I recently tested a number of Silicon Power NVME PCIe SSDs. Not only do they have very similar names, but the SSDs also look and weigh the same. At first glance, the only differences you could make are the price tags and the PCB colors.
As a content creator, I usually run out of storage space because I have large project files or often need to access archives for new projects. This is a workflow problem that can only be resolved by establishing a seamless storage setup workflow. Unfortunately, not everyone can set up a huge NAS, hundreds of terabytes in size, that is constantly connected to the system. It is an expensive and complex business. This is where faster SSDs come into play. With the advent of modern technologies, SSDs have not only become cheaper, but have also increased their transfer speeds significantly. Whether you are a professional photographer or a filmmaker, you need reliable storage all the time. Silicon Power has made some great PCIe NVME SSDs and I’ve been using them for quite a while. It might sound silly at first, but there are many factors to consider before choosing the right SSD for your next editing rig upgrade.
So let’s compare the US70, P34A80, and P34A60 NVME SSDs from Silicon Power from the perspective of a content creator. Let’s find out which SSD is better for your content creation workflow.
I take a lot of pictures and videos with all kinds of cameras from mine Daily driver smartphone (OnePlus 7T) to a Cinema camera (ZCAM E2). File size and compression vary significantly, and you need to know which SSD is the right choice for your needs. So let’s take a quick look at which Silicon Power NVME PCIe SSD is the right choice for you.
What should you watch out for with an SSD?
Before we move on to comparing, let’s figure out what factors to compare in order to make a fair comparison and make the right buying decision. There are many factors a content creator needs to consider, but most of them can be broken down into 3 main factors. Here’s a quick look at them:
Compatibility & Interface
First, you need to find out whether your current or future hardware, be it a desktop editing rig or a laptop, will support these SSDs. Since most modern laptops and motherboards come with PCIe NVME SSD slots, they usually support these SSDs by default. However, if you have an older laptop or desktop, just look at the datasheet and see if you have the correct NVME M2 slots. Another underlying factor is the interface. Some SSDs use a PCIe Gen3x4 interface which is pretty fast and is very common even in mid-range laptops and all modern motherboards. the Silicon Power US70 (Review) uses the latest PCIe Gen4x4 interface, which offers almost twice the performance and endurance of Gen3 SSDs. At the time of this writing, the Gen4 interface is not as widely supported as the Gen3 interface. Even though, new laptops and Motherboards with compatibility will be announced every month.
Second, storage capacity is the biggest decision maker when buying a storage device. Since the price of SSD increases with storage capacity, you need to determine the amount of storage you need. The rule of thumb is to choose the variant that offers more capacity than you actually need. Additional memory not only ensures smooth system processes, but also offers more lasting performance. In short, if you’re a photographer, 1TB is usually the sweet spot (depending on your workflow such as whether or not you shoot RAW). On the other hand, 2TB is the right amount of storage for most of your needs. You can also add an additional 2TB SSD if you have a free slot on your motherboard or laptop.
Persistence is basically the lifespan of the flash drive with a certain amount of data being written to it every day. It is measured in TBW, which is terabytes of written. You need a longer life SSD when writing large files, which is very common in video editing. On the other hand, a decent SSD with endurance performance is sufficient for photo editing.
Now that we’ve covered the key factors to consider before buying an SSD, let’s take a quick look at a comparison chart that compares key features and benchmark tests.
US70 vs P34A80 vs P34A60: Which One Should You Buy?
