The Crucial P5 Plus is a M.2 PCIe 4 SSD given for 6.6 GB/s. It is intended for both desktop and laptop computers, for gaming or creative purposes, but also for the Sony PS5 console with which it is fully compatible.
Crucial has been around since the beginning of the SSD era, but it rarely overdoes its numbers or the number of products in its catalog. The P5 Plus series is positioned as a high-end solution in the M.2 NVMe SSD category, but it is content with theoretical data rates that are slightly lower than those of the big names. And it must be said that in the context of classic use (gaming or creative), gaining one or two hundred megabytes per second does not change much.
The fact remains that the P5 Plus operates on a PCIe 4 interface like most of its counterparts. This allows it to be compatible with Sony's PS5, although it is necessary to add a third-party heat sink - these can be found for around 15 euros in most online stores.
We test here the 1Tb version, but the series is also available in 500Gb and 2Tb. Be careful, the 500 GB version has a lower theoretical throughput than its 1 and 2 TB counterparts.
Taking the form of a very classic module in M.2 2280 format, the 1TB P5 Plus embeds two 176-layer 3D TLC NAND memory chips from Micron. This memory is managed by a controller from Micron, a DM02A1. This is the first time we've seen this chip, about which we don't know much except that it is capable of handling eight channels. A cache memory of 1 GB accompanies the whole.
The 1TB P5 Plus is guaranteed for five years or 600TB of write data, whichever comes first as is the industry standard. While this isn't the most incredible endurance we've encountered, it's still very high and the overwhelming majority of users will find themselves at the end of the term much sooner than the end of the endurance.
Crucial still offers its Storage Executive software. Although its presentation is a bit dated, it nevertheless offers what you would expect from this type of application: automatic firmware upgrade, health status management, secure erasure and overprovisioning management.
SLC cache management
Crucial has chosen to integrate a fixed SLC cache, and not a dynamic one, as is increasingly common. According to our measurements, this cache is about 100 GB, which is particularly comfortable for everyday use where it is rare to move more than 100 GB in one go. Outside of this acceleration zone, throughput drops to around 1.25 GB/s, a fairly high value. In short, the P5 Plus has a solid SLC cache, matched by a similarly solid out-of-cache throughput.
The P5 Plus has a tendency to heat up very quickly, reaching 70°C in a few seconds during a data transfer. This temperature rise then calms down to stabilize at around 76°C, a value that was not exceeded during our tests in a closed case. In fact, this model will not have entered throttling, the manufacturer having opted for a target temperature of 82 °C, after which the flow is reduced to avoid overheating.
As usual, Crucial does not provide much technical data on the speeds, contenting itself with delivering the one achievable in sequential: 6.6 GB/s in reading and 5 GB/s in writing. And we must believe that the manufacturer was a little shy, because under benchmark we find slightly higher values in reading with an average of 6.85 GB / s. In writing, we find an average of 5 GB/s, as promised. The sequential accesses are at best 691 KIOPS in reading and 647 KIOPS in writing. These results place the P5 Plus behind elements such as the Corsair MP600 Pro, the WD Black SN850, the MSI Spatium M480 or the FireCuda 530.
On the other hand, the manual copy gives excellent results with 2.1 GB/s in reading and 1.9 GB/s in writing. Enough to position it among the elite of PCIe 4 SSDs.
The 1TB Crucial P5 Plus is not the fastest SSD of its generation, but it still delivers a convincing performance. Although lower than the best competing models, the speeds are still high and this model can notably rely on a robust SLC cache system. An excellent product that will sit comfortably in any computer or PS5 (expect a third-party heatsink in this case).