The Best SSDs For Gaming and General Use in 2023

Although SSDs do not give you extra FPS in games, these faster storage devices do greatly improve your quality of life since boot times for your system and games are significantly cut down.

SSDs become even more important if you do some work on your PC besides gaming since then the time wasted on transferring large files is directly correlated to the speed of your disk drive.

Besides the very obvious choice in storage size, when buying an SSD you should be looking out for 3 major things: read/write speeds, does it have DRAM cache, what is the rated TBW.

  • Read/Write Speeds: This is an important metric since this gives you a clear idea of how fast your device can move data around. SSD speeds usually correlate with the PCIe generation used for the drive (Gen 5.0>Gen 4.0>Gen 3.0).
  • DRAM cache: SSDs that have a DRAM cache are faster than their counterparts without it since your CPU does not need to access the slower NAND chips for mapping tables while fetching or moving data. This is also important for the TBW measurement since the CPU won’t cause extra wear to the NAND chips if it just accesses the DRAM cache. DRAM-less SSDs will be cheaper and might look attractive but in the long term you should always try to confirm your drive has DRAM.
  • TBW: In simple terms TBW (total bytes written) is a metric that is measured in terabytes to showcase how many said terabytes you can write to the drive before it starts degrading the NAND chips. The bigger the quoted TBW on the spec sheet of your SSD the longer you can expect it to work without any issues!

Things to Be Aware of When Buying SSDs

Just like with every other product on the market there are gimmicks you need to understand when preparing yourself for a new SSD purchase.

  • Branding does not mean anything – an SSD marketed for gaming is using the same technology as one designed for professional work. The drives will perform the same for either of those tasks so do not overpay for fancy wording.
  • SATA drives are more than enough for gaming – you might be tempted to buy a super fast NVMe M.2 3000+ MB/s drive when in reality if you are purely gaming you will never really max out the 500MB/s most SATA SSDs offer.
  • Gen3 (3000+ MB/s) or Gen4 NVMe (7000+ MB/s) SSDs truly maximize their potential when dealing with large file sizes and file transfers. Your operating system and gaming sessions will never even come close to saturating a fast NVMe SSD.

How to Choose an SSD

Below you will find a list of both SATA and NVMe M.2 SSDs that we have compiled so you can have a clear idea of what are some good options for you to purchase. This does not mean that you need to buy these SSDs specifically since the market keeps continuously growing and innovating with new products available.

You can buy whatever SSD is fit for your budget and build, but you need to make sure that the read/write speeds are decent, the TBW is decent, and the drive has DRAM cache for optimal performance. If you find an SSD for a good price and it fits all of these criteria there is no need to hesitate.

The drives on the list, however, are fast, have a long lifespan and have DRAM cache so if you do not want to do any research at all you can just get one from the list.

The Best SSDS

Samsung 870 EVO

Flagship SATA SSD for Gaming

samsung 870 evo
  • 250GB/500GB/1TB/2TB/4TB storage options
  • 560/530MB/s read/write speeds
  • Up to 2400 TBW
  • Standard 2.5’’ SSD

At this point in time, everyone knows that Samsung produces a bunch of high-quality SSDs that are not only reliable but also offer unrivaled performance. This is also the case if you are specifically looking for a SATA SSD for gaming.

The Samsung 870 EVO is a 2.5’’ standard SATA SSD that can just be plugged in and used as a storage device or boot device. The SSD has a solid 560MB/s read speed and 530MB/s write speed. This type of performance is more than enough for most things you would be doing on a computer as a regular user (especially for just storing and opening games).

The 870 EVO SSD also has a long lifespan with the medium-sized 500GB option having 600TBW and 5 years of warranty. Additionally, you can also download the Samsung Magician software that will help you maintain your SSD but it is not a necessary requirement for the SSD to work as intended.

  • Great read/write performance for a SATA SSD
  • Great reliability with a 5-year warranty included
  • Additional software
  • Plug-and-play device
  • Might be more expensive than other SATA SSD options

Crucial MX500

Affordable SATA SSD

crucial mx500
  • 250GB/500GB/1TB/2TB/4TB storage options
  • 560/510MB/s read/write speeds
  • Standard 2.5’’ SSD
  • 6-year warranty

If on the other hand the main criteria for your research on good SATA SSDs for gaming is the price, then you should take a look at the Crucial MX500. This is a more budget-oriented 2.5’’ SATA SSD that still has decent performance with 560/510 MB/s read and write speeds.

This once again means that this SATA SSD is well suited for 99% of the people that are using a computer for casual tasks like gaming. The only exception is of course people that are moving TBs of data around, but they would definitely not even look at the MX500.

This is a standard 6GB SATA drive with a 5-year warranty that will fit very well in any laptop or PC that can be purchased for a good price. A very good deal indeed.

  • Great value proposition
  • The lower price does not mean that the SSD is unreliable
  • Great read/write speeds
  • Easy installation
  • No extra software or options come with the SSD

SK hynix Gold P31

The Gen3 Samsung Alternative SSD

sk hynix gold p31
  • 500GB/1TB/2TB storage options
  • 3500/3200MB/s read/write speeds
  • 750 TBW
  • Gen3 M.2 NVMe SSD

If you are fine with a Gen3 NVMe SSD but want something a bit more premium than a Samsung 980 then you should try the SK hynix Gold P31 drive. This is another PCIe NVMe 3 drive with 3500/3200 MB/s read/write speeds.

