4TB SSD Roundup: All 4 TB+ Solid State Drives

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If you work in video editing or audio recording – or simply want ultra-fast storage for your entire Steam library – a high-capacity SSD will certainly speed things up. For now, four terabytes is the largest amount of SSD storage space you can get your hands on today in the consumer market. And even then, availability is very limited. Here we’ve collected every single 4TB SSD we could find as of early 2020. 

From the manufacturers’ perspective, It’s fully possible to build SSDs in even higher capacities, at least in the 2.5″ and Add-in Card form factors. The major stopping block is the high cost for the end-user. However, the cost of Flash memory has been dropping for some time. And thanks to the arrival of cheaper chips in the form of TLC (triple-level cell) and  QLC (quad-level cell) NAND, prices have kept falling.

As of now, however, only a limited few manufacturers build 4TB drives. Most are in 2.5-inch SATA, Add-in Card or external form factors. The list of PCIe/NVMe M.2 SSDs with this capacity is very easy to manage as it consists of just one drive:

4TB M.2 NVMe: Sabrent Rocket

Sabrent’s Rocket lineup of SSDs is very popular due to a very attractive mix of performance and value. The Rocket naming is used on a rather large variety of drives, ranging from affordable QLC-based (explained below) units up to and including extremely fast PCIe Gen 4 models.

This high-capacity option uses the PCIe Gen 3 interface, but should still be fast enough for the vast majority of users. Besides, only the latest AMD platforms (X570/TRX40) support Gen 4 thus far. The four terabyte Sabrent Rocket offers sequential read/write speeds of up to 3,450 MB/s (read) and 3,000 MB/s (write) and comes in the standard 2280 M.2 form factor in spite of its large capacity.  

Check prices: Amazon, Newegg, Amazon UK

4TB 2.5″ SATA SSDs

If you are looking for lots of fast internal storage space at a cost that isn’t too exorbitant, the 2.5-inch SATA segment is where to look. However, your options are limited here as well, as just one manufacturer offers 4TB drives. The good news is that it’s Samsung, which is perhaps the only SSD manufacturer with an impeccable track record in terms of reliability and performance since forever. 

