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Akasa M.2 SSD to PCIe Adapter Card query

Discussion in 'Storage Drives' started by mikeo, Jul 9, 2018.

  1. mikeo

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Aug 17, 2005

    Posts: 2,469

    Location: Scotlandshire

    I currently have an MSI Z170a gaming M7 motherboard with the OS on a Samsung 970 EVO 250GB (connected via the 1st M2 slot on the mobo) and 4 SATA SSD's + a couple of external mechanical hard drive connected via USB3.

    My question is, can I add a spare SM951 that I've got, via an add in card like the AKASA one in the bottom x4 PCIe slot (which I believe is connected via the chipset) without eating into the performance of anything else already connected?

    I've tried reading up about the distribution etc. of the PCIe lanes and have just managed to confuse myself.

    Just seems a shame to leave the old SM951 NVMe lying around not being used.

    Thanks in advance.

    PS. One final question. If I do use the SM951 in an adapter card, would it probably be better to replace the Samsung NVMe controller with the stock Windows 10 one? As I'm assuming they would both use the come controller. I only ask, as the SM951 is not a retail drive and I'm not sure if it's supported by the Samsung controller.
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2018
  2. mikeo

    Wise Guy

    Joined: Aug 17, 2005

    Posts: 2,469

    Location: Scotlandshire

    Answered my own questions:

    The SM951 runs just fine in an adapter in the lower PCIe x4 socket on my motherboard without appearing to cause any issues.
    Just had to use Diskpart to remove the old partitions as it had originally been used as my boot drive and good to go.

    It appears to add another controller for the SM951 (stock Windows 10 one) so that's OK.
    IE. One for each NVMe drive.

    I have also reverted back to the Windows 10 native NVMe driver for the Samsung 970 EVO, as Samsung's driver seemed to cause some odd results, throttling for no apparent reason in some test (EG. ATTO) NB. not heat related. On looking at Toms Hardware review (I think it was) they appear to have come to the same conclusion. Quote (from Toms hardware reiew):
    We tested the 970 EVO SSDs with the new NVMe 3.0.1802 driver, but some of our results were lower than we expected.

    Out of interest. I added a side panel fan (120mm) and this lowered idle/load temps of the Samsung Evo 970 by around 8C (dropping idle from high 30's to approx 30C and load from around 60C+ to 50C+) added a passive Gelid cooler to the EVO 970 and while this did not drop the idle temp, it knocked around the best part of another 10C of the load temps (IE. 50C+ becomes 40C+). So looks like some extra cooling doesn't hurt with these drives. Think I'll add a passive cooler to the SM951 now running in the adapter card (less than 10 quid a pop).

    Yes, I do know that under normal use these drives are unlikely to thermal throttle, but an extra bit of cooling never hurt anything.

    Just thought folks might be interested.
     
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2018