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Samsung 960 Evo M.2 NVME SSD with Asus Z97-PRO(wifi ac) motherboard

Hello. I currently use a Samsung 850 Evo 120GB SSD in my system with Asus Z97-Pro (wifi ac) motherboard and Intel Xeon E3-1231 v3 CPU. I have a laptop, which has a mechanical hard-drive and I think I could speed it up with an SSD. So, I want to swap my current SSD to the laptop and buy a new, perhaps faster one for my main rig. I see that Samsung 960 Evo 250GB M.2 NVME SSD is a great deal for $130. But there are something that I'm not really sure about.

Firstly, the SSD requires 4 PCI-E lanes, while my motherboard only dedicates 2 for the M.2 slot and the drive will not run on its full speed, but after all, I think it will still run faster, than any SATA SSD. Am i right? And since the drive will run at the maximum speed my motherboard can provide, can it affect the system stability?

The second thing is, that I need to update the BIOS, in order to enable support for NVME. And that is potentially risky. Should I take the risk of doing that?

So, after all, can anyone tell me if it's worth buying Samsung 960 Evo for use in my Asus Z97-PRO / Intel Xeon E3-1231 v3 rig? I mainly want to buy an M.2 SSD just be "future-proof", because SSDs last so much time and I will probably move it to my next rig after few years and since the M.2 SSDs are so new, it will probably not get outdated. And of course, I think that SATA is slowly dying with faster and faster SSDs being made.

Thanks in advance!
10 answers Last reply Best Answer
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  1. Best answer
    Well I just put your mobo and the 960 EVO into PCPartPicker.com and it came up with no issues so I'm thinking that you are correct that it will only work at the max speed that the mobo can give it. I would not think that it would cause any instability or issues. In theory it should be just like hooking up a SATA3 SSD to a SATA2 port, you can only go as fast as the port will allow but still work just fine. I would buy the 960 EVO and give it a shot. As for the BIOS, most mobo manufacturers make it very easy to update the BIOS, so if you do need to do it, it should be quick and painless.

  2. For some odd reason SgtScream's reply only shows up in my email.

    My motherboard is "Asus Z97-PRO(wifi ac)". I have mentioned that 4 freaking times in my post! It's even in the title of the post. SSD could dissipate heat freely into the air without anything blocking the hot air. But yeah, there are no fans blowing there.
  3. Gustas said:
    My motherboard is "Asus Z97-PRO(wifi ac)". I have mentioned that 4 freaking times in my post! It's even in the title of the post. SSD could dissipate heat freely into the air without anything blocking the hot air. But yeah, there are no fans blowing there.


    Who are you yelling at? I didn't mention anything about heat or airflow. I believe that I did my best to answer your questions. Did you accidentally post this on the wrong post?
  4. mcconkeymike said:
    Gustas said:
    My motherboard is "Asus Z97-PRO(wifi ac)". I have mentioned that 4 freaking times in my post! It's even in the title of the post. SSD could dissipate heat freely into the air without anything blocking the hot air. But yeah, there are no fans blowing there.


    Who are you yelling at? I didn't mention anything about heat or airflow. I believe that I did my best to answer your questions. Did you accidentally post this on the wrong post?


    I know you did your best and I appreaciate your answer :) This was not for you. Tomshardware actually sent me an email with one more answer, but IT DOESN'T SHOW UP HERE! It only shows up in my mail box. So when I tried to answer to that, it turned out that I answered to you. You can check my answer again, I uploaded a photo to clear things up. I'm not yelling at you. Your answer was one of the best and most informative answers.
  5. Gustas said:

    For some odd reason SgtScream's reply only shows up in my email.

    My motherboard is "Asus Z97-PRO(wifi ac)". I have mentioned that 4 freaking times in my post! It's even in the title of the post. SSD could dissipate heat freely into the air without anything blocking the hot air. But yeah, there are no fans blowing there.

    I deleted my post because I saw that the nvme is located on the lower right hand side of the motherboard (correct me if i'm wrong). If this is true, the nvme is placed logically away from the gpu and cpu so other components won't contribute to excessive heat. Disregard my initial post as I tried to delete it before anyone could read it.
  6. Ok Gustas, makes sense. Good luck with the 960EVO, I'm sure even at partial speed it'll run nice and fast.
  7. mcconkeymike said:
    Ok Gustas, makes sense. Good luck with the 960EVO, I'm sure even at partial speed it'll run nice and fast.


