Fake SSD: Fake Samsung SSD 980 Pro circulating in China

Another case of: People have to be very careful when buying used hardware: SSDs are circulating in China that should actually be Samsung’s second fastest model – the SSD 980 Pro, with a capacity of 2 TB. They are secretly slower no-name SSDs.

A member of the Chinese Baidu forum shows that nothing is conspicuous at first. The used item arrived in Samsung packaging; the M.2 card itself had the typical Samsung sticker.

The SSD was bought via Taobao’s used trading platform Xianyu, practically a Chinese Ebay. It cost 880 yuan, the equivalent of around 120 euros. A real Samsung SSD 980 Pro with 2 TB (from €165.90) ​​now costs almost €50 more in this country.

Installed in the notebook, Windows reads the model as Samsung SSD 980 Pro 2 TB. Samsung’s own Magician software also works with the data carrier. That means: Not just someone put a cheap SSD in Samsung packaging and transferred the sticker, but actively installed a customized firmware. This does not mean that it is an isolated case.

The chips under the SSD sticker ultimately prove that it is a fake: the memory components come from the Chinese manufacturer YMTC, the controller is supplied by the Chinese company Maxio. Unlike the real 980 Pro SSDs, there is no soldered DRAM chip for cache. Samsung uses chips and controllers from its own development and production.

The SSD with the Samsung sticker.
(Image: 东-董咚懂冬 / Baidu)

After all, in this case it was actually a PCI Express 4.0 SSD with a capacity of 2 TB. Depending on the benchmark, the model achieved a read speed of a good 4.2 to 4.8 GB/s and a write speed of almost 4.0 to 4.5 GB/s. The real Samsung SSD 980 Pro achieves 7.0 or 5.1 GB/s.


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