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Posts: 24
Registered: ‎05-25-2015
Location: US
Views: 131
Message 1 of 2

Helix 2 SSD replacement advice

I have a 20CG0037US. It says it has an Intel SSDsckjf180a5L SSD. It has a M.2 2280 form factor. I am a bit confused by the specs. Is this SSD both SATA and PCIe compatible? Anyway, this is a smallish 180 GB drive which is more than half full, and I want to plan for its eventual failure and replacement although it is MLC, and therefore has a good life expectancy. 

Want list:

>= 500 GB

preferably a TLC NAND SSD.


Intel has a QLC SSD which would otherwise fit the bill but it is also PCIe:   Intel 660p Series M.2 2280 512GB PCI-Express 3.0 x4 3D NAND Internal Solid State Drive (SSD)


Intel also has a 760p series which is TLC, but it also is PCIe  NVMe 3.1 interface, and therefore I don't believe is compatible with the tablet, but can be obtained at the 500GB capacity for the reasonable price of $80


The only SATA M.2 2280 Intel still makes with TLC is only 256 GB.


I know I will pay a bit more for a TLC drive, but I expect it to last at least twice as long as the common QLC, which is important to me since it will have the OS on it. Can I replace my current drive with a PCIe SSD with a simple clone since it seems my model will handle a PCIe drive? I want to do this before this form factor and format become unavailable. 

I invite all recommendations for a replacement drive. Thanks.

Punch Card
Posts: 24
Registered: ‎05-25-2015
Location: US
Views: 96
Message 2 of 2

Re: Helix 2 SSD replacement advice

Someone registered as Bstone has apparently answered the compatibility issue. He posted "pro devices[Samsung] that can run in sata mode.  Some can, some can't.. the 950 pro some people have said works, some said it didn't.  I used the 860 pro [I think it was 860, it was 8something.


The helix 2 requires a sata compatable pcie drive to boot.  It won't work with NVME drives unless that drive can operate in a sata."


Some on the thread reported that the Samsung Pro retail drives had software on board which enabled it to boot, and then run in NVME. They also reported better performance. I am not so concerned about a little better performance though - especially not enough to pay twice the price. I don't use my Helix to game or anything. I have decided on a WD blue Sata M.2 500Gb - it has TLC NAND architecture, and will be easy to clone. Then I will keep it as a back up drive until the Intel gets too full or begins to fail. 


With NAND prices dropping so low, maybe I will consider an additional drive in the future, but I'm thinking this format will become obsolete, and will no longer be available after another 5 years or so. However, there may continue to be NVME drives that can boot on SATA machines. I welcome any suggestions anyone else has. 

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