LaCie Transportable SSD and WD My Passport SSD Capsule Evaluation: 2TB SATA SSDs Behind a USB Bridge

The appearance of 3D TLC Flash has created a brand new class of budget-friendly exterior bus-powered SSDs. The worth of flash reminiscence has not too long ago dropped, making excessive capability arduous drives reasonably priced. Present exterior flash reminiscence gadgets fall into one in every of 4 classes:

USB sticks with direct flash on USB interface
Exterior SSDs that implement one of many following configurations:

SATA drive behind a USB bridge
NVMe drive behind a USB three.1 Gen 2 bridge
NVMe drive behind a Thunderbolt controller

At the moment's overview seems to be at two Seagate (LaCie branded) 2TB drives and Western Digital. They belong to the second class within the listing above and place a SATA drive behind a USB three.1 Gen 2 bridge.

Introduction and Platform Evaluation

USB sticks often have USB 2.zero or USB three.zero interfaces and could be linked on to the host port with out an extra cable. Capacities are steadily rising, although only some high-end fashions supply peak efficiency within the vary of 300-400 MBps. Most low-end and mid-range Thumb drives have write speeds of the order of 20-80 Mbps and browse speeds of the order of 100-150 Mbps. Lately, we’ve positioned a 2.5-inch SSD board behind a SATA USB three.zero bridge. This has now change into M.2 SATA SSDs behind a a lot smaller and extra energy environment friendly SATA USB three.1 Gen 2 sort -C bridge: Such exterior SSDs now present a lot of the exterior, instantly connected storage gadgets for the mid and high-end storage gadgets Shoppers who require very excessive efficiency, very exterior bus reminiscence are served by Thunderbolt three SSDs, regardless of their efficiency profile, that are surprisingly low cost: These SSDs present an M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD behind a Thunderbolt three controller and supply a efficiency equal to an inner PCIe three.zero x4 M.2 NVMe arduous disk (as much as three GBps) PCIe three.zero x2 NVMe SSDs behind an NVMe USB three.1 Gen 2 bridge with efficiency figures of about 1 GB / s.

The LaCie Transportable SSD has the identical inner components because the Seagate Quick SSD that we reviewed in September 2018 whereas the WD variant was My Passport SSD 2TB, which resembled SSD by SanDisk Excessive Transportable handled in the identical overview. Nevertheless, the My Passport SSD 2TB WD variant makes use of a unique firmware (along with the modified capability) that permits encryption in comparison with the SanDisk Excessive Transportable SSD.

Much like Seagate's Quick SSD, the LaCie Transportable SSD has a sq. kind issue and a conventional 2.5-inch SSD board. The 9 mm x 79 mm x 94 mm machine is supplied with 82 grams. Not like the silver-gray / black exterior The LaCie Transportable SSD is a quick, black SSD with a very black case and a gold rim across the ridge.

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Two 18in. Cables – a sort C to sort C and a sort C to sort A are included. Added advantages embrace two free months of the Adobe Artistic Cloud images plan and a bundled Seagate Rescue information restoration service plan. The latter shouldn’t be obtainable on the Seagate Quick SSD. The interior parts are primarily the identical because the Quick SSD – Toshiba BiCS 64-Layer 3D TLCs, that are linked to a brand new Phison S10 controller behind an ASMedia ASM235CM bridge chip. The machine additionally has complete thermal safety, much like the Seagate Quick SSD .

The Western Digital My Passport SSD, then again, has the identical design and packaging parts because the 1TB Finest Purchase-exclusive variant we reviewed in mid-2017 . Regardless of the USB three.1 Gen 2 interface, this model was hindered internally by the planar, TLC-equipped SanDisk X400. Western Digital has since up to date the product line to make use of the WD Blue 3D NAND SSDs with 64-layer 3D TLC Flash. The 2TB variant described on this check bears the mannequin quantity WDBKVX0020PSL-WESN.

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The My Passport SSD Gumstick kind issue (45 mm x 90 mm x 10 mm) signifies using an M.2 SSD inside. As a substitute of delivering two completely different cables to the machine, WD gives solely a Kind C to Kind C cable and a small Kind C to Kind A adapter. Regardless of the sort C socket of the adapter, the equipped cable sort C to sort C can solely be plugged in a single path (indicated by a triangular marking on the adapter as a cable).

