Five USB 3.0 Flash Drives For Your Pocket

Chaintech Apogee Astro And OCZ Enyo

Chaintech Apogee Astro A101

The world of portable storage applauded when Walton Chaintech announced the “world’s smallest USB 3.0 flash drive” last winter, but finding one hasn’t been so easy. Unlike the “paper launch” products of last winter, Chaintech has actually produced a few of these, has maintained its product page, and is continuing its efforts to ramp up full-scale production. As we await retail availability, today’s test can be viewed as a preview of the final product.

Our request for a 128 GB model was met with a 64 GB part that facilitates a more rudimentary performance evaluation. We know that some competing models perform better at higher capacities due to increased parallelism in design, but the compact size of this particular model lends itself to the use of higher density—rather than a larger quantity—in the selection of appropriate ICs. Planned capacities include 128 GB, 64 GB, and 32 GB.

OCZ Enyo 128 GB

A company that advertises higher transfer speeds for its two highest-capacity models, in fitting with the idea of increased parallelism mentioned above, OCZ was more than happy to send its Enyo with a 128 GB capacity, as we requested.

Available in capacities up to 256 GB, the Enyo’s 4.7” length is approximately twice that of traditional thumb drives, while its 2.2” width approximates that of a credit card.

Pocketability is emphasized by the design’s scant 0.4” thickness, though the added cable might require a second pocket. The USB 3.0 “Micro-B” connector is also compatible with the narrower “Micro-B” connector of the previous generation, easing access to data if the correct cable is lost.

The Enyo package includes the drive, cable, information pamphlet, and decorative sticker.

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16 comments
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  • hardcore_gamer
    nice review..thanks toms
    1
  • tony singh
    Another proof of ever growing nature of techonology..
    1
  • rohitbaran
    Quote:
    The heavy-duty gaming hardware used for today’s test is coincidental, as it was already set up on the bench for an upcoming graphics test. It includes Gigabyte’s high-flying X58A-UD9 motherboard.

    Which is the mystery card?
    1
  • rohitbaran
    BTW, I liked Super Talent Super crypt, despite being slower than OCZ and PQI, it is the size I would be comfortable carrying in my pocket.
    0
  • huron
    I know these technologies are more toward the "bleeding edge," but it's nice to know that manufacturers see it as enough of a market to start making products. Maybe USB 3.0 will make it mainstream relatively soon.
    1
  • Anonymous
    Would you be able to use the 128GB as a boot drive for win7 and how would they fall in price/performance between sata ssd and a VelociRaptor?
    -1
  • justsayin
    Where's the hint on the upcoming graphics test?
    0
  • liquidsnake718
    can you play a game like crysis or even warcraft 2 well straight out of this ssd with a no cd crack?
    -1
  • irh_1974
    reclusiveorcWould you be able to use the 128GB as a boot drive for win7 and how would they fall in price/performance between sata ssd and a VelociRaptor?

    I have been saying this to people for years, that one day you will have your whole PC installation on a flash drive. Just plug into a PC, boot from the flash drive and everything is there.
    -1
  • bCubed
    Too bad it will still be some time before usb 3.0 will become mainstream and even longer for extremely good drives to come out
    0
  • MoonSaghar
    a cool drive
    0
  • Anonymous
    I've read that the SuperTalent Express drive runs very hot. Did you notice this, and would it be a problem?
    0
  • Crashman
    jpaul_johnsonI've read that the SuperTalent Express drive runs very hot. Did you notice this, and would it be a problem?

    The big SuperTalent drive was warm, but I don't see that as being a problem. None of the drives were uncomfortably hot.
    0
  • willc
    Great article. With flash drives becoming more popular, it's good to know which ones are the best to go with.
    0
  • ghanz84
    Please share with us what's the file system used on the drives in this review(FAT32 or NTFS) & were they tested with the default filesystems that they were shipped with?
    The reason for asking is cos the FS will affect the performance.
    0
  • Crashman
    ghanz84Please share with us what's the file system used on the drives in this review(FAT32 or NTFS) & were they tested with the default filesystems that they were shipped with?The reason for asking is cos the FS will affect the performance.
    Yes
    0