Wilk Elektronik, which owns the GoodRAM brand, continues to delight us with its latest innovations, and this time we will look at another NVMe SSD. But if our last guest was an ordinary bufferless model, today’s one is a progressive solution with PCI Express 4.0 support. There are not many such drives now and they are fully supported exclusively by the AMD platform. In any case, Intel will not be able to offer anything in the desktop segment, at least until the release of processors based on the Rocket Lake-S core.

For AMD, the PCI Express 4.0 interface is a key feature that the Ryzen 3000 series processors, the X570 chipset and the Radeon 5000 series video cards can boast of. NVMe drives immediately suggest themselves from the equipment demanding such speeds, which have begun to hit the PCI Express 3.0 limit equal to about 4 GB / s for four lines leading to the M.2 connector. In reality, getting over 3500 MB / s is almost impossible. With the new revision of this interface, the data transfer rate doubles — up to 7.88 GB / s, which should be enough for several years to come.

But, despite almost a year after the release of the updated AM4 platform to the market, the developers of controllers for solid state drives are in no hurry to actively release their new products. So far, only the Phison PS5016-E16 with a declared speed of 5000 and 4400 MB / s for linear read and write, respectively, and 750K IOPS for random read / write can be called the only and relatively massive one. SSDs with such a controller really achieve the promised speeds, but in benchmarks, while in real tasks they are at the level of their counterparts with PCI Express 3.0. The PS5016-E16 chip, although it has modern characteristics, unfortunately does not have time to process data due to the presence of only two ARM Cortex R5 cores, which are characteristic of the previous generation controllers. For the future PS5018-E18, three such cores have already been announced, but there the speeds will have to increase to 7000 and 7000 MB / s for linear reading and writing, respectively. In the meantime, the current Phison product can be called a transitional solution, allowing you to enjoy the latest system with advanced features right now.

GoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X PCIe GEN 4 x4 NVMe M.2 1000GB

GoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X

In the new line of Ultimate X drives, the Polish company offers three models with a capacity of 500, 1000 and 2000 GB. They claim compatibility with AMD Ryzen 3000 processors, high data transfer rates and a five-year warranty. We got an IRX-SSDPR-P44X-1K0-80 with a capacity of 1000 GB for testing.

Name RX-SSDPR-P44X-500-80 IRX-SSDPR-P44X-1K0-80 IRX-SSDPR-P44X-2K0-80
Manufacturer’s site goodram.com
Capacity, GB 500 1000 2000
Sequential read speed, MB/s 5000 5000 5000
Sequential write speed, MB/s 2500 4500 4500
Maximum random read speed (blocks of 4 KB), IOPS 550K 750K 750K
Maximum random write speed (blocks of 4 KB), IOPS 400K 750K 750K
Controller Phison PS5016-E16
Memory type 3D NAND TLC (Toshiba BiCS4 96L)
Total Bytes Written (TBW), TB n/a n/a n/a
Mean time between failures (MTBF) 1,700,000 hours
Vibration resistance n/a
Operating temperature range, °C 0–70
Connection interface PCI Express 4.0 x4 (NVMe 1.3)
Form factor M.2 2280
Dimensions: LxWxH, mm 80 x 22 x 3,5
Weight, g n/a n/a n/a
Guarantee 5 years
Cost, ~$ 143 220 420

Wilk Elektronik has recently stopped specifying the total number of bytes written for their drives, but judging by competitor products based on the PhisonPS5016-E16, TBW can be about 1800 TB for the GoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X 1000GB model.

GoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X PCIe GEN 4 x4 NVMe M.2 1000GB

The drive comes in a small, thick box that has an SSD on the front. The mention of the interface, maximum speeds and support for AMD Ryzen is not forgotten. On the reverse side there is a minimum of information and a tag with the name of the model.

GoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X PCIe GEN 4 x4 NVMe M.2 1000GBGoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X PCIe GEN 4 x4 NVMe M.2 1000GB

Inside the foam-shaped package, the SSD and heatsink are neatly arranged for self-installation. There are also instructions for «assembling» the drive.

GoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X PCIe GEN 4 x4 NVMe M.2 1000GB

The black heatsink is about 10.5mm high and has several extended fins for better heat dissipation. One of these ribs is made in the form of the IRDM series logo. Interestingly, last year’s news featured a cooler with a slightly different shape.

GoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X PCIe GEN 4 x4 NVMe M.2 1000GB

On the reverse side, there are two «thermal stickies» of different thicknesses for uniform adhesion to the flash memory chips and the controller, since their height is different. Unfortunately, the cooler will not reach the buffer.

GoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X PCIe GEN 4 x4 NVMe M.2 1000GB

There are stickers on both sides of the drive: decorative with logos on the front side, already with information on the back.

GoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X PCIe GEN 4 x4 NVMe M.2 1000GB

It shows the SSD model, manufacturer, company website, date, serial number, and more. This sticker cannot be removed, otherwise the user will lose the warranty, but on the front side, where the controller is located, it is possible and even necessary if you plan to install a complete radiator.

GoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X PCIe GEN 4 x4 NVMe M.2 1000GB

The total thickness of the assembly is 13.3 mm — this must be taken into account if the M.2 socket will be located under the video card. In the case when the motherboard is equipped with its own heatsinks for NVMe drives, then the complete one can not be glued. Given that the SSD is with a two-sided arrangement of components, then if there is a rubber spacer on the board, it will have to be removed.

GoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X PCIe GEN 4 x4 NVMe M.2 1000GB

The GoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X PCB is similar to those used by other SSD manufacturers with this platform.

GoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X PCIe GEN 4 x4 NVMe M.2 1000GB

It has an eight-channel Phison PS5016-E16 controller with a 1 GB buffer made of SK Hynix H5AN4G8NBJR DDR4 chips soldered on each side of the PCB.

GoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X PCIe GEN 4 x4 NVMe M.2 1000GB

The non-volatile memory array is made up of four 96-layer Toshiba BiCS4 3D TLC NAND chips marked TABBG65AWV, located two on each side of the board.

GoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X PCIe GEN 4 x4 NVMe M.2 1000GB

After determining the drive in the system and its subsequent formatting, 931 GB of free space will be available to the user.

GoodRAM IRDM Ultimate X PCIe GEN 4 x4 NVMe M.2 1000GB

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