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How Many SSDs Can You Have?

The introduction of the SSDs or Solid State Drives has changed the way people are gaming or working on their PCs. Before, gamers were stuck on the loading screen for a few minutes. With SSDs, load times are faster now, so much so that you can’t even go take a break while waiting for the game.

SSD storage back then was very expensive, so multiple SSDs required spending a lot of money if you want 512GB of storage. But now, a 1TB SSD will cost you about $200 to $300, depending on the brand.

In this article, we’ll talk about how many SSDs can you have in a single system and how you can maximize your SATA SSD ports if ever.

How Many SSDs Can You Have?

Installing an M2 SSD How Many SSDs Can You Have

The answer is simple: it depends on how many SSD slots your motherboard has. There are motherboards out there that have one to two SSD slots, while there are those that will give you more. The SATA standard will probably give you about 6 to 8 drives, but SATA SSDs are limited.

Depending on the mounting options and the size of the SSD storage, you might be able to get about 2 to 4 SSD drives in compact motherboards and cases. But some people get creative enough that they use tape to mount their SSDs to the case panels. This is perfectly fine because there are no moving parts in an SSD that would be disrupted by rattling or bumping.

Motherboard supports may vary for SSD storage. Some motherboards may support a dedicated SSD, an M.2 SSD slot combined with HDD slots, or a hybrid of both combinations. If your motherboard doesn’t have a dedicated SSD slot, then you can use a caddy to install the said drive into your laptop’s optical drive spot.

SATA slots are still common amongst motherboards and is still considered the best slots for hard drive option, regardless if it’s an SSD or traditional HDD. M.2 slots are relatively smaller and easy to use, making them perfect for small-form motherboards and laptops.

Note that there are SSDs that use NVMe bandwidth and will take up an M.2 form factor, and if your motherboard supports them, you could have more SSDs installed in a system compared to utilizing SATA drives. However, motherboard may restrict bandwidth for NVMe drives, so your NVMe M.2 SSD might not even function to its full potential.

PCIe slots are far superior than SATA SSDs in terms of size and they’re utilized for high-performance gaming rigs or systems with RAID configurations.

To sum it up, it boils down to how many SATA ports are available in your motherboard that will determine how many SSDs you can install. For example, my motherboard allows me to install 2 NVMe SSDs and 2 slots for an SSD drive. In theory, I could install 2 1TB NVMe SSDs and Traditional SATA drives (HDD) for storage), or use one of the SATA slots to house a SATA SSD.

So you see, running multiple SSDs will boil down to how many SSDs your motherboard supports and how big your wallet is.

How Do You Identify SSD Slots?

Believe it or not, identifying SSD slots is very easy. If you want to mix SSds, or just want to find out if your motherboard supports all other SSD types, then this is how you tell which slot is which.

Refer To The Manual

The best source of information will always be your motherboard’s user manual. Head on over to the Technical Specifications section and you should be able to see the kinds of SATA port your motherboard has, if it support SATA III, and other important details.

Check Specs Online

If you’ve chucked your motherboard’s user manual, then don’t fret. You can still check your motherboard’s specs online so as long as you know the motherboard model.

What’s The Ideal Storage Capacity For An Internal SSD?

Taking into consideration your operating system, some productivity programs, and possibly some light gaming, 512GB storage capacity might be more than sufficient for the average Joe and Jane.

For gamers who like to show off their libraries, they’re better off with 1TB or 2TB of SSD storage. They can run multiple SSDs too if they want to get more than 2TB.

Is Having Multiple SSDs Worth It?

The answer is YES. Regardless of your SATA setup, having more than one SSD gives you some advantages.

  1. More storage capacity compared to buying just a singular SSD. Sometimes, it’s a lot cheaper to buy 2 512GB SSDs than 1 1TB SSD, but the amount of money you save is negligible at best.
  2. In case one of your SSDs malfunction, you still have a back up SSD that’s working.

But ideally, you really want to use a traditional HDD if you’re thinking about storing files. SSDs should be used for storing programs and applications.

Is a 256GB SSD Enough?

For gaming? Not in the least, unless you’re planning on installing just one game title on there. 256GB SSDs are commonly used in laptops (the non-gaming types, at least). Some office PCs may have a 256GB SSD installed if it’s prebuilt.

Is 512GB SSD Enough?

Gaming laptops are equipped with 512GB SSDs at the very least, but they have room to accommodate another NVMe SSD in case you ever want to upgrade.

For gaming, 512GB is more than enough, provided that you don’t have a lot of games installed or if you’re just loading in a couple of your most-played games.

The Wrap Up

The moment you install a Solid State Drive SSD into your system, you’ll never want to go back to using a traditional HDD for anything other than storage.

James Stephenson

james stephenson profile picJames is a gaming and tech enthusiast. He has been playing computer games since the Commodore 64 days in the 80s. He has worked as a Broadcast Engineer with BBC News and knows a thing or two about building, fixing, and playing with PCs.