Western Digital WD Black NVMe SSD Review

Western Digital WD Black NVMe SSD Overview
The WD Black NVMe SSD is your typical M.2 2280 NVMe drive, so it is 80 mm long. This is the default size for most M.2 slots on motherboards. Each drive has its own sticker on the top which lets you know the capacity, model number, serial number, etc. You will void your warranty if you remove the sticker.

Western Digital WD Black NVMe SSD

Flipping the drives over there is nothing on the back. WD has designed these drives to be single-sided so they are able to fit in thin and light devices. Interestingly enough the PCBs are slightly different colors.

Western Digital WD Black NVMe SSD

So talking about what is under the hood, or under the sticker at the center of the drive is the Western Digital controller, then you have a DRAM cache chip, and two WD 3D NAND chips. The controller is a brand new in-house 3-core, 28nm chip.

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WD tells us that this drive is doing much more work in the hardware rather than the firmware. Sequencers maximize hardware acceleration and minimize CPU processing, which decreases power use and lowers latency.

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WD is also incorporating a tiered caching process, which improves performance and burst access. Everything is written directly to dedicated SLC blocks, which gives you that really good burst rate. After the SLC is exhausted the drive will write directly to the TLC NAND. There is also an aggressive evacuation policy, which removes data from the SLC.

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