The best SSDs for gaming come with a range of benefits that many gaming PC builders may not know about. Besides the fact that they are faster than traditional HDDs, solid-state drives are also more portable, efficient, and reliable. Since games are becoming more complex with each passing day, PC builders are best off using SSDs specifically designed to provide a competitive edge in gaming.
Solid-state drives used to be expensive and only used in top-of-the-line computers. Nowadays, there are many different SSDs on the market, at some reasonable prices too. This can make the buying process a little tedious, especially if you’re picking out an SSD for gaming for the first time. Not to worry though, as we’ve reviewed 10 of the best SSDs below, alongside providing some tips on the necessary factors to consider when buying the best SSD for gaming.
TL;DR - Best SSD For Gaming:
- Samsung 860 EVO 500GB 2.5″ SATA III SSD
- Corsair Force Series MP600 1TB SSD
- Crucial MX500 1TB 3D NAND SATA 2.5″ SSD
- Samsung 970 EVO Plus SSD 500GB SSD
- SK Hynix Gold S31 500GB 3D NAND SSD
- WD_Black SN750 1TB NVMe Gaming SSD
- ADATA XPG SX8200 Pro 1TB SSD
- Addlink S70 1TB SSD
- Sabrent 1TB Rocket Internal SSD
- Seagate Barracuda 510 1TB SSD Internal SSD
Factors To Consider When Choosing The Best SSD For Gaming
Gaming SSDs (and SSDs in general) come with different NAND technologies. Knowing what these technologies are and choosing a drive with the best technology for your setup will make a lot of difference.
This NAND type is often found in high-performance SSDs. It’s expensive and usually used in enterprise-grade drives. SSDs with this NAND type also feature better write endurance. This means that you can write and rewrite plenty of data before you notice any performance degradation.
This NAND type is the complete opposite of the SLC NAND. It’s the primary type of NAND technology found in SSDs. This technology is cheaper and slower than SLC NAND.
This technology sits between the first two above. SSDs with eMLC NAND are often more expensive than those with MLC NAND, but cheaper than those with SLC NAND. eMLC NAND also offers faster performance and greater write endurance than MLC NAND, but not quite as much you would get from SLC NAND. It’s often used in high mainstream performance or low enterprise-grade SSDs.
Just like eMLC, this is another type of MLC NAND. It’s often found in cheaper SSDs and typically has a lower write and rewrite endurance than MLC. Since it’s less expensive than MLC, you’ll often find this NAND type in budget SSDs.
This NAND type features a newer architecture that stores up more data on less material. It is typically thirty-three percent less dense than TLC NAND. However, it’s also considered to be less reliable than other NAND architectures.
This is another MLC NAND technology that stacks its memory cells vertically instead of horizontally like traditional NAND types. It offers mid-range storage capacities without being expensive. Its performance is lower than that of MLC NAND, but on the same level as TLC NAND.
As we noted earlier, SSDs are often more expensive than traditional HDDs. This often leads people to choose lower storage capacities to save costs. For a typical gamer, you should ensure that your SSD storage capacity should be no less than 500GB. Going with lower storage capacities could leave you stranded when you least expect it. Another option is to combine lower storage SSD capacities with high HDD storage capacities.
Format and Interface
There are different SSD formats on the market, making the buying process a little tedious. These formats include NVMe, 2.5-inch SATA, and M.2 SSDs. Ensure that you know the right format for your computer before making a purchase.
2.5-inch SATA SSD
These SSDs use the SATA interface often found on hard disk drives. They are ideal for both laptop and desktop computers.
This design is newer than the 2.5-inch SATA. It sits on your computer’s motherboard via an M.2 slot, which usually has a PCIe or SATA interface. Note that the M.2 slot is often used for other adapters, such as Bluetooth and Wi-Fi adapters.
This SSD form factor connects to your motherboard via the PCIe interface.
Read and Write Speeds
These are two essential factors to consider when choosing the best SSD for gaming. In short, these two speeds help determine the performance of your SSD. Read speeds affect your loading time while write speeds determine how fast your SSD saves data.
In gaming, the read speed of your storage is more important than the write speed, as faster loading times continually enhance gaming experiences. If you’re looking for more ways to optimize your gaming setup, you may also like our article on the best gaming desks.
1. Samsung 860 EVO 500GB 2.5″ SATA III SSD
Best SATA SSD for Gaming
The Samsung 860 EVO is currently the best SATA SSD for gaming on the market. Designed to enhance both laptop and desktop performance, the 860 EVO features V-NAND technology and comes in varying form factors. It offers consistent speeds under high workloads, with a sequential read speed of up to 550MB/s and a write speed of up to 520MB/s. This SATA SSD is available in multiple storage capacities and can handle 3D data and 4K rendering without hiccups. To make things even better, it receives regular updates via Samsung's management software and features a 5-year warranty.
