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Kingston HyperX Savage USB 3.1 Flash Drive Review (128GB)

A short time ago, Kingston sent us their newest HyperX Savage USB 3.1 128GB flash drive for report and we have been doing a bit of testing to see if it makes spec.  Most importantly, it is a USB 3.1 Gen1 flash drive which means it is the newer version of USB 3.0 with SuperSpeed, and it is still only capable of 5 Gbps transfer speeds.  In fact, the same controllers are used for USB 3.1 as USB 3.0 and it is not until USB 3.1 Gen 2 that we will start seeing the extra goodies such as 10 Gbps transfer speeds and some extra features.

Kingston HyperX Savage 128 USB3.1 Flash Drive Angle

The HyperX Savage is available in 64m 128 and 256GB capacities and, while speeds of up to 350MB/s read and 250MB/s write are attainable in the two higher capacities, the 64GB model is drops a bit in write transfer to 180MB/s. It’s pricing is seen on Amazon to be $166 (256GB), $90 (128GB) and $55 (64GB ) at the time of this report and it Kingston has included a 5-year warranty with the drive.  It is also fully backwards compatible with USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 devices, as well as OS’s Win Vista and newer, Mac OSX, Linux and Chrome.

Kingston HyperX Savage 128 USB3.1 Flash Drive Standing 2

Admittedly, the Kingston HyperX Savage has a very attractive exterior, is very solid, and the red HyperX logo on the device appears to be metal.  The drive comes in a clear plastic blister pack that I have to concede in having never liked, it is a PITA yo get open.  It also includes a thin rope lanyard attachment in the paperwork for attaching the drive to a keychain or other device.

Kingston HyperX Savage 128 USB3.1 Flash Drive Packaging

ATTO DISK BENCHMARK VER. 2.47

ATTO Disk Benchmark is a relatively easy-to-use benchmark tool, which happens to be the benchmark of choice for many manufacturers. ATTO uses compressible data rather than random data, which results in higher performance and thus, higher benchmark scores. In our testing, we have selected the transfer size to range from 0.5KB to 8192KB, and have set the total length of the test to be 256MB.

Kingston HyperX Savage 128 USB3.1 Flash Drive ATTO

As we can see, read speeds of 348GB/s are pretty much dead on but write speeds of 177MB/s are just a bit below what we might expect  Let’s see how things look testing with incompressible data on the next page…

  • HERETIC

    G’day Les.
    Might be worth doing a practical copy test to flash drives……….
    Have found that copying files to flash drives is considerably slower than
    synthetic bench’s……………..

    Wonder how many people actually buy a 128GB flash drive.
    16GB is probably the most common-probably a ratio about 10,000 to 1……….

    My pet hate on small flash drives is write speed-usually around 11MBs…..
    They shouldn’t be allowed to call USB3 if can’t do 30MBs.haha

    • Mike

      I think all flash tested for now on should have a practical copy test like maybe 30gbs. Because the new flash looks good on paper? But are there advertized speeds mostly just dram cache? If crystal and as ssd are benching higher than atto isn’t that mostly cache? Shouldn’t atto have the highest bench. A copy test large enough will tell the real speed.

  • Michael Moser

    I recently bought the 512GB version of this stick and I am more than disappointed! It is ridiculously slow!
    It works decently fast (>100MB/sec) copying individual large files (10GB+), but if it comes to many small files the transfer speed goes down as far as 1/2 file per second and speeds of 1/2 KB/sec. (yes: a half KILObyte/sec!).
    Another stick from Corsair (half that size) that I had before also goes down for many small files but never below a couple of MBytes/sec. (i.e. it is more than an order of magnitude faster for typical backups even though according to specs the Kingston should be twice as fast)! Where the Corsair took me ~10mins. to do my daily backup the Kingston takes several hours and is thus completely unusable as a backup device!
    Something in the buffering or whatever must be completely broken! I witness the same effect on two machines (one Windows 8.1, the other Windows 10, both using USB 3.0). The stick also gets very hot during longer transfers.

    • Such drives are not intended for use with program files that slow them as you describe. They are marketed for media first and foremost and I was surprised with your post. This has been my ‘go to’ drive since I posted this report. I find it to be an excellent drive and, in fact, is in my pocket up here at Computex.

      • Michael Moser

        What you mean by “programs that slow them down”? I am using them to copy and backup files (a wide variety of files that is!). That’s what USB sticks are for IMHO!
        BTW: I benchmarked my stick with the ATTO Disk benchmark and while reads indeed reach the advertised 350MB/sec., the writes just manage to reach a meager 80MB/sec. (while the specs. boast 250MB/sec)! And even that only for block lengths >1MB. Below that speed breaks away down to 90kB/sec. for block lengths of 512B!

      • Perhaps you received a defective product. What I meant about my statement was to clarify that no storage medium will transfer small files at the stated transfer speeds. Disk transfer speeds slow down significantly when the file size becomes smaller and the total file number to transfer increases significantly. The example of this is system files or program files. I didnt say ‘programs that slow them down’.

    • TriesToHelp

      Hi. What you are describing is most likely due to the fact that the USB port you are using does not support UASP. UASP (USB Attached SCSI Protocol) must be supported by the drivers for the USB 3.0 chipset for the hub/port. USB 3.0 chipsets that do not support UASP will use the same BOT (Bulk-Only Transport) that USB 2.0/1.1/1.0 uses. BOT does not allow for command queuing, out-of-order completion or any of the other SCSI commands that make SCSI/SATA/SAS devices so fast. UASP also adds support for TRIM, which is especially important if you’re using an SSD over a USB 3.0 connection.

      Basically, without UASP, if you transfer a set of files with a mixed file size (say, 2KB – 2GB) the transfer speeds will slow to a crawl — like USB 2.0 speeds or worse — after a period of time. I had this same problem on one of my old computers that used a motherboard released before USB 3.0 had been integrated into mobo chipsets. The motherboard used an NEC chipset for which they did not provide UASP enabled drivers. One of my other motherboards uses an ASMedia chipset, which is still not as good as what’s built into an Intel motherboard chipset, *BUT* it does at least support UASP. Transfer speeds are easily 100MB/sec-300MB/sec on the ASMedia, even for file copies involving thousands of files of mixed sizes.

      To benefit from UASP you would need to be using Windows 8 or newer, and the USB 3.0 chipset on your motherboard must have drivers which support UASP. If you are using Windows 8 or newer, but there are no UASP drivers for the USB 3.0 chipset on your mobo, then you could easily correct the problem with an add-on card. For example, either of these Inateck USB 3.0 controller cards:

      https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00B6ZCNGM
      https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00FPIMJEW

      I have personally used the 5-port model to add USB 3.0 to an older AMD chipset-based Windows 8 computer that pre-dated USB 3.0. It worked great with mSATA drives inside USB 3.0 enclosures and my Corsair GTX (their SSD Flash Drive).

      Anyway, hope that helps. Good luck to you, sir.

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