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Trying out the Mushkin Gamma 8TB Gen4 NVMe SSD (2024)

My thoughts on the Mushkin Gamma 8TB SSD: evaluating performance, comparing brands, checking device compatibility, and reliability.
Douglas Cheston



December 16, 2023


I’ve been on the lookout for a new SSD to upgrade my gaming console, and decided on the Mushkin Gamma 8TB drive. Below I elaborate on its gaming performance, how it stacks up against the competition, and the installation and longevity.


Property Value Property Value
Digital Storage Capacity 8 TB Hard Disk Interface NVMe
Connectivity Technology USB Brand Mushkin Enhanced
Special Feature PS5 / PS4 COMPATIBLE Hard Disk Form Factor 2280 Inches
Hard Disk Description Solid State Drive Compatible Devices Laptop, Gaming Console, Desktop
Installation Type Internal Hard Drive Color Gen 4 PCIe


Click on photos to enlarge them:

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Performance Evaluation in Gaming Consoles

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In the quest to get the best gaming experience, there’s a lot riding on storage speed and capacity, especially with today’s massive game titles. I’ve been keeping tabs on the Mushkin Gamma 8TB, and here’s the rundown on its performance in gaming consoles, notably the mighty PS5.

First off, the speeds are saying a lot - we’re looking at a Max Read of up to 7,000MB/s and a Max Write of 5,900MB/s. Trust me, that’s a ton of bandwidth that can seriously cut down on loading screens. Translating these speeds into real-time gaming, it’s smooth sailing through game levels without stutters, which can be the bane for any gamer.

Here’s where the SSD really shines:

  • Quick loading times for games – noticeably a leap from traditional SATA drives.

  • Large storage capacity means a solid game library without the constant uninstall/reinstall dance.

  • Compatibility with PS5 has been tested and benchmarked – a big relief since not all SSDs play nice with Sony’s latest console.

But nothing’s perfect. Some folks have reported packaging errors, like the drive being labeled as Gen 3 instead of Gen 4. That said, the actual SSD performance is unaffected; it’s a Gen 4 through and through, and it’s been locking in speeds that rival the console’s internal drive when installed properly with a heatsink.

I’m getting ahead of myself here, but take note, a third-party heatsink is a must for the PS5 to keep those temps in check. Mushkin’s not new to the game, but it’s still something to remember when you’re doing the setup.

Price-wise, the value is solid for an 8TB beast, especially when you catch it on sale. I mean, when you look at the competition, Mushkin’s offering often lands as the more wallet-friendly option without skimping on performance.

There have been reports about inconsistencies in speed tests compared to other Gen 3 drives, yet the majority of gamers report that in-console performance is as good as it gets. And, it’s not just PS5 owners reaping the benefits; PC users also report this dynamo of a drive excelling in read/write speeds across various tasks.

I came across some hiccups from users, mainly dealing with defective units or misleading product labeling. While these are genuine concerns, they seem to be the exception rather than the rule. Plus, Mushkin’s been responsive to these issues, putting a lot of my initial concerns to rest.

All things considered, for the sheer performance boost and the massive space to grow your game library, the Mushkin Gamma is pretty much an ace in the hole. Just remember that while the PS5 caps speeds due to software limitations, you’re still getting a drive that outperforms many others in real-world tests, all without breaking the bank.

Comparison with Competing Brands

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When it comes to SSDs, the market is replete with options, but the Mushkin Gamma 8TB Gen4 NVMe SSD holds its ground as a compelling choice. After trying out this SSD and stacking it against competing brands, there’s a lot to consider. To start off:

  • Price point: The Mushkin often wins on cost. Brands like Samsung and Seagate are heavy-hitters in this space, but you’re not always getting a bang for your buck proportionate to the extra dollars spent.

  • Performance: With a max read speed of 7,000MB/s and max write of 5,900MB/s, the Mushkin can stand toe-to-toe with other high-end options, even if it’s sporting the Phison E16 controller rather than the latest E18.

  • Compatibility: The fact it works with a range of devices, including PlayStation consoles, is a huge plus. Few SSDs are this versatile.

  • Reliability: The 5-year warranty gives peace of mind, though it’s a standard offering among top-tier SSDs.

One should be wary of the Phison Controller (E16/18) that the Mushkin line uses. While providing solid performance, it’s not the latest and greatest on the market. High-end gamers and professionals might opt for the newer controllers for that incremental performance boost, albeit at a higher price.

While Mushkin Enhanced generally isn’t as well-known as some other brands, their ALPHA, DELTA, and GAMMA series SSDs have been making waves, particularly for their price-to-performance ratio. They’re proving you don’t need to break the bank for quality storage.

The packaging mishap concerning PCIe generations could deter some buyers, but most users report the drives do run at Gen4 speeds, as advertised. It’s a hiccup, sure, but not one that impacts performance.

It appears some users have faced issues with defective units or incorrect labeling leading to confusion, but these seem to be outliers compared to the majority positive experience.

From a personal standpoint, I’ve been pretty satisfied with the Mushkin Gamma’s performance so far. Considering that speed tests on the PS5 show results nearly matching the internal SSD, and recognizing how smoothly it integrates with the system, the value here is undeniable.