2. Corsair Force Series MP600 1TB SSD
Best M.2 SSD for Gaming
The Corsair Force Series MP600 SSD is an NVMe solid-state drive that offers incredible storage performance. This SSD uses a PCIe 4.0 controller to provide sequential read and write speeds that are ten times faster than SATA SSDs and up to fifty times faster than what you'd get on a traditional hard drive. To make things even better, this solid-state drive is backward compatible with PCIe 3.0 devices. It features an aluminum heatsink that helps minimize heat under heavy workloads, and it's capable of writing up to 3,600TB before dropping in performance.
The Corsair Force Series MP600 uses 3D TLC NAND technology. This means that you'll be able to get a decent mix of performance, value, and endurance from this SSD. It is Ryzen ready, and thanks to its M.2 form factor, it easily fits AMD x570 chipset-style motherboards. So, if you're looking for a way to enable easy cable routing, free up space in your PC, or allow more airflow, this is one of the best SSDs you can choose.
3. Crucial MX500 1TB 3D NAND SATA 2.5″ SSD
Bang for your Buck
The Crucial MX500 is a great SSD for laptops and desktops. It is a 2.5-inch 7mm SATA drive that uses AES 256-bit encryption to keep your data safe. The MX500 also performs better than many more expensive drives on the market. It is reliable and comes with a power loss immunity feature that helps preserve your saved work when power gets cuts unexpectedly.
Although this drive doesn't come with the speed of the Samsung 970 EVO Plus, it's still an excellent drive for those looking for the best value. The Crucial MX500 features a sequential write speed of 510MB/s and a sequential read speed of 560MB/s. It comes with a 5-year warranty just like the Samsung 970 EVO Plus, and it's relatively easy to install, too. To make things even easier, the brand has created a step-by-step video that can help even beginners to install this drive.
4. Samsung 970 EVO Plus SSD 500GB SSD
Best NVMe SSD for Gaming
While the Samsung 860 EVO sits as the king of SATA SSDs, the Samsung 970 EVO Plus is the reigning champion of NVMe SSDs. This Samsung solid-state drive uses V-NAND technology just like the 860 EVO. However, the 970 EVO Plus is faster and ideal for many other tasks besides gaming, including 4K video editing, 3D rendering, and high-image editing, such as RAW images.
With its 3,500MB/s write speed and 3,300MB/s read speed, this Samsung SSD is quite fast. Thanks to the fact that it's an NVMe SSD, you'll be able to connect the 970 EVO Plus to your computer's motherboard via a PCIe slot. It uses the PCIe Gen 3.0 slot to provide users with low latency, excellent power efficiency, and enhanced bandwidth.
The Samsung 970 EVO Plus works optimally under 70 degrees, and features a heatsink to help disperse heat and therefore minimize performance drops. If you're looking for the best NVMe SSDs for gaming or video editing, the Samsung 970 EVO Plus is one of the best SSDs you can choose.
5. SK Hynix Gold S31 500GB 3D NAND SSD
Best Budget SSD
The SK Hynix Gold S31 500GB solid-state drive is one of the best budget SSDs you can choose to store your games. Highly stable and reliable, this drive comes with 1.5 million hours MBTF with the capability to write up to 600TB before dropping in performance. It uses a SATA 2.5 interface to deliver read speeds of up to 560MB/s and write speeds up to 525MB/s.
While this 500GB SSD isn't as fast as the above Corsair MP600, it's still ten times faster than a typical HDD. It's one of the best SSDs for laptops, and its 1000 hours of high-temperature operating life makes its a definite recommendation for those who want a budget SSD that won't falter under heavy workloads. With its 5-year warranty and top-notch support from the manufacturer, PC builders will be able to get great value for less than $60.
6. WD_Black SN750 1TB NVMe Gaming SSD
Best SSD for Gaming
When it comes to 1TB SSDs for gaming, the WD Black SN750 is one of the top choices you can work with. Launched earlier this year, this drive comes in at a reasonable price compared to other 1TB SSDs. In fact, it helped to influence the price reduction of many SSDs this year. While SSDs like Samsung's 970 EVO are priced in the $400 range, the WD Black SN750 sits at under $250. There's also a heatsink version that comes with a more expensive price tag.
On top of its reasonable price point, this drive is also fast. It features a game mode that helps enhance gaming performance, which one of the reasons why it's considered to be one of the best SSDs for gaming. The Black SN750 is ideal for enthusiasts and anyone looking to build a great gaming rig. It comes with a 5-year warranty and stands as one of the most affordable NVMe SSDs currently available. If you're looking for an excellent alternative to the Samsung EVO lineup, the Black SN750 from Western Digital is the best option you can choose.
7. ADATA XPG SX8200 Pro 1TB SSD
Outstanding Performance, Lower Price
The ADATA XPG SX8200 Pro SSD is another excellent option to look at if you're on the market for a fast NVMe solid-state drive. It sits in the $200 price range, making it just a little more expensive than the Samsung 860 EVO SATA drive. This NVMe drive uses a PCIe 3.0 interface to connect to your motherboard, providing you with a sequential read speed of 3,500MB/s and a write speed of 3,000MB/s. It's an excellent drive for 3D rendering, animation, photo and video editing, and playing games.
