Can Intel Optane Memory Outperform SSDs? Everything You Should Know

Intel has always been a leader in developing tools to improve the performance of our PCs. Founded in 1968, it is one of the largest and most profitable companies in the world, with a global turnover of more than $60 billion. It is mainly known for the production of chips, but also produces communication and data processing equipment.

Since 2015, Intel has been working on ultra-fast memory technology that could be a solution for expensive semiconductor hard disk drives (SSDs). Three years ago, Intel launched its ultra-fast memory cache module called Intel Optane Memory to accelerate slower hard drives.

So let’s see where Intel’s Optane memory is?

It should be noted that Intel Optane memory is a caching technology and it takes some time for the algorithm to determine which applications you use most often so that it can be stored in memory for fast opening.

HDD vs Intel Optical Memory + HDD

For this review I am using my laptop, which is equipped with an Intel Core I5-8300H, a GTX 1050 and 8 GB RAM with a 1 TB hard disk drive and 16 GB Intel Optane memory. With Optane switched off, I recorded read and write speeds of 145.8 MB/s and 124.3 MB/s respectively. When Intel Optane is enabled, the read and write speeds are 931.5 MB/s and 159.9 MB/s respectively. These tests show a significant improvement in reading speed, although the writing speed has not increased significantly.

These tests were performed using the Crystal Disk Mark.

The startup time increased significantly after the Intel Optane memory was activated. When Intel’s Optane memory is turned off, it takes about 25 seconds to start; when Optane memory is turned on, it starts in 22 seconds at the first attempt, but the start time drops to 18 seconds at the second attempt, and at the fifth attempt the start time is 13 seconds, and the story has remained the same ever since.


Intel Optical Memory + HDD vs SSD

These tests were performed on PCs with the same processor and memory, but 1. The system has a 2TB Seagate Barracuda hard disk drive and 32GB Intel Optane memory, while the 2nd system has a 2TB Seagate Barracuda hard disk drive and 32GB Intel Optane memory. is equipped with a 120GB WD Green SSD and a 2TB Seagate Barracuda hard disk drive.

In tests conducted by Crystal Disk Mark, the 1. system had read and write speeds of 1125.2 MB/s and 223.4 MB/s respectively, while the 2. system had read and write speeds of 2.5 MB/s and 290.7 MB/s respectively. These tests clearly imply that the Intel Optane based system broke with the SSD in read speed, while the SSD did slightly better in write speed.

In terms of boot time, the system on the SSD boots in 17 seconds, while the system on Intel Optane boots in 28 seconds on the first attempt, but after the third pass, the boot time dropped to 14 seconds, and the story has remained the same since then.


The combination of an Optane memory module with a traditional hard drive can really improve system performance and in some cases even outperform a cheap SSD, but there are a few points to keep in mind here.

  1. Intel Optane memory is in the M.2 form factor and therefore requires a motherboard that supports M.2 lines. In addition, not all Intel chipsets are supported, let alone AMD chipsets. Your chipset must be slightly higher than the seventh generation to support it.
  2. Optane memory works with all types of RAM modules, hard drives and graphics cards that fit on an Optane compatible motherboard.
  3. Intel Optane memory is available in configurations of 16 or 32 GB. For example, if you have many frequently used applications, they may not be useful because cache memory is limited.
  4. System acceleration with Intel Optane memory is only supported on Windows 10 64-bit. Drivers that support and manage this volume are not supported by other operating systems. Try using a different operating system such as . For example, if you install Windows 7, the memory capacity of Intel Optane becomes unusable and can lead to data loss.
  5. Although SSDs beat Optane storage in our tests, if you get a few good SSDs like the Samsung Evo or the Crucial MX500, they will outperform Intel’s Optane storage 65% of the time.
  6. If you are considering connecting your SSD to an Intel Optane module for turbocharging, get it out of your head. Your money is better spent on upgrading your RAM.

Do you have to buy it?

Absolutely yes, unless you can spend on high quality SSD with reasonable capacity. I use it and so far it’s been a pleasant experience.

I hope this article will work as planned. Tell us your thoughts on the subject. If there is something I forgot to mention, or if there is a topic you want me to cover, please let me know in the comments below.

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