Best SSD 2018: get big speed and capacity with one of these top solid state drives

Boost your computer’s capacity and performance with these fast and reliable SSDs

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Wave a not so fond farewell to a flaky old traditional hard drive – too slow, too small, too old. Instead, say hello to a new breed of drive offering stability, copious storage and unrivalled speeds. Enter solid state drives. There’s a wealth to choose from for your laptop computer. But which SSD to buy?

We’ve picked the best SSDs on the market with a wide range of capacity options and models to suit every budget. The T3 top picks include offerings from the big players in solid state drives like Samsung and Crucial and cheaper, smaller brands too.

When you’ve chosen the best SSD for your needs, follow our handy guide to fitting a solid state drive into your laptop – it’s an easy job and will take you less than ten minutes. On that note, we also have a great guide to installing a new SSD in a PS4 – perfect if you fancy speeding up load times and increasing your storage capacity.

One point to note is that while we’ve assembled drives that fit into a bay in your laptop, the M.2 SSD is an mSATA that fits into your motherboard. Some models come in both formats, like this WD model, so don’t forget to check compatibility before ordering. The M.2 SSD type can be useful where space is really at a premium.

Either way, they can be fitted easily enough but if you need a helping hand then we've got a cool guide to getting the job. We've also got a handy guide to installing a new SSD in a PS4, too, if you fancy speeding up loading times and increasing storage capacity. In way less than an hour you’ll be enjoying the benefits of an SSD, although be sure to make a back-up of all your data just to be on the safe side.

How to choose the best SSD for you 

The last thing you want to do is buy an SSD and then have to upgrade it in the near future – so aim for a solid state drive with as much storage capacity as your wallet allows.

When buying an SSD you also need to check the physical specifications – to make sure your computer has room for it and that the connections between the two are compatible.  The majority are 2.5-inch but there are 3.5-inch variants and also pay attention to the z-height (thickness).  If you have a super-slim machine, fear not – you’ll just need to go for an M.2 type SSD. Lastly, quickly check your laptop is able to run via a Serial ATA (SATA) interface, before you buy a SSD.

10 best SSDs 2018

Best SSD

1. Crucial MX500 2TB

Enjoy the sizeable storage supplied from this SSD

Reasons to buy
+Huge amount of storage+256-bit hardware-based encryption

Crucial’s whopping 2TB SSD delivers sequential read/write speeds up to 560/510 MB/s and random read/write performance up to 95k/90k on all file types. It gets an added boost from Micron 3D NAND technology while there’s also 256-bit hardware-based encryption for better security. Plus you get the benefit of a brand that has a proven track record.

Best SSD

2. Samsung 860 EVO 1TB

Samsung boosts its range of high performance SSDs

Reasons to buy
+A choice of size options+Beefy performance

Samsung has upped its game in the SSD stakes with some new editions. This, the 860 EVO 1TB unit is super efficient delivering sequential write speeds up to 520MB/s thanks to Intelligent TurboWrite technology, and sequential read speeds up to 550MB/s. The superior performance means that it is ideally suited for the huge files that are so commonplace today, such as 4K video content.

Best SSD

3. Axiom 960GB SSD

A beefy but keenly priced storage option

Reasons to buy
+Respectable read/write speeds+Compact and lightweight

This sizeable SSD from the Axiom camp comes with a slimline case that should fit the thinnest of laptops and features a temperature sensor for optimum performance. The other benefit of the latest SSDs is their light weight, with this example clocking in at just 63.5 grams. Data read/write speeds are 520 MB/s and 475 MB/s respectively.

4. Kingston UV500 SSD

Great performance, good encryption and 5-year warranty

Reasons to buy
+Lots of capacity options+Solid and fast performance

The UV500 SSD from trusted brand Kingston is available in available in multiple capacities from 120GB–1.92TB, so you can be sure of a size to suit your needs. This SSD uses a Marvell 88SS1074 controller and 3D NAND Flash, which provides great performance – this drive will certainly boost your systems responsiveness. With sequential read/write speeds of up to 500MB/s it’ll make your digital life faster, without breaking the bank. We are also impressed with the end-to-end data protection and 5 year warranty.

Best SSD

5. HyperX Savage 240 GB SATA 3 SSD

Gamers will love the power and punch of this SSD

Reasons to buy
+120, 240, 480 and 960GB options available+Eye-catching looks match the performance

The HyperX Savage solid-state drive oozes performance and that’s not just from its vibrant colour scheme. The SSD boasts a quad-core, 8-channel Phison S10 controller that’ll provide you with 560 MB/s read and 530 MB/s write speeds. Input/output operations per second figures for read/write are similarly impressive at 100k/89k, while its svelte form factor makes it an easy fit for most notebooks and laptops.

Best SSD

6. WD 250GB SSD

This dependable SSD has found a home in many desktop and laptop

Reasons to buy
+Choice of 2.5-inch or M.2 SATA models+Another respected brand in the world of storage

While many of us want the ease and convenience of replacing a like-for-like 2.5-inch SSD it is also possible to get drive variants in the M.2 SATA format. These fit into your motherboard without fuss, but are slightly different as illustrated by this hugely popular WD example. This is a 250GB edition, but they also have 120, 240, 500 and 1TB models available too, all armed with superior performance.

7. Sandisk Ultra 3D SSD

Fast, reliable and shock resistant

Reasons to buy
+Rapid-fire read/write speeds+Shock and vibration resistance

Sandisk really boosts its SSD offering with the Ultra 3D SSD, which should be of particular interest to gamers, who’ll appreciate the blazing speed and graphics. The Sandisk 3D SSD isn’t just for gaming, it’s a great all rounder for anyone who wants applications to load faster and files to move quicker. This SSD provides cool, quiet computing and even features proven shock and vibration resistance, so you won’t lose your data even if you drop your computer! Lastly, the advanced 3D NAND technology provides not only increased reliability but lower power usage too – result.

Best SSD

8. Dogfish 240GB SSD

Why spend a fortune if you’re looking for straightforward storage

Reasons to buy
+A cheap and cheerful SSD+Four different capacity options

Granted, most of us are after the biggest and best storage solution we can lay our hands on, just as long as the budget holds up. However, if you just want a few extra gigs with the benefit of an SSD then the Dogfish range starts off at just 30GB. This 240GB variant is at the larger end of the spectrum, but it’s still keenly priced.

Best SSD

9. Samsung 860 EVO 4TB

A gargantuan SSD that’ll take care of all your data

Reasons to buy
+Vast amount of storage space+Super speedy read and write

If you find yourself munching your way through storage and constantly looking for more then the latest Samsung 860 EVO SSD offers a substantial 4TB to keep you going. It’s not going to be cheap, but it’ll give you fast read and write speeds while workflow tasks can be made more efficient thanks to included data migration and magician software. Add it all together and you’ve got a storage solution that is perfectly suited to professionals.

Best SSD

10. Corsair Neutron XTi 1920 GB

Expect bruising performance from the suitably named Neutron

Reasons to buy
+Suitable for gamers, professionals and 4K fans+Various capacity options

Corsair have a solid background in storage and this, the ominous sounding Neutron XTi 960 GB, offers up performance aplenty with 560MB/s sequential read and 540MB/s sequential write speeds. Its lower power usage means the speed is matched by efficient performance. And, if you need something smaller then there are 240 and 480GB editions, as well as a stonking great 1920GB model at the other end of the spectrum.