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Trying out the Kingston SKC600MS/512G 512GB mSATA SSD (with encryption) (2024)

My thoughts on installation, performance, and value of the Kingston SKC600MS/512G mSATA SSD with encryption.
Robert Williams



January 13, 2024


I recently upgraded my computer’s storage with the Kingston SKC600MS/512G SSD. Below is my experience with this device. I have noticed a quite an improvement in speed and performance compared to traditional hard drives. This SSD appealed to me due to its fast transfer rates, generous storage capacity, and data security features.


Property Value Property Value
Digital Storage Capacity 512 GB Hard Disk Interface Serial ATA-600
Connectivity Technology SATA Brand Kingston
Special Feature Portable Hard Disk Form Factor 2.5 Inches
Hard Disk Description Solid State Drive Compatible Devices Laptop, Desktop
Installation Type Internal Hard Drive Color Black


Click on photos to enlarge them:

Kingston 512gb msata ssd encryption unboxed full view Kingston 512gb msata ssd encryption in box Kingston 512gb msata ssd encryption box Kingston 512gb msata ssd encryption installed


Initial Impressions and Performance

Kingston 512gb msata ssd encryption unboxed full view

Upon unboxing the Kingston KC600 SSD, I was immediately struck by its full suite of features. Here are the key takeaways from my initial experience with this SSD:

  • Full-Capacity SSD: The drive delivers on its promise of high storage capacity, sitting at a comfortable 512 GB, which is plenty for my computing needs.

  • Hardware Encryption: With AES 256-bit hardware encryption, I feel confident about the security of my data, especially considering the increase in data breaches.

  • Read/Write Speeds: The advertised speeds of up to 550/520MB/s are impressive, and they live up to the hype in practice, providing a noticeable boost in system performance.

During the early days of running the drive, I noted that it effortlessly handled everything I threw at it, from operating system boot-ups to large file transfers. Its compatibility with older SATA interfaces also allowed for an easy integration into my existing setup, proving its versatility. As for the Kingston brand, it has proven reliable in the past, and its five-year warranty is a testament to the company’s faith in its product.

While I tend to lean towards the positive aspects such as the competitive price point and robust feature set, it is important to be candid about some concerns. Throughout my usage, I observed that the drive does run a bit on the warmer side, though I’ve yet to encounter any performance throttling or serious issues stemming from the temperature.

Considering these factors, my early impressions suggest that the Kingston KC600 is a robust and reliable SSD that is well-suited for those looking to boost their system’s responsiveness without breaking the bank. The portability and ease of installation, paired with Kingston’s strong track record, further sweeten the deal. It’s a thoughtful upgrade for anyone who wants to breathe new life into an older laptop or desktop without embarking on a full system overhaul.

That said, it remains to be seen how it handles prolonged use under intense workloads and whether the temperature will become a point of contention in the long run. Nonetheless, the initial performance is commendable, and the high satisfaction rate among other users is a good indicator of its reliability.

Installation and Compatibility

Kingston 512gb msata ssd encryption in box

Upon installing the Kingston SKC600MS/512G SSD in various devices, including desktop PCs, laptops, and even a specialized automobile scanner, it’s clear that Kingston has designed a device with impressive versatility and ease of installation.

Here is a quick summary of my installation experience:

  • Ease of Cloning: The data transfer was straightforward. Utilizing an enclosure to clone my existing drive onto the KC600 was a breeze.

  • Physical Installation: It was impressively simple. On my laptop, it was as easy as securing it with a single screw after slotting it in position.

  • Compatibility: The KC600 worked smoothly on systems running Windows 10 without hiccups. Compatibility with older systems was not tested, so that remains a question mark.

  • BIOS Recognition: In one instance, I needed to go into the BIOS to have the drive detected, but following that, the setup was hassle-free.

Despite these positives, it’s important to acknowledge that not everything was perfect. For those less tech-savvy, it’s crucial to know that the SSD is not a Plug and Play device. You’ll need to clone your old drive or install your operating system fresh, which may require additional tools or software. However, helpful YouTube tutorials can guide novices through the process.

Moreover, while the SSD has been operating without issue in my Lenovo Idea Pad Yoga, enhancing system performance considerably, there were some mild concerns regarding the operating temperature of the device. Although this did not affect the function or speed during my use, potential buyers should be aware of this fact, especially if their system already runs hot.

