Newegg.com had a sale the other day, offering an ADATA 32GB USB thumbdrive (memory stick, flash drive, jump drive, call it what you want) for $17.99 after rebate (free shipping at the time). Not a bad price given the capacity of the drive, so I figured I would give it a shot. The drive is by ADATA and I don’t know much about the company, or their product line. But it’s been my experience that, when it comes to flash memory, you get what you pay for.
For example, a year or two back, I picked up a 16GB drive from a company called PQI. I forget what I paid for it but it wasn’t much. And while the drive remains functional to this day, it has also proven to be the slowest damn memory stick I’ve ever seen in my life. So, I figure I got what I paid for. In other situations I’ve had thumbdrives that just outright failed after only a minimal amount of use.
So, skipping my due dilligence, I jumped on this ADATA deal and hoped for the best. And at this point I’m very happy with the drive. But since it’s my first USB 3 thumbdrive, I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect. So, for purely anecdotal comparison, I just ran a couple of quick tests with the Blackmagic Disk Speed Test application. Since my late 2012 Mac Mini has USB 3.0 onboard, I ran a test there. I also have a Belkin USB 2 hub attached to the Mini, so I ran a test with the drive attached to the hub (because it will force the drive to step down to USB 2 speeds). And, since the hub wasn’t a fair test of pure USB 2, I ran one more test by attaching the drive directly the the USB 2 port on my Early 2011 MacBook Pro.
Sure, the USB 3 isn’t taking full advantage of the bus, but it is a good step faster than USB 2. And for the price, it’s a nice chunk of storage the fits comfortably in my pocket. Not a bad deal. It blows the doors off that deal I got on that old PQI drive.
Update: 10/17/13 11:37am
Interested in seeing a speed test from that PQI drive that I mentioned? It’s not pretty!