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Reviewed by: Carl Nelson [11.19.04]
Manufactured by: Seagate, Kingston, Vantec

Lowest Price Finder
Seagate Pocket Drive 5GB: $155 @ NewEgg
Kingston Data Traveler Elite 512MB: $60 @ mWave
Vantec NexStar 2 USB2: $36 @ NewEgg
2.5" HotDrive: $37 @

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Just for curiosity's sake, let's see how the burst performance look. While this doesn't give an idea of real world performance, it tells us the highest potential speed of each device:

Burst rate is measured at read speed, so it's not surprizing to see the flash-based devices carry the same burst rate as average READ rate. Because there are no mechanical parts, flash devices will run at the same speed across the entire device.

Seagate's product had an average read speed of 6.9 MB/s, while it can potentially reach up to 26.3 MB/s, depending on what part of the platter is being written on. FireWire is smokin' fast here, although it is not quite up to FireWire's 50 MB/s potential.

Next we'll look at Random Access Timing, which probably mean nothing for what these devices will be used for, but what the hey:

Honestly Seagate, I didn't post this to try to make you look bad! Haha... Well as you can see, Seagate didn't exactly worry about RAT when designing this device. That's just fine too, because RAT means next to nothing for what these devices are mostly used for - copying files from one place to another. However, if you plan on installing a game and running it off the drive, the Seagate wouldn't be very suitable at all.

To test this, I copied the Quake 3 directory over to the Pocket Drive, and played from the it. Sure enough, load times were terribly slow, and every time data needed to be loaded, the game would stutter. Obviously the other drives were butter smooth. Of course none were as fast as playing directly from the PC's hard drive, so the obvious solution would be to copy the game over to the system, play from it, and delete it when you're finished.

Next Page: (CPU Utilization, File Transfer Speeds)