Storage devices speeds – usb, sata, nvme, pcie

Orico hdd rack comes with the ns1066x chip sata to usb bridge.
NS1066/NS1066X USB 3.0 to SATA Bridge Controller

Connected to the Orico rack with the NS1066X chip has a max read speed of ~ 100MB/s on a HDD HGST 500GB 5400RPM SATA 6.0Gb/s – Z5K500-500 and 280 MB/s on a Kingston SSDNOW300 120GB SSD.

To test the speed of a USB stick you can use Cristal Disk Mark on windows or KDiskMark on linux.

USB specification speeds:

USB ProtocolSerial clock data – bitrateMaximum transfer speed
Data throughput
USB 1.012 Mhz / 12 Mbits/s
USB 2.0480 Mhz / 480 Mbits/s / 60 MB/s53.248 MB/s
USB 3.0
USB 3.1 Gen 1
USB 3.2 Gen 1
5 Ghz / 5 Gbits/s / 625 MB/s500 MB/s
USB 3.1 Gen 210 Ghz / 10 Gbits/s1000 MB/s or 1212 MB/s
USB 3.220 Ghz / 20 Gbits/s2424 MB/s
USB 4.040 Ghz / 40 Gbits/s4848 MB/s
USB 4.0 Gen 280 Gbits/s9696 MB/s

USB 3 Gen 1×1 (lanes) – 5 Gbits
USB 3 Gen 2×1 (lanes) – 10 Gbits
USB 4 Gen 3×1 (lanes) – 20 Gbits
USB 4 Gen 4×1 (lanes) – 40 Gbits

Bitrate – is the physical number of bits of data that can be transfered. This is given by the frequency of the clock. From these a part are used part of the transfer protocol, to decide if data is writen or read, verification of data integrity etc.
Maximum transfer speed = maximum clock rate minus the control bits used in the comunication protocol – this is the real speed you will see when copying files.

New NamesUSB 3.2
Gen 1×1
USB 3.2
Gen 1×2
USB 3.2
Gen 2×1
USB 3.2
Gen 2×2
Known As
USB 3.1 Gen 1
and USB 3.0
USB 3.1 Gen 2
Transfer Speed5Gbps10Gbps10Gbps20Gbps
Interface OptionsUSB-A, USB-C,
USB-C Only

Thunderbolt 3 uses the USB-C connecter – it is made by intel so you will find it only on intel hardware.
When usb devices are connected to a Thunderbolt 3 or 4 port they see it as a native usb port with high speed.

Usb cable length is 3 meters for most devices, keyboard or mouse works with bigger cables.
If you need more cable use active usb cable extender for up to 5 meter a cable, or up to 25m by using more devices. If you go with 25m the data is still good but you lose voltage, if you device requires more then 2W of power use external power.

M.2 – is a form factor of physical the slot that is 22mm wide.
The slot can have diferrent pins – it can have a sata connector (two notches) or a pcie connector (one notch) and some motherboards can accept both and switch between them from bios.

SATA speeds

ProtocolBit-rateBit-rate in bytesData transfer speed
SATA ISATA 1.5Gb/s187 MB/s150 MB/s
SATA IISATA 3.0Gb/s374 MB/s300 MB/s
SATA IIISATA 6.0Gb/s750 MB/s600 MB/s

PCIe speeds
PCIe buses can support 1x, 4x, 8x and 16x lanes. M.2 slots can have x2 or x4 only.

PCIe 1.0 – 250MB/s per lane
PCIe 2.0 – 500MB/s per lane
PCIe 3.0 – 1 GB/s per lane with 4x = 4GB/s or 4000MB/s
PCIe 4.0 – 2 GB/s per lane with 4x = 8GB/s

NVMe = Non Volatile Memory Express – it is a storage protocol made for ssds (solid state drive) that takes advantage of the paralel transfer capabilities of flash memory – you have multiple flash modules vs one read/write head per disk in hdds.
THe protocol is used on bigger drives since it requires to have multiple physical flash memory chips.

Western Digital Black WD5002AALX 500GB 7200 RPM 
Tested on SATA II and on SATA III has same resultsYou need a SSD to get any benefit from SATA 3.
It may get same result even on a SATA I given the bandwidth, but I don’t have one to test.

Here you can see a speed comparative between :

  • Kinston DataTraveler 512 MB
  • Sony MicroVault 16GB
  • Verbatim 1GB

SD Cards

V60 – 60 MBps
V90 – 90 MBps

CD, DVD and Blu-ray write speeds

Media1X speedCapacity
CD1.2290.150.73448x = 7.2MB/s
DVD11.0801.324.716x = 21.12 MB/s
Blu-ray Disc36.0004.2925.05-12x=21.45-51.48MB/s

For reading speed drops with seek times of 120-170ms

WiFi speeds

You have to check the router maximum speed on different bands and your client maximum speed. Speed is given by the number of antenas the router/client has and maximum QAM speed and is ussually mentioned by the manufacturer.

WIFI5 or ac protocol 5Ghz band and 866 Mbits PHY (physical bitrate) – this bitrate it is only available when you are close to the router, otherwise it goes down.
The real transfer speed is 70% of the bitrate that your connection reports, as 30% is taken by the transfer protocol, that encrypts your data, has data receive/lost confirmation etc.
So if your os reports a connection of 433Mbits you will get a 300Mbits data transfer speed. For 320Mbits bitrate you get 220Mbits data transfer speed.
Note depending of your position versus the router and other things moving in between your connection bitrate will change all the time.

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