PNY EliteX-PRO 1TB Portable SSD

2 months ago 39

While the header speeds are blindingly accelerated by astir USB standards, they’re not arsenic speedy arsenic we’ve seen with Thunderbolt. And you volition request a Gen 2x2 USB larboard to beryllium this fast. However, this is simply a inexpensive outer SSD that is simply a bully enactment adjacent if you don’t person this port.

Pros

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    Easy to use

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    Affordable

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    Fast by USB standards

Cons

  • -

    Needs USB Gen 2x2 larboard for afloat speed

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    Lacks a question pouch

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    Needs amended cables

The retention manufacture is bracing itself for a important simplification successful the outgo of NAND memory, arsenic the interaction of the planetary pandemic and the terms hikes it created person present worked done the system.

The PNY EliteX-PRO portable SSD whitethorn beryllium 1 of the archetypal products that bespeak the post-covid NAND market, offering enhancements supra and beyond what we’ve expected portion undercutting existing pricing.

Should those successful the marketplace for a speedy outer SSD with plentifulness of capableness leap present oregon beryllium consenting to hold for adjacent amended deals?

Price and availability

PNY offers the EliteX-PRO successful 4 capacities that see 500GB,1TB,2TB and 4TB. The UK terms connected Amazon for these is £74.51, £113.04, £204.65 and £525.17.

In the USA, Newegg has the equivalent dollar pricing of $65.99, $104.99, $189.99 and $489.99.

In some regions, the 2TB exemplary represents the champion worth for money, and the 500GB is the worst.

Comparing this with a akin Gen 2x2 design, specified arsenic the Kingston XS2000, the PNY EliteX-PRO is importantly cheaper and adjacent undercuts axenic Gen 2 solutions similar the Crucial X8 by a fewer dollars oregon pounds.

PNY EliteX-PRO 1TB Portable SSD

(Image credit: Mark Pickavance)

Design and features

Specs

Interface: USB 3.2 Gen 2x2
Connector: Type-C
Package Includes:  USB 3.2 Gen 2x2 C-to-C cable,  USB 3.2 Gen 2x2 C-to-A cable
Capacities4: 500GB,1TB,2TB and 4TB
Speed: Up to 1600MB/s read, 1500MB/s write
Dimensions: 64.5 x 57.8 x 11mm
Compatibility:
 USB 3.0/USB 3.1/USB 3.2 Gen 2x2
Security specification: N/A
Warrant: Limited 3-year warranty
Compatible with: Microsoft Windows, macOS, Linux, Chrome OS oregon immoderate strategy that supports a USB wide retention device.

Before we get to the precise basal plan of this drive, it is worthy saying that PNY selling appears to person tied itself successful knots implicit the naming of this product.

Because successful its MicroSD line, PNY has a merchandise called PRO Elite and Elite-X, and successful its portable SSDs range, different is called the Pro Elite V2.

How the hyphenated PRO ended up aft the EliteX present is simply a mystery, but these inconsistencies tin undoubtedly confuse the buying public.

The Elite-X PRO is the aforesaid size arsenic the Elite V2, specifically 2.50 x 2.25 x 0.43 inches oregon 64.5 x 57.8 x 11mm (L x W x H). It is simply a somewhat unusual size since the enclosure isn’t large capable to judge a 2280 M.2 NVMe module internally, revealing that it is astir apt that the NAND representation and its associated controller are mounted connected a customized committee inside.

PNY EliteX-PRO 1TB Portable SSD

(Image credit: Mark Pickavance)

This enclosure is arsenic minimalist arsenic it is imaginable to get, being a bladed aluminium extrusion capped by integrative ends. The lone outer features are a USB-C larboard and enactment LED astatine 1 extremity and immoderate accumulation markings connected the other.

These markings uncover the thrust was manufactured successful Taiwan and that the capableness of our reappraisal illustration was 1TB.

PNY included with the thrust are 2 12cm agelong USB cables, 1 each for connecting the thrust to Type-A and Type-C ports. There is nary included documentation, but you tin download this on with a branded mentation of Acronis True Image that volition enactment with this thrust from PNY.

PNY EliteX-PRO 1TB Portable SSD

(Image credit: Mark Pickavance)

In use

There is precise small to notation astir this thrust which makes it antithetic from immoderate different USB retention device, which I accidental is the constituent of this technology.

It’s each remarkably straightforward. You prime the cablegram that is due for the big system, link that to the EliteX-PRO, and link the thrust via the cable. In the bulk of scenarios, it volition conscionable enactment unless the operating strategy of that instrumentality can’t recognize the exFAT record strategy that it comes with by default, it should beryllium bully to go.

For those that privation to usage NTFS, EXT4 oregon immoderate different record system, it is imaginable to reformat the thrust to those standards oregon adjacent usage an encrypted record solution. However, determination isn’t immoderate hardware encryption from what we could ascertain.

We’ll speech astir show shortly, but however good it performs is wholly babelike connected the specification of the USB the thrust is connected.

It volition enactment with USB 2.0, USB 3.0 and the assorted USB incarnations that came aft those, with the highest level being USB 3.2 Gen 2x2. Most computers travel with either USB 3.2 Gen 2 oregon Gen 1, but comparatively fewer travel with Gen 2x2.

It should besides enactment with galore Thunderbolt ports that tin grip USB 3.2, but it is apt that a USB 3.2 Gen 2 level of show is the champion outcome. Using a Gen 2x2 port, it volition spell faster, which begs the question of precisely what show are we talking about?

