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Vantec CB-STU3 USB 3.0 to SATA 2.5-inch Adapter with Case Review

Vantec CB-STU3 USB 3.0 to SATA 2.5-inch Adapter with Case Review

Vantec's STU3 is a value based storage solution, but does it have the performance to compete in the market? Let's take a close look.

By Tyler Bernath from May 14, 2016 @ 17:50 CDT
TweakTown Rating: 83%Manufacturer: Vantec
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It seems like Vantec has an endless rotation of products that deploy each month. While they have slowly been building a reputation for well-built low-cost solutions, this month they are adding to their lineup a simple device that allows consumers to take any 2.5" drive and convert it over to an external drive.

The CB-STU3 or USB 3.0 to SATA Adapter is a rather simple device and thinking back I did look at something very similar to this solution years ago from Inateck. With that said the Vantec CB-STU3 is a bus-powered solution that allows installation of any 2.5" drive. Included with this model is a plastic enclosure for securing your drive while you are on the go while UASP is supported with this device along with an impressive OS support list that includes everything from Windows XP through 10, OS X 10.4+, and Linux.

MSRP of the Vantec CB-STU3 is listed at $18.99 with a one-year warranty.

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Product packaging is quite simple as you can see in the image above. Vantec didn't stretch the budget and spring for a box with this solution.

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The scope of delivery includes the adapter and plastic enclosure.

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A closer look shows the SATA connector of the adapter with a small pinhole for the blue LED.

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The connection end of the Vantec CB-STU3 uses a low profile plug of course colored blue to denote USB 3.0.

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To get an idea of the performance of the Vantec adapter, I set up my Intel 730 SSD in the device and ran it through Anvils. As you can see, performance was quite good with the adapter reaching top tier USB 3.0 performance at 413 MB/s read and 402 MB/s write.

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Moving the results after a few more runs to our chart, performance was slightly lower with the average coming in at 396 MB/s read and 430 MB/s write. With that said, the top two enclosures in this chart now belong to Vantec with the STU3 and previously tested USB 3.1 adapter.

I have seen nearly every product that has come out of Vantec over the past five years, and while they do have a trend where they are starting to produce some higher-end enclosures, there are times where they just throw leftover components together and shove a solution out the door. With that said, the CB-STU3 is not one of those products, and while it certainly is "cheap" as in cost, they have built a solid product. The build quality is respectable with the soldering on the PCB looking clean and this being a JMicron based solution using the JMS567 controller, it doesn't suffer from past issues including dropouts, a plus in anyone's book.

The performance was quite good and surprising to me as most devices that are capable of this kind of performance normally utilize an ASMedia platform. In testing, I was able to reach a peak of 413 MB/s read and 430 MB/s write, something that not every USB 3.0 adapter can do, even in today's market.

Overall, the Vantec CB-STU3 is certainly worth a look and heck with an MSRP of just $18.99, you really can't go too wrong if you are in the market for a USB 3.0 adapter for a spare drive you have laying around.

Tyler's Test System Specifications

Performance90%
Quality including Design and Build85%
General Features80%
Bundle and Packaging70%
Value for Money92%
Overall TweakTown Rating83%

The Bottom Line: While Vantec's CB-STU3 USB 3.0 to SATA 2.5-inch Adapter with Case is simple with no frills, it does have a great price point and top tier performance.

PRICING: You can find the Vantec CB-STU3 USB 3.0 to SATA 2.5-inch Adapter with Case for sale below. The prices listed are valid at the time of writing, but can change at any time. Click the link below to see real-time pricing for the best deal:

United States: The Vantec CB-STU3 USB 3.0 to SATA 2.5-inch Adapter with Case retails for $10 at Amazon.

United Kingdom: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon UK's website.

Canada: Find other tech and computer products like this over at Amazon Canada's website.

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