MyDigitalSSD Pocket Vault Express Review

The PVX arrives for its lab tour, lets see what it can do!

Published Thu, Oct 11 2018 10:00 PM CDT   |   Updated Tue, Nov 3 2020 6:57 PM CST
Rating: 86%Manufacturer: MyDigitalSSD
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The team over at MyDigitalSSD has been hard at work for years delivering high-end performance in storage solutions without the inflation of a big-name brand, after all it's their "motto." That said, I never thought they would venture into Thunderbolt solutions as by nature Thunderbolt usually demands a higher price tag, but with the recent influx of portable SSDs taking advantage of the interface, MyDigitalSSD decided to take a leap and introduce the PVX.

There are a few levels of Thunderbolt 3 flash storage solutions, starting with high-performance high capacity desktop options all the way down to bus-powered portable devices like the PVX. The PVX is an entry-level platform for users that want a little more than what traditional USB 3.0 can offer. 1600 MB/s read, and 1000 MB/s write is what is offered with the PVX although if we look at product packaging, you will notice that number has been tamed down to 1550 MB/s read. With Thunderbolt 3, comes the Type-C interface and so the PVX comes with a generous 1.6ft cable, the enclosure which they say is crush-resistant is a two-piece aluminum design.

Internally, MDSSD uses a Phison E8 controller paired with 3D NAND; capacity options are 256GB, 512GB, and 1TB. Compatibility includes Windows 10 and macOS 10.13 and later. MyDigitalSSD backs all capacities with a five-year warranty and MSRP comes in at $199, $299 and $499 respectively.

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The PVX offers an attractive package design. On the front, we find an image of the device and rated performance down below.

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Scope of delivery gives us the drive and its 0.5m cable.

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On the bottom of the drive, we have branding next to the Thunderbolt logo.

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The edge houses the Type-C connection for the Thunderbolt 3 interface.

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Opening the PVX, we find a JHL6340 Thunderbolt controller.

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As for the storage, it appears MyDigitalSSD is using their new SBX NVMe solution inside the PVX.

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Usable capacity sits at 476GB with factory formatting.

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A quick synthetic performance test gives us 1480 MB/s read and 908 MB/s write.

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Taking things a bit further with FBM, we see a solid 1405 MB/s read from 16 to 4m after which the drive falls off to 850 MB/s read through 256k. As for write performance, we found a 940 MB/s starting point that holds through 256k, apart from one moment where the drive tipped to 600 MB/s.

The PVX is a step forward for MyDigitalSSD. In doing so, they are one of two vendors I know of that currently have a legit three capacity lineup of Thunderbolt 3 SSDs. Surprisingly, some of the higher-end solutions on the market are single capacity product lines with an almost doubled price tag when compared to the PVX. Adding to this, the PVX is able to match endurance ratings on the 256 and 512GB capacities with its only real competitor, the EVLVR from Patriot. Once we move to the 1TB capacity, the PVX takes a serious 200TBW advantage over the EVLVR.

Build quality is probably the highest I have seen from a MyDigitalSSD product. The two-piece aluminum design offers a crush proof chassis for the SBX NVMe drive while at the same time the gunmetal color choice offers an appealing aesthetic. Performance for me was fantastic, we were almost able to hit the 1550 MB/s read set forth by marketing but came up just shy at 1480 MB/s. Write performance was 100 MB/s shy of marketing's 1000 MB/s.

Where the PVX does serious work is cost. While we stated the MSRP for each capacity above, MyDigitalSSD has now discounted each capacity by 10-12% effectively making it the cheapest portable SSD with Thunderbolt 3 across the board. Even more, MyDigitalSSD now accepts Bitcoin!

Tyler's Test System Specifications

TweakTown award

The Bottom Line: MyDigitalSSD continues the trend of "band for your buck" storage solutions, adding the PVX to its lineup as the most cost effective Thunderbolt 3 portable SSD on the market.

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Growing up in a small farm town, tech wasn't around, unless it was in a tractor. At an early age, Tyler's parents brought home their first PC. Tyler was hooked and learned what it meant to format a HDD, spending many nights reinstalling Windows 95. Tyler's love and enthusiast nature always kept his PC nearby. Eager to get deeper into tech, he started reviewing.

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