Consumer Reviews
by Tucker Mindrum

Patriot LX Series 128GB microSDXC Memory Card Review

Patriot recently released a 128GB capacity of their LX Series microSDXC cards. The LX is intended for use with HD camcorders and mid-range cameras, but can be loaded into SD host devices with its SD adaptor. It has standard Class 10 SD Association compliance, and the same reported transfer speeds as the 64GB model (70MB/s and 20MB/s for read and write, respectively). As with the rest of the LX Series, the card comes with Patriot's 5-year warranty and has an MSRP of $129.99.

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by Tucker Mindrum

Lexar Professional 1066x CompactFlash Card Review

Lexar has expanded their CompactFlash library with the new line of Professional 1066x CompactFlash cards, which is now their top-performing CF line. Delivering a reported 160MB/s in read transfers (vs. 120MB/s in their next-fastest line), the 1066x line is geared towards enthusiasts or professional photographers and videographers. These cards can be loaded into HD camcorders, 3D cameras, or DSLR cameras to capture modern video formats (1080p, 3D, and 4K) across a range of top-tier as well as entry-level hosts.

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by Tucker Mindrum

Lexar JumpDrive M20 Flash Drive Review

The new M20 flash drives by Lexar were designed to handle mobile storage and transfer needs for On-The-Go (OTG)-enabled Android users. Up to 64GB can be leveraged through its retractable (and capless) micro-USB and USB 3.0 connectors to alleviate mobile data drain and congestion; M20 drives perform offline cordless transfers (at 120MB/s read and 55MB/s write, which is faster than WiFi-mediated transfers) and could also be used alongside the mobile device's internal storage (or kept separate as a backup hub). They also function as normal USB drives, so Lexar has simply added a few meaningful incentives for Android users.

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by Lyle Smith

Samsung SSD 850 EVO SSD Review

The 850 EVO, announced today, is a mainstream client SSD that is designed for superior performance and reliability during everyday computing. Samsung has really been hitting it out of the park with their storage devices these past few years, so we are always excited to see what their new SSDs are capable of with each iteration. If the 840 EVO is any indication of how well its successor will perform, Samsung's new SSD has a ton of potential to be relevant for a very long time. 

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by Brian Beeler

Selecting the Best Samsung SSD for Intensive Desktop Workloads

There are many choices when buying flash to accelerate intensive desktop-oriented workloads like those for media and entertainment (M&E), oil and gas research, CAD and more. It's not always obvious though where to justify the expense when it comes to figuring out capacity vs performance vs form factor. We took the HP Z620 and Samsung's line of SSDs to get to the bottom of this question to determine which SSDs are best for intensive PC-based workloads. 

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by Lyle Smith

CalDigit T4 Review

The CalDigit T4 is a four-bay storage solution designed for the Mac platform, featuring the latest Thunderbolt 2 technology, storage capacities up to 20TB and compatibility with various RAID configurations to offer professionals quite a bit of versatility. The new T4 also comes with the CalDigit Drive Utility, which is management software that allows for complete control of the company’s storage devices. The bundled software also provides users with vital drive information, RAID management, event notifications, email notifications, event logs, and disk benchmark tests.

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by Tucker Mindrum

Icy Dock TurboSwap 3.5" Tray-Less Mobile Rack Review

Ideal for applications such as medical and military systems, industrial PCs and servers,  the Icy Dock TurboSwap 3.5" tray-less mobile rack (MB171SP-B ) allows for the mounting of a 3.5" hard drive into a 5.25" bay while providing stability, thermoregulation, and lots of added features. 

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by Tucker Mindrum

Icy Dock EZConvert Air HDD/SDD Converter Review

Icy Dock has recently released the EZConvert Air converter/mounting kit, which consists of two cost-effective products that are designed to maximize airflow while mounting a 2.5" HDD/SSD into a 3.5" bay (the MB382IP-3B and MB382SP-3B respectively); the only difference between the two products reviewed herein is that one serves SATA drives and the other serves SAS drives.  The EZConvert Air is comprised of the same form factor of a 3.5” hard drive, such as the outer dimension, location of the SATA connector, and the mounting holes. This allows users to fit it perfectly inside any standard 3.5" SATA/SAS drive bay. Icy Dock indicates that any system that uses 3.5” SATA HDDs is compatible with the EZConvert Air. 

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by Lyle Smith

Patriot Supersonic Bolt XT USB 3.0 Flash Drive Review

The Patriot Supersonic Bolt XT is a rugged USB 3.0 flash drive that focuses on both performance and data security. To back up this claim, the Bolt XT uses built-in FIPS 197 compliant hardware-based 256-bit AES security and the drive locks and reformats itself when 10 consecutive failed password attempts have been made. In addition, the flash drive is designed with heavy rubber housing to ensure that the integrity of user data is protected physically as well. Patriot is known for their rugged USB drives, and the Supersonic Bolt XT is no exception.

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by Tucker Mindrum

QNAP TS-253 Pro Review

The QNAP TS-253 Pro is a two-bay NAS optimized for small offices, workgroups and enthusiasts. It is a feature-intensive system that provides transfer speeds of up to 415MB/s, DDR3L RAM of up to 8GB (with upgrade), military-grade AES 256-bit encryption technology (70MB/s), video transcoding, third-party application compatibility, and virtualization. The TS-253 Pro supports VMware, Citrix, Microsoft Hyper-V and Windows Server 2012 and can be scaled up to 60TB with QNAP’s UX-800P expansion enclosure. QNAP loaded the TS-253 Pro with a 22nm quad-core Intel Celeron 2GHz processor as well as 512MB of flash memory.

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