With the rapid progress of technology from one day to the next, concepts, ideas, inventions, and reinventions suddenly turn from wishful thinking into reality.
In the case of solid-state drives the burning question was whether we would see a viable external solution. Conventional hard-drives already go their external variant primarily thanks to USB 2.0; with the raw speed and performance of SSDs however, the lagging catalyst was the upgraded USB 3.0 interface standard. Of course a slue of other components were needed as well – cooling, enclosure size, controllers, design, chipsets just to name a few.
Only recently after advancements in each area did this mix come together to form a practical external SSD concoction in the Angelbird mobile SSD line. Today we take a look at two different models – the $780 Angelbird SSD2go 480GB and the $900 dual Angelbird SSSD2go TWIN 480GB (240GB x 2). We will see if the Angelbird drives are worth their premium prices, and if they can indeed perform at SATA 3.0 speeds using USB 3.0.
SPECIFICATIONS AND CUSTOMIZATION
Key features to focus on of course include the USB 3.0 connectivity and subsequent 460MB/s concurrent read and write speeds. Note that the USB 3.0 is 5Gb/s versus SATA 3.0 which is 6Gb/s; hence, we can expect a loss of about 128MB/s read/write when comparing the two. The rating is technically incorrect as the parts inside the Angelbird’s are capable of 6Gb/s; unfortunately standard consumer USB 3.0 is capped at 5Gb/s and unless you have a similar-specced Angelbird USB 3.0 bridge, 6Gb/s speeds will not be achievable. A three-year warranty accompanying both the Angelbird SSD2go and its TWIN variant are excellent, along with the security and enterprise features. The SSDs within also use typical architecture such as SandForce SF-2200 series integrated controllers and Micron MLC NAND flash memory.
While the normal SSD2go is one drive available in 120/240/480GB, the TWIN can go up to 960GB depending on how you configure it, as the TWIN is basically two SSD2go’s stacked together (as seen by the larger height dimension). You can check the SSD2go and SSD2go TWIN configuration pages down below, which allow you to mix and match not only different storage sizes, but also colour your external drive enclosure by choosing from the plethora of vibrant colours.