Potentially the best 512GB Drive?
Kingston has an on-the-go, fast storage product that the users can carry in their pockets easily. With a blazingly high speed of 1000MB/s read, the DataTraveler MAX is a must-have for mobile users and content creators as these drives can handle 4k/8k videos and other data. It comes recommended by us.
Quality - 9/10
Performance - 8.5/10
Features - 8/10
Value - 9/10
- Fast Portable Drive
- USB 3.2 Gen2 standard
- USB Type-A and Type-C interface
- 1000MB/s Read Speed
- 900MB/s Write Speed
- 5-Year Warranty
- Plastic Shell could be metallic
- Runs Warm
So far, we have tested multiple products from Kingston in SSD and DDR5 categories. This time we are taking a look at something different but much-needed and practical solution. Kingston carries a multitude of USB Flash drive solutions depending on the user’s requirements. Their DataTraveler is a popular series. Kingston has a faster on-the-go USB drive in this series named MAX or DT MAX, where DT stands for DataTraveler. This series is based on USB 3.2 Gen2 standard offering a whopping data transfer speed of up to 1000/900 MB/s. Kingston is offering these drives with USB Type-A and Type-C interfaces. We are spinning the 512GB USB Type-C drive this time.
|Interface||USB 3.2 Gen 2|
|Speed||Up to 1,000MB/s read, 900MB/s write|
|Dimensions||Type-C: 82.17 mm x 22.00 mm x 9.02 mm|
|Warranty/support||5-year warranty with free technical support|
|Compatible with||Windows® 11, 10, 8.1, macOS® (v. 10.14.x +), Linux (v. 2.6.x +), Chrome OS™|
Kingston is using a white color paperboard-made packing box. Kingston has highlighted a Read speed of 1000MB/s and a write speed of 900MB/s. This is a USB Type-C version. There is also a USB Type-A version available separately.
DTMAX/512GB is a part number of this particular drive. The drive is made in Taiwan.
The drive is tucked in a see-through container.
DataTraveler MAX is a USB Flash Drive based on a USB 3.2 Gen2 interface which implies that there is an SSD-based solution under the shell offering speeds of up to 1000MB/s in reading and up to 900MB/s in writes. This series is available in three capacities:
Here is a statement from Kingston about this drive. “Kingston’s DataTraveler® Max series USB flash drives leverage the latest USB 3.2 Gen 2 standard to deliver record-breaking read/write speeds up to 1,000/900MB/s1. Designed with portability and convenience in mind, the unique ridged casing protects the connector when not in use and is easily moved with a single motion. Available in USB Type-C®2 and Type-A connections to support next-gen and traditional laptops and desktops. The DT Max series delivers premium performance and expanded capacities up to 1TB3, making them the ideal solution for transferring and storing large digital files such as HD photos, 4K/8K videos, music, and more.”
Some key features are:
- Advanced USB 3.2 Gen drives
- Up to 1000MB/s Read Speed
- Capacity up to 1TB
- Ridged Casing
- Keyring Loop
- USB Type-C and Type-A Connectivity
- Sliding Cap
- Subtle LED Indicator
The dimension of USB Type-C-based drives is 82.17x22x9.02mm, where 82.17mm is the length, 22mm is the width, and 9.02mm is the thickness of the drive. Dimension for USB Type-A is different. Taking a look at the top of the drive, we can see a KINGSTON branding in the center. There is an integrated LED indicator with a very dim light below the branding. This drive has a ridged casing for protection of the Type-C connector when not in use. This has actually provided Kingston to hide the connector when not in use since there is a sliding cap. This is a 512GB capacity drive.
Now we can see the smart design. USB Type-C connector is visible here, which is still concealed as it is in a slide into the drive’s main housing. The part number of this drive is DTMAX/512GB, and it is made in Taiwan. This drive takes 5V for operations.
The opposite end of this drive has a slider handle which not serves the function of sliding the USB Type-C connector out of the housing and back in. It also serves the function of a keyring loop.
Taking a look at the connector end of this drive, this is what it will look like. It is there to protect the connector when not in use and during travel.
In the above picture, the connector is slid out of the main housing, and the drive is ready to be connected to the PC.
Since these drives are rated for speed of up to 1000MB/s in reading and 900MB/s in writing using USB 3.2 Gen2 protocol, it is certain that these drives are based on SSD. We are not sure about the Flash type and controller as we did not open the drive. We were hoping to have some insight from Kingston on this, but we are still waiting to hear from them. Please take note that only a USB Type-C connector will provide these rated speeds.
