Samsung is one of the most well-known technology giants around the Globe. Its wide variety of products includes some of the best SSDs in the market. 980 Pro was one of their top SSD products for a long time. It was one of their top-selling products, too. Although the 990 succeeded the 980, consumers still buy its predecessor. Some might look in the second-hand market for a better price. The Chinese Market is one of the largest in the World and even offers hard-to-resist products at a street price. The same rule applies to its second-hand market, as well. But, it is also well-known that you should be very careful when you trust them. Learning about people scammed by this kind of trade is not unusual.
This seems to be the case with the 980 Pro counterfeits. When a product is well-regarded and successful, there are also counterfeit offers. They are usually offered at a meaningfully lower price but sold as the original ones. Of course, most of the time doesn’t perform as well as the actual products or offer the same quality level. So, it is advised to be very cautious. If something seems too good to be true, it usually isn’t.
A Chinese user seemed to fall recently for a 980 Pro counterfeit. As it became known in Baidu Tieba forums, the scam SSD was sold at about 130 USD, opposing the 170 USD price tag of the original, in the Chinese second-hand Market, Xianyu. In my opinion, it wasn’t way cheaper, after all. It also came in the official packaging of the original SSD. To make things even harder, the counterfeit had a 980 Pro 2TB sticker and fake firmware that fooled even Samsung’s Magician software. The user had to remove the sticker to find out the truth.
The counterfeit utilizes a TSMC’s DRAM-less 12nm process node controller, the Maxio MAP1602A PCIe 4.0 SSD. This is opposed to the DRAM 8nm Elpis controller utilized in the original 980 Pro. The scam uses X2-9060 (YTMC TLC 3D NAND, 128-layer) of Xtacking 2.0 technology. The original 980 Pro offers 128-layer TLC 3D V-NAND. That means the counterfeit’s performance is way lower than the original’s. As was expected, the user posted benchmarks showing about a 20% performance drop opposing the original 980 Pro. This alone is a big disappointment.
As was already stated, being cautious with the second-hand market is strongly advised. The Chinese market is a perfect example of how easily you can fall for a scam. The general rule of thumb is when something is too good to be true; then it probably isn’t. Be cautious, and stay in the know.