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Best 4TB Portable SSD External Drives

This article rounds up the more popular 4TB portable SSD (Solid State Drives) which are rapidly replacing the heavier HDD (Hard Disk Drive) from the market.

It might still take a little more time before the 3.5″ HDD is reclassified as a dinosaur, however, we believe that the smaller 2.5″ HDD will be the first to go. Currently, the prices of SSD has been falling rapidly over the years while the capacity and speed has been increasing in the opposite direction. In the last year, the 4TB versions are slowly moving into the mainstream as prices dropped and more users prefer the SSD due to its size, weight and durability. At the very least, there are no moving parts in SSD, unlike the traditional HDD.

Even though they still cost double the 2.5″ version or more, it is also important to look beyond the price tag but at reliability and durability. After all, portable products are just one step below military grade as they are subjected to accidental drop, shock, vibration, exposure to water and dust.

Hey, these are not “outrageous” demands only for military operations but they are required for peaceful, urban commutation as well.  By real military-grade, we mean even more demanding expectations such as saltwater testing, mud testing, high pressure and temperature testing. As such, we are not shy to highlight any “portable” devices which have not met the urban outdoor standards.

SanDisk 4TB Extreme Pro Portable SSD V2

SanDisk 4TB Extreme Pro
SanDisk 4TB Extreme Pro
Specifications and FeaturesComments
  • Size: 110.3×57.3×10.2mm thick (4.34×2.26×0.4in)
  • Weight: 77 grams (2.72 oz)
  • Up to 2000MB/s read and write
  • Two meters drop protection
  • Shock-resistant up to 1500G
  • Vibration resistant 5 gRMS, 10-2000 Hz
  • IP55 dust and water-resistant
  • Carabineer loop attachment
  • An outer silicone shell and forged internal aluminium chassis that acts as a heatsink
  • USB-C Connector with USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 (20Gb/s)
  • Built-in 256-bit AES hardware encryption
  • Warranty: 5 years
The overall size and weight could be 10-20% smaller if the signature Carabineer loop attachment is removable.

The SanDisk 4TB Extreme Pro is a Red dot award winner, and also the best portable SSD on this list. It may not be the thinnest, smallest, fastest or most durable, however, the design covers everything we need for a portable SSD. Most importantly, it includes an IP55 weatherproof rating which is not normally done for portable SSD.

IP55Dust protected. Dust must not enter in sufficient quantity to interfere with the satisfactory operation of the equipment.Protected from low-pressure water jets from any direction.

Based on internal testing. IPEC 60529 IP 55, the SanDisk Extreme Pro was tested to withstand water flow (30 kPa) at 3 min. and limited dust contact does not interfere with operation.

Buy Sandisk 4TB Extreme Pro Portable SSD

It is also the only portable SSD (or even HDD) so far that is designed with a carabineer loop for hooking on your backpack or pants easily. However, most users would pack the portable SSD inside their bag instead of hanging around. Besides getting knocks and damages, it is also easier for others to steal the SSD.

So not all users may use the carabineer loop attachment and most of them may the loop redundant and taking up unnecessary space. The overall size of the SanDisk Extreme Pro could have been reduced to smaller by at least 10-20% if the carabineer loop is designed to be removable. The device is just a portable SSD, and it is useless unless it is plugged into a tablet or computer. Why should it have such a big and useless carabineer loop?

The SanDisk Extreme Pro is also significantly larger than the regular SanDisk by at least 10-20%. So if you are getting a casing, please note which one the casing is designed for.

Buy Sandisk 4TB Extreme Pro Portable SSD

SanDisk Extreme and Extreme Pro Size Comparison
SanDisk Extreme and Extreme Pro Size Comparison, Source: Amazon

Considering the price of 2TB SSD was over $1000 just 2-3 years ago, the current price has reached quite affordable even for the 4TB. SanDisk is also a brand under Western Digital and comes with a 5-years warranty.

Price Range: $399-$652 (price range subjected to changes over time)

Buy Sandisk 4TB Extreme Pro Portable SSD

WD BLACK 4TB P50 Game Drive SSD

WD_BLACK P50 Game Drive SSD
WD_BLACK P50 Game Drive SSD
Specifications and FeaturesComments
  • Size: 118x62x14mm (4.65×2.44×0.55in)
  • WEight; 115 grams (4 oz)
  • Up to 2000MB/s read speed
  • Shock-resistant design
  • USB-C Connector with USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 (20Gb/s)
  • Min. OS versions: Windows 8.1, Mac OS 10, PS 4, Xbox One
  • Warranty: 5 years
  • Marketed as “battle-tested” but does not have military-grade MIL-STD 810 design qualification, such as vibration and drop test.
  • There is no IP rating for dust and water protection.
  • Designed for shock-resistant but not certified.
  • Basically, a WD TLC SSD wrapped inside a cool looking casing.
  • No built-in security software, need to use Windows or Mac.

What are the features that make the WD Black P50 SSD a “Game Drive”?

Firstly, it has the rugged “military” look even when it has absolutely no military design qualifications such as MIL-STD 810. The designers do not even bother to get any certified IP rating for water and dust resistance, let alone MIL-STD qualification. Even the shock resistance is designed, not certified/qualified/tested. We could not assume that the design was tested unless Western Digital officially added that statement of commitment in their design specifications.

