As technology continues to advance, the demand for high-speed, high-capacity storage solutions has become increasingly prevalent. When I set out to build a centralized high-speed NAS (Network Attached Storage) for my virtual machines (VMs), I sought a storage device that would eliminate the need for high-speed drives in individual nodes. With the recent landslide of NAND prices, it led me to discover the Fanxiang S880 2TB PCIe 4.0 x4 NVMe SSD. As it was going on-sale on Amazon, I was able to snag two of them for $83 each. In this review, we will explore how the S880 fulfills these requirements and enhances the performance of my virtualized environment.
Packaging and Design:
The box arrives with a simple and minimalistic design, reflecting Fanxiang's commitment to a clean and sleek aesthetic. The packaging efficiently protects the SSD during shipping, ensuring it reaches you in pristine condition.
Upon opening the box, you'll find the Fanxiang S880 nestled securely in a plastic enclosure. The SSD itself is not enclosed in an anti-static bag, which could be improved. The minimalist approach to packaging really shows the manufacturer is trying to save some costs.
Included in the package, Fanxiang ensures that the necessary tools and accessories, such as a M.2 mounting screw and a screw driver, are provided, further simplifying the installation process.
Fanxiang has clearly invested effort into the design of the S880. The SSD boasts a sleek and minimalist appearance. While the device is well priced, it still features a sturdy construction that inspires confidence.
Installation and Compatibility:
The installation process of the Fanxiang S880 is straightforward. It follows the standard M.2 2280 form factor, which is widely supported by modern motherboards. As long as your system has a PCIe 4.0 x4 M.2 slot, you can easily install and set up the S880, allowing for quick integration into your existing hardware configuration.
While open information is very limited, I will update this section in the coming days, such as the controller and NAND flash.
CPU: Ryzen 9 5950X
RAM: 16GB 3200MT
MB: Gigabyte X570 Master
Software: CrystalDiskMark 8.0.4 x64
When it comes to performance, the Fanxiang S880 truly shines. With its PCIe 4.0 x4 interface, this NVMe SSD delivers exceptional data transfer speeds.
At queue depth 8, single thread, the Fanxiang S880 can reach up to 7446 MB/s write speed, and 7101 MB/s read speed. Most importantly, the q1t1 (queue depth 1, single thread) test, the S880 is no slouch either, delivering 84 MB/s read and 228.80 MB/s write.
Next, we will use the built-in NVMe benchmark. While the first test is identical to the default test, the 2nd and 3rd tests are all about “peak” performance of the SSD that’s being tested. With queue depth at 32 and 16 threads, the S880 can deliver 947k IOPS in read, and over 1 million IOPS in write.
Last but not least, let’s run the mixed test with 70% read and 30% write. Here, we do see some performance degradation, but it is still lightning fast at 4402 MB/s. At mixed q1t1 test, it can reach 96 MB/s, while doing 23K IOPS.
It is safe to say that whether you're transferring large files or running resource-intensive applications, the S880 performs well enough and it is right up against the market’s mid to high-end offerings from companies like Western Digital, Samsung and SK Hynix.
Value for Money:
Considering the adequate Gen 4 SSD performance and generous storage capacity the S880 offers, it provides excellent value for money. It competes favorably with other SSDs in its price range, often outperforming them in terms of speed and reliability.
Fanxiang S880 is the latest challenger in the budget PCIe 4.0 SSD space. While being priced like other QLC SSDs like the Intel 670p 2TB, it offers tremendously more than its QLC counter parts, sometimes punching above it’s class to compete with the premium offerings from Samsung and Western Digital. For $89.99, it is sometimes just half as much as a premium 2TB Gen 4 SSD. I was going to buy four of these to put them on to a four PCIe Gen 4 SSD expansion card, but it got out of stock quick so I only got two of them.
I will write another review when I am done with setting up the system with the PCIe add-in card. All in all, this SSD passed the numbers test, so we will see in the coming months if it can survive my demanding workloads.