I am a massive fan of dual USB drives and own two made by Sandisk. I find that they are the best way to transfer large files onto Android devices; MTP and Windows tend not to be the best of friends. They are also great now that SD cards seem to be less and less featured in phones and networks just don’t give us the data allowance to stream our favour movies and albums over and over again.
StarTech have taken a different approach to the dual USB drive by not including any onboard storage. Instead you use your own SD cards, which are inserted into the USB A side where you would normally expect there to be a bit of black plastic. This means you can buy a 16Gb for a few pounds or a 64GB SD card depending on your needs at the time, or perhaps even just to put your old SD cards back into use.
The drive is USB 2.0 so transferring large files is going to be fairly slow but it will have ample speed for video playback and looking at photos. As with my last few reviews of dual drives I have done some speed tests to see how well it performs.
For the tests I used a Sandisk Ultra 32GB UHS-I Class 10 Micro SD card. I chose this because I believe it provides a fair test to the USB drive rather than the card being the bottleneck for transfer quality and speed. On the PC side I used a USB 2.0 Port on my EVGA Stinger Z97.
I would normally use FlashBench to test my drives but for some reason it wouldn’t see this one. When transferring files I got a steady write speed between 9MB/s and 12MB/s which is in the right area for USB 2.0. Read speeds were also about right at around 20MB/s. On the phone side using A1 SD Bench by a1dev.com I got a read speed of 18.81MB/s and a wirte speed of 5.85MB/s, again in the right area for USB 2.0. So I have found that the drive is versatile and can perform well for USB 2.0
Onto the design. The drive is a solid structure unlike the versions sold by Sandisk and Kingston which have moving parts to protect the ports. I am not sure what StarTech where thinking when It came to protection as the USB A side has a plastic cap to protect it and the SD card inside but the Micro USB side gets no cover at all. This has caused a problem for me as I am happy to leave it on my desk but won’t put it in my tech bag with all of my other cables and back up batteries because I am concerned that when I will need it I will find that the Micro USB has bent or broken off. I see this as a massive shame as it’s the only flaw on an otherwise great product.
So if you are fine leaving this on your desk or have a more organised tech bag than me, you can pick one up for £5.99 following the image link below.