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256GB vs 512GB vs 1TB GB SSDs - How Much is Enough for You?

Finding the ideal storage solution for desktop and laptop buyers

Solid State Drive

Short answer:

  • 256GB (or even 128GB) for light/budget users who only browse the internet, watch online videos and use basic programs (Microsoft Office, very light gaming, etc.).
  • 512GB: Users who want more apps, modest media collections & gaming.
  • 1TB: Serious gamers, larger media collections, and/or people who have file-intensive work (video editing, music production, etc.).
  • 2TB: Very heavy gaming/production work – at this point consider mixing a smaller SSD + larger HDD (hard drive) for the budget.

That’s just a very simplistic summary.

For the rest of this feature, we’re going to be breaking down each size, detail what you might want depending on your usage, and recommend the best 256GB, 512GB & 1TB SSDs to ensure you avoid fake options on the market.

(This is a long, in-depth piece, use the contents to guide you!).

Table of Contents

A quick word on where to buy SSDs

Before we get started, we need to touch on the problem with fake SSDs in today’s market.

For whatever reason, storage tends to attract a lot of inauthentic listings that usually use smaller SSDs disguised as a larger size (e.g. a 128GB drive that “pretends” it’s 1TB but will fill up very early).

I point this out because some scammers are cunning and will use a well-reviewed page to deceive buyers into thinking they’re purchasing a well-reputed product (e.g. a listing for a 1TB drive with lots of reviews is changed to a fake 4TB SSD option).

These fake drives are often more common at larger sizes because they lure buyers in with prices around 80-90% less expensive than our top, genuine picks (e.g. a 1TB SSD for $10…).

Unfortunately, we’re here to tell you won’t be able to buy an SSD that cheap for a long time, so be vigilant, keep to our recommendations later in this article if possible, and even when buying from these choices, make sure it is Amazon themselves delivering the product (or a reseller with 98%+ feedback).

If you want to stray to other picks around the web, then we highly recommend purchasing from reputable brands like Corsair and Samsung.