Product
Price
Samsung 860 QVO SSD 4TB - 2.5 Inch SATA 3 Internal Solid State Drive with V-NAND Technology (MZ-76Q4T0B/AM), Gray
Value
Samsung SSD 860 EVO 4TB 2.5 Inch SATA III Internal SSD (MZ-76E4T0B/AM)
Performance
Samsung 860 PRO SSD 4TB - 2.5 Inch SATA III Internal Solid State Drive with V-NAND Technology (MZ-76P4T0BW)
Image
Samsung 860 QVO SSD 4TB - 2.5 Inch SATA 3 Internal Solid State Drive with V-NAND Technology (MZ-76Q4T0B/AM), Gray
Samsung SSD 860 EVO 4TB 2.5 Inch SATA III Internal SSD (MZ-76E4T0B/AM)
Samsung 860 PRO SSD 4TB - 2.5 Inch SATA III Internal Solid State Drive with V-NAND Technology (MZ-76P4T0BW)
Sequential read (max., MB/s)
550 MB/s
550 MB/s
560 MB/s
Sequential write (max., MB/s)
520 MB/s
520 MB/s
530 MB/s
Random read IOPS (4K/QD32)
97,000 IOPS
98,000 IOPS
100,000 IOPS
Random write IOPS (4K/QD32)
89,000 IOPS
90,000 IOPS
90,000 IOPS
Random read IOPS (4K/QD1)
7,500 IOPS
10,000 IOPS
11,000 IOPS
Random write IOPS (4K/QD1)
42,000 IOPS
42,000 IOPS
43,000 IOPS
Average rating
User reviews
2,227 Reviews
13,469 Reviews
479 Reviews
Warranty
3 years
5 years
5 years
Endurance rating
1,440 TBW
2,400 TBW
4,800 TBW
Price
$449.99
$612.49
$919.00
Price
Product
Samsung 860 QVO SSD 4TB - 2.5 Inch SATA 3 Internal Solid State Drive with V-NAND Technology (MZ-76Q4T0B/AM), Gray
Image
Samsung 860 QVO SSD 4TB - 2.5 Inch SATA 3 Internal Solid State Drive with V-NAND Technology (MZ-76Q4T0B/AM), Gray
Sequential read (max., MB/s)
550 MB/s
Sequential write (max., MB/s)
520 MB/s
Random read IOPS (4K/QD32)
97,000 IOPS
Random write IOPS (4K/QD32)
89,000 IOPS
Random read IOPS (4K/QD1)
7,500 IOPS
Random write IOPS (4K/QD1)
42,000 IOPS
Average rating
User reviews
2,227 Reviews
Warranty
3 years
Endurance rating
1,440 TBW
Price
$449.99
Value
Product
Samsung SSD 860 EVO 4TB 2.5 Inch SATA III Internal SSD (MZ-76E4T0B/AM)
Image
Samsung SSD 860 EVO 4TB 2.5 Inch SATA III Internal SSD (MZ-76E4T0B/AM)
Sequential read (max., MB/s)
550 MB/s
Sequential write (max., MB/s)
520 MB/s
Random read IOPS (4K/QD32)
98,000 IOPS
Random write IOPS (4K/QD32)
90,000 IOPS
Random read IOPS (4K/QD1)
10,000 IOPS
Random write IOPS (4K/QD1)
42,000 IOPS
Average rating
User reviews
13,469 Reviews
Warranty
5 years
Endurance rating
2,400 TBW
Price
$612.49
Performance
Product
Samsung 860 PRO SSD 4TB - 2.5 Inch SATA III Internal Solid State Drive with V-NAND Technology (MZ-76P4T0BW)
Image
Samsung 860 PRO SSD 4TB - 2.5 Inch SATA III Internal Solid State Drive with V-NAND Technology (MZ-76P4T0BW)
Sequential read (max., MB/s)
560 MB/s
Sequential write (max., MB/s)
530 MB/s
Random read IOPS (4K/QD32)
100,000 IOPS
Random write IOPS (4K/QD32)
90,000 IOPS
Random read IOPS (4K/QD1)
11,000 IOPS
Random write IOPS (4K/QD1)
43,000 IOPS
Average rating
User reviews
479 Reviews
Warranty
5 years
Endurance rating
4,800 TBW
Price
$919.00

Last update on 2020-02-20 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Samsung 860 QVO, EVO or PRO?

For several years, many users made only one choice when buying an SSD, regardless of capacity: either the Samsung EVO or the PRO series. Fortunately, for anyone looking for a larger variety, Samsung recently added a more affordable 4TB SSD to the lineup along with the 860 QVO series (review here).

What makes the QVO different – and more importantly cheaper – is the use of quad-level cell or QLC NAND memory. QLC memory stores an additional bit per cell (compared to TLC), which means higher densities, a more efficient production process, and a lower total cost.

Needless to say, some significant drawbacks are also included in the more moderate price tag. Most importantly, performance and endurance are both reduced. One extra bit doubles the number of charge states in each transistor, making them more prone to voltage drift and other issues that need to be corrected for. Samsung also offers a shorter warranty with the QVO, which is arguably an argument in favor of the EVO.

Bigger Drive – Better Performance

samsung 860 QVO SSDOn the other hand, Samsung seems to have the technology well in hand. The QVO series offers impressive performance. We have tested it in the 1 TB capacity, but the 4 TB model is a bit faster.  The endurance issue is also compensated by the sheer size of a 4TB SSD. A vast majority of users will never come close to the 1,440 TB of the guaranteed writes ever – and even less so during the warranty period. Most likely, it won’t wear out before all other parts of the computer are already on the scrap heap.

So the main drawbacks compared to the more expensive Samsungs would be lower performance and a 3-year warranty (instead of five).

If you’re not comfortable with the warranty terms and performance numbers for the 860 QVO, the 860 EVO might be a more attractive option. It comes with the usual 5-year warranty as well as tried-and-tested TLC memory that will last longer. And in terms of performance, this SSD is only bested by the 860 PRO in the 2.5″ SATA space.

The bottom line: There’s really no question that the 860 PRO is the fastest and most durable drive out of the three high-capacity SATA SSDs available (check out AnandTech’s comprehensive review here). 

