Best 256GB SSDs for Laptop | Top 6 SSDs for Upgrading Laptop!

It’s not wrong to say, SSDs are the real OGs of the pc hardware world.

I have never found anyone who was satisfied with how fast his or her PC is right now.

You may build your PC with the best hardware available currently, in three months you will find yourself wishing you had ‘that’ part.

That part could be anything. A better CPU, the new series of GPU, the DD5 RAM, or that motherboard with better VRMs.

Seldom has any hardware made an impact at such a low price point as SSDs.

There was a time when if you wanted to make a PC faster, the obvious answer was RAM upgrade and an eventual CPU upgrade.

Today, if you ask anyone how to make a PC more responsive, snappy and improve game loading times, SSDs are the obvious answer.

So, in this article let me relay the best 256GB SSDs for laptop that you can get right away to infuse all these qualities into your machine.

I will go in-depth into each of these SSDs to justify my recommendation. But if you are for some reason in a hurry, here are the best 256GB SSDs for laptops at a quick glance.

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Samsung 870 EVO SATA III
SAMSUNG 980 PRO 250GB PCIe NVMe Gen4
SAMSUNG 970 EVO Plus
Crucial MX500 250GB
SABRENT 256GB Rocket NVMe PCIe
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SAMSUNG 870 EVO SATA III SSD 1TB 2.5” Internal Solid State Hard Drive, Upgrade PC or Laptop Memory and Storage for IT Pros, Creators, Everyday Users, MZ-77E1T0B/AM
SAMSUNG 980 PRO 250GB PCIe NVMe Gen4 Internal Gaming SSD M.2 (MZ-V8P250B)
SAMSUNG 970 EVO Plus SSD 250GB NVMe M.2 Internal Solid State Hard Drive with V-NAND Technology, Storage and Memory Expansion for Gaming, Graphics w/ Heat Control, Max Speed, MZ-V7S250B/AM
Crucial MX500 250GB 3D NAND SATA 2.5 Inch Internal SSD, up to 560MB/s - CT250MX500SSD1
SABRENT 256GB Rocket NVMe PCIe M.2 2280 Internal SSD High Performance Solid State Drive (SB-ROCKET-256)
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Best SATA SSD for laptop
Best PCIe 4.0 M.2 NVMe SSD for laptop
Best M.2 NVMe SSD for laptop
Best Budget Friendly SATA SSD
Best archiving SSD for laptop
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Samsung 870 EVO SATA III
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SAMSUNG 870 EVO SATA III SSD 1TB 2.5” Internal Solid State Hard Drive, Upgrade PC or Laptop Memory and Storage for IT Pros, Creators, Everyday Users, MZ-77E1T0B/AM
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Best SATA SSD for laptop
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SAMSUNG 980 PRO 250GB PCIe NVMe Gen4
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SAMSUNG 980 PRO 250GB PCIe NVMe Gen4 Internal Gaming SSD M.2 (MZ-V8P250B)
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Best PCIe 4.0 M.2 NVMe SSD for laptop
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SAMSUNG 970 EVO Plus
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SAMSUNG 970 EVO Plus SSD 250GB NVMe M.2 Internal Solid State Hard Drive with V-NAND Technology, Storage and Memory Expansion for Gaming, Graphics w/ Heat Control, Max Speed, MZ-V7S250B/AM
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Best M.2 NVMe SSD for laptop
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Crucial MX500 250GB
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Crucial MX500 250GB 3D NAND SATA 2.5 Inch Internal SSD, up to 560MB/s - CT250MX500SSD1
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Best Budget Friendly SATA SSD
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SABRENT 256GB Rocket NVMe PCIe
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SABRENT 256GB Rocket NVMe PCIe M.2 2280 Internal SSD High Performance Solid State Drive (SB-ROCKET-256)
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Best archiving SSD for laptop
Prime

Is 256GB SSD Enough for a Laptop?

So, before we go into detail discussing the top 256GB SSDs that you can get, it is very important to lock on the storage capacity.

So, is 256GB SSD enough for a laptop?

Well, it depends on your needs. That said, 256GB is totally enough if you wish to store your OS, most active work/productivity applications, and at most 3 games. 

If you game heavily, meaning play more than a few games concurrently, in addition to using apps, and plan to store files, media, and data on the same laptop, then you need to look at higher-capacity options.

So, in short, an active laptop on which you don’t desire to store static files will do well with a 256 GB SSD.


Now when you build a PC things become relatively simple. 

You have a lot of freedom so to speak to arrange the storage space in the way you see fit. My PC for instance has a combination of a 7200 PM 1TB HDD and a 256 GB SSD.

