Storage technology has advanced to the point that solid state drives (SSD) can be shoved into tiny packages, and portable conventional hard drives can easily cram terabytes of data into a casing the size of a wallet.
Hard drives and storage
But there’s still a niche for the good old USB flash drive, especially now that faster USB 3.0 ports are standard on pretty much all new laptops (and even some tablets). After many hours of testing and research, we’re happy to recommend the very largest flash drives available, starting with the 2TB Kingston DataTraveler. Check them out!
Kingston DataTraveler Ultimate GT 2TB
Kingston eclipsed its own record-breaking USB drives with the release of the DataTraveler Ultimate GT in 2017, offering a staggering 2TB of space in a relatively compact package. It’s not as slimline as some of the other entries on this list, but considering it sports the kind of capacity that only a few years ago was the reserve of platter-spinning hard drives, that’s no surprise.
With full support for USB 3.1, the Ultimate GT is no slouch when it comes to file transfer speeds. It can read at 300MBps and write at 200MBps. It supports Windows 10, 8.1, 8 and 7, as well as Mac OSX, Linux and Chrome OS. Much like it’s smaller cousin, the HyperX Predator, this USB drive’s only real downside is its price. You would need to have a very good reason to pay so much for a USB drive, when you could simply use multiple smaller drives and spend a fraction of that. However, for those who want the biggest and accept no substitutes, here it is.
For those who want to save a significant amount of money, there’s also a 1TB version of the Ultimate available for nearly half the price.
Western Digital SanDisk Ultra Dual Drive Luxe 1TB
Western Digital is coming out with a new SanDisk flash drive line in 2020, with storage options all the way up to 1TB, making it easily one of the biggest flash drives on the market. There are a couple things about this drive that really stand out for buyers who want the latest and greatest: First, it’s USB-C, which means it’s extra quick and powerful with the latest data transfer standards. Usually, this means you will need a USB-C connection on your computer to use it — but the drive has another trick up its sleeve with dual compatibility for USB-A drives as well. It works on both, so having the latest connections isn’t a requirement!
Other features include an automatic backup tool, a swivel design to protect the port when not in use, and a handy little keyhole so you can always keep this drive nearby. While it’s not quite out yet, you can reserve one easily with a visit to Western Digital.
Corsair Flash Voyager GS USB 3.0 512GB
Corsair’s fastest flash drive is also one of its largest. The Flash Voyager GS USB 3.0 combines a sleek metal alloy housing with quoted read and write speeds of up to 290MB/s, assuming you have the USB 3.0 or higher ports to handle it.
That’s on the 512GB version — the lower-capacity GTX Voyager 3.0 can read at up to 450MB/s, but only comes in 256GB. For those who would rather save a few dollars, Corsair also offers several 256GB drives which in some ranges can go for substantially less.
Patriot Supersonic Rage 3.1 512GB
Patriot has upgraded most of its line of USB 3.1 flash drives to 512GB, and the fastest among them is the aggressively-named Sonic Rage 3.1. It can write at up to 400MB/s and read at 300 and it’s very affordable — you can find the 512GB version for under $100. The less robust Supersonic Magnum 2 and Supersonic Mega also come in 512GB flavors. The 3.1 version of the Rage is backwards compatible with other USB standards, in case you were worried.
PNY Pro Elite 512GB USB 3.0
Touting sustained read and write speeds of 400MBps and 250MBps respectively, the PNY Pro Elite 512GB is a very affordable way to get yourself a massive amount of storage in a small form factor. It’s hardly the most eye-catching of USB drives, but it’s quick, compact and can fit just about anything you want. Game installs? No problem. Hundreds of hours of video? It can do it. Your entire music collection? Easy.
Some reviews have noted that smaller files take longer to transfer than larger ones, but if you just need a lot of space and have a relatively constrained budget, this device will see you right.
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