While this drive sits at a great price point and offers some great speeds, it's only compatible with Windows PCs. Mac users may have to purchase additional parts to get this drive to work on their device, otherwise it won't work at all. The ADATA XPG SX8200 Pro features a 5-year warranty and comes with software to help you transfer your data. If you're looking for the ideal NVMe PCIe drive for your Windows machine, this fast SSD is one of the best around you can work with.
8. Addlink S70 1TB SSD
Best PCIe 3.0 SSD
A list of the best SSDs for gaming would be incomplete without mentioning the Addlink S70 SSD. This brand is a new force helping to drive down the prices of NVMe-based SSDs. They seem to be one of the major players ensuring that PCIe drives cost as low as SATA SSDs. While Addlink may not be a household name like Samsung, there's no denying the brilliance of the S70 1TB SSD. This NVMe SSD sports a Phison memory controller as well as 3D NAND technology made by Toshiba.
Combining these technologies provides a super-fast NVMe M.2 drive on par in performance with the WD Black SN750. To make things even better, this 1TB model comes with better write performance than the 500GB version, even though the latter is also an excellent option for building PCs. Reliable, fast, and well-priced, this PCIe NVMe drive is one of the best gaming SSDs you can choose over many SATA drives or the more expensive Samsung SSDs.
9. Sabrent 1TB Rocket Internal SSD
Best PCIe 4.0 Performance
The Sabrent 1TB Rocket Internal SSD card is an excellent PCIe 4.0 SSD. Designed with Toshiba's BiCS4 TLC NAND technology, this solid-state drive features speeds beyond what you would get from the WD Black SN750. Its read speed on a PCIe 4 motherboard can reach up to 5,000MB/s while its write speed peaks at 4,400MB/s. It's also compatible with PCIe 3.0 motherboards, providing users with a write speed of 3,000MB/s and a read speed of up to 3,300MB/s.
The Sabrent Rocket Internal solid-state drive is ideal for high-end games and for those who carry out intensive tasks on their PC. It provides faster load times, allowing your programs to feel snappier. This drive works well with Intel and AMD PCs and can be used on both laptops and desktops. You'll have to install a heatsink though, as the drive doesn't come with one built-in.
10. Seagate Barracuda 510 1TB SSD Internal SSD
Fast and Reliable
The final product on our list of best SSDs for gaming is the Seagate Barracuda 510. This is an internal SSD with a read speed of up to 3,400MB/s and a write speed of up to 3,000MB/s. It minimizes power consumption, thereby extending your PC's battery life. This solid-state drive is one of the best for thin and ultra-small laptops thanks to its M.2 2280 form factor.
Just like the Sabrent above, the Seagate Barracuda 510 comes with its own software suite, which you can use to analyze the health and performance of your drive. The Barracuda is touted to be six times faster than a typical SATA SSD, which means that you can get your computer running even faster. If versatility, speed, and a good form factor are what you're looking for, the Seagate Barracuda 510 is a great option to consider.
Compare the Models
|Picture||Model||NAND Type||Storage Capacity||Format||Interface||Write Speed||Read Speed|
|+ Samsung 860 EVO||V-NAND||250GB to 1TB||M.2||SATA III||550MB/s||520MB/s|
|+ Corsair ce Series||3D TLC||1TB||M.2 2280||PCIe 4.0||3,480MB/s||2,700MB/s|
|+ Crucial MX500 1TB||3D NAND||1TB||2.5-inch SATA||SATA||510MB/s||560MB/s|
|+ Samsung 970 EVO||V-NAND||500GB||M.2 NVMe||PCIe 3.0 x4||3,300MB/s||3,500MB/s|
|+ SK Hynix Gold||3D NAND||500GB||2.5-inch SATA||SATA III||560MB/s||525MB/s|
|+ WD_Black SN750 1TB||3D TLC||1TB||M.2 NVMe||PCIe 3.0 x4||3,000MB/s||3.470MB/s|
|+ ADATA XPG SX8200||3D TLC||1TB||M.2 2280||PCIe 2.0 x4||3,500MB/s||3,000MB/s|
|+ Addlink S70 1TB||3D TLC||1TB||M.2 NVMe||PCIe 3.0 x4||2,000MB/s||3,000MB/s|
|+ Sabrent 1TB Rocket||3D TLC||1TB||M.2 2280||PCIe 4.0 x4||4,400MB/s||5,000MB/s|
|+ Seagate Barracuda 510||3D TLC||1TB||M.2 2280||NVMe PCIe 3.0||3,000MB/s||3,400MB/s|
Having the best gaming SSD in your PC is highly essential in today’s world. Investing in the right drive allows you to enjoy incredible speeds, better performance, and high storage space. Our reviews above include ten of the best products on the market. Simply compare them by going through their pros and cons and decide on the best option for you.
And just in case you’re looking for some tips on how to choose the right SSD for your rig, our expert tips above have you covered. Once you have your SSD sorted, you may want to gain an edge with the best gaming mouse for 2020. And while you’re at it, why not check out our guide on the best graphics cards, too.If you liked our article on ssds for gaming, please share and comment below what your favorite product is.