Western Digital's portable SSD lines get 4TB options

Shawn Knight

Posts: 12,793   +124
Staff member
The big picture: Portable SSDs like the newest models from Western Digital offer unparalleled performance and durability compared to their traditional mechanical counterparts. Sure, you're going to pay a healthy premium for flash media but the benefits afforded to creatives, professionals, gamers and ordinary users alike are worth it in the eyes of many.

Western Digital as CES 2021 this week introduced a quartet of high-capacity, portable solid-state drives across its consumer-facing brands.

Collectively, the new 4TB drives focus on performance, durability and of course, capacity, catering to a variety of target users. It starts with the SanDisk Extreme Portable SSD, an NVMe solution that offers up to 1050MB/s read and up to 1000MB/s write speeds. The unit also boasts two-meter drop protection and IP55 water and dust resistance and is expected to retail for $699.99 when it goes on sale later this quarter.

The SanDisk Extreme Pro Portable SSD, meanwhile, ups the ante with read and write performance rated at up to 2000MB/s, respectively. The drive’s aluminum chassis helps to keep temperatures down, allowing it to maintain higher sustained speeds for longer. Look for it to land this quarter from $749.99.

Related Reading: The Best SSD and PC Storage

Turning to Western Digital’s own brand, the WD Black P50 Game Drive SSD is compatible with PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC game libraries, offering read speeds up to 2000MB/s when it goes on sale this quarter for $749.99.

Last but certainly not least is the WD My Passport SSD. For $679.99, you get read speeds up to 1050MB/s and writes at up to 1000MB/s in a package that’s drop resistant up to 6.5 feet. It’ll be available in your choice of red, blue, gray, gold and silver color schemes when it arrives later this quarter.

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terzaerian

Posts: 219   +257
Somewhat related, but is it just me or is USB getting worse as it gets more "advanced"?

Because I have a brand new USB 3.0 drive bay that supposedly has all the bells and whistles but still does *this thing*: if it's been idle for a while, it takes like a minute for it to initialize the disks to access them.

The disks are fine, once they are spun up work as normal, work as normal over SATA, show up as good in CrystalDisk, etc. I thought it could have been related to USB selective suspend so I went into power settings and turned it off, and then into Device Manager and turned it off for each instance of the drive bay, and it still behaves like this. Finally, I cut down the number of USB devices using bandwidth by turning off my hub, and still get the behavior.

Which leads me to my point: why the hell would anyone want to put a modern multi-TB SSD on USB? It's like buying a Ferrari only to put it on a trailer and drive the truck towing it around as your daily driver instead. Y'all need Jesus and to get a desktop.
 

3volv3d

Posts: 300   +127
Somewhat related, but is it just me or is USB getting worse as it gets more "advanced"?

Because I have a brand new USB 3.0 drive bay that supposedly has all the bells and whistles but still does *this thing*: if it's been idle for a while, it takes like a minute for it to initialize the disks to access them.
I find buyin any drive a pain in the ***. Bang for buck. But if yours is mechanical what size? Its been a while since I talked to my mates in the storage / nas game about the fall over rates but anything over 2tb has issues of more platters and dies more often.

If your usb is mechanical not ssd, them drives prefer to stay warm so the cooling as they sleep make them give in, ok if you have storage you want to keep but rarely access but if its continuous copy delete move rest repeat then possibly it will just give up. Its why I don't touch blues or greens in the WD range.

With these WDs are they blacks? I have heard they been using other non WD drives or sub par ones and they probably aint as great on quality

Move to ssd and you have a decent speed but prices still have to come down on larger drives.

Move to m.2 and they have just gone to 7000mbps and the speed plus the heat (get with a heatsink) apparently give them a quicker death. So whats the safest long term O/S and best for storage. Does Techspot have a storage wars (careful of the copyright) page?
 

terzaerian

Posts: 219   +257
I find buyin any drive a pain in the ***. Bang for buck. But if yours is mechanical what size? Its been a while since I talked to my mates in the storage / nas game about the fall over rates but anything over 2tb has issues of more platters and dies more often.

If your usb is mechanical not ssd, them drives prefer to stay warm so the cooling as they sleep make them give in, ok if you have storage you want to keep but rarely access but if its continuous copy delete move rest repeat then possibly it will just give up. Its why I don't touch blues or greens in the WD range.

With these WDs are they blacks? I have heard they been using other non WD drives or sub par ones and they probably aint as great on quality

Move to ssd and you have a decent speed but prices still have to come down on larger drives.

Move to m.2 and they have just gone to 7000mbps and the speed plus the heat (get with a heatsink) apparently give them a quicker death. So whats the safest long term O/S and best for storage. Does Techspot have a storage wars (careful of the copyright) page?
It's a mix of mechanical WD blacks, reds, and golds, 2TB-4TB. Like I said, I don't think it's the drives themselves - CrystalDiskInfo is generally green across the board. I'm like 95% sure it's something to do with the USB controller for the bay (which is less than year old) as the drives work normally over SATA and once the drive bay has reinitialized whatever it keeps shutting down when idle. I usually access the drives at least once a day but they're not doing continuous read-writes or running programs, it's primarily bulk storage.

At this point I'm almost tempted to just try and find a mini case with room for lots of mechanical drives and build a poor man's NAS.
 

mbrowne5061

Posts: 1,721   +978
...Which leads me to my point: why the hell would anyone want to put a modern multi-TB SSD on USB?...
Only 'legitimate' use case I can think of is if you are using a Pi 4, and want a more desktop-like experience. A Pi OS installed to an SSD vis USB3 has proven to be noticeably faster than the same OS installed to the microSD card. But that is about it. I've seen "apocalypse computers" - computers with offline wikis; IDEs configured for C/C++, Python, and Octave; all packaged up in a watertight case with keyboard, trackpad, battery, - that are based off of a Pi4 and SSD.