The drive is preformatted in exFAT. It contains some software program installers to reinforce the performance of the product – WD Discovery & Drive Utilities, WD Backup and WD Safety. With the WD Backup software program, scheduled backups of sure folders on the PC could be created on the SSD. WD Safety lets you set a password (as much as 25 characters) to allow the drive's encryption options. After restarting the system, the drive should be unlocked with the password, the drive should be reconnected, or the system should exit sleep mode.

The My Passport SSD shouldn’t be as simple to disassemble because the SanDisk Excessive Transportable SSD. Proof from a teardown video proves that the interior MILAN II M.2 SATA SSD is definitely a variant of the WD Blue 3D NAND SSD used within the SanDisk Excessive Transportable Model could be seen. MILAN II is more likely to be completely different from the retail variants of the WD Blue 3D NAND SSD when it comes to firmware options akin to self-encryption.

Drive Info

WD My Passport SSD 2TB (Alpine Ridge) LaCie Transportable SSD 2TB (Alpine Ridge) LaCie Transportable SSD 2TB (ASM 2142) Samsung Transportable SSD T5 2 TBWD My Passport SSD 2TB (ASM 2142)

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CrystalDiskInfo offers some further insights into the drives we’re taking a look at in the present day. Each help S.M.A.R.T readouts and TRIM over the USB bridge

Testbed Setup and Check Methodology

Lately, we’ve described DAS items underneath Home windows with our Thunderbolt three desktop PC (based mostly on a GIGABYTE Z170X-UD5 TH ATX board), . Nevertheless, for the reason that finish of final 12 months, we've seen unusually low efficiency ranges for sure gadgets and basic instability after making an attempt Thunderbolt firmware upgrades (whereas making an attempt to pair an eGFX chassis with the system). Beginning with the Plugable USBC NVME Reminiscence Bridge Check we briefly used the Hades Canyon NUC as a check mattress for instantly connected storage gadgets.

When performing benchmarks on the LaCie Transportable SSD, efficiency was nonetheless under the desired numbers when linked to one of many Alpine Ridge Controller-enabled sort C ports. To match apple and apple between the WD My Passport SSD and the LaCie Transportable SSD, we evaluated each SSDs with two completely different host ports:

One of many Thunderbolt three Kind-C ports within the Intel NUC8i7HVK rear I / O panel ( Hades Canyon NUC ) is activated by the Intel JHL6540 (Alpine Ridge) controller
The USB three.1 Gen 2 Kind-C connector within the entrance panel of the Intel NUC8i7HVK ( Hades Canyon NUC ) is activated by the ASMedia ASM2142 controller

Our analysis routine contains using ATTO and CrystalDiskMark for a fast overview. The latter helps to find out the provision of UASP help and offers some efficiency figures underneath ideally suited situations. Actual efficiency testing is carried out on our customized check suite which incorporates Robocopy benchmarks and the PCMark eight reminiscence financial institution.

We additionally consider the thermal efficiency of exterior storage by monitoring its temperature whereas it’s topic to the above-mentioned actual world burden. Examined writes, a notable weak point of many Flash-based gadgets, but in addition a practical use case for DAS items, are additionally being examined. Vitality consumption is recorded for the CrystalDiskMark workloads.

Earlier than presenting the benchmark numbers, we listing the DAS items used for comparability on this overview:

WD My Move SSD 2 TB (Alpine Ridge)
LaCie Transportable SSD 2TB (Alpine Ridge)
LaCie Transportable SSD 2TB (ASM 2142)
Samsung Transportable SSD T3 2TB
Samsung Transportable SSD T5 2TB
SanDisk Excessive 900 1.92TB
WD My Passport SSD 2TB (ASM 2142)

Artificial Benchmarks – ATTO and Crystal DiskMark

Seagate and Western Digital are demanding speeds of as much as 540 MB / s for the LaCie Transportable SSD and My Passport SSD. No write velocity is reported, however the ATTO benchmarks present some fast numbers. With Alpine Ridge, the My Passport SSD 2 TB achieves a learn / write velocity of 538/526 Mbps, whereas the LaCie Transportable SSD 2TB achieves a learn / write velocity of 562/179 Mbps. Nevertheless, for the ASMedia ASM 2142 host, the numbers for the WD My Passport SSD will enhance to 544/533 Mbps and for the LaCie Transportable SSD to 569/521 Mbps. Sadly, these entry tracks usually are not quite common in real-world situations.