However, the design of the aluminium case with the added ribs does make it more durable than the SanDisk Extreme Pro when it comes with withstanding pressure. If you place say 20-30kg of load on both SSD, we will bet the WD Black P50 to survive the compression force due to the design of the casing.

Secondly, it is designed with a fast read and write TLC memory with up to 2000 MB/s speed and comes with a USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 which delivers up to 20 GB/s with 2 lanes. This is even faster than most internal HDD just a few years back, thanks to the advancement in USB and memory technology, we are now able to get such hyperspeed beast at a more affordable price.

Overall, we still prefer the SanDisk 4TB Extreme Pro is also fast and comes with proper IP rating and shock testing. However, we will need to be careful when packing into our bags to make sure there is nothing too heavy sitting on top of the SSD.

One major disadvantage is the WD Black P50 4TB SSD cost $100 more than the SanDisk 4TB Extreme Pro, and both come with a 5-years warranty.

Price Range: $749.99

Buy WD BLACK 4TB P50 Game Drive SSD

WD 4TB My Passport SSD External Portable

WD MyPassport SSDWD MyPassport SSD

FeaturesComments
  • Size: 100x55x9.0mm thick (3.94×2.17×0.35in)
  • Weight: 45.7grams (1.61 oz)
  • Up to 1,050MB/s read and 1,000 MB/s write
  • Drop-resistant up to 2meters (6.5 ft)
  • Shock and vibration resistant
  • USB-C Connector with USB 3.2 Gen 2 (10 GB/s) with support for legacy USB-A.
  • Built-in 256-bit AES hardware encryption
  • Min. OS versions: Windows 8.1, Mac OS 10
  • Warranty: 5 years
  • No built-in security software, need to use Windows or Mac.
  • No hooks or loop attachment
  • Not water resistant

The Western Digital My Passport range is designed to be a fashion statement for everyday users who needed a good looking, elegant and trusted portable SSD on their table. It is quite a basic design with no built-in security software, no loop for attaching, and is not water-resistant. On the other hand, it is surprising to find that the WD My Passport SSD is drop resistant up to 2meters while it is not stated for the P50 Game Drive SSD.

Currently, it is only half the speed of some of the other brands but is more expensive. We expect the prices to drop in the near future.

Price Range: $679.99-$876

Buy Western Digital WD 4TB My Passport SSD Portable

Crucial X6 4TB Portable SSD

Crucial X6 4TB Portable SSD
Crucial X6 4TB Portable SSD
Specifications and FeaturesComments
  • Size: 69x64x11mm thick (2.7×2.5×0.43in)
  • Weight: 40.5 grams (1.43 oz)
  • High sequential read speed of 800MB/s
  • Tested to withstand 2meters (6.5 foot) drop test on the carpet floor
  • Shock, vibration, and extreme temperature resistant
  • USB-C Connector with USB 3.2 Gen 2 (10 GB/s)
  • For PC, Mac, PS4, Xbox One, Android devices
  • Warranty: 3 years
  • No built-in security software, need to use Windows or Mac.
  • No certified IP rating for dust and water-resistant.
  • Warranty of 3 years is much shorter than other competitors.

While most portable SSD is rectangular in shape with at least 100mm in length, the Crucial X6 4Tb is almost a square with just 11mm thick. It is also the lightest among the list of portable SSDs in this review and is tested to 2 meters drop test. It would be better if there is a certified IP rating for water and dust.

Currently, there is a Crucial X8 with a higher sequential read speed of 1050 MB/s, but the maximum capacity is only 2TB.

The Crucial X6 4TB is the cheapest in our review but comes with a 3-years warranty only.

Price Range: $489.95-$499

Buy Crucial X6 4TB Portable SSD

SABRENT Rocket XTRM 4TB Thunderbolt 3 External SSD

Sabrent Rocket XTRM 4TB Thunderbolt 3 External SSD
Sabrent Rocket XTRM 4TB Thunderbolt 3 External SSD
Specifications and FeaturesComments
  • Size: 105x45x14mm thick (4.13×1.77×0.55in)
  • Weight: 317 grams (11.2 oz)
  • Up to 2400MB/s and 1800MB/s, read and write
  • The aluminium casing acts as a heatsink
  • Support only USB-C with Thunderbolt 3 (40GB/s)
  • For PC, Mac, PS4, Xbox One, Android devices
  • Warranty: 3 years
  • No built-in security software, need to use Windows or Mac.
  • No IP rating, drop, or shock resistance.
  • Warranty is only one year and extended to 3 years after registration.

We spent like two hours checking every tech specs, review and shopping site for the weight of this Sabrent Rocket XTRM-Q 4TB External SSD and there is only one mentioned is the weight of 11.2 oz or 317 grams. Even then, we are suspecting that the weight is wrong because even the heaviest smartphone weighs no more than 250 grams. We could not understand how could any reviewers missed the basic weight specification.

All portable devices must have weight specifications. If you are not watching the weight, you will be carrying around several kilograms of “portable” devices in your bag.

The standard warranty is only 3 years after registration and is much less than Western Digital. At the price of $799.99 and lack of full specifications, we do not find any strong reason to buy the Sabrent. Even though it supports Thunderbolt 3, the speed is limited by the 2400/1800 MB/s read and write speed respectively.

Price Range: $799.99 (TLC version)

Sabrent Rocket XTRM 4TB Thunderbolt 3 External SSD

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