Western Digital goes for sheer speed with new WD Black NVMe SSD

Western Digital has a new SSD on the block, and it's quite the speedster. The company today took the wraps off of its new WD Black NVMe SSD, which offers up incredibly fast speeds at relatively affordable prices.

According to Western Digital, the Black NVMe SSD can achieve sequential read speeds of up to 3,400 MB/s and write performance of up to 2,800 MB/s. You'll only reach those top speeds on the 500GB (read) and 1TB (read and write) options, but that's still exceptionally fast. The drive is also available in 250GB option, which can reach up to 3,000 MB/s read and up to 1,600 MB/s write speeds. Here's the full breakdown:

  • 1TB: Up to 3,400 MB/s Read, Up to 2,800 MB/s Write
  • 500GB: Up to 3,400 MB/s Read, Up to 2,500 MB/s Write
  • 250GB: Up to 3,000 MB/s Read, Up to 1,600 MB/s Write

Western Digital says that it took advantage of a new NVMe architecture and controller to drive performance up to levels intended primarily for the gaming crowd and those looking to eke out the best performance from their video editing rigs.

"Today's gaming applications require increasing capability from their PCs, and this will only continue to advance. With our new architecture and controller, the Western Digital Black SSD integrates our 3D NAND technology with the NVMe interface to enable new levels of performance. Whether it's a new gaming rig or a video-editing workstation, our innovative NVMe drives will power many existing and future environments that enable data to thrive," said, Mark Grace, senior vice president, Devices Business Unit, Western Digital.

All three variants of the WD Black NVMe SSD are up for order now (opens in new tab), starting at $119.99 for 250GB, $229.99 for 500GB, and $449.99 for 1TB. The drives are expected to be available by "late April."

Dan Thorp-Lancaster

Dan Thorp-Lancaster is the former Editor-in-Chief of Windows Central. He began working with Windows Central, Android Central, and iMore as a news writer in 2014 and is obsessed with tech of all sorts. You can follow Dan on Twitter @DthorpL and Instagram @heyitsdtl

  • Yeeessss!!!! I was just about to get the 1TB Samsung Pro version to get similar speeds. I'm glad I waited and don't mind waiting til the end of the month.
  • Is there a 2TB version?
  • To be fair, that is a good M.2 SSD, but only mentioning the max read/write speed with sequential operations is not really that useful.
    You should also report the IOPS and the MTBF, otherwise the top 10 M.2 SSDs would all basically look the same on paper.
  • We don't have one. So all we have right now is what the manufacturer wants to tell you.
  • Those info are present in the page linked by that very same link in the 3rd line of the article.
    And I mean, this really looks like an amazing drive (at least, on paper), I'm surprised WD didn't ask you to specifically report those values as well in the news.
  • Personally, I feel that the speeds are already incredible. All I'd love now is to continue increasing storage capacities and decreasing prices. 1TB NVMe for $200, then eventually 2TB NVMe for $200, etc. I want all my system storage to be SSD based, not just a primary drive.
  • Samsung finally has competition!
  • Didn't Samsung sell their hard drive division to Western Digital? Or was that Seagate?
  • SanDisk I believe.
  • I have the Samsung 960 and love it. I'm glad WD is stepping up in the SSD realm
  • $449 equates to ~£320, but you can bet it will cost £449 in the UK too
  • Expensive! The price should come down...Also the controller is brand new and not yet matured...
  • If I'm reading the stats right it's quicker than a 960 Pro and apparently cheaper (according to Amazon prices). Wow, that's impressive.