by Lyle Smith

SanDisk Extreme PRO USB 3.0 Flash Drive Review (128GB)

The SanDisk Extreme Pro USB 3.0 128GB Flash Drive is a high-performance, as well as SanDisk’s largest capacity, USB flash drive that allows consumers to share and transfer large media files on the go. At 128GB, not only does this thumb drive have a plethora of space, it's  also quoted to deliver up to an impressive 240MB/s write and 260MB/s read transfer speeds, which is roughly 60 times faster than standard USB 2.0 drives and would certainly qualify as top-in-class if the drive can deliver. 

SanDisk continues to deliver quality feeling products with the Extreme Pro, sporting a sleek aluminum metal casing to protect against daily wear and tear; a welcoming feature for users who are always on the go. Additionally, the SanDisk Extreme PRO offers SecureAccess software to provide 128-bit AES file encryption and password protection; this gives users a peace of mind for securing specific files against prying eyes all the while allowing them to leave the remainder of their content on the drive for sharing.

SanDisk Extreme PRO USB 3.0 128GB Flash Drive goes for a hefty $199.99 and includes SanDisk’s usual lifetime warranty.

Specifications

  • Available capacity: 128GB (Model: SDCZ88-128G)
  • Performance/Speed: Up to 240MB/s write; Up to 260MB/s read
  • Dimensions: 11.0 x 21.0 x 71.0 mm; 0.45 x 0.84 x 2.79 in
  • Operating Temperature: 0 C to 45 C
  • Storage Temperature: -10 C to 70 C
  • Compatibility: USB 3.0 and USB 2.0
  • Warranty: Lifetime

Design and Build

The SanDisk Extreme PRO USB 3.0 Flash Drive has a very attractive, yet very durable design with its aluminum metal casing. The SanDisk logo is branded just below the USB connector along the black strip that goes through the middle of the stick.

Fortunately, SanDisk opted to drop those annoying caps frequently used on USB drives. Instead, there is a black switch that moves up and down located at the center of the drive, which retracts the connector inside the enclosure to safety. The functionality of this mechanism feels very sturdy and responsive with a solid click-action feel. It is by far the best constructed and easiest to operate thumbdrive we've tested. 

Performance

In this review, we include the following comparables from our database of USB flash drive reviews

All comparable drives are generally each company's top-in-class USB 3.0 offerings.

Using our Consumer Testing Platform, we measured transfer speeds from the SanDisk Extreme Pro 128GB Flash Drive with IOMeter. Sequential read speeds measured 229MB/s, while write activity reached 211MB/s. The Lexar JumpDrive P10 was the top performer, clocking in at a blistering 252.4MB/s read and 225.9MB/s write. The Patriot Supersonic Magnum trailed closely behind with 247.0MB/s read and but had a significantly slower write speed with 151.3MB/s. The SanDisk Extreme 64GB Flash Drive had read speeds of 194.5MB/s and write speeds of 177.9MB/s.

The SanDisk Extreme Pro outshone its comparables when we switched to random large-block transfers, boasting 229MB/s read and 66.4MB/s write. The Patriot Supersonic Magnum recorded speeds of 166.3MB/s read and 39.1MB/s write while the Lexar JumpDrive P10 posted a similar read number at 167.7MB/s, but with a much slower write speed of 14.8MB/s. The other SanDisk flash drive measured 177.6MB/s read and 43.5MB/s write.

Conclusion

The SanDisk Extreme Pro USB 3.0 is a performance-driven, high capacity consumer flash drive that quotes minimum performance figures of up to 240MB/s write activity and up to 260MB/s for read activity. The SanDisk Pro is only offered in a 128GB capacity, which is fine because its target demographic is catered to professionals who are always on the go and deal with large data files on a regular basis. In terms of construction, it sets the bar as to how a thumbdrive feel or operate.

As far as performance goes, the SanDisk Extreme Pro performed with top-in-class numbers overall. The SanDisk drive hit 229MB/s read and 211MB/s write for sequential activity and 229MB/s read and 66.4MB/s write for random transfer speeds. The sequential numbers were a little below the spec sheet, but within the realm of reason. The Extreme Pro performed incredibly well against other top-of-the-line USB flash drives, especially in random large-block activity where it took first place by a significant margin. 

Pros

  • Excellent overall performance
  • Great design and easy to use
  • Lifetime warranty

Cons

  • Pricing may keep casual users away

Bottom Line

The SanDisk Extreme Pro USB 3.0 Flash Drive is an excellent choice for enthusiasts looking for speed and reliability in an enclosure that is simply second to none.

SanDisk Extreme Pro USB at Amazon

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