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Power Quotient International (PQI) SSD S533-E

Five USB 3.0 Flash Drives For Your Pocket

Unable to supply the previously announced 128 GB version of its latest key-sized USB 3.0 UFD, PQI instead picked the closest capacity match with its pocket-sized S533-E solid-state drive (SSD). Intel’s formidable X25-M 2.5” SSD fills the S553-E’s standard USB 3.0 pocket enclosure.

One might not expect anything spectacular from the design standpoint, but PQI does specify a brilliant-red anodized finish for the drive’s brushed-aluminum shell.

PQI’s S533-E uses a full-sized Type A connector, making it compatible with both USB 3.0 and previous-generation cables. The drive requires a little more power than what the USB 2.0 front-panel ports of some systems are able to provide, which hinders backwards-compatibility. A 5 V connector can supply power from a second cable.

A basic user guide describes how to connect the S533-E to a USB port, while a soft vinyl pouch protects its case from scratches. PQI includes a USB 3.0 cable, but does not add a USB 5 V power adapter to enhance compatibility with older systems. Older systems are usually capable of powering this drive only from rear-panel ports, which is an issue we confirmed using a previous-generation Asus motherboard.

PQI formats its drive in FAT32 for compatibility across multiple operating systems and puts FNet TurboHDD software on that partition. A software license is included on a small slip of paper in the box. Because users are unlikely to have this software installed for every system on which they connect a portable drive, we tested the drive both with and without the added software.

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