On a motherboard, where is it best to install an M.2 NVMe SSD?

The number of PCIe lines that both motherboards and processors have does not stop growing. If RAM is the main bottleneck in any PC, the second is undoubtedly storage, no matter how fast we have. And it is that without a doubt, correctly place our SSD It is essential to take advantage of all the available bandwidth and reduce latency, but where is it better to install it within a motherboard?

We are immersed in the change towards PCIe 5.0 and this will bring us heart attack speeds, but this will be of no use to us if the configuration of our PC for the SSD is not correct. This is something that many know, but others do not, and due to the increasing use of solid state drives it is clear that connecting more than one SSD has become routine, and therefore, they need to be conveniently configured.

So installing an SSD on a motherboard isn’t that simple?

Well yes and no at the same time. We point out the fact that we are talking about M.2 NVMe SSD or even SATA if it is worth it, but not SATA SSD in use. The problem here is logically the slot where they are punctured.


The SATA port does not distinguish priority beyond Boot or system start, but the M.2 is different, since the PCIe lines are linked and given the greater number of these, the deviation can interfere either with the performance of this or good on latency, which is almost more detrimental than even losing half the throughput along the way.

The problem is precisely that, the latency and therefore the SSD has to be installed in the M.2 that produces the least access time to the PC, and therefore there are a series of keys that we have to take into account.

Each model is a world, as well as each manufacturer

You must have the manual of the motherboard of your PC at hand. Why? Because each plate and model is a world, and each manufacturer has different configurations that we must know exclusively. The theory in this case tells us that the best M.2 to install an NVMe or SATA SSD is the one that is physically closest to the CPU, but it turns out that for some time now this has not always been true.

Therefore, the only option we have to be 100% sure that the correct M.2 is the one we are selecting is the manual of the motherboard and its configuration for SSD. In it we will see if it shares lines, if these lines go to the processor or the chipset and if installing more than one SSD is counterproductive for performance.


Even if it is possible to make a RAID 0 or 10 with two SSDs or several, depending on the board. In this way we can be sure that the configuration will be the best, that the latency will be the minimum and that the performance will be optimal. If you are wondering what the priorities are because, for whatever reason, the manual does not specify it or you are not clear about it, the M.2 that are prioritized are those that are connected to CPU and that they do not share any line with any bus, port or component.

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