    Yeah, thank you for helping me decide :)
  8. SgtScream said:
    Gustas said:

    For some odd reason SgtScream's reply only shows up in my email.

    My motherboard is "Asus Z97-PRO(wifi ac)". I have mentioned that 4 freaking times in my post! It's even in the title of the post. SSD could dissipate heat freely into the air without anything blocking the hot air. But yeah, there are no fans blowing there.

    I deleted my post because I saw that the nvme is located on the lower right hand side of the motherboard (correct me if i'm wrong). If this is true, the nvme is placed logically away from the gpu and cpu so other components won't contribute to excessive heat. Disregard my initial post as I tried to delete it before anyone could read it.



    So that's what happened. I thought that it was a server error. Turns out that you deleted your post and I did everything to get it back :D

    You are right. The M.2 (nvmE) slot is on the bottom right between 2nd and 3rd PCI-E slots. I think I would have problems if I had an SLI and the second GPU would right on the SSD with its heatsink probably, but since I only use 1 GPU, that will not be the issue.
  9. Gustas said:
    Hello. I currently use a Samsung 850 Evo 120GB SSD in my system with Asus Z97-Pro (wifi ac) motherboard and Intel Xeon E3-1231 v3 CPU. I have a laptop, which has a mechanical hard-drive and I think I could speed it up with an SSD. So, I want to swap my current SSD to the laptop and buy a new, perhaps faster one for my main rig. I see that Samsung 960 Evo 250GB M.2 NVME SSD is a great deal for $130. But there are something that I'm not really sure about.

    Firstly, the SSD requires 4 PCI-E lanes, while my motherboard only dedicates 2 for the M.2 slot and the drive will not run on its full speed, but after all, I think it will still run faster, than any SATA SSD. Am i right? And since the drive will run at the maximum speed my motherboard can provide, can it affect the system stability?

    The second thing is, that I need to update the BIOS, in order to enable support for NVME. And that is potentially risky. Should I take the risk of doing that?

    So, after all, can anyone tell me if it's worth buying Samsung 960 Evo for use in my Asus Z97-PRO / Intel Xeon E3-1231 v3 rig? I mainly want to buy an M.2 SSD just be "future-proof", because SSDs last so much time and I will probably move it to my next rig after few years and since the M.2 SSDs are so new, it will probably not get outdated. And of course, I think that SATA is slowly dying with faster and faster SSDs being made.

    Thanks in advance!
  10. Mannyg1027 said:
    Gustas said:
    Hello. I currently use a Samsung 850 Evo 120GB SSD in my system with Asus Z97-Pro (wifi ac) motherboard and Intel Xeon E3-1231 v3 CPU. I have a laptop, which has a mechanical hard-drive and I think I could speed it up with an SSD. So, I want to swap my current SSD to the laptop and buy a new, perhaps faster one for my main rig. I see that Samsung 960 Evo 250GB M.2 NVME SSD is a great deal for $130. But there are something that I'm not really sure about.

    Firstly, the SSD requires 4 PCI-E lanes, while my motherboard only dedicates 2 for the M.2 slot and the drive will not run on its full speed, but after all, I think it will still run faster, than any SATA SSD. Am i right? And since the drive will run at the maximum speed my motherboard can provide, can it affect the system stability?

    The second thing is, that I need to update the BIOS, in order to enable support for NVME. And that is potentially risky. Should I take the risk of doing that?

    So, after all, can anyone tell me if it's worth buying Samsung 960 Evo for use in my Asus Z97-PRO / Intel Xeon E3-1231 v3 rig? I mainly want to buy an M.2 SSD just be "future-proof", because SSDs last so much time and I will probably move it to my next rig after few years and since the M.2 SSDs are so new, it will probably not get outdated. And of course, I think that SATA is slowly dying with faster and faster SSDs being made.

    Thanks in advance!




    Unless you compress/unzip/encode/transfer very large files on a continuous basis you are not going to see any transfer speed difference going from sata III to m.2. This does not justify the price to performance cost for most users.
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