Hot Flash, Cool Controller
It is well known that NVMe SSD heatsinks are important, whether provided with the drive or with your motherboard, to maintain full transfer speeds. We haven’t seen a roundup of the various heatsinks available however, or at least until now. Guru of 3D took two Kioxia Exceria drives, the PCIe 4.0 Exceria Pro 2 TB and the PCIe 3.0 Exceria G2 1 TB and tested them with five different heatsinks, as well as naked.
The NVMe SSD heatsinks tested include those bundled with the Asus Z690 Maximus Apex, two from Be Quiet!, a ElecGear EL-80P and a Sabrent M.2 2280 SSD Rocket Heatsink. You can see the breakdown of the performance of these coolers, both the temperature under load as well as the transfer speeds in their roundup.
The difference in performance between a naked SSD and one with an NVMe SSD heatsink is marked and goes to show just how important having some cooling is on your NVMe SSD. The difference between the various heatsinks on the other hand is not quite as obvious. Some of the third party coolers did slightly outperform the others, but frankly the results suggest the one on you motherboard is almost as good and certainly less expensive.