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OWC Mercury Envoy Pro EX 2TB USB-C SSD: Awesomely Fast!

MPG tested the about $430 2TB Envoy pro EX USB-C, sku OWCENVPROC2N20. Available in 0GB, 250GB, 500GB, 1TB, 2TB models.

OWC Mercury Envoy Pro EX USB-C SSD

What a difference a few years make. The USB-A OWC Envoy Pro EX was respectably fast, but the 2019 OWC Envoy Pro EX USB-C SSD races past it and every other USB SSD that MPG has yet tested.

What adds unusual appeal to the OWC Envoy Pro EX USB-C SSD? The combination of relatively compact size and light weight with durability, no driver needed, bus power and insanely fast speed for a device of this type. Along with a competitive price for this level of performance.

With bus power provided by its compact USB3 cable, it’s an ideal bus-powered on the go drive. Stow it just about anywhere with ease*. My only minor criticism is that it deserves some kind of soft pouch to be included with it, just to keep the cable together with the drive—the enclosure itself looks to be very durable, but the USB port and the cable are best not mishandled.

* Travelers: never store it with your laptop, since if the laptop is stolen, the drive is also stolen. Store in a pants or jacket pocket or anywhere but the bag containing the laptop.

Protect Your Phone
NuGard KX Case for iPhones and iPads.
Outstanding protection against drops and impact!
Plus, excellent grip for wet hands, cycling, etc.

Potential uses

The potent performance and silent bus-powered operation means that the OWC Mercury Envoy Pro EX USB-C SSD is at home as a high-speed data transfer drive, backup or Time Machine or clone backup drive, travel drive, or high performance desktop drive. For some users it might even be an ideal boot/system drive.

Description

From OWC.

Meet the World's Fastest USB-C Portable Drive — Need EXtreme performance, durability, portability, and design in a portable drive? The NEW OWC Envoy Pro EX with USB-C is the perfect solution for taking photos, videos, music, and other files with you wherever you roam.

EXtremely Fast — With lightning fast speeds up to 980MB/s, the Envoy Pro EX delivers desktop-class performance on the fly. Edit 4K videos and photos or drag and drop files in mere seconds. Even record directly from USB-C cameras!

EXtremely Tough — Weather or location won't stop you from working. The Envoy Pro EX's anodized aluminum housing is 100% dustproof with an IP67 waterproof rating that's certified to survive 30 minutes in 1 meter of water. Plus, it thrives in temperature extremes from freezing to 104 degrees Fahrenheit.

EXtremely Portable — No power adapter required, and no moving parts allow the Envoy Pro EX to work silently anywhere. Sized and weighing similarly to an iPhone, it slips easily into a pocket, purse or gear bag to safely transport your data.

EXtremely Elegant — inspired by the Envoy Pro's award-winning design, the silver matte finish of the Envoy Pro EX complements your existing gear to make you look like a pro. *Water resistant for up to 30 minutes at < 1 meter.

  • USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C Port, Thunderbolt 3 compatible
  • USB 3.1 gen 2 : 10 Gb/s (or 1250 MB/s)
  • M.2 NVME
  • Mac OS 10.12 Or Above Windows 10 Or Above
  • Aluminum enclosure
  • Bus-powered.
  • Dimensions: height: 9 mm (0.4 in) X 65 mm (2.6 in) X 115 mm (4.5 in)
  • Easily fits into a pocket.
  • No noise, no vibration, no heat.
  • Consistent high performance at all I/O transfer sizes.
OWC Envoy Pro EX USB-C SSD (shown without USB cable)

Large transfer sustained performance

Tested using diglloydTools DiskTester: disktester fill-volume --xfer 128M

This test uses very large transfers to fill the entire drive to capacity. Performance is stunningly good in two ways.

First MPG has never seen performance this high (as of mid 2019) from any USB-A or USB-C device before.

Second, there is almost no deviation in performance for the entire 2TB capacity written continuously. This is a jaw-droppingly good performance suitable for just about any task.

Average Write speed: 1043 MB/sec
Average Read Speed: 1040 MB/sec

Speeds shown are through the macOS file system, so are real-world performance accessible to applications.

disktester fill-volume drive speed across the drive capacity
OWC Envoy Pro EX USB-C SSD

Speed vs transfer size

Tested using diglloydTools DiskTester.
disktester run-sequential-suite --iterations 5 --test-size 4GiB

Performance for 32K transfer sizes is an important metric for some uses; the results shown in the 240 to 270 MB/sec range are excellent. Speed rises rapidly with transfer size to very high levels by 1MB transfers. This is an awesomely fast performance for a USB drive.

Speeds shown are through the macOS file system, so are real-world performance accessible to applications.

disktester run-sequential-suite — speed vs transfer size
OWC Envoy Pro EX USB-C SSD

Conclusions

The about $430 2TB Envoy pro EX USB-C is a highly attractive storage solution, whether on the go or not—silent, super fast, and compact, it’s hard to not want to run out and buy one.


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