Whether you've built your own portable SSD or have an old drive lying around you want for backups, there are a number of reasons why an external M.2 SSD case might be appealing. However, it has been difficult to find M.2 SSD cases which are designed solely to accommodate the most compact M.2 2230 form factor drives. A post by the AKIBA PC Hotline drew our attention to an attractive looking M.2 2230-only solution: very small with aluminum alloy construction and a USB 3.2 Gen2 connection for up to 1,000 MB/s transfers.
【今日の人気記事】更新：M.2 Type 2230 SSD専用の外付けケースが入荷、USB 3.2 Gen2対応 https://t.co/EXQE5PNYE4 #自作PC pic.twitter.com/l3YUwddwoDAugust 28, 2023
M.2 2280 SSD external drive cases are easy to find, and you can get them from mainstream storage brands like Sabrent. They are particularly useful when you upgrade a system and end up with a spare M.2 stick, for example. Most commonly sized to accommodate up to M.2 2280 drives, they are also typically compatible with smaller sticks like 2242 and 2230.
When purchasing an external M.2 enclosure, buyers should also watch out for some other specs. Pay attention to the M.2 key interface supported (B-key, B&M-key, or M-key) for NGFF, SATA and / or NVME drive support. This headlining M.2 2230 model supports the M-key, so bear that in mind.
Another thing to watch out for, on the technical side of things, is the interface and transfer speeds supported. Here, the USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C connector is claimed to support a little over 1,000 MB/s transfers both ways.
This enclosure looks nice with an aluminum alloy case, a magnetic removable cap, and two simple cross head screws covering up your installed drive. An activity LED appears on the top of the device, above a bull’s head logo. The device size is a compact 40 x 40 x 8mm, and it is claimed to be 25 grams in weight.
Some other info from the listings suggest this M.2 2230 case has safe eject and hibernation auto-power off, and is supported on both Windows and Linux systems without a driver.
We have found the same M.2 case available for sale on both eBay US and eBay UK. The devices are sold by a Chinese distributor for $16.43 and £17.45, respectively. The price includes shipping. We haven’t tested this storage accessory, but the source seems to be quite pleased with the device. In Japan it is said to cost ¥2480, which is about $17.
If you don’t have a spare M.2 2230 drive yet, you probably will have after you upgrade a PC gaming handheld like the Steam Deck or ROG Ally. Thankfully higher capacity 2230 drives are now starting to become more common, including in some gaming laptops, and you can check out the best M.2 2230 drives in our recent roundup.