It certainly has been a while since we have taken a close look at SATA Solid State drives. For a myriad of reasons these workhorses of the industry just do not garner the same level of attention, let alone excitement, as their PCIe NVMe brethren. This is rather unfortunate as “SATA is not dead” (…yet). There are plenty of good reasons to opt for a SATA model over a NVMe, the most obvious of which is their asking price. Take for example, toady’s review of, the Silicon Power A55 1TB SATA SSD. With an online average asking price of only $80 (USD) for a full one Terabyte of capacity, or a mere 8 cents per Gigabyte, it does offer plenty of room with ‘good enough’ performance for the typical ‘budget builds’ secondary drive.
Silicon Power A55 M2 intro - Silicon Power A55 M.2 1TB
Thanks to its M.2 2280 form-factor the A55 series also appears to be tailor made for NUC’s, older laptops, and similar small form-factor devices where there is simply not enough room for the typical 2.5 Inch SSD (even 7mm z-height models).
When you mix in the facts that this is a single sided M.2 SSD, comes with a 3 year warranty, uses Micron CuA gen 3 TLC NAND, and a decent (if DRAM-less) controller there certainly appears to be more than just the asking price going in the Silicon Power A55’s favor. So while we do not expect to see any benchmark records be broken… the A55 may just be a decent or even optimal choice for certain scenarios. The only real question is if this is actually a worthwhile addition to their lineup. After all, for a mere 20 dollars more buyers can opt for Silicon Power’s own A60 1TB M.2 drive. A drive which uses a more powerful DRAM-less SMI controller, arguably better NAND, and will offer a lot more performance thanks to its NVMe interface. Let’s find out how the A55 stacks up.