What do you load on to SSD?

Started May 26, 2013 | Discussions thread
Jim Cockfield Forum Pro • Posts: 16,333
TLC versus MLC

As an FYI, that's not the best SSD around for write speed.

Basically, the Samsung 120GB 840 SSD is using a new type of memory cell known as TLC.

It's designed to be their new "budget" model, and you get slower write speeds with smaller drives (the 120GB model is rated up to 130MB/Second).   See specs here:


Larger sizes of the standard 840 series drives have faster write speeds if you look at their specs (in addition to longer life expectancy).

In addition, all of the 840 Pro (versus standard 840 SSDs) have faster write speeds compared to that drive, as they use faster MLC memory cells (whereas the standard 840 drives use a new type of memory known as TLC that is not as fast).

Another downside to the standard 840 (versus 840 Pro) is that the newer TLC memory cells are going to have reduced P/E (Program/Erase) compared to the MLC memory cells used in the older 830 series drives and newer 840 Pro series drives.

Most reviewers say that TLC memory cells (as used in the new standard Samsung 840 series drives) are designed for 1000 P/E Cycles.   In contrast, the older 830 series drives and newer 840 Pro series drives use MLC memory cells that are rated for 3000 P/E cycles per cell.

MLC memory is probably going to last several times as long as the TLC memory cells used in the standard 840 models (and smaller drives like the 120GB Samsung 840 are going to have lower life expectancy compared to larger models).

The new 840 series [standard versus pro] drives are the only SSDs on the market so far using the new TLC memory cells.    So, only time will tell about reliability.

IOW, personally, I'd have spent the extra cash for a 840 Pro model instead (and the 840 pro also has a longer 5 year warranty).  That way, I'd get a drive that should last several times as long, *and* have much faster write speeds (as TLC is much slower for write speeds, especially with a smaller 120GB Drive).

But, for most uses, you shouldn't have a problem, as even the standard 840 drives should be able to last a long time.   See this article about TLC versus MLC endurance for more details


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