Nice M.2 add-on kit for RPi4: 185 MB/sec write speed sequential


A little on the slow side, but options are a good thing and M.2 makes for a nice small, fast storage medium.

Thanks for sharing this.

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It is unfortunate that that takes up similar space as a $10 SATA USB 3 enclosure without the benefit of the lower price or the benefit of the M.2 speeds. I really wish the Raspberry Pi foundation would consider expanding RPi with a proper PCIe slot like the RockPro64 has.


Yeah, that would be awesome. I’m sure it will happen at some point.

I’m sure they are developing to a price point that puts this out of reach right now, but at some point they will need to consider this to remain competitive. Perhaps, one vendor will emerge as a more powerful option for those with need for faster storage, multiple network interface, or high vCPU counts for server-based projects like firewalls or NAS storage needs.

Get better results with the Rock Pro 64 which has an actual high speed PCIe slot. I am sure you would get closer to that 3k read/write speeds which NMVe drives have.


Well, since the GbE port only goes like 112MB/sec, I for one, don’t mind the slower-than-ideal speed this M.2 kit delivers, since it still well exceeds the 112MB/sec.

In other words, if I used this kit as a simple NAS, I would be bottlenecked by the 112MB/sec GbE anyway, not the M.2 kit.

Correct me if i’m wrong but I think the NanoPC-T4 is the only? Pi sized SBC with an onboard m.2 if you want an alternative. It uses the Rockchip RK3399.

The Rock PI 4 also has onboard m.2 as far as I know.

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Completely forgot about that one! Looking at it I remember why I sidelined it in my mind; the M.2 port points outward requiring an extension board for mounting which didn’t appeal to my past criterea. It does have M.2 though, way better than USB.

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Yeah, that’s correct. It needs an extension board for mounting the m.2 drive, but at least the port is there. :stuck_out_tongue:
The Rock Pi 4 is a great little board, that just got a new revision with the Rock Pi 4C, which uses miniDP instead of regular HDMI (which is a weird choice in my opinion).

Do any of those boards above have a Realtek USB controller chip (has a crab logo on it)? If so, I would personally disqualify it from consideration. I was burnt by a flaky Realtek USB controller chip (UAS inflight errors seen in syslog, filesystems got repeatedly corrupted) when I extensively tested a FriendlyElec NanoPi Neo2 (see Armbian forum). This sent me back to Raspberry Pi land, feeling kind of stupid for doubting their superb hardware build quality.

Maybe you all might have better luck with me, but I’ve got this distrust in Realtek chips whereby I’ll avoid them if I can.

I actually have no idea what USB controller it is, but I have had zero issues with it. But again, I’ve been using mainline kernels on it for a long time. I don’t know what kernel Armbian uses for it, but maybe their kernel has a flaw in its USB controller driver?

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