Verbatim Vx500 SSD portable storage drive
A slim, shirt-pocketable solid-state storage drive for anyone who needs to move large quantities of data quickly between USB-C connected devices.
This drive is compatible with PC, Mac and Android-powered devices. It’s robustly constructed and, unlike a portable hard disk drive, it can withstand a fair amount of rough handling – a drop onto a hard surface is unlikely cause it to fail.
We’ve become accustomed to using solid state ‘thumb’ drives for temporary storage when moving files between devices and the market is replete with drives in capacities that range from 16GB through to 256GB. Solid state drives (SSDs) can take capacities up to two terabytes (2TB), although they tend to be very pricey. Verbatim’s Vx500 SSD range targets the ‘happy medium’ with capacities extending from 120GB to 480GB and prices from AU$89 to AU$229. We received the 120GB unit for this review.
Angled view of the Verbatim Vx500 SSD. (Source: Verbatim.)
It comes in a lightweight cardboard box and is supplied with a USB-C cable that ends in a Type-A connector, which allows it to be connected to older, USB 2 devices. Nero BackItUp software is pre-loaded on the Vx500, giving users a software application for data back-ups.
Who’s it For?
It’s only worth using this drive if you need to connect USB-C devices because it’s designed to deliver transfer speeds of up to 500 Megabytes per second (MB/s). You’re wasting time and money if your devices only support USB 2.0, USB 3.0 or even USB 3.1.
The USB 2.0 standard offers a theoretical maximum rate of 480 megabits/second or 60MB/s which is roughly ten times slower than the USB 3.0 standard, which has a top speed of 5GBps. The USB 3.1 doubles the transfer speed of 3.0 to a whopping 10 Gbps or 120MB/s. USB-C is even faster with a speed rating of 40Gbps or at least 480MB/s.
For photographers and videographers whose devices support USB-C, this tiny drive could be a good investment when they need to transfer and/or temporarily store large quantities of data. It can also operate through a Thunderbolt 3 port and cable, which uses the same USB-C interface.
This illustration shows the small size of the Verbatim Vx500 SSD. (Source: Verbatim.)
The drive is based upon an mSATA-SSD with an ASMedia ASM235CM controller, which are enclosed in a shock resistant aluminium housing. A small blue LED is available at the port end to show when the device is connected to a PC, tablet, or smartphone.
The Vx500 is supplied with a single cable with a Type-C plug on one end and a Type A plug on the other, which can connect to older USB 2.0 sockets. If you want to plug into a USB-C socket, you’ll need to supply the double USB-C plug cable.
The packaging for the Verbatim Vx500 SSD. (Source: Verbatim.)
Verbatim quotes speeds of up to 500 MB/s when reading data and 430MB/s when writing with the Vx500, although these speeds are only achievable when the connected devices can support them. Tests conducted by several computer magazines reveal this doesn’t necessarily occur in ‘real world’ usage.
We tested the review unit on a computer with an Intel Core i7-7700 processor running at 3.6GHz with 16GB of installed RAM plus the latest version of the 64-bit Windows 10 Pro operating system. Since we lack the sophisticated testing equipment and benchmark software used by the computer magazines, our tests have been, by comparison, pretty basic.
We assembled two folders, one containing 10GB of video clips and the other a 100GB folder of image and video files and timed how long it took to transfer each one from our computer to the Vx500 SSD.
The first comment we must make is that the drive quickly became quite hot, even during the 10GB folder transfer. Some reviewers have commented on file transfer being ‘throttled back’ to prevent damage to the unit. This could account for the slow transfer times we recorded when the 100GB folder was transferred.
Reading speed for 10GB folder: 402.85MB/sec.; write speed: 91.4MB/sec.
100GB folder: 388.6MB/sec; write speed: 58.3MB/sec.
When reading files, the Vx500 came close to Verbatim’s specifications if you make allowance for the ‘throttling’ that can occur during extended usage. Write speeds were well below Verbatim’s specified rates. When writing large files, this ‘throttling’ delivered disappointing results, achieving speeds that were similar to a lower-priced USB 3.0 stick.
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Type: External Solid State Drive
Capacity: 120GB, 240GB, 480GB
Interface: Type-C USB 3.1 Gen. 2 (backwards compatible with USB 2.0 ports)
Data transfer rate with USB 3.1 Gen. 2: Read: 500 MB/s; write: 290 MB/s
Operating systems: Windows 7/8/10, Mac OS X 10.4 or higher
Dimensions (lxwxh): 92 x 29 x 9 mm
Weight: 26 grams
RRP: 120GB- $89, 240GB- $129, 480GB- $229
Cost per gigabyte: 120GB – 74 cents, 240GB – 54 cents, 480GB – 48 cents
Distributor: Verbatim Australia, (03) 9790 8980
RRP: $89 120GB, $129 240GB, $229 480GB
- Build: 9.0
- Transfer speeds: 8.5
- Software: 8.5