The XD80 from Silicon Power comes with a Phison E12S SSD controller, BICS4 TLC and a heat sink. This combination delivers solid, cool performance at an affordable price, making the PCIe 3.0 x4 drive great value for money for those looking to save a few bucks on premium drives.
The XD80 competes with other mainstream SSDs like the Crucial P5, WD_Black SN750, and Samsung’s 970 EVO Plus. In addition, the drive has a unique design for a Phison-based SSD – it’s one of the few slim PS5012-E12S-based designs with TLC flash that still retains a single-sided M.2 form factor, even for the 2TB model.
The XD80 also has a pre-installed thin aluminum heatsink that barely adds to the thickness of the XD80, making it perhaps even suitable for some laptops. Based on our testing, the XD80 was equipped with a heat sink in our testing, fitted with a relatively recent Dell ultrabook without any approval issues, which is an important consideration when looking for a laptop drive.
|Capacity (User / Raw)||256GB / 256GB||512GB / 512GB||1024GB / 1024GB||2048GB / 2048GB|
|form factor||M.2 2280||M.2 2280||M.2 2280||M.2 2280|
|Interface / Protocol||PCIe 3.0 x4 / NVMe 1.3||PCIe 3.0 x4 / NVMe 1.3||PCIe 3.0 x4 / NVMe 1.3||PCIe 3.0 x4 / NVMe 1.3|
|controller||Phison PS5012-E12S||Phison PS5012-E12S||Phison PS5012-E12S||Phison PS5012-E12S|
|Memory||BiCS4 96L TLC||BiCS4 96L TLC||BiCS4 96L TLC||BiCS4 96L TLC|
|Random reading||180,000 IOPS||290,000 IOPS||390,000 IOPS||500,000 IOPS|
|Random write||240,000 IOPS||510,000 IOPS||450,000 IOPS||600,000 IOPS|
|Endurance (TBW)||200TB||400TB||800TB||1600 TB|
|Guarantee||5 years||5 years||5 years||5 years|
The Silicon Power XD80 is available in capacities of 256, 512 GB, 1 TB and 2 TB, each with a competitive price tag of about $0.11 to $0.13-per-GB. The company rates the XD80 for up to 3.4/3.0 GBps of sequential read/write throughput and over 500,000/600,000 random read/write IOPS through its PCIe 3.0 x4 interface. However, it has a 52GB SLC cache, so sustained real-world write performance will be slower than spec if you write more than 52GB in a single operation. We’ll see what that looks like on the next page.
Backed by a high durability rating within its five-year warranty, the XD80 should be capable of creating heavy content. The 2 TB model can withstand 1,600 TB of data written within the warranty period (400 TB higher than the Samsung 980 Pro). Plus, it offers this impressive endurance with less factory overprovisioning than competing drives, at around 7.4% versus 10%, giving you slightly more usable storage capacity than other SSDs.
Software & Accessories
Silicon Power offers a very simple SSD Toolbox. Allows you to monitor the capacity used, the total number of bytes written to the drive, and the temperature as reported by the SSD’s SMART data. It also has a built-in diagnostic scanner.
A closer look
As mentioned, the XD80 comes in an M.2 2280 single-sided form factor – even with a 2TB capacity. It features a gray-colored, pre-applied aluminum heat sink. Silicon Power claims that the heat sink lowers the temperature by up to 20%. The XD80 also supports low-power ASPM and ASPT for cooler, more efficient operation.
Phison’s PS5012-E12S PCIe 3.0 x4 NVMe SSD controller is a quad-core, NVMe 1.3-compatible design that uses two Arm Cortex R5 CPUs clocked at 666 MHz, in addition to lower-clocked dual co-processors. Phison’s third-generation Low-Density Parity-Check (LDPC) ECC, a RAID engine and end-to-end data path protection ensure reliability and consistency. The drive supports SMART data reporting and Trim, but does not support AES 256-bit hardware encryption.
The controller has DRAM to buffer the FTL mapping tables and is task coupled to 4Gb DDR3L from Xi’an UniIC Semiconductors. The controller also interfaces with Kioxia’s BiCS4 96L TLC flash. Our 2TB XD80 contains thirty-two 512Gb chips spread over four NAND packs. This flash operates at 533 MTps and has a dual-plane design.
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