Efficiency Benchmarks – ATTO

WD My Passport SSD 2TB (Alpine Ridge) LaCie Transportable SSD 2TB (Alpine Ridge) LaCie Transportable SSD 2TB (ASM 2142) Samsung Transportable SSD T3 2TBSamsung Transportable SSD T5 2TBSanDisk Excessive 900 1.92 TBWD My Passport SSD 2TB (ASM 2142)

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Though CrystalDiskMark is a canned benchmark, it offers a greater estimate of efficiency with a specific variety of numbers.

Drive Efficiency Benchmarks – CrystalDiskMark

WD My Passport SSD 2TB (Alpine Ridge) LaCie Transportable SSD 2TB (Alpine Ridge) LaCie Transportable SSD 2TB (ASM 2142) Samsung Transportable SSD T3 2TBSamsung Transportable SSD T5 2TBSanDisk Excessive 900 1.92 TBWD My Passport SSD 2TB (ASM 2142)

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As proven within the above screenshot, the efficiency of the LaCie Transportable SSD could drop to 26 MB / s and that of the WD My Passport SSD to roughly 30 MB / s with the ASM 2142 host controller. The efficiency of the Alpine Ridge controller is decrease in comparison with the ASMedia ASM 2142 for all entry tracks. On the whole, the LaCie Transportable SSD gives higher studying efficiency whereas the WD My Passport SSD provides higher outcomes when writing.

Benchmarks – Robocopy and PCMark eight Storage Bench

Our check methodology for DAS gadgets additionally takes under consideration the everyday use case for such gadgets. The most typical utility state of affairs is the switch of a lot of photographs and movies to and from the machine. The smaller utility state of affairs is to import information instantly from the DAS right into a multimedia enhancing program akin to Adobe Photoshop.

To deal with the primary use case, we created three check folders with the next properties:

Images: 15.6 GB Assortment of 4320 photographs (RAW and JPEGs) in 61 subfolders
Movies: 16.1 GB massive assortment of 244 movies (MP4 and MOVs) in 6 subfolders
BR: 10.7 GB Blu-ray folder construction of the IDT Benchmark Blu-ray (the identical we use in our Robocopy exams for NAS techniques)

Images ReadingPictures WritingVideos ReadingVideos WritingBlu-ray Folders ReadingBlu-ray Folder WritingAll Broaden

- LaCie Transportable SSD and WD My Passport SSD Capsule Evaluation: 2TB SATA SSDs Behind a USB Bridge Adobe Photoshop Gentle – ReadAdobe – Photoshop: Heavy – ReadAdobe – ReadAdobe – Illustrator – ReadAdobe – Photoshop – Gentle – WriteAdobe – Photoshop: Heavy WriteAdobe – After Results – WriteAdobe – Illustrator – WriteExpand All

- LaCie Transportable SSD and WD My Passport SSD Capsule Evaluation: 2TB SATA SSDs Behind a USB Bridge gif;base64,R0lGODlhAQABAAAAACH5BAEKAAEALAAAAAABAAEAAAICTAEAOw== - LaCie Transportable SSD and WD My Passport SSD Capsule Evaluation: 2TB SATA SSDs Behind a USB Bridge

We will see no SSD throttling for our workload set, however the inner temperature of the WD My Passport SSD touched 72C on the finish of our Robocopy workload. In distinction, the LaCie Transportable SSD stays under 45 ° C, though it takes about the identical period of time to deal with the identical quantity of labor. This clearly reveals that the thermal efficiency and cooling resolution of the LaCie Transportable SSD are considerably higher than these of the WD My Passport SSD.

Numerous points and concluding remarks

The efficiency consistency for actual functions was thought of within the earlier part. We not too long ago added a check to find out the effectiveness of the thermal resolution for persistent workloads. After the SSD quantity was deleted, a fio workload was set as much as write sequential information with a block dimension of 128 KB and an Iod depth of 32 to the arduous drive to cowl 90% of the drive capability. The within temperature, instantaneous write information fee, and complete quantity of information written as much as that point have been recorded.