I use my SSD for storing adobe programs, to store games that I am currently playing, in addition to OS and files associated with my active projects and I still have 120GB left.

I make it a point to not store anything static on my SSD live media files, archived footage, or anything similar. And to be honest, I don’t do this to save space.

I do it because I like keeping things organized.

Newer laptops, gaming laptops especially have started coming with additional M.2 slots that you can use. Most won’t have it yet, but if yours does, all power to you.

A nice NVMe M.2 SSD will make your system run like a hot knife through butter.

Best 256GB SSDs for laptop

Alright, then without any further ado let’s get straight into discussing the best 256GB SSDs you can look to get straight away for your laptop.

Samsung 870 EVO SATA III

Best SATA SSD for laptop

Sale
SAMSUNG 870 EVO SATA III SSD 1TB 2.5” Internal Solid State Hard Drive, Upgrade PC or Laptop Memory and Storage for IT Pros, Creators, Everyday Users, MZ-77E1T0B/AM
  • THE SSD ALL-STAR: The latest 870 EVO has indisputable performance, reliability and compatibility built upon Samsung's pioneering technology
  • EXCELLENCE IN PERFORMANCE: Enjoy professional level SSD performance which maximizes the SATA interface limit to 560 530 MB/s sequential speeds,* accelerates write speeds and maintains long term high performance with a larger variable buffer
  • INDUSTRY-DEFINING RELIABILITY: Meet the demands of every task — from everyday computing to 8K video processing, with up to 600 TBW** under a 5-year limited warranty***
  • MORE COMPATIBLE THAN EVER: The 870 EVO has been compatibility tested**** for major host systems and applications, including chipsets, motherboards, NAS, and video recording devices
  • UPGRADE WITH EASE: Using the 870 EVO SSD is as simple as plugging it into the standard 2.5 inch SATA form factor on your desktop PC or laptop; The renewed migration software takes care of the rest

One of the best SSDs that provide peak serial SATA III performance. 

It isn’t a surprise that Samsung EVO SSDs have been one of the hottest selling SSDs in the market.

They are time tested, offer plenty of speed, and are very efficient even in 4K random read and write operations.

Pros
  • Incredible performance for random 4K read and write operations
  • Great write durability rating
  • Time tested gold standard management software
  • Responsive architecture
  • AES 256-bit encryption
  • 5 year warranty
Cons
  • For large file transfers SATA drives have lower ceiling than PCIe cards.

SAMSUNG 980 PRO 250GB PCIe NVMe Gen4

Best PCIe 4.0 M.2 NVMe SSD for laptop

SAMSUNG 980 PRO 250GB PCIe NVMe Gen4 Internal Gaming SSD M.2 (MZ-V8P250B)
  • Next-Level Ssd Performance: Unleash The Power Of Samsung 980 Pro Pcie 4.0 Nvme Ssd For Next-Level Computing
  • Maximum Speed: 980 Pro Is Raising The Bar For Nvme Ssds, Delivering Read Speeds Up To 6,400 Mb/S. Controller Type: In-house
  • A Winning Combination: Designed For Hardcore Gamers And Tech-Savvy Users, The 980 Pro Offers High-Performance Bandwidth And Throughput For Heavy-Duty Applications In Gaming, Graphics, Data Analytics, And More
  • Efficient M.2 Ssd: The 980 Pro Comes In A Compact M.2 2280 Form Factor, Thus Optimizing Power Efficiency, Making It Ideal For Building High-Performance Computing Systems

To be fair this isn’t the SSD for the masses, at least for now. 

And no not just because it is expensive but also because for most people this is overkill.

The 980 Pro is Samsung’s introduction to the high-performance SSD market segment. It offers sequential reads at 7GB/s and random reads at up to a million IOs per second.

Samsung with its EVO lineups has more or less been a top-notch pick when it comes to consumer-grade SSDs. 

With the new 980 PRO, Samsung is looking to continue sitting at the top of high-performance Gen4 SSDs.

As I said, this is an excellent SSD that you can skip. 

The core problem with the 980 PRO and similar high-performance NVMe drives is the lack of support from surrounding hardware.

But you know it is my duty to include at least one option for people who have the latest tech and are willing to extract every possible performance bit out of their machine.

Pros
  • Fast PCIe Gen4 performance
  • Consistent write speeds
  • 256-bit AES hardware based encryption
  • Good SSD management software
  • 5 year warranty
Cons
  • Fairly expensive
  • Endurance writings could have been better
  • Average TurbiWrite SLC cache.

