Samsung 980 1 TB Review – Faster Than You Think

Introduction to Samsung 980 1 TB

As one of the world leaders in digital technology, Samsung pretty much makes any type of electronic device you can think of. Their products are used by millions of people around the world.

Being a leader in DRAM and flash memory production, it comes as no surprise that they are also a huge player in the SSD business. Their EVO and PRO Series SSDs are highly popular among upgraders, system builders, and enthusiasts.


The Samsung 980 non-Pro has announced at the end of March 2021 and made waves because it is a DRAM-less SSD, a design choice usually reserved for value drives without maximum performance, yet they picked the “980” name, which is used on their flagship “980 Pro”. Under the hood, the  980 in today’s review uses a relatively new controller called “Pablo”, or S4LR033—a 4-channel PCIe Gen 3 controller design that we’ve seen on some Samsung external SSDs before. The flash chips are 128-layer 3D TLC, the same as on the 980 Pro. As mentioned before, a DRAM chip is not present, which is a cost-optimization measure, but has the drawback that random write performance is reduced.

The 980 comes in capacities of 250 GB ($55), 512 GB ($60) and 1 TB ($140). Endurance for these models is set to 150 TBW, 300 TBW, and 600 TBW respectively. Samsung includes a five-year warranty with the 980 non-Pro SSD.

Specifications: 980 1 TB SSD
Capacity:1000 GB (931 GB usable)
24 GB additional overprovisioning
Controller: Pablo
Flash: 110 to 136-layer 3D TLC V-NAND v6
DRAM:N/A, but HMB 64 MB
Endurance:600 TBW
Form Factor:M.2 2280
Interface:PCIe Gen 3 x4, NVMe 1.3
Device ID: SSD 980 1TB
Warranty:5 years
Price at Time
of Review:
$140 / 14 cents per GB

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