Specifications, Pricing and Availability
Plextor has already launched three capacity sizes under the M3 Pro umbrella. Those are 128GB that we reviewed earlier in the week, the 256GB model that we are looking at today and a massive 512GB capacity size. The 256GB and 512GB both receive a very large 512MB cache while the 128GB drive only gets 256MB. You may notice that Plextor didn't release a 60GB model in the Pro class, but they did release a 60GB drive in the non-pro, M3 series.
As we said earlier in the week we looked at the 128GB M3 Pro and it has a claimed performance of up to 535MB/s read and 350MB/s write speeds. The 256GB drive we are looking at today moves those specs to 540MB/s read and gets a big boost in the maximum write performance, all the way up to 420MB/s.
Other notable specifications from the list that we found interesting include the 1.5 million hour mean time between failure, a number high enough to put the M3 Pro into the enterprise category. Most of the enterprise drives, HDD or SSD usually pull quite a bit of power, but that isn't the case with the M3 Pro. Plextor is claiming a very low .01 watt while idle and 5 watts while active. Finally the new M3 Pro series all use the new 7mm Z-Height form factor making these drives available in many of the new ultrabook products on the market.
Newegg already lists all three capacity sizes of the Plextor M3 Pro. The 256GB model we're looking at today is listed at the time of writing at $374.99. The MSRP according to Newegg is $399, so we are already seeing a nice reduction, but at this price, the M3 Pro 256GB is one of the higher priced consumer SSDs available today.
For that price you are getting a premium SSD with a premium accessory bundle. The five year warranty is certainly the stand out from this group, but not the only nice add-on you get. The 7mm height should be included in this group because it extends your installation options. Along the same lines of thinking, the included desktop adapter bracket extents your installation options as well. Disk cloning and data backup software is also included in the package, a nice feature that we don't see every day with consumer SSDs.
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