Chapter in this post:
After being the owner of the new MacBook Pro 2017 for a short time, the switch to USB-C compatible accessories is now of course on the agenda. Since I needed a USB stick again, I researched which USB 3 sticks are available with a USB-C connector that can be connected directly to the MacBook or USB-A adapter without a USB-C to USB-A adapter MacBook Pro can use.
After all, I'm on Amazon at Amazon SanDisk Ultra USB stick with 128 GB struck, which has a built-in slider and thus even covers USB-A and USB-C ports. If you have the slider in the middle position, both plugs are well protected inside the stick. The stick also looks good from a purely visual point of view, but the customer ratings are rather mixed. Some customers give the stick very good reviews because it offers high speeds, while others give it bad reviews because it would get too hot.
Due to the good experience I have had with SanDisk SD cards so far, I have not been put off by the negative reviews and just ordered the 128 GB model, which I was able to take a closer look at today. I describe my results to you in this review.
In the product description, SanDisk advertises the stick with a read speed of up to 150 MB per second. In practice this is definitely a value for me that can be understood. My reading speed is an average of 145 MB / sec, only a few MB below the advertised value. I tested the data throughput with the Hard drive benchmarking tool called AJA System Test, with which you can also check all other storage media.
As always, it looks a little different when writing data. Here, at around 70 MB / s, I am still quite high compared to other devices. I don't have the speed with some other USB sticks (which also support USB 3). Only my Transcend Extreme Flash USB Stick can top the values and brings about 185 MB / s when reading and about 75 MB / s when writing. But it doesn't have a USB-C connector that fits directly into the MacBook.
To test whether the SanDisk Ultra also delivers its good values via the USB-A connector, I have it with a corresponding one USB-C to USB adapter from Anker connected and started the tests again. The results were very similar, so I would say there is no noticeable difference in speed here.
I think the idea that the two USB plugs can be retracted and extended using a slide switch is quite successful. As a result, the plugs are well protected during transport and can still be extended with a single movement. At the end of the sliding process, the slider engages, which prevents you from accidentally pushing the plug back into the stick when inserting the stick. The lock can be released when you pull it back by lightly pressing the slide.
I find the small width to be an advantage, as it leaves enough space on the MacBook Pro so that the USB-C charging plug can easily be plugged into the adjacent port. However, you have to make sure that you turn the slide switch away from the other connector, as this side needs a little more space. However, by using USB-C this is not a problem, as you can insert the connector in any "direction".
If you read the Amazon reviews on this USB stick, you will often come across the negative entries that the stick would get unnaturally hot and burn your fingers or the stick will sooner or later because of the strong ones Heat development would give up the ghost.
To investigate this phenomenon, I connected it to my MacBook Pro via USB-C and tormented it with several gigabytes of data for several minutes. In fact, it does get warm after a few minutes, but I was only able to measure a temperature of 47 degrees Celsius on one corner of the stick with my infrared thermometer. Although this is not a particularly high value, it appears significantly "hotter" when you touch the stick, as it has a small aluminum sheet which, of course, conducts the heat well and transfers it to the fingers.
In practice, however, 47 degrees Celsius is not a problem for microchips. Even sensitive processor models only reach a critical temperature of 55 degrees. With most Macs, even 80 degrees are no problem. For this reason I think that the measured temperature is not a real risk. However, it is unusual for a USB stick to produce heat. I haven't seen this in any other model so far. To check whether it is perhaps only connected to the USB-C port, I also connected the stick with the anchor adapter to my MacBook Pro via the normal USB plug, but here too the temperature rises slightly after a few minutes to 36 to 38 ° C.
Update 18.8.2017: In order to track down the heat development, I have the current consumption with me my new USB-C Multi-Tester measured. Unfortunately there is no difference between USB-A and USB 3.1 Type-C connections. Both draw 0,12 amps at the usual 5 volts.
The USB stick from SanDisk with 128 GB offers plenty of space for data that you would like to have with you on the go. I think the solution with the slide-out plugs for USB-A and USB-C is very successful and the small size ensures that only one USB-C port is actually used on the MacBook Pro. I was positively surprised by the high reading speed, which corresponds to the SanDisk advertising promise.
Overall, there is nothing to complain about about the stick, so I can recommend it without hesitation.
Jens has been running the blog since 2012. He appears as Sir Apfelot for his readers and helps them with problems of a technical nature. In his free time he drives electric unicycles, takes photos (preferably with his iPhone, of course), climbs around in the Hessian mountains or hikes with the family. His articles deal with Apple products, news from the world of drones or solutions for current bugs.
The page contains affiliate links / images: Amazon.de