Below mentioned configuration is used to test this drive:
- Intel Core i7-13700K
- GIGABYTE Z790 AORUS ELITE AX
- XPG Lancer RGB 2x16GB DDR5 kit 6000MHz, CL40
- DIY Cooling
- Sabrent Rocket Q 1TB NVMe SSD [OS Drive]
- GIGABYTE GeForce RTX 3060 VISION OC Rev.2
- be quiet! Straight Power 11 850W Platinum PSU
- Thermaltake Core P6 TG Snow Edition in an open frame layout
We have used the following software:
- AS SSD 1.8.5636.37293
- ATTO Disk Benchmark 4.0
- CrystalDiskMark 8.0.4
- 3DMARK Storage Benchmark
- PCMARK10 Storage Benchmarks
Microsoft Windows 11 22H2 is used for the testing.
By default, this drive is using exFAT. This drive uses using UASP protocol. This drive features S.M.A.R.T, TRIM, GPL, and NCQ functions. We will come back to operational temperature later.
This drive passes the sequential rated read and writes speeds in the CrystalDiskBenchmark test. Speeds in Random 4K Q1T1 are fine. Users can use these drives for 4k/8k video storage easily.
This drive has scored an overall score of 819 which is good for this category.
The above is a result of the AS-SSD Copy benchmark. Though this drive took more time to program, it was quite fast in ISO and Gaming segments.
The above pictures show the result of the Compression benchmark run from AS SSD. I love the almost straight line in read operations with a sustained rate of 950MB/s and only one dip. The lowest speed during a write operation is 740MB/s, and there are regular dips along the line.
Next, we ran the ATTO Disk Benchmark to test the drive’s performance. The drive maintained the rated read and write speeds across the line.
Black Magic Disk Bench shows a similar pattern as other software has shown.
3DMark Storage Test
3DMark Storage test is a relatively new test bench measuring the gaming-only performance of the given drive using three games. It measures the load time of the games, recording the gameplay, saving the game, and moving the game. The overall score is given in a number, whereas there is also a result for the bandwidth and access time
This drive has a score of 1063 which is fine for this category drive. The average bandwidth comes to 185.48MB/s for gaming load with an average time of 172µs.
PCMARK10 Storage Benchmarks
We have added Data Drive Benchmark from PCMARK10 software. The Data Drive benchmark is designed to test drives that are used for storing files rather than applications. You can also use this test with NAS drives, USB sticks, memory cards, and other external storage devices.
This drive scores 710 with an average bandwidth of 109.66MB/s and an average access time of 228µs. There is no other drive in comparison at the moment. But you can have an idea of what to expect when putting this drive to store and carry your data.
Real World Testing
Now that we have completed testing using synthetic benchmarks, it is time to prepare our sample for a real-world use scenario for further evaluation. We prepared a 46GB size folder containing multiple files and folders, including compressed files. DiskBench was then used to observe the real-world data transfer speeds. Here are the results:
We copied the 46GB folder on the same drive. The average transfer rate comes to 92.358MB/s, and it took 8 minutes to complete this operation.
We used a custom run of CrystalDiskMark to run for 18 minutes on sequential read and write speeds to stress the SSD for this test. We are showing absolute temperature along with ambient temperature values at the time of testing.
74°C is a high temperature under full load and crossed the upper-temperature limit of Kingston Drive.
We have tested Kingston DataTraveler MAX 512GB USB drive. The DT MAX series drives are USB Flash Drives driven by USB 3.2 Gen2 protocol. These drives are available in two colors and capacities of 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB. These drives can have either with USB Type-C or Type-A interface. Kingston has mentioned that these drives are capable of doing up to 1000MB/s sequential reads and 900MB/s sequential writes. Given the high data transfer rate, it is sure these drives are using SSDs. However, we are unable to find any more detail about the SSD and controller.
We have tested the 512GB version with a USB Type-C interface. This drive has a dimension of 82.17x22x9.02mm LxWxH. Dimension for USB Type-A is 91.17x22x9.02mm LxWxH. The USB Type-C has a unique feature where the connector can be slid out of the main housing using the handle on the opposite end. This handle also serves as a keyring loop. Since these are portable external USB drives, these features would protect the USB Type-C connector. However, note that this connector is still exposed on the backside of the housing.
The weight of the USB Type-C drive is 12g, whereas it is 14g for a Type-A drive. Their operating temperature is 0°C to 60°C. The storage temperature values are between -20°C to 85°C. These drives are compatible with Windows 11, 10, 8.1; macOS(v 10.14.x+); Linux (v 2.6.x +), and Chrome OS. These drives have a blue color LED indicator with dim lighting. These drives use the exFAT file system out of the box. They feature S.M.A.R.T., TRIM, GPL, and NCQ.
This drive is listed on AMAZON at USD 64.83 at the time of this writing. In our synthetic testing, this drive easily passed the rated sequential read speed of up to 1000MB/s and sequential write speed of up to 900MB/s. the real-world data transfer rate is fine, but we observed that during operations and load stress, this drive reached 74°C, and the drive was found throttling.
Kingston is offering a 5-year warranty on these drives which is quite good. 1TB variant would be my pick for my particular requirement, where I have to move heavy data among several PCs at my place. This will not only keep a backup of the data given the high capacity but also incredibly fast speed would make handling convenient.
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