SAMSUNG 970 EVO Plus

Sale
SAMSUNG 970 EVO Plus SSD 250GB NVMe M.2 Internal Solid State Hard Drive with V-NAND Technology, Storage and Memory Expansion for Gaming, Graphics w/ Heat Control, Max Speed, MZ-V7S250B/AM
  • INNOVATIVE V-NAND TECHNOLOGY: Powered by Samsung V-NAND Technology, the 970 EVO Plus SSD’s NVMe interface (PCIe Gen 3.0 x4 NVMe 1.3) offers enhanced bandwidth, low latency, and power efficiency ideal for tech enthusiasts, high end gamers, and 4K & 3D content designers
  • BREAKTHROUGH READ WRITE SPEEDS: Sequential read and write performance levels of up to 3,500MB/s and 3,300MB/s, respectively; Random Read (4KB, QD32): Up to 600,000 IOPS Random Read
  • PERFORMANCE OPTIMIZATION AND DATA SECURITY: Seamless cloning and file transfers with Samsung Magician Software, the ideal SSD management solution for performance optimization and data security with automatic firmware updates
  • SUPERIOR HEAT DISSIPATION: Samsung’s Dynamic Thermal Guard automatically monitors and maintains optimal operating temperatures to minimize performance drops. WWN not supported

Best M.2 NVMe SSD for laptop

If Samsung 980 Pro is the obvious choice for top-of-the-line high-end laptops, for everyone else Samsung 970 EVO Plus is a no-brainer.

That is of course if you want something in the M.2 form factor.

The Samsung 970 EVO plus in an incredible SSD in just about every way. 

With this SSD you get read and write speeds of 3500MB/s and 3300MB/s respectively.

With every iteration in the EVO lineup, Samsung looks to create an SSD that is reliable, provides stable performance, and is high on endurance.

With the 970 EVO plus Samsung has been able to hold all those qualities, in addition to introducing the advanced heat dissipation, which helps prolong the SSDs life even more.

Pros
  • Great performance
  • Good endurance
  • Advanced heat dissipation design
Cons
  • Efficiency optimization can be tweaked further
  • Write performance sometimes sees a dip when small buffer is full

Crucial MX500 250GB 

Best Budget Friendly SATA SSD

Sale
Crucial MX500 250GB 3D NAND SATA 2.5 Inch Internal SSD, up to 560MB/s - CT250MX500SSD1
  • Sequential reads/writes up to 560/510 MB/s and random reads/writes up to 95K/90K on all file types
  • Accelerated by Micron 3D NAND technology
  • Integrated Power Loss Immunity preserves all your saved work if the power unexpectedly gets cut
  • Aes 256-bit hardware-based encryption keeps data safe and secure from hackers and thieves
  • Crucial 5-year limited warranty

Crucial MX500 was one of the first SSDs that I picked for one of my older laptops.

To this day, the SSD and the laptop are performing satisfactorily.

The SSD replaced a 5400rpm HDD that came with the laptop and it was like infusing a new life into the PC. 

A reinvigoration if you will.

Performance in strict terms is slightly worse than other SATA III drives that I have listed here, but in the real world, you wouldn’t notice the dip.

The slight dip in performance is matched by the price it comes at. 

And for this reason, it is the most widely accepted mainstream SSD on a budget.

As I said, my laptop uses it and from the day I installed the SSD, I haven’t faced any performance issues.

It performs more or less the day it did when I first installed it.

Pros
  • Budget friendly
  • Solid performance.
  • Robust and reliable
Cons
  • Low endurance rating for heavy data writes

WD Blue 3D NAND SATA III SSD

Best Alternative Budget SSD for laptop

Sale
Crucial MX500 250GB 3D NAND SATA 2.5 Inch Internal SSD, up to 560MB/s - CT250MX500SSD1
  • Sequential reads/writes up to 560/510 MB/s and random reads/writes up to 95K/90K on all file types
  • Accelerated by Micron 3D NAND technology
  • Integrated Power Loss Immunity preserves all your saved work if the power unexpectedly gets cut
  • Aes 256-bit hardware-based encryption keeps data safe and secure from hackers and thieves
  • Crucial 5-year limited warranty

For people who wish to look at more options against the Crucial MX500, the WD Blue 3D is a great option.

It provides excellent performance at a very budget-friendly price point.

Side-by-side comparison keeps this SSD a shade less than the 850 EVO, but given the difference in price point, make this a very worthy choice.

The introduction of the first SSD by WD was less than remarkable. 

