AG3-710-UW11 MB can i upgrade NVMe M.2 vs. SATA M.2 vs. 2.5" SATA SSD

FloridaMan_7
FloridaMan_7 Member Posts: 5 New User
edited December 2023 in Predator Desktops

Hello,

I have the G3-710 MB as part of the Predator G3 AG3-710-UW11. It came with 128GB M.2 SSD (if I understand correctly, this is the SATA M.2 3rd gen 2280 - System info says LITEON CV1-8B128), as well as a 1TB SATA III 7200RPM.

I'm thinking of upgrading with either of the 2 options:

  1. Buying 1TB M.2 (NVMe or SATA) and replacing the 128GB M.2 that I'm currently using.
  2. Buying 1TB 2.5" SATA SSD.

Would you kindly be able to help me answer the following, please?:

A. Can I put a NVMe M.2 drive in there, or does it need to be ONLY the SATA M.2 drive if going the M.2 route (Option 1.)?

B. Will I have significantly higher performance by swapping the M.2 drive, or by going the 2.5" SATA SSD route should give me enough performance increase with the benefit of easier installation and keeping the old drive intact?

Price-wise all the options seem to be about the same ~$45-50.

Currently I'm using the system for playing games and streaming that gameplay on Twitch and YouTube, and I'm experiencing quite a bit of lags lately. My suspicion is that the HDD that holds the games is just not able to keep up together with the CPU (although that upgrade would probably be more complicated and expensive to do). But might be that a fresh install on a new drive might help things too.

Thank you very much for your time and advice!

All the best,
Mike

[Edited the thread to add model name and issue detail]

Best Answer

  • StevenGen
    StevenGen ACE Posts: 9,424 Trailblazer
    Answer ✓

    The only M.2 SSD drive that will work with your G3-710 desktop is the SATA 3 type M.2 SSD drive which is operational now in 128GB form and you want to upgrade to 1TB, I don't know if you can get a 1TB SATA 3 M.2 SSD drive anymore (I could be wrong?) as these SATA 3 M.2 SSD drives are very old and obsolete. Also be aware that your desktop will NOT work with PCIe 3 x2 or PCIe3x4 M.2 SSD drives, so there is no advantage if you fit a new and bigger 1TB M.2 SSD SATA 3 type drive but these drives are faster than a 2.5" SATA 3 SDD drive.

    When doing an upgrade and you don't want to lose your data that you had previously, a clone is the only way to transfer the operating system and data, while a clean install deletes all your previous data and you do this upgrade only if the data is of no concern to you, as a clean install you need to reformat the boot drive with a fresh install of the operating system. Good luck and hope this helps you out.

    The theory between SATA 3 M.2 and 2.5" drives is as follows: the M.2 SATA 3 interface uses the same SATA III protocol as the 2.5" SATA SSD drive, but it has a higher maximum bandwidth of 6 Gbps compared to the 3 Gbps of the 2.5" SATA SSD drive. Additionally, M.2 drives are designed to use the PCI Express (PCIe) interface, which can provide even faster data transfer rates than SATA III.

Answers

  • StevenGen
    StevenGen ACE Posts: 9,424 Trailblazer
    edited December 2023

    Unfortunately NO, the Predator G3-710 desktop only has a 1x interface SATA III M.2 SSD slot at #3 of the mainboard diagram below, and hasn't got provisions for a Gen3 M.2 SSD drive.

    This is the specs of the G3-710 drives:

  • FloridaMan_7
    FloridaMan_7 Member Posts: 5 New User

    Thank you very much, @StevenGen , for the quick answer!

    So if I understand correctly, getting the M.2 SSD variant (replacing my 128GB with new M.2) WOULD NOT make my computer faster than upgrading to SATA 2.5" SSD, please?

    If you would be doing the upgrade, would you move your OS install to the new SSD? And if so, would you do it as a clone, or better to start with a fresh install?

    Appreciate all the help and advice!
    Mike

  • StevenGen
    StevenGen ACE Posts: 9,424 Trailblazer
    Answer ✓

    The only M.2 SSD drive that will work with your G3-710 desktop is the SATA 3 type M.2 SSD drive which is operational now in 128GB form and you want to upgrade to 1TB, I don't know if you can get a 1TB SATA 3 M.2 SSD drive anymore (I could be wrong?) as these SATA 3 M.2 SSD drives are very old and obsolete. Also be aware that your desktop will NOT work with PCIe 3 x2 or PCIe3x4 M.2 SSD drives, so there is no advantage if you fit a new and bigger 1TB M.2 SSD SATA 3 type drive but these drives are faster than a 2.5" SATA 3 SDD drive.

    When doing an upgrade and you don't want to lose your data that you had previously, a clone is the only way to transfer the operating system and data, while a clean install deletes all your previous data and you do this upgrade only if the data is of no concern to you, as a clean install you need to reformat the boot drive with a fresh install of the operating system. Good luck and hope this helps you out.

    The theory between SATA 3 M.2 and 2.5" drives is as follows: the M.2 SATA 3 interface uses the same SATA III protocol as the 2.5" SATA SSD drive, but it has a higher maximum bandwidth of 6 Gbps compared to the 3 Gbps of the 2.5" SATA SSD drive. Additionally, M.2 drives are designed to use the PCI Express (PCIe) interface, which can provide even faster data transfer rates than SATA III.

  • FloridaMan_7
    FloridaMan_7 Member Posts: 5 New User

    Thank you again very much!! Yeah, I'll go with the 2.5" then.

    By the way in this setup since M.2 is theoretically faster, isn't it better just to use the M.2 for the operating system, and install anything over 128GB to the 2.5" SSD?

  • billsey
    billsey ACE Posts: 31,153 Trailblazer

    Actually, according to the block diagram:

    The M key M.2 slot is PCIe 3.0 x4, so an NVMe drive should work, and at a substantially faster rate than SATA. YMMV, but I don't see anything that would preclude it from working… If it were SATA only it would be an x1 port, not x4.

    Click on "Like" if you find my answer useful or click on "Yes" if it answers your question.
  • FloridaMan_7
    FloridaMan_7 Member Posts: 5 New User
    edited December 2023

    Ok, thank you! So in real world, would that make the operation of the OS or playing games any faster/smoother/higher FPS, or I would only see benefits in things like video compilation/editing/transfers of files, please?

  • FloridaMan_7
    FloridaMan_7 Member Posts: 5 New User

    Meaning to compare the M.2 vs 2.5" route in the above. Thank you!!

  • billsey
    billsey ACE Posts: 31,153 Trailblazer

    The difference in performance between your existing M.2 SATA drive and a new M.2 SATA drive or a new 2.5" SATA drive will be minimal. An NVMe M.2 drive will be much faster for data reads and writes, but how well that is reflected in game performance is really dependent on how much the game uses the disk. If the game is using the internet for most of it's data updates then a faster drive won't change the performance much at all. For disk data transfers an NVMe x4 drive will be four times faster than SATA, an x2 drive will be twice as fast…

    Click on "Like" if you find my answer useful or click on "Yes" if it answers your question.