Asus ux31e SSD Replacement for under $100

ux31eThe short story is that Sandisk made some pretty crappy (both slow & unreliable) SSD’s for these Asus UX31E units and lots of them failed.  Normally it would be just a matter of replacing them with cheap inexpensive mSata or M.2 SSD drives but Asus decided to use some proprietary connector to complicate the task.  Normally this would mean your only option for SSD replacement in this laptop was another extremely expensive and slow Sandisk unit at hundreds of dollars but we’re going to show you a trick to get a much faster SSD up and running in this laptop all for under $100.

Simply remove the 10 bottom screws with a t5 torx screwdriver and the entire metal bottom cover pulls right off…

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and reveals the Sandisk SDSA5JK-128G SSD, part # 54-90-20854-128G.  These also came in a 256GB variant part # SDSA5JK-256G.  This article applies to either one.

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Introducing the M.2 NGFF Mydigital SBe 128GB SSD. Found on Amazon now for only $65.  The 256GB variant can be found on Ebay/Amazon for ~$150

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This is a much faster speed than the original Sandisk SSD but uses a standard M.2 NGFF triple connector which the Asus does not support, so we bring in this adapter to finish the process..

 

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This adapter from Sintech typically has to be ordered from China and runs around $15-25.  Search either Amazon or Ebay for “ux31e ngff” and you will find them.

2014-11-07 22.12.09Here you can see the two side by side for comparison

After sliding the new SSD into the laptop we discovered that a bolt on the bottom of the  adapter was causing it to stick out too far, this prevented the bottom of the laptop casing from fitting properly.

2014-11-07 22.15.06We unscrewed this bolt but were then unable to secure the SSD drive to the adapter.  In this case we used hot glue to secure the SSD down to the adapter as it’s easily removable and quite strong.  You could just as easily use electrical tape or other means to secure it.

Once the bolt was removed the new SSD with the adapter fit under the bottom case and worked perfectly.  For those needing to reinstall Windows after an upgrade we recommend using a USB Drive and Microsoft’s own bootable USB tool located Here.

Total cost: ~$85

Total time to install… about 10 minutes

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