Samsung’s Portable SSD T3 comes in 250GBG, 500GB, 1TB and 2TB models.
Its USB-C (Gen 1, UBS 3.1) connector is capable [in theory] of up to 450MB/s – that’s nearly half a GB a minute or about four times faster than many portable, USB 3.0, external spinning disks.
It weighs just 51g and 74 x 58 x 10.5mm it is way lighter and smaller than spinning disks. It has AES 256-bit encryption on the fly and password setting for Windows, macOS, and Android.
While it's solid state, it can still break – it is rated for 1500g force and a two-metre drop. It has a thermal guard to eliminate any possibility of overheating.
It uses 48-layer, 3D-vertical NAND, and an mSATA 5Gbps interface to keep compatibility with Mac, Windows, and OTG Android-enabled devices – up to 2GB on a smartphone! All you need is a micro-USB male to USB-A female adaptor. It worked a treat on a Samsung S7 Edge and an LG G5 (USB-C).
It comes preformatted with exFAT.
In my tests using USB3.0 on a Microsoft Surface Book it regularly achieved between 100-125MB/s write (copy to) and over 200MB/s read (copy from). It is not quite as fast as the superseded Samsung T1 due to V-NAND versus single layer NAND. International lab tests show between 300-400MB/s write and 425-500MB/s read – it’s an insanely fast drive.
Using an older USB 2.0 equipped desktop, I typically got 30-50MB/s write and 50-70MB/s read.
I had a few other portable HDDs, so I tested against these. While the WD My Passport Ultra was as fast at write, it was about 50% slower on read. The results were similar for a Seagate Backup Plus confirming that spinning disks are good at write but no so good at read. One thing I noticed was that its data transfer rates were pretty constant – no slowing down if the buffer was full like a spinning disk.
Samsung did not provide prices so here are retailer JB Hi-Fi’s prices. Online sellers appear to offer these for about 10% less and JB is always willing to match “apples for apples”.
- 250GB - $199
- 500GB - $329
- 1TB - $649
- 2TB - $1249
If you are looking for a tiny, pocketable, rugged, solid state backup device, this is it. Of course, speeds are relative to the computer and interface you use, but it should achieve top performance from all connections.
I rate it 10 out of 10 for a portable solid-state, backup, device.