With the new 3D NAND-based SSDs it wouldn’t be extravagant to say WD is elevating its performance at par with the premium options.

These new SSDs feature as indicated by the name, 3D NAND. 

3D NAND isn’t a new technology, Samsung introduced it first in its 850 series.

WD targets different market segments using different colors. 

The blue signifies that the series is targeted toward mainstream users. Similarly, the black series is targeted at enthusiasts.

Performance wise the WD Blue is capable of delivering read and write speeds of 562MB/s and 532MB/s respectively.

While the sequential performance needs to be improved, its 4K random speeds elevate it into the tier of the best SATA III SSDs available in the market.

Pros
  • Budget friendly
  • 4K randoms writes are equivalent to high tier SATA SSDs
  • High endurance ratings when compared with price
  • Good SSD management software
Cons
  • Sequential performance can be improved
  • Cannot be matched to Samsung 850 EVO on all fronts
  • 3 year warranty

SABRENT 256GB Rocket NVMe PCIe

Best archiving SSD for laptop

SABRENT 256GB Rocket NVMe PCIe M.2 2280 Internal SSD High Performance Solid State Drive (SB-ROCKET-256)
  • M.2 PCIe Gen3 x 4 Interface. Built to the PCIe 3.1 specification / NVMe 1.3 Compliant.
  • Power Management Support for APST / ASPM / L1.2.
  • Supports SMART and TRIM commands. Supports ONFi 2.3, ONFi 3.0, ONFi 3.2 and ONFi 4.0 interface.
  • Advanced Wear Leveling, Bad Block Management, and Over-Provision.
  • All Sabrent SSDs come with FREE Sabrent Acronis True Image for Sabrent Software for easy Cloning. For those who require a specific sector size to clone their existing SSDs: A newly released Sabrent utility enables users to re-format the Rocket drive and choose the sector size of their liking, either 512-bytes or 4K bytes.

The Sabrent SSDs do receive less limelight than they should be having. 

At the price point they come in they tend to provide a very generous range of features.

The drive supports SMART and TRIM commands. Additionally, the drive also features advanced wear leveling, bad block management, and over-provisioning.

The spectrum of capacities is wide too, as it provides variants as high as 4TB.

While the performance does show unevenness in 4K and 64K writes, it offers great sequential read and SQL performance.

The Sabrent rocket M.2 NVMe SSD is a very viable, not to mention budget-friendly option that you can use to upgrade your PC. 

Because the high capacity options are priced lower compared to competitors, if abject performance is not a demand, you can use it as a storage unit too.

Pros
  • Budget friendly
  • Broad spectrum of capacities
  • High sequential writes than SATA drives
  • Low performance loss from thermal throttling
  • 5 year warranty
Cons
  • Small SLC cache
  • Average 4K and 64K write speeds

FAQs

So, those were the best 256 SSDs for laptops that you can buy straight away and upgrade your laptop.

By no means are these the only SSDs out there but I have gone through the efforts of coming up with the top ones so that you don’t have to.

If you have any other SSD that you think deserves to make the list let me know in the comments section and I will include it.

Here are a few more SSD-related FAQs that I think will help remove any residual doubts you may have regarding SSDs.

Is 8GB ram and 256GB SSD enough for laptop?

For work and productivity laptops yes 8GB RAM with a 256GB SSD will serve you well. But if you plan to game and use resource-hungry apps from adobe, for example, you would be better off with 16GB RAM and at least 512GB SSD.

Is 256GB for a gaming PC?

To be honest, if you are building a PC for gaming specifically, you would be better off with a 512GB SSD or more. Not that you cannot make do with it, it’s just that current-gen AAA gaming titles today can easily take 70GB or sometimes more. If you plan to install 2 or 3 games at a time, in addition to essential apps, you may feel the storage is limited.

How long do SSDs last?

On paper SSD, manufacturers estimate that SSDs can last as long as 10 years. While their estimate has some basis owing to storage technological enhancements yet it is a very optimistic number. Realistically, you can expect good quality SSDs to last anywhere from 6 to 8 years.

It’s not an exact estimate. There are many factors that come into play like brand, usage, load, how competent the rest of the hardware is, etc.

I hope you enjoyed reading this article on the best 256GB SSD for laptops as much as I enjoyed writing it.

If you have any other doubts, suggestions, queries or feedbacks, all of them are welcome in the comments section below.

Take care of yourselves and I will see you in the next one!

Bbye!

Electronics Engineer | Former Deputy Manager | Self-Taught Digital Marketer. Owner & Admin Of A Network Of Blogs and Global E-Commerce Stores

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