NVMe vs SATA vs M.2 – Difference and Comparison

What is NVMe?

NVMe means Non-Volatile Memory Express. It is a kind of storage device that uses recent technology for storage. NVMe is a communication protocol designed for working with flash memory using a PCIe interface.

They are prepared to take advantage of being parallel nature of solid-state drives. NVMe SSDs combine with the PCIe interface to produce unparallel reading and writing speeds.

However, you can also obtain PCIe-compatible SSDs that are NVMe. NVMe drives were introduced in 2013 and are attached to the PCI express slot on a motherboard rather than using SATA bandwidth.

These drives can deliver an uninterrupted speed of 3.5 GB/s in contrast to SATA SSDs, which limit the speed to 600MB/s.

Thus, NVMe SSDs attain higher speeds than SATA SSDs, such as M2 devices, making them ideal for gaming high-resolution video editing. However, NVME drives are expensive in the market.

What is SATA?

SATA is abbreviated as Serial AT attachment. It is a computer bus that acts as a bridge or an interface for connecting host bus adapters to mass storage devices such as hard disk drives, optical drives, and solid-state drives.

As the preferred interface for storage devices, Serial ATA replaced the previous Parallel ATA (PATA) standard.

SATA helps in transferring data between the computer’s main circuit board and storage devices. SATA transfers data fastly as compared to PATA.

It also enables computers to be simpler and slimmer for cabling and makes it cost-effective. SATA was introduced in 2000. It was created to provide multiple advantages over PATA while reducing cable size and cost.

It also allows native hot swapping and faster data transfer by higher signal transferring rates and are more efficient in transferring data through an I/O queuing protocol.

What is M.2?

An M.2 is also a kind of memory storage device. It is also known as the next-generation form factor. M.2  is a small SSD drive internally connected to storage expansion cards.

An M.2 SSDs are according to the current needs of the computer industry and specifications in terms of their design and performance to enable high-speed storage in thin power-constrained devices like ultrabooks, laptops, tablets, etc.

Some desktop PC peripherals like WI-Fi cards may come in M.2 form factor. The most common usage of M2 is SSD data storage which primarily functions as an alternative to the existing 2.5 storage drives.

These devices are connected and mounted in a separate bay, then connected to the motherboard via SATA cable.

Difference Between NVMe and SATA and M.2

The main difference between NVMe and SATA SSDs is the interface used—NVMe uses a PCIe interface, while SATA SSDs use a SATA interface. in contrast to NVMe, and SATA, M.2 can use both SATA and PCIe protocols as interface.

NVMe, SATA, and M.2 are not the same, but they all work together on a computer. NVMe is an interface connected to the motherboard, while SATA SSDs act as a bridge between optical devices and SSDs; besides this,  M.2 is the SSD form factor which is the most recent and smaller in size.

Comparison Between NVMe and SATA and M.2

SpeedRanges from 3500-7500 MB per second as per generation.Upto 550 MB per second.Ranges from 3500 MB to 7500 MBs per second.
InterfacePCIe Interface.SATA SSDs interface.It uses PCIe and SATA SSDs interface.
AdvantageOffers very high speed while pairing devices.It offers a good balance between affordability and speed.It uses very little space on a desktop or PC.
UseUsed in mid-range laptops and prebuilt desktop PCs.Used in budget range laptops and prebuilt PCs.Used in mid to higher range laptops and prebuilt PCs.
DisadvantageHigher cost.Slower speed.M.2 devices are sometimes more expensive.


  1.  “NVM Express.” NVM Express, Inc. Retrieved 2017-01-24. NVMe is designed from the ground up to deliver high bandwidth and low latency storage access for current and future NVM technologies.
  2. ^“NVMe 1.4 Specification Published: Further Optimizing Performance and Reliability”.