The more impressive part about this drive specifically is the fact that it has 750 TBW which means your data will be safe on the SSD for a long time. As with most of these SSDs, you also benefit from a 5-year warranty in case something does go wrong, but in most cases these NVMe drives are rock-solid.

One cool bit about purchasing the P31 is that you also get the Macrium cloning software which means you can simply clone your entire boot drive with no losses and just use your new fast NVMe drive as your main C drive.

  • Fast read/write speeds
  • Amazing 750 TBW
  • 5-year warranty in case something does go wrong
  • Cloning software for easy setup
  • The black PCB is only available for the 2TB model

Crucial P5 Plus

Crucial’s Entry Into the gen4 Market

crucial p5 plus
  • 500GB/1TB/2TB/ storage options
  • 6600/5000MB/s read/write speeds
  • Gen4 M.2 NVMe SSD

It is obvious that all companies that are players in the storage device market will need to compete in the newest Gen4 SSD category. Crucial’s entry is the P5 Plus Gen4 M.2 NVMe drive. This is a standard 2280 M.2 drive with blazing-fast read/write speeds (6600/5000 MB/s) that will help you get your work done faster and load your games in a snap of your fingers.

The P5 Plus also has a decent life expectancy with 600TBW and a 5-year warranty that will give you some peace of mind as well. Overall this is a solid choice for someone that does not want to spend too much money on a new Gen4 drive but wants to benefit from the newest tech.

  • Great read/write speeds that can tackle anything
  • 600TBW
  • 5-year warranty
  • Micron Advanced 3D-NAND technology
  • A bit slower spec-wise compared to the competition

Corsair MP600 PRO XT

Flagship Gen4 M.2 NVMe SSD

corsair mp600 pro xt
  • M.2 Gen4 NVMe SSD
  • 7100/6800MB/s read/write speeds
  • 3000 TBW
  • High-density 3D TLC NAND

The truth about the Corsair MP600 PRO XT is that 99.9% of people would never need this type of drive and are incapable of using it to its full potential. The main reason for this simple conclusion is the fact that we are dealing with an M.2 Gen4 SSD, which is the newest standard for storage devices.

This means that not only is this SSD tiny in terms of physical dimensions (2280 form-factor) but oh boy is it fast. The MP600 PRO XT is capable of 7100MB/s read and 6800MB/s write speeds. These numbers are absolutely absurd even in comparison with Gen3 M.2 NVMe SSDs so you can understand just how overpowered this drive is.

Besides the incredible speed, the MP600 also has 3000TBW which means that it will be able to store your data for a very, very long time. If you have the money and just want one of the fastest, most reliable drives then you know where to look.

  • There is nothing humanly possible that can push this SSD to the limit of its speed
  • Incredible reliability
  • M.2 2280 form-factor means it takes no space in your build
  • Uses the latest and greatest technology on the market
  • The price of such a drive will obviously be higher than most other SSDs you can find


A Great Gen4 Drive From WD

wd black sn850
  • 500GB/1TB/2TB/ storage options
  • 7300/5300MB/s read/write speeds
  • Gen4 M.2 NVMe SSD

Another great option to look at if you are interested in a blazing fast Gen4 drive is the WD_BLACK SN850 drive. Western Digital is known for making storage devices for a long time and this drive does not disappoint either.

You have 3 storage options that will cater to most people and their necessities – 500GB, 1TB, and 2TB. Since this is a Gen4 drive the read and write speeds are 7000/5300 MB/s which are simply stellar.

The only thing to be aware of when purchasing this drive is that you most definitely want the option with the heatsink. Operating at such high speeds means your NVMe drive will produce a lot of heat, and without the heatsink, this storage device can get toasty.

Besides this small recommendation, this WD drive is an excellent option for anybody interested in the fast speeds of Gen4.

  • Fast read/write speeds
  • 3 main choices of storage configuration are present
  • Software for maintaining the health of your drive
  • Can get hot if you have purchased the drive without the heatsink

Seagate FireCuda 530

The Gaming Gen4 SSD From Seagate

seagate firecuda 530
  • 500GB/1TB/2TB/4TB storage options
  • 7300/6000MB/s read/write speeds
  • Up to 5000 TBW
  • Gen4 M.2 NVMe SSD

A good option to look at if you are searching for one of the fastest Gen4 NVMe drives is the Seagate FireCuda 530. Why? Well, it has gaming in its name so it must be good right? Jokes aside the FireCuda 530 is an impressive drive with insane 7300/6000 MB/s read/write speeds.

The even more impressive part is that this drive depending on the capacity configuration you have chosen can reach 5000 TBW. Even at the most popular 1TB storage size, the 1275 TBW represents incredible endurance in terms of long-lasting products.

The drive also comes with a 5-year warranty so you can rest assured that even in the worst case you can always salvage your drive. The drive does come with the Seagate DiscWizard software which you can use to monitor the health of your drive, but that is not necessary whatsoever for the smooth operation of your SSD.

  • Insanely fast read/write speeds
  • This drive won’t die considering the specs for the TBW
  • 5-year warranty
  • Software for maintaining the health of your drive
  • Costs a pretty penny

About The Author


Custom Windows ISO enjoyer, FPS optimizer, and aim improvement enthusiast. Will disassemble all of his peripherals (and sometimes PC parts) to mod them even if all of them work perfectly fine. Discord/Twitter: vile_is_dead

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