Sequential write to 90% of disk capability – consistency of efficiency

WD My Passport SSD 2TB (Alpine Ridge) LaCie Transportable SSD 2TB (Alpine Ridge) LaCie Transportable SSD 2TB (ASM 2142) WD My Passport SSD 2TB (ASM 2142)

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The main focus on this overview can be on efficiency with the ASMedia ASM 2142 host. Within the above graphs we see two sorts of throttling. With the WD My Passport SSD, the lower in write switch fee is because of thermal throttling after the interior SSD temperature reaches 75 ° C (write charges fall from about 490 Mbps to 60 Mbps). The LaCie Transportable SSD has a a lot better consistency – there isn’t any proof of thermal throttling as the utmost noticed inner temperature is just 57 ° C. The switch charges lower from about 500 MBit / s to about 420 MBit / s. Nevertheless, this appears to be as a consequence of the truth that the SLC cache runs out.

The above train additionally lets you decide the SLC cache dimension and / or the quantity of information that may be written to a recording with out lowering the write information fee. The graphs under present the switch fee and the full information switch quantity from the start of the fio workload to the approximate timestamp the place the switch fee has a major drop.

Sustained Writes – Properties

WD My Passport SSD 2TB (Alpine Ridge) LaCie Transportable SSD 2TB (Alpine Ridge) LaCie Transportable SSD 2TB (ASM 2142) WD My Passport SSD 2TB (ASM 2142)

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The thermal efficiency restrict for the WD My Passport SSD with the Alpine Ridge host is reached after roughly 250 GB of sustained writes, whereas the ASM 2142 host solely has 165 GB (because of the larger write efficiency). For the LaCie Transportable SSD, the Alpine Ridge host configuration is nugatory, however the ASMedia ASM 2142 shows roughly 25 GB of SLC cache. This appears to correlate effectively with the 12 GB SLC cache of the 1 TB variant of the Seagate Quick SSD.

Each SSDs are powered by a bus, and it’s assumed that peak energy consumption can’t exceed 5W to take care of compatibility with the widest attainable vary of techniques. Nevertheless, some Kind-C ports can present extra energy, and a few DAS items powered by a bus can make the most of this. Subsequently, it’s nonetheless related to look carefully on the vitality consumption profile. The plug-in USBC-TKEY tracked the bus's energy consumption for each SSDs whereas the CrystalDiskMark workloads have been being processed. The workloads have been arrange with an interval time of 30 s.

Drive Energy Consumption – CrystalDiskMark Workloads

WD My Passport SSD 2TB (Alpine Ridge) LaCie Transportable SSD 2TB (Alpine Ridge) LaCie Transportable SSD 2TB (ASM 2142) WD My Passport SSD 2TB (ASM 2142)

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When linked to the Alpine Ridge host, the WD My Passport SSD consumes lower than three.6 watts in the course of the workload set and about 1.three watts idle. In the identical configuration, the LaCie Transportable SSD behaves unusually and idles at zero.9 W, however has sporadic spikes of as much as 5 W. As talked about within the earlier sections, the conduct of the LaCie Transportable SSD with the Alpine Ridge host didn’t match the anticipated strains. To proceed with the ASM 2142, the WD-SSD spends extra time with the three.6-watt mark and even with a peak above four watts. The LaCie SSD has a number of peaks round four.5 W and even a pair within the 5.5 W vary, though the idle energy was as little as the opposite host. These larger efficiency numbers correspond to the upper efficiency.

On the conclusion of the overview, the WD My Passport SSD and the LaCie Transportable SSD carry out effectively, although there are some reservations. Earlier than we focus on this, let's take a look at the side of pricing.

Exterior flash storage gadgets – costs

product
Mannequin No.
Capability (GB)
Road Value (USD)
Value per GB (USD / GB)

WD My Passport SSD 2 TB
WDBKVX0020PSL-WESN
2000
$ 322
zero.16

Samsung Transportable SSD T5 2TB
MU-PA2T0B / AM
2000
$ 348
zero.17

LaCie Transportable SSD 2TB
STHK2000800
2000
$ 420
zero.21

SanDisk Excessive 900 1.92TB
SDSSDEX2-1T92-G25
1920
$ 646
zero.34

Samsung Transportable SSD T3 2TB

2000
EOL
zero.41

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