In short: Solid-state drives compliant with the latest PCIe 5.0 standard are starting to trickle into retailers. As with most cutting-edge hardware, expect to pay a pretty penny to play ball and don’t be surprised if you find one or two absurd requirements along the way.
The Micro Center-exclusive Inland TD510 is a 2TB PCIe Gen 5 NVMe M.2 SSD rated at up to 10,000 MB/s reading and 9,500 MB/s writing. It is reportedly good for 1,400 TBW and is backed by a generous six-year warranty. Notably, the drive also ships with a large heatsink that is actively cooled. Unfortunately, the product listing does not mention the specifications for the fan and it also does not 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 capable of sequential read speeds of up to 10,000 MB/s and sequential writes of 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 rightly so. The 2TB Inland drive is listed for $349.99. The Gigabyte drive is out of stock as of writing but according to Ars Technica, it usually 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 that fast – just 7,000 MB/s read and 5,100 MB/s write – but that’s plenty easy for most users.
Speaking of raw speed, most high-end Gen 5 drives can be overkill in many situations. Again, enthusiasts always favor the absolute fastest products on the market and this is one of them.
Another concern is the extreme cooling requirements – specifically, the potential compatibility issues that large heatsinks can introduce. When looking at a new drive with a large heatsink, be sure to clean the surrounding components and expansion cards before placing your order.