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Benchmark Results: Folder Transfer

Nine External Thunderbolt Storage Devices, Rounded Up

We focused most of our attention on the performance of sequential transfers. However, not all sequential tests are the same. You might move a large move file 128 KB at a time. But a folder filled with different-sized files can still be moved sequentially using smaller blocks, too. The performance you see from such a mixture is not necessarily consistent with what we just saw writing a huge Blu-ray rip to each Thunderbolt device.

Testing our RAID 0-based enclosures, our rankings are largely the same as the previous page. The only exception is LaCie’s Little Big Disk, which outperforms the 2big, G-RAID Thunderbolt, and WD My Book Thunderbolt Duo.

Thunderbolt's benefits become clearer using single-drive devices with 3.5" disks. Moving a single file to the GoFlex Desk resulted in similar performance from Thunderbolt and USB 3.0. However, USB doesn't support command queuing. As a result, Thunderbolt takes a 22% lead when transferring bulk files. This is also an advantage when it comes to editing video, as data caching behaves similarly.

We see Elgato’s Thunderbolt SSD surge back because it's no longer getting hammered by incompressible data. Consequently, it matches the performance of Seagate's GoFlex Ultra-Portable (Thunderbolt or USB 3.0).

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