Adding a third-party heat sink was a breeze, and the SSD’s installation was far from daunting –supporting the claim that it’s suitable for both the tech-savvy and the casual user.

In all, while the Mushkin may not be the undisputed speed king, its price-performance ratio, broad compatibility, and solid build quality make it a worthy competitor in an oversaturated market. If you’re not chasing the marginal gains of the latest controller and want a robust SSD with plenty of space for games or creative projects, this Mushkin offering stands out as a smart, budget-friendly choice.

Installation and Compatibility across Devices

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When upgrading or building a gaming setup, the Mushkin Gamma 8TB Gen4 NVMe SSD seems to be a high-capacity storage contender that’s worth a look. My primary concern was compatibility across devices; luckily, installation was a breeze on different platforms. Here’s a quick rundown:

  • Desktop PC: Just plugged into the M.2 slot on my motherboard, and boom, my PC recognized it instantly.

  • Laptop Notebooks: Had to check the specs for NVMe support, but once confirmed, it was smooth sailing.

  • PlayStation: Needed a third-party heat sink to match Sony’s requirements, but after that, installation was a snap, and the PS5 benchmarked it favorably.

Now, while the SSD markets itself as plug-and-play across several devices, it’s crucial to mention that hardware and firmware versions can affect performance, so double-checking compatibility is vital. You might face situations like packaging errors – an unexpected but thankfully isolated incident that caused some confusion since the packing listed the SSD as Gen3 when it was, in fact, a Gen4.

I paired this with a third-party heat sink as Sony requires for the PS5, expecting a bit of a hassle, but to my surprise, the PlayStation handbook was dead on – installation was super simple. The heat sink seems non-negotiable for maintaining optimal temperatures, especially during marathon gaming sessions. Though it was an added cost and step, it’s definitely a necessity rather than an option.

Truth be told, performance has been mostly solid, though some speed inconsistencies during benchmarks were noted. It wasn’t anything drastic, but definitely something to keep in mind if your workload demands consistent high-speed data transfer.

And let’s talk about the capacity – 8TB is massive. For someone like me, who dabbles in content creation alongside heavy gaming, this kind of storage space is a godsend. I can have my entire game library installed with plenty of room to spare for 4K video projects.

On the flip side, there have been reports of drives being defective right out of the box, which raises some concerns, but then again, that’s what warranties are for. Besides, no issues here so far.

Overall, the value proposition of this drive is strong. The balance between price, performance, and compatibility makes it a good choice, especially if you’re looking to upgrade from a Gen3 without breaking the bank. Sure, it’s not the latest and greatest, but it nails the sweet spot for what I need right now.

Longevity and Reliability Assessments

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When it comes to longevity and reliability of SSDs, particularly when we’re shelling out big bucks for a high-capacity drive like the Mushkin Gamma 8TB Gen4, there are a few key factors that I consider essential:

  • Manufacturer reputation and history of reliability in the market

  • Warranty length which often reflects the manufacturer’s confidence in their product

  • Controller technology, since that’s the brain of the drive

  • User reviews, as they often reveal common issues or strengths over time

Taking a closer look at the Mushkin Gamma’s specs and factoring in community feedback, you’re getting a drive from a company that’s been a player in the game for quite some time. Mushkin isn’t as large as some of its competitors, but it’s managed to carve out a reputation for offering solid performance at a more palatable price point, particularly among the gaming crowd.

The 5-Year Limited Warranty is a critical piece of the puzzle. It’s the industry standard for high-performance drives, which adds a layer of reassurance. If a company’s willing to back its tech for half a decade, they’re confident it won’t bail on you in the middle of a critical gaming session or when you’re knee-deep in content creation.

Now, onto the controller—the heartthrob of every SSD. The Phison Controllers, namely the E16/E18 variants, are well-regarded in the industry. The E18 is notably the newer and faster option, but both are proven performers. Based on the information provided, there’s a bit of a mixed bag on whether or not users are consistently getting E18 speeds, but so far, most suggest that the drives do deliver as promised.

User reviews, often a goldmine of real-world usage, seem mostly positive. There’s talk of excellent game load speeds and system performance, with many expressing satisfaction after plugging into a PS5, as detailed in my PS5 use of the Corsair MP600 PRO LPX 8TB SSD Black. However, a few reports cite issues with mislabeled packaging and inconsistent benchmark results, which is worth noting for potential buyers.

Now for a brief Markdown list summarizing these thoughts:

  • Pros:

  • Reputable brand with a solid track record

  • 5-year warranty is reassuring

  • Phison Controllers are a trusted name

  • Mostly positive user reviews with good performance feedback

  • Cons:

  • Some reports of mislabeling which can cause confusion

  • Speed inconsistencies in some user benchmarks

In conclusion, while every product has its quirks, the Mushkin Gamma seems like a solid contender in the high-capacity SSD battlefield. It’s got the warranty, the tech, and user backing to suggest it’ll be a reliable workhorse for your gaming or content needs. However, do keep an eye out for potential labeling mistakes and ensure you’re getting the actual performance you expected—take the time to do your sanity checks after installation. Otherwise, it looks like a compelling choice especially when spotted at a hefty discount or sale.