Does It Make Sense To Buy an External SSD?

External SSD

Solid State Drives (SSD) are becoming more and more popular every day. They make computers run faster and have been slowly taking over the storage market. If you have an extra SSD lying around, you can easily convert it into an external drive or you can buy readymade Brandnew external SSDs in the market.

An external SSD is a great option if you want to use it as an extra backup drive or need more storage space for your projects and files. It can be plugged in anytime without needing to open up your computer case or install any drivers on the system itself. You just have to plug it into a USB port and you’re good to go.

In a hurry? Click here to jump to recommended external SSD section.

Before we jump into the external SSD part for quick catchup let’s see what is an SSD in the first place.

If you are a gamer or if you happen to build a new-gen PC, then you must have definitely come across the acronym ‘SSD’. So what is this thing called SSD, and why do people go crazy about SSDs for their PCs?

Well SSD stands for Solid State Drive and as the name suggests, it is a storage device that doesn’t have any moving parts. It is essentially a flash-memory based storage device which means that data can be accessed and written much faster than traditional spinning hard disks.

This is why SSDs are so popular now; because they offer much higher performance than traditional hard disks. In fact, an SSD can offer speeds that are up to 20 times faster than a regular hard drive! So if you are looking for a PC that offers blazing-fast performance, then you should definitely consider getting an SSD.

Just keep in mind that since SSDs are still relatively new on the market, they tend to be more costly than traditional hard disks.

Advantages of Using SSD Over HDD

Samsung-970-PRO SSD (Check on Amazon)
Seagate BarraCuda 2TB HDD (Check on Amazon)
  • Speed: When it comes to SSD they are faster than regular HDD. Because regular HDD have spinning disks that need to be accessed in order to read or write data. SSD don’t have any moving parts so it can access the data much faster.
  • Durability: Another advantage of SSD is their durability. They are less likely to fail because there are no moving parts. So even if you drop your laptop with an SSD installed in it, there is a good chance that the SSD wouldn’t fail. However, you should not rely on this as every storage device will eventually fail regardless of what type they are.
  • Size: Another benefit of SSD is their size. Because there are no moving parts and all data stored in an array of flash memory chips, they can be made in much smaller sizes than regular HDD.
  • Noise: SSDs are also quieter than regular hard drives because of their non mechanical structure. This might not be a big deal to some people, but if you are someone who is always working in a quiet environment then an SSD would definitely be a good option for you.
  • Heat: Finally, SSDs also produce less heat than regular hard drives. This is because regular hard drives tend to use more power in order to spin their disks and therefore produces more heat. So if you are someone who is always concerned with keeping your PC cool, then an SSD would be a good option for you.

Why Do People Use External SSD?

SanDisk Extreme Portable SSD (Check on Amazon)

An external SSD is a handy option for people who want to gather their files in one place. It is also a good option for those who are always on the go and do not have access to a computer or laptop. Also, if you don’t need large storage space, but still want something reliable, an external SSD could be the best choice.

There are a few reasons why people love to use an SSD as external storage instead of an HDD.

Build and Size

SSD is very light compared to a regular HDD. It can even fit in your pocket. If you are a traveller even if the SSD falls out of your bag, you do not have to worry about it being damaged. The reason for this is that, unlike an HDD that has moving parts in it, SSD only stores flash memory chips on the inside and they are not prone to damage from falling or getting bumped while travelling.

The speed of an external SSD

The storage you carried around must have a higher read and write speed to transfer files quickly. If you happen to go to your friend’s house and see your friend has a large movie collection and photo collection, you will definitely want to take the time to grab a coffee or tea and quickly transfer all of those files over. a higher transfer rate is a must when it comes to an external SSD.

HDD has a slower transfer rate that can take up to twice as long compared to an SSD to transfer files. So if you are always on the go and need to quickly grab or transfer files, then an external SSD is a better choice.


The SSD is a better option when it comes to durability. The main reason why the external SSD can withstand more damage than an HDD is because of how it works. An internal HDD has moving parts that are constantly rotating, so if you drop your hard drive or hit it against something, then there’s a chance that the internal parts of your HDD will be damaged. A solid-state drive does not have any moving parts inside and has flash memory chips on the outside that can withstand some heavy damage.

Does an External SSD Read/Write as fast as an Internal SSD?

Yes pretty much. An SSD’s transfer rate may be limited by two factors

  1. The speed of the SSD drive :
  2. The transfer rate of the interface

Most consumer SATA SSDs comes to market today have an AVG read /write speed of 560MB/s to 530MB/s. If you take NVME SSD Read and write speeds are pretty much faster.

