Samsung is accused of cheating products, deceiving customers to buy SSD hard drives

Tram Ho

A few weeks ago, both well-known hard drive brands, Crucial and Western Digital, were found to have swapped out the TLC NAND chips used for some of their SSD products with high-quality QLC NAND chips. poor quality, without updating the specification for the community or users. This is an action that is considered “unacceptable”, causing the community to raise a wave of protests, many technology sites even bluntly recommend that readers buy SSDs from Samsung or Intel, instead of Western Digital. or Crucial.

But, it seems that Samsung is also not a reasonable choice at this point. According to a recent discovery, Samsung did not swap out TLC memory chips with QLC, but swapped the drive controller and TLC chip with another inferior drive controller, the same line of TLC chips.

Samsung bị tố đánh tráo sản phẩm, lừa dối khách hàng mua ổ cứng SSD - Ảnh 1.

The top hard drive has a manufacturing date of 4/2021, the bottom one has a manufacturing date of 6/2021.

The report was documented by , based on a report by a YouTube channel called , after comparing two different versions of the Samsung 970EVO Plus SSD. Both hard drives are labeled the same, claiming they are 970EVO Plus, but have some different internals.

The upper hard drive is labeled MZVLB1T0HBLR, is equipped with a Phoenix controller (S4LR020) and 3D-TLC-NAND with identifier K9DUGY8J5B-DCK0, belongs to the 96-layer generation. The hard drive below has a product number of MZVL21T0HBLU, is equipped with an Elpis controller (S4LV003) and 3D-NAND with identifier K9DUGY8J5B-CCK0. NAND could also be 96-layer TLC NAND, but could also be in a different design format.

Samsung bị tố đánh tráo sản phẩm, lừa dối khách hàng mua ổ cứng SSD - Ảnh 2.

Parameters of two hard drives after removing the sticker.

The packaging of these two versions is also slightly different. Another distinguishing feature is the firmware version: the old version is version 2B2QEXM7 and the new version is 3B2QEXM7.

Basically, the same SSD 970EVO Plus, but the two hard drives use different components, and one of them uses the older Phoenix controller. But in tests, it gives better performance.

Samsung bị tố đánh tráo sản phẩm, lừa dối khách hàng mua ổ cứng SSD - Ảnh 3.

Test results of the hard drive using the Phoenix controller on the left, Elpis on the right.

The test applied to these two SSDs requires them to maintain stable performance in the 200GB test. SSDs using the original Elpis controller showed faster performance, but when they hit the 120GB mark, the performance immediately dropped to 50% compared to before. That means real-time write speeds vary, with the Phoenix at 1.58GB/s and the Elpis at 830MB/s.

Some might argue that it’s not a big deal, because 800GB/s is still very fast, or people don’t usually copy more than 120GB of data at once. Or the technology is still TLC NAND, not replaced by QLC NAND like Crucial and Western Digital’s hard drives.

Samsung bị tố đánh tráo sản phẩm, lừa dối khách hàng mua ổ cứng SSD - Ảnh 4.

The speed difference between the two hard drives after reaching the 120 GB mark.

Unfortunately, that’s not the only problem.

120GB cache seems like enough for most cases, but it’s not real cache. It is an empty TLC (or QLC) NAND used as an SLC write buffer. That is, the less free space on your drive, the less cache you have. The drive can’t give you 120 GB SLC without about 360 GB of TLC free (or 480 GB QLC) and the amount of cache it can give you at any given time will depend on the amount of cache. amount of data you have recently written to the drive. That 120GB SLC cache was the largest and fastest, when the drive was new and almost empty. Once the drive is full and 2/3 of its capacity is reached, the total cache capacity and overall performance of the drive will both start to decrease.

Samsung bị tố đánh tráo sản phẩm, lừa dối khách hàng mua ổ cứng SSD - Ảnh 5.

Packaging of the old version on the left, the newer version on the right.

The pandemic, supply shortage, or the wave of SSD mining… are not the reason why Samsung has to write “970 EVO Plus” on both products. These products are not equivalent.

When a manufacturer sends one product to reviewers and another to customers, they damage public trust. Ordinary users trust reviewers or tech sites, but in the end they get a completely different product.

The product is not the problem. Lying due to omission, reduced performance is the problem.

Refer to extremetech

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Source : Genk