The Bottom Line
Introduction & Drive Details
Kingston is the first to partner with SMI to bring forth the world's best performing native USB portable solutions. Until now, fast portable solid state storage has relied on bridge chips between the USB interface and the NVMe SSD. Bridge chips can introduce compatibility issues, another point of failure, and performance penalties, so eliminating the need for bridging to USB is currently a top priority for the solid state storage industry.
Silicon Motion Inc, or SMI, is at the forefront of native USB controller technology, and their newest controller is revolutionary. The SM2320 is not NVMe, it is native USB, and it eliminates the need for a bridge between the flash and USB interface. Beginning of the end for bridge chips, and we are delighted at the prospect as bridge chips have long been a source of frustration, most recently with Tiger Lake and JMicron.
Kingston's XS2000 portable SSD is available in three capacities, 500GB, 1TB & 2TB. This super-compact portable interfaces through USB 3.2 Gen2 x2 Type-C at speeds of up to 2,000 MB/s. It's backward compatible with all USB 3 generations, albeit at reduced speeds. Kingston backs the XS2000 with a 5-year warranty and free technical support.
The Kingston XS2000 is enclosed in rugged plastic. The drive is tested to be water-resistant, dust-resistant, and shockproof with an included rubber sleeve. Included with the drive is a USB Type-C cable. Keep in mind that to reach full throughput, you will need to have a USB 3.2 Gen2 x2 host port available.
Jon's Test System Specifications - Intel Z590
Note: For USB 3.2 Gen2 x2 SSDs, we test on our Z590 system set to match our Intel NUC 11 specs (4.8GHz, 8-threads, DDR4 3200, balanced power plan).
Synthetic Benchmarks: CDM, ATTO & Blackmagic
The 1TB XS2000 demonstrates via CDM that it can deliver more than 2,000 MB/s sequential read throughput. Outstanding.
This is exactly what we are looking for. Nearly full speed at 128KB transfers and a good consistent pattern that doesn't show any signs of throttling as transfer sizes increase. Excellent.
Kingston's XS2000 1TB portable SSD will be right at home if employed for video storage duties. Blackmagic shows it to be capable of handling even 4K 60FPS video processing when running on a USB 3.2 Gen2 x2 host interface.
Real-World Testing: PCMark 10 & Transfer Rates
PCMark 10 Data Drive Benchmark
Of the drives that comprise our test pool, only Thunderbolt can do better.
We brutalize our test subjects with our extremely hard-to-swallow 100GB data block. This data block is the same one we use for our internal SSD testing and is composed of more than 62K files. Of the USB interfaced SSDs we have in our test pool, only the 4TB rocket 4 Pro can program our massive 100GB data block faster, and this is, in our opinion, just a capacity advantage. Other than that, again, only Thunderbolt can do better.
Incredibly, the XS2000 can serve data to the host at speeds that rival Thunderbolt. This thing is fast.
Native USB, compact, durable, highly compatible, and fast as hell. Kingston's XS2000 portable SSD is best-in-class and TweakTown Elite. Goodbye, and good riddance to bridge chips.
- 5-year warranty
Native USB at 2,000 MB/s, gotta love that!
What's in Jon's PC?
- CPU: AMD Ryzen 7800X 3D
- MOTHERBOARD: GIGABYTE AORUS Master X670E
- RAM: Kingston Fury Renegade 7200MHz 32GB
- GPU: ZOTAC AMP Extreme GeForce RTX 4090
- SSD: Crucial T700 2TB Gen5
- OS: Windows 11 Pro
- COOLER: Lian Li Galahad 360 AIO
- CASE: Lian Li Lancool III
- KEYBOARD: Corsair K65 RGB Mini
- MOUSE: SteelSeries AEROX 5 Wireless
- MONITOR: ASUS ROG Strix PG27AQN 360Hz 1440p ULMB2