Plextor M6e 256GB M.2 PCIe SSDs in RAID – Hitting 1.4GB/s


CrystalDiskMark and Conclusion

CrystalDiskMark 3.0.3 x64 – Intel Z97 Platform

CrystalDiskMark is a small benchmark utility for drives and enables rapid measurement of sequential and random read/write speeds. Note that CDM only supports Native Command Queuing (NCQ) with a queue depth of 32 (as noted) for the last listed benchmark score. This can skew some results in favor of controllers that also do not support NCQ.

Single Drive:


Software RAID0:


Benchmark Results: The Plextor M6e 256GB M.2 SSD topped out at 727MB/s read and 573MB/s on the sequential test with one drive and hit 1408MB/s read and 1098MB/s write once the second drive was up and running in RAID0.

Final Thoughts & Conclusions

Plextor M6e RAID Setup

The point of this article was to see how a pair of M.2 PCIe x2 SSD’s do in RAID and we have to say the pair of Plextor M6e 256GB M.2 PCIe drives were impressive. It would have been nice to have a bootable RAID array with the M.2 PCIe cards, but right now we don’t have the ability to do that as we don’t yet have a hardware RAID card for M.2 drives and neither Intel nor AMD natively support PCIe RAID configurations with their chipsets. With a single Plextor M6e 256GB on the ASUS Z97-A motherboard we were getting around 730MB/s sequential read and 575MB/s sequential write. With the second card added to the system and setup with our software RAID configuration we were able to hit 1410MB/s sequential read and 1100MB/s sequential write. Those are pretty impressive numbers and make for one quick storage setup! If you are wanting to raise the I/O bar, the M.2 PCIe SSDs are certainly changing the game.

Plextor has the PX-G128M6e, PX-G256M6e and PX-G512M6e priced at about $1 per GB when it comes to MSRP pricing. Now that the Plextor M6e M.2 drives are hitting the market we can find the street price on the 256GB drive that we reviewed today to be around $236.25. This breaks down to $0.92 per GB and that isn’t bad for what you are getting in terms of the tiny form factor and the overall performance of the drive. In order to have RAID we needed the Plextor PX-AG256M6e M.2 SSD w/ Adapter ($294.40), so our total cost for this 512GB software RAID setup came out to be around $530, which is starting to get up there. For example if all you care about is speed…. You can buy four Kingston HyperX 3K 240GB SATA III SSDs for $540 ($134.99 shipped each) and get a copy of Watch Dogs with each drive. This will allow you to setup a bootable 4-drive RAID0 setup that has twice the storage capacity and sequential read speeds pushing 2GB/s. The M.2 PCIe drives are interesting to us though as they are small and offer faster single drive performance. Prices on M.2 SSDs will eventually come down and we still see the interface as becoming popular due to enthusiasts and gamers looking into it for the single drive performance advantages over traditional SATA III drives. Using two M.2 PCIe SSDs in RAID might not make dollar sense or be bootable today, but we see that changing in the years ahead.

Legit Bottom Line: The Plextor M6e M.2 PCIe SSD in RAID is quick and our dynamic RAID volume had us up and over 1.4GB/s read speeds in no time!