Samsung 950 Pro M.2 512GB vs Mushkin Scorpion Deluxe 480GB

I got myself a new “disk-drive” today for my home workstation, if you can call a M.2 NVM chip a disk-drive!

I wanted to get a new drive for my OS and programs, as well as I use my workstation for GIS work, where I have both many, and large files opened in my GIS application. I also do graphics work on this PC using Lightroom, which uses huge number of index files for my photo collection.
What I got was a brand new Samsung V-Nand 512GB 950 Pro M.2 NVM Express, and I decided to test it against my older Mushkin Scorpion Deluxe 480GB PCIe based drive.
I wanted to find out how the new drive would hold up against my older Mushkin that I have been using for several years now. I used FIO to run several tests, 4K and 256k block size, Random and sequential reads and writes, to get some different views on the drives performance.

iops-4kUsing 4K block size during a 60 sec testing period, I get premium performance from the Samsung drive and pretty consistence performance though out the different test. The Mushkin delivers great performance as well during sequential reads and writes, but suffers when doing random writes and reads.

iops-256kUsing 256k block size, the Mushkin shines! The PCIe bus based drive delivers more than twice the performance of the Samsung M.2 Based drive.  The Samsung is like in the first test, more constant though.

My initial thoughts were to stop using the old Mushkin drive on my workstation, and move it over to my VMware server for PernixData FVP cache, – but now where I see the throughput difference for large IO’s on the Mushkin drive, I believe I’ll use that one for my GIS application files, and the new Samsung drive for OS, programs and Lightroom catalog files. I guess my VMware server has to stick with a normal SATA based SSD for now…