Other World Computing is taking a new approach with faster desktop-class SSD memory, this time in a highly portable design. The design of plug-in memory products has largely remained the same. OWC wanted their Envoy Pro Mini to go a step further by tapering the end to fit space constraints of new MacBooks and include an upgraded brushed aluminum enclosure.
The tapered all aluminum case works well with the thinner MacBooks and MacBook Airs that taper off to a slim margin. It fits up and away from the tabletop, rather than adding stress to the computer’s USB pot. A loop on the back of the thin case makes it convenient to attach it to a lanyard string. Its USB 3.0 connection ensures a quick transfer rate of around 427MB per second.
The Envoy Pro Mini is about twice as fast as an average memory stick. Several ideal scenarios where one would need both the speed of SSD in this form factor and transfer rate would be transferring 4K video files, booting into a secondary clean operating system or hosting a virtual machine.
QuickBench test results of an Envoy Pro Mini are impressive. Such as a few stats below.
• 50 MegaBytes Read – 427.656 MB/sec Write – 408.198 MB/sec
• 60 MegaBytes Read – 427.437 MB/Sec Write – 403.845 MB/Sec
• 70 MegaBytes Read – 427.609 MB/Sec Write – 408.203 MB/Sec
• 80 Megabytes Read – 427.405 MB/Sec Write – 408.348 MB/Sec
• 90 MegaBytes Read – 427.893 MB/Sec Write – 408.493 MB/Sec
• 100 MegaBytes Read – 428.026 MB/Sec Write – 408.638 MB/Sec
• Extended Test Average Read – 427.339 MB/Sec Write – 407.659 MB/Sec
• Ran at 10 Cycles on a 240GB Envoy Pro Mini
Like in other OWC SSD drives used in desktop applications, this portable drive utilizes wear-leveling and ultra-efficient block management. Together, they provide high level of reliability. If you have ever had a memory card or stick go bad on you at the worst time, then you know how a few more dollars for reliability means to keeping important data backed up.
OWC includes a nice software package along with the slick hardware. Intech SpeedTools Utilites OEM version for Mac OS 10.3.9 and above, ProSoft Engineering Data Backup for Mac OS X 10.2.8 and above and finally NovaStor NovaBACKUP for Windows 2000 and above. It is nice to see a company provide software packages for Windows PCs and Apple computers running OS X. Check compatibility with your flavor of operating system before installation.
Storage comes in multiple forms today, one of which is not physical, but instead resides on servers called the cloud. That requires an enormous amount of connectivity and is yet to be able to boot a computer through the Internet.
Be prepared with a speedy USB 3.0 external enabled memory stick. There is no more waiting for files to arrive or backups to complete. With the right tools, the Envoy Pro Mini can accomplish tasks that many of today’s external hard drives would have a very hard time completing.
The Envoy Pro Mini 240GB from OWC is a highly portable SSD with desktop class performance. It can store, transfer and boot a computer in a single bound. All for a reduced price of $179.99 from MacSales.com.
- Designed To Fit MacBook Air
- Solid Aluminum Construction
- Desktop Class SSD Performance
- Length Of Device
Disclaimer: The OWC Envoy Pro Mini 240GB was provided at no cost for review. I have not been compensated for the review. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Photos courtesy of OWC MacSales.com.