First PCIe 5.0 SSDs touch down with blazing speeds, big heatsinks, and high prices
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In a nutshell: Solid-state drives compatible with the latest PCIe 5.0 standard are starting to trickle down to retailers. As with most cutting-edge hardware, expect to pay a pretty penny to play ball and don't be surprised if you come across an absurd requirement or two along the way.
The Micro Center-exclusive Inland TD510 is a 2TB PCIe Gen 5 NVMe M.2 SSD rated for up to 10,000 MB/s reads and 9,500 MB/s writes. It's reportedly good for 1,400 TBW and comes backed by a generous six-year warranty. Notably, the drive also ships with a sizable heatsink that is actively cooled. Unfortunately, the product listing doesn't mention specs for the fan nor does it seem to ship with a fan speed controller.
Gigabyte's Aorus Gen5 SSD is another newcomer. We profiled this extreme SSD last month, highlighting its Phison E26 controller and 232-layer 3D TLC NAND flash that's capable of sequential read speeds up to 10,000 MB/s and sequential writes up to 9,500 MB/s in the 2TB flavor. The 1TB version is no slouch either, with sequential read speeds of up to 9,500 MB/s and sequential write speeds of up to 8,500 MB/s.
Some may scoff at the high cost of these new drives, and rightfully so. The 2TB Inland drive is listed at $349.99. The Gigabyte drive is out of stock as of writing but according to Ars Technica, it typically goes for around $340 when in stock. For comparison, Samsung's 980 Pro PCIe Gen 4.0 2TB drive commands just $159.99. It's not as fast – just 7,000 MB/s read and 5,100 MB/s write – but that's still plenty quick for most users.
Speaking of raw speed, most high-end Gen 5 drives are going to be overkill in many situations. Then again, enthusiasts often favor the absolute fastest products on the market and these are among them.
Another concern is the extreme cooling requirements – more specifically, potential compatibility issues that large heatsinks could introduce. If eyeballing a new drive with a big heatsink, ensure it'll clear nearby components and expansion cards before placing your order.