However, it’s no less obvious that the price tag on the 4TB 860 PRO is intimidating. In our opinion, the 4TB 860 EVO offers the best mix of value, performance and warranty terms at today’s price levels. The 860 QVO is also an excellent drive, but it should preferably drop a bit further in price to compensate for the downsides of QLC NAND and the shorter warranty period. 

External 4TB SSDs

If you just want lots of really fast storage to go – in a compact form factor – you actually have more options. Unlike hard drives, solid state drives are not limited by the size of spinning platters, only on how the manufacturers decide to arrange the memory chips and layout of the PCB. Oddly enough, storage giants like SanDisk and Samsung don’t offer 4TB or larger drives in their well-known Extreme and T5/T3 ranges. Instead, several smaller manufacturers have found a niche here.

One thing to keep in mind when shopping for an external SSD is rated performance. What you really need to avoid is ending up with a glorified thumb drive that’s barely faster than a mechanical hard drive. The best-performing drives use either the USB 3.1 Gen2 or Thunderbolt interfaces. Here are some of the leading models right now.

Product
Glyph Atom RAID SSD 4TB External Solid State Drive with USB-C Connection - Compatible with Mac OS X, Windows, USB 3.0, Thunderbolt 3, Time Machine (Silver)
VectoTech Rapid 4TB External SSD USB-C Portable Solid State Drive (USB 3.1 Gen 2)
U32 Shadow 4TB External SSD USB-C Portable Solid State Drive (USB 3.1 Gen 2)
Glyph Atom RAID SSD 4TB External Solid State Drive with USB-C Connection - Compatible with Mac OS X, Windows, USB 3.0, Thunderbolt 3, Time Machine (Silver)
VectoTech Rapid 4TB External SSD USB-C Portable Solid State Drive (USB 3.1 Gen 2)
U32 Shadow 4TB External SSD USB-C Portable Solid State Drive (USB 3.1 Gen 2)
Sequential performance (max., MB/s)
950 MB/s
540 MB/s
575 MB/s
Interface
USB 3.1 Gen2
USB 3.1 Gen2
USB 3.1 Gen2
Average rating
User reviews
14 Reviews
374 Reviews
62 Reviews
Warranty
3 years
3 years
3 years
Price
$879.95
$599.00
$592.13
Product
Glyph Atom RAID SSD 4TB External Solid State Drive with USB-C Connection - Compatible with Mac OS X, Windows, USB 3.0, Thunderbolt 3, Time Machine (Silver)
Glyph Atom RAID SSD 4TB External Solid State Drive with USB-C Connection - Compatible with Mac OS X, Windows, USB 3.0, Thunderbolt 3, Time Machine (Silver)
Sequential performance (max., MB/s)
950 MB/s
Interface
USB 3.1 Gen2
Average rating
User reviews
14 Reviews
Warranty
3 years
Price
$879.95
Product
VectoTech Rapid 4TB External SSD USB-C Portable Solid State Drive (USB 3.1 Gen 2)
VectoTech Rapid 4TB External SSD USB-C Portable Solid State Drive (USB 3.1 Gen 2)
Sequential performance (max., MB/s)
540 MB/s
Interface
USB 3.1 Gen2
Average rating
User reviews
374 Reviews
Warranty
3 years
Price
$599.00
Product
U32 Shadow 4TB External SSD USB-C Portable Solid State Drive (USB 3.1 Gen 2)
U32 Shadow 4TB External SSD USB-C Portable Solid State Drive (USB 3.1 Gen 2)
Sequential performance (max., MB/s)
575 MB/s
Interface
USB 3.1 Gen2
Average rating
User reviews
62 Reviews
Warranty
3 years
Price
$592.13

Last update on 2020-02-20 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Out of these three best-selling 4TB external drives, it’s clear that the Glyph Atom RAID SSD is the best-performing option. It actually consists of two smaller M.2 drives in a RAID 0 array, which nearly doubles transfer rates compared to a single drive. It is also ‘Thunderbolt 3 compatible’, meaning that it should play well with recent MacBook Pros.

