I’d like to introduce you to the WD Blue SSD. It has quite an interesting and inevitable fate. I think at this day and age, we all have heard about WD. They’re the major leader in storage media, of course. To be honest, I’ve speculated that one day, WD will sell their own SSDs to the masses. With Western Digital’s recent acquisition of SanDisk, that day has come.
The packaging on the WD Blue SSD is fairly simple yet somewhat a hit and miss at the same time. Compared to the Transcend SSS370S I’ve reviewed here, I have to say that the WD Blue SSD’s packaging is rather too simple. Information-wise, it’s definitely lacking. At the front, there’s a big WD Blue WWD printed at the front alongside its capacity. One thing I like is the fact that they do highlight the 3-year limited warranty.
At the back there’s absolutely nothing about the product specs. While WD is still a hard disk company in its core, I find that the placement to explain all the other WD family of hard disks a little out of place.
This might be a sign for WD Black/Purple/Red SSDs in the future.
Opening the box reveals absolutely nothing other than the WD Blue SSD in an antistatic bag, sitting in a plastic cradle. That’s everything in the box. Could’ve at least included a 3.5-inch to 2.5-inch bay and some screws.
The entire WD Blue SSD is enclosed in matte plastic with a huge sticker on top. It’s no different at the back side too, actually. Pretty standard all throughout.
And by the way – the WD Blue SSD is 7mm thin – which means it is compatible with all laptops’ SATA3 slots.
One more thing that I’ve noticed is that M.2 form factor WD Blue SSD is only available in one length.
Modern day SSD storages commonly have their own utility to ensure that their SSD is working in tip top condition. WD Blue SSD is no different – and they have something called the WD SSD Dashboard.
The WD SSD Dashboard isn’t the fastest to initilize – and it takes about 5 seconds before everything is loaded and displayed.
The WD SSD Dashboard is fairly clean, with the most useful information laid out at the top and split the other information into tabs. Here you can monitor the WD Blue SSD’s performance in both transfer speeds and IOPS, and also force TRIM run if you wish to.
Other than that, there’s the firmware updater and S.M.A.R.T. tests to check for the SSD’s status.
You might think – the WD SSD Dashboard is a little too simple. Where are all the other features – like storage media migration? Well, WD is smart, as they leave that up to another software – the Acronis True Image WD Edition Software.
I find it pretty smart of WD to split it up, as there is no need to download one bulky utility took that has everything inside. I mean, how many times do you actually need to clone your current storage media to a brand new one? Mostly just once, but personally I prefer to reinstall a fresh copy of my OS.
While WD Blue SSDs are available in both M.2 and 2.5-inch form factors, both of them are running off the SATA III interface – which means 6Gb/s is the theoretical maximum. While I find that to be disappointing, I can understand that this is WD’s first real step into the world of SSDs.
Here’s the complete table of all the available variants and sizes of the WD Blue SSD on their website.
|WD Blue PC SSD 2.5”/7mm cased||WDS100T1B0A||WDS500G1B0A||WDS250G1B0A|
|WD Blue PC SSD M.2 2280||WDS100T1B0B||WDS500G1B0B||WDS250G1B0B|
|WD Blue PC SSD 2.5”/7mm cased||SATA III 6 Gb/s||SATA III 6 Gb/s||SATA III 6 Gb/s|
|WD Blue PC SSD M.2 2280||SATA III 6 Gb/s||SATA III 6 Gb/s||SATA III 6 Gb/s|
|Performance4 [4KB QD32]|
|Sequential Read up to (MB/s)||545||545||540|
|Sequential Write up to (MB/s)||525||525||500|
|Random Read up to (IOPS)||100k||100k||97k|
|Random Write up to (IOPS)||80k||80k||79k|
|Avg. Active Power (mW)4||70||70||70|
|Max Read Operating (mW)||2,850||2,850||2,350|
|Max Write Operating (mW)||4,400||4,000||3,400|
|MTTF7||Up to 1.75M hours||Up to 1.75M hours||Up to 1.75M hours|
|Operating Temperatures||0°C to 70°C||0°C to 70°C||0°C to 70°C|
|Non-operating Temperatures||-55°C to 85°C||-55°C to 85°C||-55°C to 85°C|
|Operating Vibration||5.0 gRMS, 10–2000 Hz||5.0 gRMS, 10–2000 Hz||5.0 gRMS, 10–2000 Hz|
|Non-operating Vibration||4.9 gRMS, 7–800 Hz||4.9 gRMS, 7–800 Hz||4.9 gRMS, 7–800 Hz|
|Shock||1,500 G @ 0.5 msec half sine||1,500 G @ 0.5 msec half sine||1,500 G @ 0.5 msec half sine|
|Certifications||FCC, UL, TUV, KC, BSMI, VCCI||FCC, UL, TUV, KC, BSMI, VCCI||FCC, UL, TUV, KC, BSMI, VCCI|
|Limited Warranty8||3 years||3 years||3 years|
|Size: 2.5”/7mm cased||7.00mm x 69.85mm x 100.5mm||7.00mm x 69.85mm x 100.5mm||7.00mm x 69.85mm x 100.5mm|
|Size: M.2 2280||2.38mm x 22.00mm x 80.0mm||2.23mm x 22.00mm x 80.0mm||2.23mm x 22.00mm x 80.0mm|
|Weight: 2.5”/7mm cased||59.7g||37.4g||37.4g|
|Weight: M.2 2280||7±1g||7±1g||7±1g|
Running the usual benchmarks here gives us the true colours of what the WD Blue SSD is truly capable of. Let’s start off with the most commonly-used tool first.
Crystal Disk Mark
Personally speaking, the performance here is vastly better than my personal unit of the Transcend SSD370S. So far so good.
ATTO Disk Benchmark
AS SSD Benchmark
The WD Blue SSD is a decent SSD in today’s standard, and it packs quite a nice punch into SSD market too with its price/gigabyte ratio of ~RM1.27/GB. Considering that WD is backing you up with a 3-year limited warranty and one complimentary year of Kroll OnTrack data recovery service, I think it’s pretty sweet.
WD made included a really clean interface and separated its rarely-used features into another app to reduce clutter. However, I think WD SSD’s packaging needs to be improved. There is no 3.5-inch to 2.5-inch converters or screws included. Also, the packaging is too simple and offers no real product information on its packaging – like the dimensions as 9mm thickness SSDs aren’t compatible with many laptops.
Overall, I have to give the WD Blue SSD props, for acquiring SanDisk and releasing their first family of SSDs so quickly. And it performs decently too when compared to what the market is offering now.