Performance

Benchmarks

Here’s however the PNY EliteX-PRO 1TB performed successful our suite of benchmark tests:
CrystalDiskMark 8.0.4: 1490.89MBps (read); 1163.79MBps (write)
ATTO:  1.69GB/s (read, 256mb); 1.61GB/S (write, 256mb)
AS SSD: 1075.89MBps (seq read); 497.92MBps (seq write)
AJA: 735MB/s (read); 1174 MB/s (write)

The astir caller Gen 2x2 specification thrust that we’ve tested was the Kingston XS2000 (opens successful caller tab), a overmuch much costly prime that has managed successful excess of 2,000MB/s reads and 1,800MB/s writes successful immoderate tests.

Regrettably, the PNY Elite-X PRO 1TB can’t deed those precocious notes, though it is importantly quicker than Gen 2 designs similar the Crucial X8, Crucial X6 and the SanDisk Extreme V2.

Those drives highest astatine astir about 1,000MB/s for reads and 900MB/s writes, but successful perfect conditions, the Elite-X PRO tin beryllium 50% faster than that.

Note, we said ‘can be’ due to the fact that the workout of investigating this thrust proved to beryllium overmuch much challenging than we’d anticipated.

Our trial rig has an ORICO branded USB paper rated for Gen 2x2 mode, and we’ve utilized this successfully with different drives supporting this mode.

Initially, the Elite-X PRO refused to usage Gen 2x2 mode and alternatively defaulted to Gen 2 operations, capping the velocity to astir 1,000MB/s.

Different machines, antithetic cards, supportive words, we tried it all, to nary avail.

And then, successful desperation, we swapped the provided PNY cablegram with different that came from a Seagate One Touch SSD, which is ironically lone Gen 2 velocity rated.

Voila, Gen 2x2 speeds, capping the Elite-X PRO astatine astir 1490MB/s reads and 1163MB/s writes, outstripping Gen 2 drives by a decent amount.

We haven’t determined if the cablegram provided was faulty oregon of the incorrect spec, but it didn’t supply the means to fulling exploit the drive. If it is simply a accumulation issue, this is thing PNY needs to hole promptly, arsenic galore imaginable purchasers volition presume their Elite-X PRO thrust is faulty.

CrystalDiskMark 8.0.4 investigating  the PNY EliteX-PRO 1TB

(Image credit: PNY)

The benchmarks besides threw up a fewer oddities that are worthy mentioning, astir apt linked to the mode the cache works connected these drives.

AJA displayed fantabulous constitute speeds but mediocre work performance. It looks similar arsenic it performed the constitute archetypal that the processing of those writes impacted negatively connected consequent reads.

Conversely, AS SSD showed debased constitute show that looked similar the cache was afloat aft archetypal performing work tests. In AS SSD compression tests, constitute speeds initially started astatine conscionable 650MB/s and past jumped up to implicit 1500MB/s aft a abbreviated period. That’s unusual behaviour.

Whatever was going connected successful either of these benchmarks, it did not interaction connected the ATTO test, which delivered some speechmaking and penning results astir 1600MB/s.

PNY EliteX-PRO 1TB Portable SSD

(Image credit: Mark Pickavance)

Our conclusions are that erstwhile this thrust works successful Gen 2x2 mode, the thrust is typically astir 50% faster astatine speechmaking and 20% faster astatine penning than a emblematic Gen 2 drive, and if you person a larboard to this specification, those improvements are surely worthy having.

But beryllium warned, according to the PNY enactment illustration for this merchandise line, the 500GB exemplary lone offers 1500MB/s reads, and 900MB/s writes. The 1TB that we tested has quoted 1500MB/s reads and 1400MB/s writes. Whereas the 2TB and 4TB person the champion show of 1600MB/s reads and 1500MB/s writes.

Therefore, wherever the 1TB, 2TB and 4TB models are adjacent capable for it not to beryllium an issue, we’d debar the 500GB enactment arsenic the constitute show little than galore Gen 2 spec drives.

PNY EliteX-PRO 1TB Portable SSD

(Image credit: PNY)

Final verdict

The bottommost enactment is that the PNY EliteX-PRO is simply a perfectly serviceable portable SDD that delivers amended than Gen 2 speeds for those fortunate capable to person a Gen 2x2 USB port.

Sadly, the Gen 2x2 modular ne'er truly became established, and it is apt to go a footnote to the past of USB erstwhile USB 4.0 becomes the caller norm.

However, if you bash person this port, this thrust tin exploit the other bandwidth without the disbursal of a Thunderbolt thrust and the constricted hardware that uses that technology.

If we disregard the Gen 2x2 request and usage the EliteX-PRO arsenic simply a USB 3.2 Gen 2 drive, it would inactive beryllium a decent acquisition and worthy considering.

It mightiness not beryllium capable to instrumentality the knocks that the Crucial X8 tin sorb oregon person immoderate fancy information options seen connected Samsung drives, but for astir users, determination is small incorrect with this design.

However, buyers request to find a padded pouch to transport it and its cables,  as 1 isn’t included.

At the clip of writing, the PNY EliteX-PRO looks similar a large deal, but we fishy that the driblet successful NAND representation pricing coming could marque for adjacent amended ones successful the coming months.

Mark is an adept connected displays, reviewing monitors and TVs. He besides covers retention including SSDs, NAS drives and portable hard drives. He started penning successful 1986 and had contributed to MicroMart, PC Format, 3D World among others.

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