However, it doesn’t use an actual, full-featured Thunderbolt 3 interface, and neither does Oyen Digital’s U32 Shadow. Both utilize the USB-C 3.1 Gen2 interface, which has a maximum bandwidth of 10 Gbps.  This is also true for the VectoTech Rapid, which offers about the same performance as the U32 (approximately SATA 6 Gbps speed).

Additional High-Capacity Options

There are also a few other high-capacity alternatives on the external SSD market:

Oyen Digital U32 Shadow Dura – This is, unsurprisingly, a close relative to the previously mentioned U32 Shadow from Oyen Digital. The difference is that it comes in a more durable rubber-enclosed case, making it shockproof and somewhat water-resistant. At least according to the manufacturer (we could find no IP-rating though). Check price >>

Oyen Digital MiniPro Dura – The MiniPro Dura also shares many features with the U32 Shadow (Dura) from the same manufacturer. This drive, however, is a bit larger (oddly enough, considering the name) and complies with the military-grade test MIL-STD-810G 516.6. The warranty is only one year instead of three, perhaps reflecting that it’s supposed to be used in the field. Check price >>

MiniproV3 ssdOyen Digital SSD MiniPro RAID V3 – The MiniPro RAID is an enclosure that can be purchased separately or equipped with up to two 4TB Samsung 860 EVO SSDs. A total of 8 GB of fast storage space should be enough for most use cases. For the same reason, it’s much larger than most portable drives and requires external power. As the name implies, you can set up your drives in RAID for striping (performance) or mirroring (backup). There’s also a Dura version of this drive/enclosure. Check price >>

istorageiStorage diskAshur PRO2 – If you value security higher than any other aspect, then – and only then – this might be the drive for you. It comes with a code lock and all the military-grade security certifications you can imagine. You also get AES-XTS 256-bit hardware encryption. Performance is not nearly as impressive at 148 MB/s (read) and 140 MB/s (write). Check price >>

BUSLink driveBUSlink Disk-On-The-Go External Slim Portable – Last but not least, BUSlink offers external SSDs in sizes all the way up to 7.68 GB. In other words, they likely use enterprise SSDs from Samsung or Micron inside. The drive uses the USB 3.1 Gen2 interface, offering up to 10 Gbps of bandwidth. Unfortunately, BUSlink doesn’t provide any more detailed performance data. Check price >>

4TB+ Enterprise SSDs

If money is no object, or you happen to run a data center, it’s possible to buy SSDs in even higher capacities than 4TB, such as Samsung’s 30.72 TB PM1643. This monster will probably set you back around $12,000. Most enterprise drives are both very expensive and very durable, as they are intended for the server market.

Endurance in this market is usually measured in DWPD (drive writes per day) or petabytes written (PBW) instead of terabytes written (TBW). Enterprise SSDs are a bit outside of the scope for this article, but for the sake of perspective, we’ll take a brief look at a pair of interesting models.

Product
INTEL SSDPEDKE040T701 Solid State Drive 3.5"
Micron 5200 ECO | MTFDDAK7T6TDC-1AT1ZABYY | 7.68TB 2.5" SATA 6GB/S 64-Layer 3D TLC NAND | 3 Million Mttf | Industry Leading Solid State Drive SSD
Image
INTEL SSDPEDKE040T701 Solid State Drive 3.5"
Micron 5200 ECO | MTFDDAK7T6TDC-1AT1ZABYY | 7.68TB 2.5" SATA 6GB/S 64-Layer 3D TLC NAND | 3 Million Mttf | Industry Leading Solid State Drive SSD
Interface
PCIe NVMe 3.1 x4
SATA
Form factor
HHHL (CEM3.0)
2.5"
Sequential read (max., MB/s)
3200 MB/s
540 MB/s
Sequential write (max., MB/s)
1900 MB/s
520 MB/s
Random read IOPS
617,500 IOPS
95,000 IOPS
Random write IOPS
225,000 IOPS
9,500 IOPS
Warranty
5 years
5 years
Endurance rating
23.23 PBW
8.4 PBW
Price
$2,777.85
Price not available
Product
INTEL SSDPEDKE040T701 Solid State Drive 3.5"
Image
INTEL SSDPEDKE040T701 Solid State Drive 3.5"
Interface
PCIe NVMe 3.1 x4
Form factor
HHHL (CEM3.0)
Sequential read (max., MB/s)
3200 MB/s
Sequential write (max., MB/s)
1900 MB/s
Random read IOPS
617,500 IOPS
Random write IOPS
225,000 IOPS
Warranty
5 years
Endurance rating
23.23 PBW
Price
$2,777.85
Product
Micron 5200 ECO | MTFDDAK7T6TDC-1AT1ZABYY | 7.68TB 2.5" SATA 6GB/S 64-Layer 3D TLC NAND | 3 Million Mttf | Industry Leading Solid State Drive SSD
Image
Micron 5200 ECO | MTFDDAK7T6TDC-1AT1ZABYY | 7.68TB 2.5" SATA 6GB/S 64-Layer 3D TLC NAND | 3 Million Mttf | Industry Leading Solid State Drive SSD
Interface
SATA
Form factor
2.5"
Sequential read (max., MB/s)
540 MB/s
Sequential write (max., MB/s)
520 MB/s
Random read IOPS
95,000 IOPS
Random write IOPS
9,500 IOPS
Warranty
5 years
Endurance rating
8.4 PBW
Price
Price not available

