The Bottom Line
LaCie has perhaps one of the most iconic lineups in external drive history, with that they have now shipped over 4 million "Rugged" drives. The Rugged lineup goes back several generations and covers nearly all connectivity platforms from USB to Thunderbolt 3. The latest in this lineup is the Rugged RAID Pro, a 4TB solution with SD functionality built-in.
As mentioned above, LaCie has furthered its commitment to the professional introducing the Rugged RAID Pro, a single capacity 4TB solution with included SD card capabilities. For connectivity, we have USB-C and cables included for those using Type-A USB 3.0 ports. Performance is touted at 240 MB/s read and write in RAID 0, with the ability to switch to RAID 1 with LaCie RAID manager in both Windows and macOS. The Pro is IP54 certified for dust and water along with a drop rating of 4ft and crush resistance of 1 ton.
Compatibility includes Windows and macOS. MSRP sits at $349.99 with a three-year warranty.
Packaging is as clean cut as it's ever been, an image of the drive on the front, capacity top right.
The spine of the box offers a specifications list and system requirements.
The internal packaging for the Rugged RAID Pro uses the packaging for the quick install guide as seen above.
Included with the Rugged RAID Pro, we have the power adapter, USB-C cable, and C to A adapter cable.
With the overmold removed we can see the ports and LEDs a little better. The bottom row houses the USB-C to the left and SD card next to it. These are followed by power and LED for activity.
Toolkit software will aide in setting up and creating backups with the Rugged RAID Pro.
Additionally, having a toolkit installed will automatically download all SD cards content to the drive.
The drive comes from the factory formatted with exFAT. Usable capacity is 3.63TB.
Testing performance in windows, we run with CDM. With this we found 201 MB/s read and 196 MB/s write, RAID 0 of course.
Moving over to macOS, we use AJA. Here we have 249 MB/s read and 252 MB/s write with our UHD Workload.
The Rugged lineup has long been the benchmark portable HDD when it comes to durability. That said, many vendors are beginning to play catch up some now offering IP68 solutions, like the HD830 that just arrived from ADATA. With that very few seem to pay attention to details like LaCie and that is where the Rugged lineup shines. With the new Pro, of course, we have the addition of the SD card slot allowing one less dongle on our MacBook's but also the choice of materials offers a better feel in the hand, the addition of all cables needed being included is a choice I certainly agree with.
Performance of the Rugged RAID Pro hit marketing numbers in macOS rather easily, while Windows came up a bit short at 201 MB/s read and 196 MB/s write using CDM. SD performance is as expected offloading our SanDisk Extreme a number of times, depending on the content at 70-80 MB/s.
I can't lie, the Rugged RAID Pro is an expensive 4TB drive. At $349.99, I struggled to find a solution that comes anywhere near to this price point, in fact, you can pick up the Rugged USB-C 4TB for $179. That said, the Pro does nearly double the performance of the standard model when left configured in RAID 0, I do think most creative users will push the drive to RAID 1, so it will ultimately come down to whether you think the convenience of having the SD card port is worth the extra investment.
Tyler's Test System Specifications
- Motherboard: ASUS Prime Z370 (buy from Amazon)
- CPU: Intel Core i3 8350K (buy from Amazon)
- RAM: Corsair Vengeance 32GB 4x8GB DDR4 3200 (buy from Amazon)
- Cooler: Corsair Hydro H115i (buy from Amazon)
- Case: Corsair Air 540 (buy from Amazon)
- OS Storage: Samsung 960 EVO 250GB (buy from Amazon)
- Power Supply: Corsair RM850x (buy from Amazon)
- OS: Microsoft Windows 10 (buy from Amazon)
- Wi-Fi NIC: ASUS PCE-AC88 (buy from Amazon)
- 10Gbe NIC: ASUS XG-C100C (buy from Amazon)
- Thunderbolt 3: ASUS Thunderbolt EX3 (buy from Amazon)
The Bottom Line: The Rugged RAID Pro offers a solution for professionals in the field needing their portable storage to be more than a box of mechanical disks.
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