|US70 (2TB)||P34A80 (2TB)||P34A60 (1TB)|
|capacity||1 TB, 2 TB||256 GB, 512 GB, 1 TB, 2 TB||128GB, 256GB, 512GB, 1TB, 2TB|
|Dimensions||22.0 mm x 80.0 mm x 3.5 mm||22.0 x 80.0 x 3.5 mm||22.0 x 80.0 x 3.5 mm|
|interface||PCIe Gen4x4||PCIe Gen3x4||PCIe Gen3x4|
|Read power (max.)||up to 5,000 MB / s||up to 3,400 MB / s||up to 2,200 MB / s|
|Writing performance (max.)||up to 4,400 MB / s||up to 3,000 MB / s||up to 1,600 MB / s|
|guarantee||5 years||5 years||5 years|
|Regulator||that ends E16||that ends with E12||Silicon Motion SM2263XT|
|Random reading||750,000 IOPS||390,000 IOPS||240,000 IOPS|
|Random writing||750,000 IOPS||450,000 IOPS||240,000 IOPS|
|Endurance (TBW)||3,600 TB||1665 TBW||600 TB|
|Average copy / paste speed (50 GB)||1089 MB / s||865 MB / s||564 MB / s|
|ATTO 2.47 (read) 1GB||5553 MB / s||3108 MB / s||2079 MB / s|
|ATTO 2.47 (write) 1GB||4209 MB / s||3110 MB / s||1720 MB / s|
|Crystal Disk Mark 3.04 x64|
|512K writing||3620 MB / s||2240 MB / s||1530 MB / s|
|512K read||2986 MB / s||2020 MB / s||1281 MB / s|
|Write seq||3876 MB / s||2901 MB / s||1702 MB / s|
|Read seq||4333 MB / s||2454 MB / s||1901 MB / s|
|SLC (Sustainable Performance)||[email protected]||[email protected]||[email protected]|
Silicon Power P34A60 PCIe Gen3 NVME SSD
Let’s start with the P34A60. As the number in the name suggests, it is the entry-level PCIe NVME SSD from Silicon Power. It is available with multiple storage capacities from 128 GB to 2 TB, making it suitable for a wide variety of tasks. In addition, the A60 SSD weighs only 8g, which means that it is also suitable for laptop upgrades.
It offers transfer speeds of up to 2,200 MB / s (read) and 1,600 MB / s (write) when paired with the right hardware.
Since it supports the PCIe Gen3x4 interface, it is more than sufficient for basic productivity tasks such as web browsing, project management or media usage.
Given its sustained performance and transfer speeds, it should be enough for some entry-level photo and video editing. It is the best value for money for basic editing tasks including creating content for social media platforms like Instagram, TikTok, Etc.
If you are looking for an entry-level NVME SSD to upgrade your old SATA SSD or HDD, the P34A60 offers noticeable increases in performance with minimal investment costs. Silicon Power also offers a problem-free 5-year guarantee on the A60.
Check price on:
Amazon (USA): https://amzn.to/3j7LxlI
Amazon UK): https://amzn.to/2SUe6ss
Amazon (India): https://amzn.to/3zMSHSm
Silicon Power Ace A55 SATA SSD in the test (1 TB)
Silicon Power P34A80 PCIe Gen3 NVME SSD
As the name difference highlights, the A80 is the upgraded version of the A60 SSD mentioned above. It has a better controller with DRAM support. This means faster transfer speeds and better sustained performance. Therefore, it is suitable for memory-intensive tasks such as photo and video editing.
The A80 offers amazing transfer speeds of up to 3,400 MB / s (read) and 3,000 MB / s (write). It also features the PCIe Gen3x4 interface, which makes it compatible with most modern laptops.
If you are a photographer shooting RAW then the Silicon Power P34A80 is the ideal choice. It offers high-end performance with an endurance output of 1665 TBW. Hence the processing of FullHD videos for YouTube on this SSD will be smooth. What makes it more interesting is the fact that you can easily play intense games with no lags or frame drops.
Check price on:
Amazon (USA): https://amzn.to/2SphX0j
Amazon UK): https://amzn.to/3gSx4bX
Amazon (India): https://amzn.to/2UCXTbD
Silicon Power US70 PCIe Gen4 NVME SSD
The US70 is the latest NVME SSD offering from Silicon Power. It has the PCIe Gen4x4 interface which makes it faster than the rest of the Gen3 SSDs. We actually did one detailed test of the Silicon Power US70 NVME SSD. I’ve used it as my primary storage device for editing high frame rate 4K video ([email protected]).
If we come to the transfer speeds, the US70 is designed for read speeds of up to 5,000 MB / s and write speeds of 4,400 MB / s. Although it is an entry-level Gen4 NVME SSD, it will easily handle all types of your media needs without sacrificing performance. Be it editing high-resolution RAW images or editing 4K or even 6K footage, the Silicon Power US70 PCIe Gen4 NVME SSD is perfect.
Another important feature is that the US70 has a 3600 TBW lifespan that is backed by a 5 year warranty. As mentioned in our review, “you can fill up the 2TB drive to its full capacity every day for 5 years and Silicon Power still gives you a 5-year warranty at the end of the day.”
So this is your best bet if you want a future-proof NVME SSD without burning a hole in your pocket.
Check price on:
Amazon (USA): https://amzn.to/3zW95jJ
Amazon UK): https://amzn.to/3qo0iT7
Amazon (India): https://amzn.to/3dsnBWT