Today, there are three main types of external drive interfaces. They are:

  • USB 3.0 – the speed of USB 3.0 can be up to 625MB/s. USB 3.1 also goes up as high as 1.2GB/. There is the possibility that you may have an older USB2.0 external storage device, but this is unlikely, and it will be limited to 60MB/s
  • eSATA has a bandwidth limit of 600 MB/s
  • Thunderbolt 3: has a maximum of 5GB/s speed

Nowadays, internal drives are connected either via SATA or NVMe.

  • Internal SATA SSDs offer the same speed as eSATA and reach a maximum of 600MB/s
  • PCIe NVMe, which can operate at a maximum data rate of 4GB/s

Even though you have a faster SSD if you happen to connect it to a PC via a USB port it will be limited to USB speed. The external SSD has a transfer rate that is dependent on the interface through which it’s connected to the computer.

So if you connect it to a USB port, you’re limited by that port’s transfer speed. If your external SSD is connected via Thunderbolt or eSATA, then it will be able to use much faster transfer speeds than what USB offers.

4 Best External SSD For Everyday Use

Following external drives are selected based on their ability to use as a backup, higher storage, and portability. These are not listed in any particular order.

BrandRead/Write SpeedsAvailable Sizes
SanDisk Extreme Portable SSDRead: 1050MB/s
Write: 1000MB/s
500GB, 1TB, 2TB, 4TBCheck on Amazon
Samsung T7 Portable SSDRead: 1050MB/s
Write: 1000MB/s
500GB, 1TB, 2TBCheck on Amazon
Crucial X8 Portable SSDRead: 1050MB/s
Write: 1000MB/s
1TB, 2TBCheck on Amazon
WD Elements SE Portable SSDRead: 400MB/s
Write: 400MB/s
1TB, 2TBCheck on Amazon

SanDisk Extreme Portable SSD

Photo by Tony Webster

Check SanDisk External SSD on Amazon

Looking for a fast, reliable way to store your valuable data? Look no further than the SanDisk Extreme Portable SSD. Featuring up to 1050MB/s read and up to 1000MB/s write speeds, this SSD is perfect for creating amazing content or capturing incredible footage. What’s more, with up to 2-meter drop protection and IP55 water and dust resistance, it can handle any environment you throw at it.

And thanks to the handy Carabiner loop, you can easily secure it to your belt loop or backpack. Plus, with included password protection featuring 256‐bit AES hardware encryption, you can rest assured that your data is safe and secure.

What we like

  • Small, light weight design
  • Higher read/write speeds
  • Comes with password protection feature

What we don’t like

  • Little bit pricey

Samsung T7 Portable SSD

Check Samsung T7 External SSD on Amazon

Most people store their life on their computers. Photos, music, movies, important business documents- it all adds up over time. What happens when your computer crashes and you lose everything? That’s where the Samsung T7 Portable SSD comes in. This light, the pocket-sized drive delivers fast speeds and reliable data storage for transferring large files, including critical business documents, games, or movies.

Plus, its solid aluminium unibody construction adds further protection, keeping your data safe from falls of up to 6 ft. So whether you’re at home or on the go, don’t take chances with your irreplaceable memories and information. Store them on the Samsung T7 Portable SSD.

What we like

  • Can stick this in a pocket easily
  • Higher read/write speeds

What we don’t like

  • Outer drive shell getting warm when its really busy

Crucial X8 Portable SSD

Check Crucial X8 External SSD on Amazon

The Crucial X8 Portable SSD is the perfect way to take your incredible performance with you wherever you go. With read speeds up to 1050 MB/s, it’s faster than most desktop hard drives and can work with Windows, Mac, iPad Pro, Chromebook, Android, Linux, PS4, and Xbox One.

The anodized aluminium unibody core is not only beautiful but also durable; its drop-proof up to 7.5 feet and extreme-temperature, shock, and vibration proof. Plus, it comes backed by Micron one of the largest manufacturers of flash storage in the world.

What we like

  • Sturdy build quality
  • Sleek design with Professional Looking

What we don’t like

  • No LED indicator
  • Little bit larger than other external SSDs

WD Elements SE Portable SSD

Check WD Elements External SSD on Amazon

WD products are famous for their Speed, portability, and reliability. If you’re looking for a fast and portable way to improve your workflow, the WD Elements SE Portable SSD is perfect for you. With read speeds up to 400MB/s, this drive lets you move large files quickly and easily. Plus, its compact design and drop resistance make it perfect for on-the-go use. And because it’s from WD, you can trust that it’s a quality product that will help you get more done in your day.

What we like

  • Compact design

What we don’t like

  • Slower read/write speeds


Crucial external SSD:

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