The Transcend ESD200 Portable SSD is a portable external hard drive unlike any other. While most manufacturers are content to fit 5400rpm mechanical hard disks into their portable external hard drives, the Transcend drive has gone for broke with their ESD200 portable external hard disk and have instead equipped it with a 1.8-inch form factor SSD.
As you might know, SSDs are significantly faster than traditional mechanical hard disks. And as we have demonstrated in our review of one of the fastest mechanical hard disks currently available, the VelociRaptor from Western Digital, it was no match for even mainstream SSDs.
With this in mind, it is not surprising to see that Transcend, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of flash memory products, have fitted their ESD200 portable external hard drive with an SSD. In theory, the SSD should be much faster than the mechanical hard disks that most other manufacturers put in their portable external hard drives, but then there’s the question of its USB 3.0 interface.
To be certain, USB 3.0 offers substantially more bandwidth that its USB 2.0 predecessor - 5Gbps vs. 480MBps - and we have no doubts that the Transcend ESD200 portable SSD will be faster than typical portable external hard disks with mechanical drives, but how fast will it be? And will the Transcend ESD200’s USB 3.0 interface hamper its performance? These are the questions that we hope to address in our review. But first, let's have a closer look at the drive.