Now that the other flash fabs have nearly equaled rival Samsung's V-NAND in performance, most companies now have the ability to build low-cost consumer products that compete for the performance crown. Samsung still has an advantage in NVMe performance, but the bus limited SATA spec means you can get class-leading performance from a number of different drives and that helped to drive down costs.
For third-party manufacturers, those without significant flash or controller IP, the winning combination is the Silicon Motion, Inc. (SMI) SM2258 4-channel controller paired with Micron's 64L or 96L 3-bit per cell memory. This combination is open to just about any company willing to write a check, and many have released similar models. The most well-known with this configuration is the Crucial MX500, but that is mainly because it was the first to market thanks to Crucial's direct access to Micron's flash.
The Team Group T-Force Vulcan follows the same path with the controller and memory but costs around $10 less. Let's take a look at the fine details and see what you get in the package.
The Team Group T-Force Vulcan series comes to market in three capacities, 250GB, 500GB, and 1TB. The company also has a Vulcan DRAM series that matches the design for those looking to build a themed computer or at least color match components.
The series uses the SMI SM2258 "G" variant 4-channel controller and Micron's mighty 3-bit per cell flash. As we've already mentioned, this is the same combination as the Crucial MX500, a SATA drive we often recommend when asked.
The Vulcan delivers very similar performance per the specifications. Every drive shows the same performance rating, 560MB/s sequential read, and 510 MB/s sequential write speeds. Random performance peaks at 90,000 IOPS read and 85,000 IOPS write.
Pricing, Warranty, and Endurance
The series starts at just $31.99 at Newegg. Amazon doesn't have the smallest size listed but does carry the $59.99 500GB Vulcan and the $99.99 1TB.
Team Group backs the series with a 3-year warranty, and that's a bit of a disappointment since most mainstream SSDs now ship with a 5-year warranty.
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