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Lots of Hi-Speed USB Pen Drives Tested - 512MB to 4GB

By: Cameron Wilmot | USB Drives in Storage | Posted: Oct 23, 2006 4:00 am

Pen drives from Kingston, OCZ, Crucial and Transcend


- Kingston DataTraveler Elite



First on the list is the 4GB DataTraveler Elite from Kingston. This is a no thrills pen drive, meaning it is basic but it does its job well and the quality of materials used feels good.


The DataTraveler Elite series from Kingston come in sizes of 256MB to 4GB in USB 2.0 and are designed for the business or enterprise user in mind - so there are no fancy bells or whistles here. Claimed read speeds are 24MB/s and write speeds are 14MB/s.


Kingston DataTraveler Elite 2 GB USB 2.0 Flash Drive (740617079548)


One thing worth mentioning, which is of concern to us, is the fact that the Kingston drive takes much longer to detect in Windows than any of the other pen drives in this roundup, which were all detected by Windows in around about the same amount of time. This may or may not be due to the fact that the Kingston pen drive has 4GB of storage (or we got a dodgy unit) but do note that you will be waiting several seconds before you can access the drive in My Computer. The drive was tested on several computers with Windows XP and the same delay occurred.


It is a simple pen drive measuring 3.1" x 0.9" x 0.4" (77.4mm x 22.1mm x 10.1mm), so while it is not huge, it is one of the biggest in this roundup.


- OCZ Rally2



If you don't know OCZ Technology, they are mainly a producer of memory modules designed for overclockers and gamers. Recently they've started producing a range of high quality power supply units as well as fast pen drives with plenty of style and the performance to back up those looks.


The OCZ Rally2 is one of the newest pen drives to come from the company and comes with an impressive feature this. One of the key features of the Rally2 besides the impressive looks is the use of Dual Channel memory technology. OCZ was one of the first to start using Dual Channel technology in pen drives and now many others have started to use it, as well.




The memory inside Rally2 is protected by a stylish black metal covering which feels good and seems like it would stand up to some small drops. Unlike the Kingston pen drive, Rally2 has an orange active LED which lets you know what is happening as far as read and write activity goes.


Rally2 comes in sizes of 512MB to 4GB in USB 2.0 and claims read speeds of 28MB/s and write speeds of 15MB/s.


- Crucial Gizmo! Overdrive



Next up is Crucial with their Gizmo! Overdrive pen drive which also features Dual Channel technology, like the OCZ Rally2 pen drive.


Crucial Technology Gizmo! overdrive 2 GB 80x USB 2.0 Flash Drive (CT2GBUFDBLKHA0)


Crucial offers a pen drive which not only looks good (probably one of the best in this roundup) but also one of the lightest, weighing very little. The memory is incased in black plastic which has a nice feel to it. You've also got a rapid flashing red LED which gives you an indication of the activity of the pen drive - the black color of the pen drive and the red light mixes quite well together and looks fantastic.



All Gizmo! pen drives come with Crucial's own security software which allows you to protected unwanted users from accessing your data. You are also given a lanyard which allows you to wear the pen drive around your neck, if you so please.


Gizmo! comes in sizes of 512MB to 2GB in USB 2.0 and claims read speeds of 25MB/s and write speeds of 13MB/s.


- Transcend JetFlash 120



Transcend has been a company which has been around for a long time and make all kinds of different products which revolve around memory.


Transcend sent us their JetFlash 120 pen drive which doesn't offer any unique features but is a product which looks good and works well. The JetFlash 120 series come in a range of different colors - each color represents the different storage sizes from 128MB all the way up to 4GB which comes in a turquoise color.


Transcend JetFlash 120 256 MB USB 2.0 Flash Drive (TS256MJF120)


We have the blue JetFlash which means it is 1GB. All of the pen drives are partly see-through with a clear plastic cover. This allows you to see some of the IC's inside of the pen drive as well as the red activity LED which lets you know what is happening.


Transcend claims read speeds of 12MB/s and write speeds of 8MB/s for the full range of pen drives from the biggest to the smallest capacity. The JetFlash 120 series don't have any stand out features but at the same time manage to impressive with a solid style and high quality plastic material.


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