Introducing an actually high-speed yet affordable SSD that you can buy right now – the ADATA Legend 960 Max. From what we can find, this SSD is available in two capacities, 1TB and 2TB. The prices are around RM380 and RM700 respectively. For the speed and the contents that ADATA included in the box – I think this is a good deal.
We have both 1TB and 2TB variants with us for our review today – so let’s get testing.
The box is fairly simple and pretty much identical-looking between the two. The only difference is – of course – 1TB and 2TB.
Once we open it up – the plastic cradle holds the SSD itself alongside the heatsink. Yes – this SSD actually has the heatsink included in the box.
The ADATA Legend 960 Max itself
Inspecting the SSD further, we can see that it is using a controller made by Silicon Motion with the model number SM2264F AB and comes with 8Gb of DRAM too. Of course, with such speeds, I am worried about the temperature – and I guess that is why ADATA included the heatsink in the box.
Both 1TB and 2TB are using the same DRAM and controller, by the way.
Kudos to ADATA for not sticking any sort of branding to cover up the NAND and controller chips, actually.
We tested the SSD on the Z690 AORUS Pro motherboard with the heatsink of the motherboard installed.
As we can see, the speed is incredible for both CrystalDiskMark and AS SSD benchmarks. The 2TB is slightly faster than the 1TB variant, but I’m not worried about it. Either way, what we achieved on CrystalDiskMark can’t really achieve the speeds published on the box.
We dedicate this section to talk about the temperatures of this SSD because it includes a heatsink in the box. This SSD heatsink uses aluminium alloy and has multi-layered fin design so that air can go through the gaps and dissipate even more heat.
The installation of this SSD heatsink is also very simple – and if you need installation instructions, ADATA also has a tutorial here.
We did a total of 3 tests – the first one without any heatsinks and the SSD is just floating in the air – second is with the included heatsink, and third is with the motherboard’s SSD heatsink.
We’ll also be using CrystalDiskMark with 64GiB file test size to strain the SSD as much as possible as I found that to be the one test that can actually make the SSD reach its highest temperature. We can see the sequential write speed with the queue depth of 1 and 1 thread (SEQ1M Q1T1).
It is very obvious that the SSD will overheat if we’re using it without any heatsinks. It can reach its thermal limit of 74°C and as we can see here – it starts thermal throttling. We recorded the sequential write speed of Q1T1 at only 2598.90MB/s, which is less than half of the speed we have during benchmarks.
Once we installed the heatsink that ADATA included in the box, it doesn’t thermal throttle anymore and the temperature drops drastically. You’d be good with this heatsink for your day-to-day computing needs, no matter how intense it gets.
If your motherboard does have a heatsink, you may want to experiment with either the motherboard’s heatsink or ADATA’s included heatsink. Our motherboard for this test is the Z690 AORUS Pro – and it has a pretty beefy heatsink with thermal pads sandwiching the SSD. The temperature will definitely vary depending on what motherboard you’re using.
Price per gigabyte
We’re referring to the official ADATA store on Shopee and we found out that the 2TB SSD – again – will offer the best bang for our buck. I’d say the price is competitive here for both capacities, actually. Here are the retail price:
- 1TB – RM465
- 2TB – RM865
Should you buy the ADATA Legend 960 Max SSD?
Yes. This is a fantastic SSD with fast read and write speed. Best of all, it has a reasonably good heatsink included and actually improves performance. I’d say that if you’re using an old motherboard that doesn’t have an M.2 SSD heatsink, then buy this. You can install it on your PC and use it with the included heatsink first, then take it apart later when you upgrade to another motherboard that has a bigger and better heatsink.
It offers a unique value and manages to stand out from the sea of M.2 SSDs in the market.