We looked at the Plextor M6e Black Edition 512GB SSD just a few days ago, and found it lacked the performance we expect from a native PCIe SSD. On paper, the 512GB model is faster than the two smaller capacity drives, but after some investigation, we learned that wasn't always the case. The difference in performance comes down to the wear leveling Plextor uses.
Larger drives take longer to clean the flash, and smaller drives are able to tidy up a bit faster. Under normal consumer use, this wouldn't be an issue, but if you have a SSD that breaks the SATA 6Gb/s barriers, you will most likely want to use it under heavy loads.
Specifications, Pricing, and Availability
The M6e Black Edition is Plextor's follow-up to the original M6e released one year ago. The Black Edition models ship in three capacities, 512GB, 256GB, and 128GB. We've already published the results of the largest capacity model, and today we will look at the mid-sized model.
Electrically, the M6e Black Edition is nearly identical to the older base model. The base performance is the same as well. Both read sequential data at 770 MB/s, and write sequential data at 580 MB/s. The original M6e shipped with a different firmware, but you can update it to the same firmware Plextor ships on the Black Edition. This is important because the updated firmware allows you to run Plextor's new DRAM cache software, PlexTurbo 2.0.
The Black Edition differs from the original model aesthetically, and there is a functionality difference that comes in the form of a heat sink used to keep the Marvell 88SS9183 controller cool. The new Black Edition also uses newer Toshiba A19 NAND flash, which is a newer process node than the 19nm flash used on the first M6e.
At this time, we don't have pricing information for the M6e Black Edition 256GB, but Newegg has the first M6e 256GB for $310. We did manage to find the drive online for as low as $256. We expect the Black Edition to cost more than the M6e 256GB since the new model has an elaborate heat sink, a black PCB, and official support for PlexTurbo 2.0.
Plextor covers the M6e Black Edition with a five-year warranty.
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- Page 1 [Introduction]
- Page 2 [Plextor M6e Black Edition 256GB PCIe SSD]
- Page 3 [Test System Setup and Initial Performance]
- Page 4 [Benchmarks - Sequential Performance]
- Page 5 [Benchmarks - Anvil Storage Utilities]
- Page 6 [Benchmarks - Mixed Read / Write Workloads]
- Page 7 [PCMark 8 Consistency Test]
- Page 8 [PCMark 8 Consistency Test - Continued]
- Page 9 [Final Thoughts]