Kingston NV1 NVMe SSD (500GB) review: Good performance, but questions remain

As SSDs move closer to becoming the default (and only) storage option for desktop PCs as well as laptops, the market is flooded with more affordable models. Even M.2 NVMe SSDs, which started out as exotic and expensive options aimed only at enthusiasts, are now extremely common. In addition to being faster than older SATA SSDs, these are small, convenient, and save you the mess of extra wires hanging around inside your PC cabinet. There’s clearly a market for entry-level NVMe SSDs today, and Kingston is targeting exactly that with its new NV Series.

Kingston NV1 SSD price in India

The Kingston NV1 SSD is on par with the SATA-based A and UV series in terms of status. It is available in 500GB, 1TB and 2TB capacities, and it is interesting to see that no lesser capacity is being offered, even though it is an entry-level model. Retail pricing for SSDs usually has nothing in common with the numbers printed on the label, and often varies as well. In India, the former two are easily found selling for around Rs. 5,499 and Rs. 9,499 respectively, while the 2TB version is not as widely available and costs around Rs. 24,500 which is not that attractive in terms of cost per GB.

The Ordinary Cardboard pack declares that the NV1 is 35X faster than a spinning hard drive, which isn’t a high bar for any SSD to achieve. You get a code to claim a free copy of Acronis True Image HD, but it’s printed inside a cardboard sandwich. It’s almost impossible unless you already know it’s there, and many people will actually tear it when opening the pack, as there’s no indication that there’s anything important inside. The software lets you clone or image the drive, but it doesn’t support the retail version of True Image such as incremental backup, scheduling, cloud or mobile backup, etc.

Suitable for single sided Kingston NV1 slim laptop

Kingston NV1 SSD Features and Specifications

Kingston doesn’t boast of exceptional performance about the NV1 but only aims to deliver high capacity at affordable prices. According to reliable source AnandTech, the most notable thing about this SSD series is that Kingston isn’t specifying which controller you’ll get or even what type of flash memory — to balance cost and inventory. For this, the company can swap out components in different batches, and you only have the guarantee that they will meet the advertised performance and endurance figures.

Other companies have been found swapping components without saying anything since the SSD was launched (and the reviews are published), and while advertising the Kingston NV1 has been fairly clear and forthright about wanting to do so. No, it was at least in front of the media that reported this fact.

This of course makes it harder to review a product, because if you’re doing your purchases within a month or two, you might find something physically different, and there’s no guarantee that Gadgets 360 will. The review unit sent to will also match. What’s on the market right now. That said, Kingston is a well-known and trusted brand, and that should be enough for a lot of buyers. If you don’t care about TLC versus QLC flash and controller bandwidth, and if you find the capacity you need at a good price, you should be quite happy.

Kingston claims 2100 Mbps sequential reads and 1700 Mbps sequential writes for all three capabilities. This SSD uses PCIe 3.0 and not the faster, newer 4.0 standard. The Endurance is rated at 120TBW, 240TBW and 480TBW for 500GB, 1TB and 2TB capacity respectively. The MTBF (mean time between failures) is 1.5 million hours. These figures are much lower than what Kingston had on the KC2500 that was introduced earlier this year. Even the previous entry-level NVMe model, the A2000, offers a significantly better endurance rating.

It wasn’t possible to identify the specific controller and flash type on my review unit without peeling off the label covering the actual chips on the module, and Kingston hasn’t published these details. Some third-party reports suggest that lower-capacity drives will use TLC flash while higher-capacity ones will use QLC flash, but that could change at any point. We can’t verify what the bandwidth of the controller is, but we can safely assume that there is no DRAM cache. There is also no mention of encryption on the official spec sheet. We have to rely on performance alone to evaluate this campaign.

The Kingston NV1 is a very basic SSD and therefore does not come with a heat spreader. The circuit board itself is bright blue and looks good enough but once it’s installed you won’t see much of it. Since it’s a one-sided M.2 module and only 2.1mm thick, it will fit in tight spaces like ultra-slim laptops.

kingston nv1 front2 ndtv kingston

No high-end heatsinks and flashy design elements here

Kingston NV1 SSD performance.

The Kingston NV1 was benchmarked on an open rig consisting of >>>>. All Windows Updates and drivers were the most recently released versions at the time of this review. Windows reported the formatted capacity of the drive as 465.76GB.

Starting with CrystalDiskmark 6, we saw sequential read and write speeds of 2,553 Mbps and 1,959 Mbps, respectively, which is significantly higher than I expected based on the official specifications. This may be a cushion in which future revisions remain within the advertised performance range. Random read and write measured at 1370.6MBps and 1447.4MBps which isn’t bad at all. That’s significantly faster than today’s premium SATA SSDs like the Samsung SSD 870 Evo, but lags behind the impressive Kingston KC 2500.

The Anvil benchmarks reported 4,674.33 and 6,827.63 reads and writes, respectively, for a total of 11,501.96. In a real-world Windows file copy test using mixed files of 80GB folders, write speeds reached 345MBps and remained fairly stable at that level with very large files, but dropped to as low as 15MBps with smaller files mixed .

It’s worth noting that even the latest version of Kingston’s own SSD Manager software, downloaded from its website, didn’t detect this drive. It was unable to show any diagnostic information or safety-related options.

Decision

There are questions that remain regarding the long-term viability of Kingston NV1. I wouldn’t use it as a boot drive for my main work PC or store my most important data on it without a rock-solid backup plan, but that doesn’t mean someone else shouldn’t pick it up. This would be a great cheap upgrade for an older PC or laptop that is serving non-critical needs, and it can also be a great secondary or tertiary drive for saving large game install folders because they can withstand quick loads. will be benefited.

What makes it most attractive is its low price, but still, there are other models that are more affordable and have clearer spec sheets, notably the Crucial P1 and WD Blue SN550. Kingston’s own A2000 is priced at just Rs. 100-200 more. Considering that this model is quite new in the Indian market, I expect to see better pricing in a few months. This SSD effectively creates a new, lower product tier so that with the right pricing, it can definitely carve a niche for itself.

That said, performance is good enough and stamina should be enough for most low-impact home and office PC use cases. You’ll save a lot of money compared to mainstream ones like the Kingston KC2500 or Samsung SSD 970 Evo Plus.

Kingston NV1
Prices (MOP):

500GB: Rs. 5,499
1 TB: Rs. 9,499
2TB: Rs. 24,500

professionals

  • good overall performance
  • relatively economical

Opposition

  • Key Specifications are subject to change
  • Disappointing endurance rating
  • no encryption
  • no management software

Rating (out of 5)

  • Display: 4
  • Value for money: 3.5
  • Overall: 3.5

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