OWC Envoy Pro EX USB 3.0 Bus-Powered Portable SSD Review


The OWC Envoy Pro EX 240GB SSD is the highest performing USB 3.0 external storage solution that we have tested to date and it’s exterior build is absolutely amazing.  Although it never met performance specifications that we might have hoped, factors may have affected this to include the fact that we are certain this device (or at least the OWC Aura 240GB SSD within) has had significant use prior to our testing as it had already seen 3.5TB of host writes.

To compound this, we have yet to see any USB 3.0 solution reach 500MB/s performance and, as with this exact case, the reasoning is not so much the SSD itself as it is the SATA to USB 3.0 bridge itself.   The Envoy Pro uses the  same ASMedia 1053e chipset as we saw some time ago in the OWC Mercury Elite Pro External Storage Enclosure running similar USB 3.0 tests back then that didn’t have results as high as we had seen here. Then again, it would be excellent to be able to simply reset the drive as we have other SF based products, however, it cannot be done in Mac or through USB 3.0

OWC Envoy Pro EX Enclosure

Pricing at OWC for the Envoy Pro is $79.99 for the enclosure alone,  $319.99 for the 240GB version or $599.99 for the 480GB version, the two latter units having the OWC Aura Pro 6G SSD contained. These are decent prices considering the 240GB version is available right at the $1/GB price point.  In considering the performance that the Envoy Pro EX is capable of and the fact that it is available with a high capacity LSI SandForce driven SSD within, this device definitely jumps outside of the typical SSD based external SSD that we have been seeing at much lower capacities recently.

Concluding, we are awarding the OWC Envoy pro EX USB 3.0 Bus-Powered Portable SSD our Editor’s Choice for its magnificent build, top USB performance, high capacity availability, as well as the fact that the 240GB reaches a very decent price point.

Compare Pricing of the OWC Envoy Pro and Aura Pro Products at Amazon!blank



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One comment

  1. blank

    Very strange that USB 2.0 would make the 4K result so much slower compared to the 4K results on USB 3.0

    Theoretically, 30 MB/s at 4K should be no problem with USB 2.0 either. How can we explain this behaviour ? Maybe the bridge chip used is at fault ?

    I still think 4K at speeds of 30 MB/s through USB 2.0 should be possible provided the underlying SSD supports those speeds.

    Excellent review !

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