Samsung T1 250GB Portable USB 3.0 SSD Review

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Conclusion

In a world where everything technology seems to be “shrinking” in size but retaining the performance, it begs the question, should you pay more for something “smaller”?  Well I guess it depends on whether or not the context of the product is important; a 5.5” screen IPS phone is going to cost more than a 4” one, but the other side of the coin is what I feel the main issue is here today; is the smaller Samsung T1 a better option than say a 2.5” SSD inside a generic USB 3.0 caddy?

Well, starting out with the obvious winner for Samsung here, the design, the T1 250GB portable SSD is nothing short of stunning; it is a beautiful device with its small stature adding to its appeal.  It has a black colour scheme throughout and weighs a pittance; 30g max on the 1TB model.  It has a rugged textured surface for easy holding; the last thing you want is an expensive bit of kit being dropped and smashed.  In saying that, flash memory is a lot more robust than other forms of storage and the likelihood of breaking it by simply dropping it is very unlikely; please do not try it though!  One thing that I really have to touch on though is although it is plastic and it’s designed to be light, I can’t help but say it feels a little “cheap”.  Now when I say feel, I mean the actual touchy feely part as opposed to the look; it looks a million dollars to be frank, but with it being so light, the plastic being relatively solid, it could certainly have a much more “premium” feel to it.

Performance wise, I have to be really brutal here, I did expect a lot more from this drive as I didn’t get close to the potential speeds of up to 450MB/s which Samsung touted but given that compressed and un-compressed data differ greatly, it isn’t actually that bad all things considered.  The T1 250GB was around 300MB/s read and write across the benchmarks with a notably strong showing in IOPS; one of the main factors on performance.  Although the Corsair GTX Voyager drive wasn’t far off, the Samsung T1 is notably more powerful albeit this is an SSD we are talking about; you also pay the price for the 3D VNAND technology that the T1 has implemented inside its sleek chassis.  Overall, although I wasn’t mesmerised by the performance, it still beats any other smaller flash drive in terms of performance that we have ever seen; that counts for something especially when a size to performance ratio is super important to you.

Now probably the most important factor of all here, the price.  I feel given the right price, most people would want this drive?  Well if you do, at launch the T1 250GB model will set you back £136.99 in the UK which is certainly not cheap; given that a Samsung EVO 250GB drive and a generic 2.5” USB caddy would give you similar if not better performance.  The main factor here however is that the T1 portable SSD is pocket sized meaning transportation is hardly ever going to be an issue; where as one might not want to walk around the office with a portable HDD sized object in their pocket.  That being said, new technology is always a premium price and I do expect the prices to come down depending on demand, retailers and of course sales but one thing I will say, currently it doesn’t offer much in the way of value for money I am afraid.

With everything being said and done, the Samsung T1 250GB Portable SSD is in reality, a fantastic piece of kit which I do expect to take off; but not yet.  With the high price tag currently attached, I can see people looking for cheaper options but make no mistake, currently the Samsung T1 is a must have for those who aren’t put off by paying the “premium” cost for having the latest or greatest of everything; 4.75GB transfer rates were exceptional for a drive of its size so I am happy to award the Samsung T1 our Gold award.

Many thanks to Samsung for allowing us to take a look at the T1 portable SSD and I look forward to more from them in the future!

 

  • Performance
  • Design
  • Value
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Summary

– Good performance
– Very portable
– Looks absolutely stunning
– Available in 250/500GB and 1TB variations

Cons:

– The feel of it is a little cheap due to its full plastic construction
– Paying the premium for “new technology”
– Only available in black currently

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