USB 3.0 Part I

Posted by: DT  :  Category: USB 3.0

So the waiting period is over. The USB 3.0 flash drive is definitely on the scene! As the new USB standard was slowly being rolled out in mid-2009, it only took until November that year for the first USB 3.0 memory stick to be announced. Of course most consumers didn’t have any computers yet with SuperSpeed USB ports – but now that its been 1 1/2 years the situation is slightly changing. Especially since there are affordable upgrade solutions such as Host Controllers and Adapter Cards.

USB 3.0 SuperSpeed Logo

So whats so cool about SuperSpeed USB? Well, the answer pretty much lies in the name. It prizes itself with a speed of 4800 Mbits/s – that’s 4.8 Gbps! Compare that to USB 2.0 which has a 10x less transfer rate of 480 Mbits/s. And that’s only in theory, as most USB 2.0 flash drive models “only” reach a peak of about 34 MB/s (vs the theoretical 57 MB/s). For instance, the Corsair Flash Voyager GTR. And that’s about the end of the line.

In other words, you can actually sit in front of your PC now and watch in amazement how your USB 3.0 flash drive transfers your 1GB worth of data. Because it should only take about 2 seconds. Well, in reality it will probably be more like 10 – but that’s still a giant leap from the previous standard.

The way these faster speeds can be achieved is by five additional pins in the USB interface. And the good news is that this is backward compatible with USB 2.0. Meaning you can still use your USB 2.0 media in a USB 3.0 port. And likewise, you can use a USB 3.0 flash drive in a USB 2.0 port. The only drawback is that you will be limited to the USB 2.0 performance. But on another upside, USB 3.0 uses 2/3 less power than its predecessor.

Without further ado, here are the first USB 3.0 flash drives on the market.

Mach Xtreme FX (MX-FX)

USB 3.0 Mach Xtreme FX in gray and blue

Almost the Speed of Sound: Mach Xtreme FX USB 3.0 (@ black logo) or (black3)

Metallic body with silver lid
Vibration and shock resistant
Available in gray or blue
16/ 32/ 64GB
max 125 MB/s read
max 80 MB/s write
USB 2.0 backward compatible
Key ring grommet
Low power consumption
RoHs certified
78 x 27 x 9.3 mm
39 grams
10 years data retention
3 year warranty


USB 3.0 ADATA N005 with & without cap

Quantum of Pace: A-DATA N005 USB 3.0 (@ black logo) or (black3)

Silver-gray coated aluminum body
Black snap-on cap
16/ 32/ 64GB
85 MB/s read
55 MB/s write
USB 2.0 backward compatible
Key ring hole
90 x 20.5 x 11.5 mm
20.5 grams
10 years data retention
3 year warranty

Team Group X101

Team X101 USB3.0 in black & white

Team Effort: USB 3.0 Team Group X101 (@ black logo) or (black3)

Slim plastic body with snap-on cap
Available in red/white or black/orange
32/ 64/ 128GB
60 MB/s read
37 MB/s write
With MSC-300 driver:
101 MB/s read
48 MB/s write
USB 2.0 backward compatible
Key ring hole
90 x 23 x 13 mm
18 grams
10 years data retention
Lifetime warranty

Kingston DT Ultimate

USB 3.0 DT Ultimate with & without cap

White Knight: DataTraveler Ultimate USB 3.0 (@ logox21) or (white logo2)

Durable plastic body in white & silver
Lid fits on end tip
16/ 32/ 64GB
80 MB/s read
60 MB/s write
USB 2.0 backward compatible
Blue LED signal
Keychain loop
Lanyard & USB Y-cable included
74 mm x 22 mm x 16 mm
5 year warranty
10 year data retention

PQI Cool Drive U366

USB 3.0 PQI U366 in blue & gray displaying plugs

Double Entrées: PQI U366 USB 3.0 (@ logox21) or (white logo2)

Aluminum body with clear plastic lid
Available in blue or silver
Lid fits on end tip
16/ 32/ 64GB
Up to 97 MB/s transfer speeds
USB 2.0 backward compatible
Support for Ur-Smart
LED indicator
Keyring hole
87 x 22 x12 mm
Weight ?
10 years data retention
Lifetime warranty

PQI Cool Drive U368

USB 3.0 PQI U368 with & without cap

The Sky’s the Limit: PQI U368 USB 3.0 (@ logox21) or (white logo2)

Blue metallic casing with lid
Lid fits on end tip
8/ 16/ 32/ 64GB
Up to 105 MB/s transfer speeds
USB 2.0 backward compatible
TurboFlash software
Support for Ur-Smart
LED indicator
Keyring hole
Key strap included
90.1 x 11.1 x 22 mm (3.55 x 0.44 x 0.87 in)
25 g (0.06 lb)
10 years data retention
Lifetime warranty

Super Talent USB 3.0 Drives

USB 3.0 Super Talent Drives: Express Duo, SuperCrypt, Express Drive, RAM Cache & RAIDDrive

Super Talent Super Speed: USB 3.0 RAIDDrive, SuperCrypt & Express Drives (@ black logo)

or (black3)

For details see Super Talent Expres Drive & Others

Make sure to check for updates on this list as more USB 3.0 flash drive models are bound to come out in the following months. By the way, if you’re longing for the “good ole days” – USB 1.1 boasted a whopping 12 Mbits/s. All praise be to progress… ;-)

…on eBay right now:
[wordbay]USB 3.0 +(flash drive,pen drive,memory stick,2TB,3TB) -(Corsair,CORSAIR,fix,no-tax,new,fake,chinese,warranty,wrty,post)[/wordbay]

Click here to find more USB 3.0 flash drives

Other parts:

Coming soon

5 Responses to “USB 3.0 Part I”

  1. mona Says:

    hey. i have a Lenovo ThinkPad E325 and an ADATA 3.0, 32gb memory stick. when i plug it in it recognizes it, i can open it, but if i try to copy something or delete something(i have 3 files stuck on it) it closes my window because “the location is unavailable” and i can`t open it again because the computer can`t see it anymore. the first 2 times i used the memory stick it worked, and it was on my old computer, but then… this. is it because neither the laptop nor the computer can work at that speed… or is it possible that my computer burnt my stick a little? because today i just plugged another memory stick in my computer and it didn’t see it all, and when i took it out it smelled like heated metal… or welding. please tell me what i`m doing/did wrong. i`m afraid i`ll kill all my memory sticks…

  2. DT Says:

    that sounds pretty strange. I would suggest to contact Lenovo customer support. On another note its possible that your ThinkPad has an operating system that does not recognize the FAT format of the sticks. So you may need to convert them to NTFS if you want to exklusively use them with your laptop.

  3. Mona Says:

    My ThinkPad recognizes both FAT and NTFS, and i have about 15 different memory sticks and it doesn’t have any problems with them, but they aren’t 3.0. It just won’t read the 3.0…
    So, allow me to rephrase…
    1. Is a 3.0 memory stick compatible with my laptop?
    2. If not, can i use some kind of adapter?
    3. Can a computer usb port burn a memory stick? and if so, is there anything that can make the stick work again?

  4. DT Says:

    3.0 USB drives are backward compatible – so they should work with a 2.0 port, no adapter needed. I have no idea why your laptop gives you that much trouble with that specific memory stick. Maybe you can try out another 3.0 stick and see if it causes problems as well (preferably a low budget low capacity drive in case it gets “burned” too ;-) .

  5. Joe Says:

    I am interested to know what your pricing is for USB 3.0 64gb, 32 gb and 16gb. I am also interested in your USB 2.0 but if you have them 3.1 would be great to get a quote on as well. Thank you.

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