Samsung 840 Pro 240GB SSD review: This is one screaming hunk o' flash

Credit: Photograph by Robert Cardin
At a Glance
  • Samsung 840 Pro 256GB SSD

    PCWorld Rating

    The Samsung 840 Pro is currently the fastest consumer SSD on the market. You pay a bit more for it, but you always pay more for the best.

It's always easy to write about the best—in this case, the Samsung 840 Pro with its proprietary MDX controller. Samsung also manufactures the toggle-mode MLC memory found in the 840 Pro, and judging from the results of our tests, the company knows what to do with it. The 840 Pro finished first in overall combined reading and writing in our December 2012 SSD roundup. It also placed first in three of our four individual read and write tests.

Samsung's model 840 Pro is the fastest 240GB SSD we've tested.

By the numbers, the 840 Pro wrote our 10GB mix of files and folders at 417.7 MBps, and it read them at 419.8 MBps. It wrote our single large 10GB file at a whopping 665.3 MBps, and read the file back at 482.9 MBps. That's an average read speed of 450.8 MBps, an average write speed of 541.5 MBps, and 496.2 MBps combined reading and writing. Impressive results; only OCZ's Vector could hang with it.

The 240GB 840 Pro we tested retails for a hefty $340, or $1.42 per gigabyte. But it is also available at steep discounts: We found it selling online for as low as $260, or $1.08 per gigabyte (as of December 18, 2012). That's still considerably more than most of the SSDs in this roundup. Samsung includes an installation guide and a CD containing its Magician toolkit software. Magician does benchmarking, and it enables the TRIM command if you're still using Windows XP (that operating system doesn’t support TRIM natively). The drive is warrantied for five years.

The Samsung 840 Pro is currently the fastest consumer SSD on the market. You’ll pay a little more for it, but you always pay more for the best.

Note: This review is part of a roundup of seven SSDs. Be sure to read the introduction, where you'll also find a detailed explanation of how SSDs work, as well as links to our reviews of each of the other six drives.

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At a Glance
  • PCWorld Rating

    The Samsung 840 Pro is currently the fastest consumer SSD on the market. You pay a bit more for it, but you always pay more for the best.

    Pros

    • Fastest SSD in our December 2012 roundup
    • 7mm thickness makes it compatible with thin-and-light laptops
    • Five-year warranty

    Cons

    • The most expensive SSD in our December 2012 roundup
    • Not dramatically faster than the second-place SSD in our December 2012 roundup
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