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OWC Envoy Pro EX SSD: vs OWC Thunderblade



OWC Envoy Pro EX Thunderbolt 3
OWC Envoy Pro EX USB-C

MPG tested the 4TB OWC Envoy Pro EX Thunderbolt 3 and the 4TB OWC Envoy Pro EX USB-C. Capacities available from 240GB to 4TB for both models.

This page evaluates speed of the 4TB OWC Envoy Pro EX Thunderbolt 3 against the OWC Thunderblade 8TB and 16TB

Test results: speed vs capacity

Test mule was the 2019 iMac 5K. The run-sequential-suite command of diglloydTools Disktester was used.

disktester run-sequential-suite -i 5 --test-size 8GB

Speed always varies with transfer size, whether on hard drives or SSDs. There is always overhead e.g., writing 1MB as thirty-two 32K transfers is far less efficient than writing 1MB as a single transfer). With RAID-0 and RAID-5, the striping aspect means that the transfer is split into blocks across drives, the “stripe size” being the determinant of how the transfer is split up.

This graph is a bit complicated, but there is a simple way to assess it: compare the thick solid green (reads) and red (writes) lines to the dotted and dashed ones for the OWC Thunderblade 8TB and 16TB, respectively.

The OWC Envoy Pro EX Thunderbolt 3 handily outperforms the Thunderblades for small reads and otherwise (mostly) matches them—superb.

For writes, the Envoy Pro EX again outperforms for small I/O sizes, but is then handily outperformed by the Thunderblades starting at the 256K to 512K range and after that it is no contest. Since writes are as a rule far less important than reads, this is of nil importance for many uses.

For most users, the OWC Envoy Pro EX Thunderbolt 3 should be the preferred choice for any capacity up through 4TB because of its bus-powered operation and much more compact form factor. The Thunderblade should be preferred when write speed for large I/Os and/or dual Thunderbolt 3 ports are required.

Vertical scale is MB/sec. Horizontal scale shows I/O transfer size.

OWC Envoy Pro EX Thunderbolt 3 vs OWC Thunderblad 8TB, 16TB

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