A couple of months in the past, OWC launched the Envoy Pro FX, a conveyable SSD storage drive that’s described as “the quickest, most suitable drive ever.” I take a more in-depth have a look at the Envoy Pro FX and its capabilities in my overview under.
Wide compatibility: The drive will be linked to a variety of units with Thunderbolt 3/4 or USB-C ports, comparable to the most recent Mac, iPad Pro, and iPad Air fashions, in addition to PCs and Microsoft Surface units. There can also be a USB-A adapter connected to the Thunderbolt cable included within the field.
Very quick speeds: Thunderbolt 3/4 compatibility permits for very quick learn/write speeds as much as an marketed 2,800 MB/s. I take a look at speeds under.
Bus-powered: The drive is powered by the machine it’s linked to, not an influence provide.
Tough design: The drive’s aluminum housing has IP67-rated water and mud resistance and military-grade drop safety.
Storage capacities: 240GB, 480GB, 1TB, and 2TB.
The Envoy Pro FX enclosure is supplied with OWC’s Aura P12 Pro, a high-performance SSD with M.2 NVMe 1.3 know-how. With a PCI-Express 3.1 connection through Thunderbolt 3, OWC guarantees spectacular learn/write speeds as much as 2,800 MB/s.
My take a look at setup consisted of a base mannequin 16-inch MacE-book Pro with a 2.6GHz six-core Ninth-generation Intel Core i7 processor working macOS Big Sur 11.2, with the Envoy Pro FX linked on to the MacE-book Pro with a single Thunderbolt 3 cable. The drive was formatted with a single Apple File System (APFS) quantity for macOS.
Using the favored AmorphousDiskMark 3.1 storage benchmark app by Katsura Shareware, the Envoy Pro FX achieved sequential learn and write speeds of as much as 3,002 MB/s and a pair of,324 MB/s respectively on my Mac. This is a bit above what OWC advertises, however in my precise utilization of the drive, knowledge switch speeds had been across the 2,700-2,800 MB/s mark. For instance, I used to be capable of switch a 25GB file in round 9 seconds.
By comparability, SanDisk’s 1TB Extreme Pro SSD additionally makes use of M.2 NVMe 1.3 know-how, however with out Thunderbolt 3, sequential learn efficiency is proscribed to as much as 2,000 MB/s. And at the low finish, exterior HDDs typically high out at learn speeds of round 100 MB/s to 150 MB/s. Of course, each of these choices are far cheaper than the Envoy Pro FX, with some comparisons included in my pricing part under.
With a modern aluminum housing, the Envoy Pro FX resembles an Apple product, however the white OWC brand and Envoy Pro FX branding takes away from the aesthetic. The drive’s “charcoal grey” shade is a bit darker than the Space Gray end of the MacE-book Pro, however they nonetheless look good side by side. Along the left and proper sides of the drive are what OWC calls “deeply grooved fins” to assist with warmth dissipation and guarantee sustained efficiency. The fanless drive by no means felt overly scorching to the contact throughout some massive file transfers in my testing.
The backside of the drive has two non-skid rubber toes to stop it from sliding round on a desk or different floor. On the entrance of the drive is a slim LED standing mild that seems blue when the drive is powered on and flashes slowly throughout file transfers, however the LED is not very vibrant, so I discovered it fairly ineffective throughout daytime. (I’m no professional photographer, so the image above makes the LED look brighter than it’s.)
The again of the drive has a single Thunderbolt 3 port, which doubles as a USB-C port, as the 2 requirements share the identical connector design.
With no fan, the Envoy Pro FX has silent operation. As anticipated, the drive did not make any noise throughout my testing, which is actually nice. Unfortunately, the followers in my Intel-based MacE-book Pro rapidly revved up whereas finishing a Time Machine backup to the drive, however I’ll take the blame right here for not upgrading to an M1 Mac but.
As an exterior drive that matches within the palm of my hand, the Envoy Pro FX can simply be introduced on the go, making it a handy, moveable resolution for storing recordsdata whereas touring. With a single Thunderbolt 3 cable that connects to a Mac for knowledge and energy, IP67-rated water and mud resistance, and military-grade drop safety, the Envoy Pro FX gives a plug-and-play expertise with none fear.
The Envoy Pro FX will be linked to a variety of units with Thunderbolt 3/4 or USB-C ports, comparable to the most recent Mac, iPad Pro, and iPad Air fashions, in addition to PCs and Microsoft Surface units. There can also be a USB-A adapter connected to the Thunderbolt cable included within the field that permits the drive to be linked to USB-A units.
To reap the benefits of the utmost speeds that the Envoy Pro FX affords, a 2016 or newer Mac with Thunderbolt 3/4 ports working macOS High Sierra or later is required. OWC lists full system requirements on its web site.
The drive comes preloaded with OWC’s Drive Guide formatting utility for configuring the drive, with choices to create a single Apple File System (APFS) quantity that fills the complete drive for macOS High Sierra and later, a single HFS+ quantity that fills the complete drive for older macOS variations, or a single exFAT quantity that fills the complete drive to be used with each macOS and Windows. The drive will also be configured manually.
Given that the Envoy Pro FX is a top-of-the-line moveable SSD, it ought to come as no shock that the drive is not low cost. Pricing begins at $199 for 240GB of storage, adopted by 480GB for $229, 1TB for $319, and 2TB for $499.
A couple of comparisons with different 1TB drives suitable with the Mac:
A black 0.7-meter Thunderbolt 3 cable is included within the field with the Envoy Pro FX.
The Envoy Pro FX is superb, however expensive. If you need ultra-fast learn/write speeds, this drive has actually earned my stamp of approval; nevertheless, in case you are merely searching for a drive to retailer your Time Machine backups, then it might be extra economical to think about a primary 1TB exhausting drive for round 1 / 4 of the value of the Envoy Pro FX, or a non-Thunderbolt SSD as a great center floor when it comes to value and velocity.
The Envoy Pro FX can be ordered on OWC’s website.
Note: MacRumors is an affiliate companion with OWC and Amazon. When you click on a link and make a purchase order, we could obtain a small cost, which helps us maintain the location working. OWC offered MacRumors with an Envoy Pro FX for this overview. No different compensation was acquired.