Technology

OWC Envoy Professional FX SSD overview: Speedy cross-platform T3/USB exterior storage

Finally, USB 4 ought to render the excellence between Thunderbolt and USB largely moot. That’s the hope at any charge. For now, if you’d like the scintillating efficiency of Thunderbolt 3 when it’s obtainable, and the compatibility of USB when it’s not, you want a drive reminiscent of OWC’s Envoy Professional FX. 

Design and specs

The all-metal Envoy Professional FX  is a good-looking, all-metal, slate grey enclosure that fairly properly matches late-gen Macs style-wise. At roughly 4.5-inches lengthy, 2.75-inches large, 0.6-inches thick, and eight.6 ounces it’s a bit on the big and heavy aspect, with extra the looks of an exterior 2.5-inch laborious drive than SSD.

I take into account the heft easy metallic floor tactilely pleasing. Non-skid runners on the underside hold it steady on the desk, and the mass of metallic distributes warmth properly—the Envoy Professional FX was barely heat to the contact below heavy use. 

One finish of the drive is residence to a clearly labeled Kind-C port (sporting the Thunderbolt emblem and “USB 3.2 10Gbps”). That assures that should you hand the drive to somebody, there will likely be little doubt that they’ll know that it really works with both bus. The opposite finish options the standing LED within the type of a small skinny bar.

The drive, in case the Kind-C port isn’t a clue sufficient, is Thunderbolt 3. There’s no AC jack so you’ll be able to’t apply it to older Macs through Thunderbolt with out an AC-powered dock.

OWC

OWC labels for each the supported switch protocols. The corporate contains teh needed cables as properly. 

The Envoy Professional FX makes use of an NVMe OWC Aura Professional internally and is on the market in 240GB, 480GB, 1TB, and 2TB capacities for $179, $229, $319, and $499 respectively. (Be aware that sustained write efficiency with bigger information usually drops considerably with decrease capability drives.) OWC contains each a Thunderbolt 3 cable and USB Kind-C to Kind-C cable with a captive Kind-C to Kind-A adapter.

The drive ships with helper software program put in on an 8GB partition. The software program will assist you to format the principle partition to the file system of your alternative, or you are able to do that your self utilizing Apple’s Disk Utility. You may wish to copy the software program to your essential drive so you’ll be able to delete the helper partition and use the complete capability. That’s what I do. Your name. 

Efficiency

Although OWC doesn’t go into it on the Envoy Professional FX’s net web page, USB Gen 2 10Gbps efficiency is about half the marketed 2GBps you’ll see over Thunderbolt 3. These are the numbers you’ll see from artificial benchmarks reminiscent of Blackmagicdesign’s Disk Pace Check and  CrystalDiskMark 6 which we ran on sister publication PCWorld’s check mattress to corroborate outcomes.

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