSD that they are calling the Fury Renegade. The Renegade is a PCIe 4.0 based M.2 SSD based on the Phision E18 controller and today I’m going to check out what the new drive is all about testing it out on our recently updated Z690 test bench and test suite.

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Lexar Play MicroSDXC 512GB

One of the features that Nintendo integrated into the Switch that I like was the Micro SD card slot for storage. Past game consoles have proven that integrated storage will almost always not be enough. Especially from the Xbox 360 on were full games and demos have been downloadable. With those consoles, you were limited to what came with your system or if you were lucky a proprietary upgrade option. A portable console like the switch have even fewer options. So going with MicroSD means they kept the cost down and as faster and larger options come out it could potentially support them. The switch does come with 32GB of onboard storage but with launch titles like Breath of the Wild taking up 14 GB each and newer games reaching up over 33GB now. Thankfully the switch does have cartridges as well, but if you don’t want to carry those around with you or If the games that you want to play are only available digitally you will need a MicroSD card. I was looking at options and Lexar’s Play series seemed to fit the bill well without making you pay more for licensed pictures on the card itself so I decided to check one out. So today let's see how the Lexar Play MicroSDXC 512GB performs!

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Crucial P5 Plus 1TB

Crucial’s P5 has been their flagship NVMe SSD for a while now and it was pushing the limited of PCIe Gen 3.0 but with AMD having PCIe Gen 4 for a while now and Intel catching up on that as well more and more people can potentially put a faster Gen 4 drive to use so Crucial recently introduced their new P5 Plus drive which has upgraded its interface to PCIe Gen 4. Today I’m going to check out the 1TB P5 Plus drive and see how it performs in our test suite compared to a mix of gen 3 and gen 4 drives then we will see where Crucial has the new drives priced to see how they fit in the market. Is the P5 Plus the drive you should be looking at for your next build? Let’s find out!

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Lexar NM620 512GB

While PCIe gen 4.0 drives are starting to trickle into the market now that AMD and Intel both support it on their latest chipsets. The reality is that most PCs out right now still use PCIe gen 3.0 so there is still a lot of need for them. So it isn’t a big surprise to still see companies bringing out new gen 3 drives. A good example of this is the NM620 from Lexar which came out a few months ago which pushes gen 3.0 to its limits. Today I’m going to check out the NM620 to see what Lexar has going on and to see how their new drive performs.

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TerraMaster F2-422 10GbE

Late last year I had an interesting external storage option come in that ran on Thunderbolt3 and also provided dock like functionality with a display connection, USB,  and ethernet ports. This was the TerraMaster TD2 Thunderbolt3 Plus and it was the first time I had the chance to check out TerraMaster. They also make a few different NAS models and they recently had a new series, their 422 series which added 10Gb network support which caught my eye. They sent over the F2-422 which is a two-drive model that looks a lot like the TD2 and today I am finally going to talk a little about the overall experience. Is the F2-422 a cheaper NAS option for someone looking for a 10Gb NAS and is the extra network bandwidth worth it? Today I will check that out.

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Sabrent Rocket 4 Plus 1TB

Up until Intel’s most recent launch, PCI Gen 4 has been limited to just the most recent AMD Ryzen chipsets which have been very popular. But now with both sides of the line having support Gen 4 devices will be more and more important. The Rocket Q4 that I previously took a look at was a Gen 4 drive, but it was just an updated controller on top of the normal Rocket setup. The Rocket 4 Plus is a PCIe Gen 4 drive like the previous Sabrent SSD I had in the office but this one is promising speeds closer to what you would expect for gen 4.0. Today I’m going to check it out to see what sets it apart and to find out how it performs compared with both Gen 4 and Gen 3 drives to see if it should be on your wishlist for your next build or upgrade.

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Sabrent Rocket Q4 2TB with Heatsink

Sabrent has been killing it when it comes to pushing the SSD market forward with great prices and high capacity options that almost no one else has been willing to bring out. Along with all of that, they have also been filling out a variety of options like heatsinks for M.2 drives and external enclosures. When they sent over their Rocket Q4 in the 2TB capacity they included the heatsink model. So today along with checking out the performance of the Rocker Q4 1TB we can also get a look at the optional heatsink to see what it is all about.

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Corsair MP400 1TB

Corsair has been in the SSD game going all the way back to when it started and while the focus recently has been on PCIe Gen 4.0 drives for most companies. Corsair was early to that back when PCIe 4.0 was first available over a year ago at the X570 launch. With that in mind, they are still launching PCIe 3.0 drives as well to give new options for those who don’t have 4.0 or don’t want/need the extra speed or costs. So they introduced the MP400 this past October. It is available in 1TB, 2TB, 4TB, and 8TB options and features 3D QLC NAND. Today I’m going to check out the 1TB model which is Corsair's cheapest 1TB SSD option to test its performance and see how it fits in today's market.

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Terra Master TD2 Thunderbolt3 Plus

With portability being a big focus, Ultrabooks and almost the entire laptop market except for gaming laptops have traded features like DVD/BluRay drives, Ethernet ports, and expandable storage in the name of keeping laptops thin. This has even pushed some to focus on the newer Type-C connection and with it Thunderbolt for nearly everything including charging. For some this hasn’t been a big deal, but others have leaned on dongles and other adapters to add things back. Even I have been using portable SSDs for supplemental storage on my own laptop, especially now with a lot of laptops even soldering on the SSD. Well, TerraMaster has their TD2 Thunderbolt3 Plus which is at its core an external Thunderbolt 3 enclosure for two hard drives, but once I started to dig in I noticed it is much more. Let's take a look.

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Qnap TS-453DU

While I am in the process of building a FreeNAS server to get some experience with it, I wasn’t planning on switching all three of our NAS over to the one system. I’ve been running two Qnap NAS for a while now and I love the flexibility they offer on the software side. So with the move to getting our data storage tucked away better in our rack, it was a perfect time to check out a rack-mounted NAS from Qnap. Specifically, their TS-453DU which has a matching non-rack mounted option in the TS-453D with that version also having 6 and 2 disk models and the rack-mounted version having 8 and 12 disk capacity options as well as a second 4 disk model with a redundant power supply. These are Celeron J4125 quad-core based and feature dual 2.5G network ports. This means we can do some testing to see how the 2.5G network that is coming with a lot of net motherboards can offer in real-world performance. So let’s dive in and see what the Qnpa TS-453DU has to offer for hardware, software, and performance!

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WD_Black AN1500 1TB

Western Digital just recently expanded their PC Gaming lineup and I don’t mean their introduction of the Call of Duty branded parts. They introduced PCIe 4.0 M.2 SSD with the new SN850, an NVMe SSD Game Dock with the D50, and an NVMe SSD add-in card with the AN1500. The AN1500 is an interesting product and a little different than you might normally see from WD as it is actually a RAID add-in card. So unlike the new SN850, the AN1500 stays on the older PCIe 3.0 interface which older Ryzen chipsets and all of Intel’s current lineup have. Offering performance beyond their PCIe 3.0 flagship SN750 without being limited to just the newer Ryzen chipsets like the new SN850. Well, today I’m going to take a look at the AN1500 and see how it performs, check out the PCIe Cards RGB lighting, and see where it fits in the market.

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