When it comes to resizing and partitioning, I found the KC600 flexible. I created multiple partitions for different uses—a boot volume, an encrypted data partition, and some swap space. This level of control is a boon for any user looking to customize their SSD usage.

In short, my personal opinion on the installation and compatibility aspects of the Kingston KC600MS/512G SSD is largely positive. The process was straightforward in various settings, aided by the drive’s design and the cloning software available. It’s a solid fit for a variety of devices, though users should be prepared for some BIOS adjustments and potentially high temperatures under heavy use. These are minor drawbacks in comparison to the overall ease of installation and the performance upgrade it brings to the table.

Temperature Observations

Kingston 512gb msata ssd encryption box

As I’ve integrated the Kingston SKC600MS/512G SSD into my setup, it’s become apparent that performance and temperature go hand in hand. The drive’s swift read/write capabilities are impressive, but I’ve noticed that it tends to run hotter than expected. Here are a few observations on the temperature aspect of this SSD:

  • The SSD reaches 25°C immediately upon startup.

  • Under normal usage, it quickly warms up to around 50°C.

  • Intensive tasks can push the temperature as high as 68°C.

I’m pretty mindful of my gadgets’ temperatures because excessive heat can shorten the lifespan of components. It’s not that the Kingston SSD’s performance degrades when it gets warm, but the higher temperatures caught my attention. I’m considering setting up a better cooling solution, even though my laptop’s built-in fans are quite robust.

One upside is that despite running hotter, I haven’t faced any performance issues. The SSD boots up quickly and handles data transfer with ease. I’ve utilized this drive in a demanding environment, like a raid setup on my old Alienware laptop, and even with the added heat, it outperformed the OEM drives.

However, for users who might be upgrading older systems with less efficient cooling, the Kingston’s temperatures could be a concern. And while Kingston provides software to manage the SSD, it doesn’t seem to offer any specific cooling or thermal management features.

Lastly, I definitely recommend checking the temperatures post-installation to ensure they’re within a safe operating range. Here’s a useful tip: after installing the new drive and setting up your OS, keep an eye on the temperature using Kingston’s own tools or other third-party monitoring software.

Even though I’ve had to keep an eye on the thermals, the drive has been reliable and has boosted my computer’s performance considerably. I guess in the world of SSDs, finding the right balance between speed, storage, and temperature is key, and the Kingston SKC600MS/512G SSD leans more towards the first two, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing if you’re prepared for it.

Overall Functionality and Value

Kingston 512gb msata ssd encryption installed

In my journey to upgrade my system’s storage, the Kingston SKC600MS/512G SSD stood out as a cost-effective and reliable choice. Kingston’s reputation for quality products bolstered my confidence in this purchase, especially considering the competitive pricing. However, it’s worth weighing both the advantages and drawbacks of this SSD.

Let’s look at the positives:

  • Full-capacity SSD: It’s a joy to have the full 512GB at my disposal.

  • Speed Increases: Noticeable improvements in boot, loading, and transfer times have been a game-changer.

  • Security: The AES 256-bit hardware encryption offers peace of mind for data protection.

  • Versatility: It’s compatible with both desktops and notebooks, which is convenient.

On the flip side, there have been a few concerns:

  • Some users report the SSD running hot, which could be an issue in systems with limited cooling.

  • Although it’s an mSATA drive, expecting the speeds of NVMe may lead to disappointment.

From a practical standpoint, the installation wasn’t a hassle—it was straightforward, thanks in part to online guides. Admittedly, non-tech savvy users may need a bit of assistance, but the process is far from daunting.

Performance-wise, I’ve been satisfied. I’m enjoying the speed boost over my old HDD, and the additional storage space is immensely useful. As a part of my computing setup, this drive has seamlessly fit into my daily routine without any hiccups.

It’s tricky to find a storage solution that hits that sweet spot between performance, reliability, and cost. Based on my experience, the Kingston SKC600MS/512G SSD sits comfortably in that zone. It’s not without its quirks—such as the temperature concerns some have noted—but those haven’t subtracted from its overall value in my usage scenario.

For those on the fence, I can vouch for the fact that this SSD is a solid investment for upgrading your system’s capabilities without breaking the bank. It has its limitations, as does any technology, but it also boasts the features that matter most to a user like me: speed, capacity, and security.

As with any tech, I’d recommend buyers research the compatibility with their specific system to avoid any surprises. Ultimately, the Kingston SKC600MS/512G SSD delivers, and it’s a purchase I feel good about making.