Last update on 2020-02-20 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

What makes these SSDs somewhat interesting from a consumer/enthusiast perspective is that they can be used in an actual end-user machine and not just high-end servers. The Intel drive is a half-height PCI Express Add-in card, while the Micron 5200 ECO uses the common SATA interface (as opposed to SAS).

Moreover, both drives are built with mostly the same hardware as consumer models, most importantly 64-layer 3D TLC NAND. This keeps the prices in check (relatively speaking) versus extremely expensive alternatives such as eMLC. Drives that use SLC, or single-level cell memory, are the oldest and most durable SSDs of all, but they are almost impossible to find these days even in the enterprise space. The production cost has always been prohibitive. Current SSDs, however, often use an SLC-mode cache to speed up transfer rates.

Summary

NAND memory

Evolution of NAND Flash memory.

SSD prices have dropped at a steady pace, partly thanks to smaller production processes (in nanometers), but mostly thanks to additional bits per cell. However, the cost per GB is obviously still high compared to mechanical hard drives. For most PC builders today, the most cost-effective solution is still to combine a lower-capacity SSD with a slow conventional hard drive for the backups and other files that are not frequently accessed. 

On the other hand, some categories of users can definitely take advantage of a 4TB+ SSD. The fast transfer rates are an advantage for everyone working with large files. Photo-, video- and audio editing come to mind. But if the price was no object, we’d really like to store everything on SSDs.

The options are still few, but it’s 100% certain that we’ll see more high-capacity SSDs in the future, at even higher capacities than 4TB. And hopefully at reasonable prices, thanks to the proliferation of QLC NAND and other more efficient production processes.

We will update this page at regular intervals. 

4 Comments
  1. VectoTech Rapid take apart disassemble would be great to see internal SSD. Is it Micron?

    On the other hand, your information is outdated:
    VectoTech Rapid 2TB External SSD USB-C Portable Solid State Drive (USB 3.1 Gen 2)
    https://www.amazon.com/VectoTech-Rapid-External-Portable-Solid/dp/B01JKMZ6L6

    Check out the pictures with USB C connector and cables. Albeit the speed is outdated. Amazing!

    • Thanks for the info, will uppdate asap. I have yet to see a full review of the vectotech. But Micron or Toshiba NAND would be the most likely.

  2. More with updated speed information:

    VectoTech Rapid 4TB External SSD USB-C Portable Solid State Drive (USB 3.1 Gen 2)
    Super fast Read/Write speeds up to 540Mb/s
    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01NC1RI61

  3. Thanks. Please, note that the article text still states:
    “The VectoTech Rapid is bound by the limits of the USB 3.0 (or USB 3.1 Gen1) interface and it’s, therefore, slower than its competitors”.

    On the other hand:
    Brand new higher-capacity internal SSD (4 TB & 8 TB) from Micron will allow higher-capacity external portable SSD
    https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/brand-new-higher-capacity-internal-ssd-4-tb-8-tb-from-micron-will-allow-higher-capacity-external-portable-ssd.2208536

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