Review Index:

Samsung Portable SSD T1 500GB Review - External EVO

Subject: Storage
Manufacturer: Samsung

Introduction, Specifications and Packaging


Today Samsung has lifted the review embargo on their new Portable SSD T1. This represents Samsung's first portable SSD, and aims to serve as another way to make their super speedy VNAND available. We first saw the Samsung T1 at CES, and I've been evaluating the performance if this little drive for the past week:

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We'll dive more into the details as this review progresses.


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The T1 comes well packaged, with a small instruction manual and a flat style short USB 3.0 cable. The drive itself is very light - ours weighed in right at 1 ounce.

Continue reading our review of the Samsung Portable SSD T1 500GB unit!

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January 20, 2015 | 11:55 AM - Posted by Chaitanya Shukla

Since Samsung is using a mSata SSD, they could have made the casing a little smaller, otherwise its a niche product and nice to see Samsung releasing external SSDs.

January 20, 2015 | 02:04 PM - Posted by Allyn Malventano

I'll take a slightly larger device in favor of the possibility of recovering the data myself if the USB port or other parts in the bridge PCB fail. It is still very small though.

January 20, 2015 | 01:39 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

UASP ability in windows 7, is another question with Intel controllers? My laptop has a Intel USB 3.0 eXtensible Host Controller, but who Knows. And what about the drive on a regular laptop(Both USB 2.0, 3.0) would the data rate be the same, at least for the USB 3.0? this device will save time for those system image backups, which can be later transferred to a hard drive. USB 3.1c can not come soon enough, but it's too bad that the PCI-SIG external PICe cable standard has not seen wider adoption, I guess that would give users too much flexibility(cough, external PCI boxes, etc., at low cost). Something like Samsung's product, with an interchangeable interface, and support for Thunderbolt, USB 3.1, etc. Linux support is another question, my Probook is getting the optional SUSE OS that is available for this series of laptops.

January 20, 2015 | 02:02 PM - Posted by Allyn Malventano

Intel's USB driver adds UASP support under 7.

January 20, 2015 | 02:26 PM - Posted by MRFS (not verified)

Allyn, What's your best guess about the next bottleneck
if Samsung offers this device with a USB 3.1 connector?

Isn't that mSATA connector limited to 6G / 10 = 600 MBps?

cf. "Interface SATA III"


January 20, 2015 | 03:18 PM - Posted by Allyn Malventano

Yes, moving to 3.1c would immediately shift the bottleneck to the SATA device (in this implementation), getting you only an additional ~100 MB/sec.

A different style product with a USB 3.1 to PCIe bridge could be made with an M.2 device, which could more easily saturate a 10Gbit link.

January 22, 2015 | 09:42 PM - Posted by godrilla (not verified)

Yep im predicting 1 terabyte thumb drives with M.2 ssd at close to 1 gig per sec speeds for usb 3.1 eventually.

January 20, 2015 | 04:58 PM - Posted by razor512

Seems that they should make a model that allows you to use esata (would be a little faster).

Hopefully they will come out with a new SATA standard which will allow for better throughput, and a batter esata plug. While PCI express is great, for many systems, it is far more limited when you need multiple storage drives.

January 20, 2015 | 10:48 PM - Posted by btdog

I took a quick peek at Amazon: the 850 EVO 500GB & 1TB sell for around $0.46/ that's a markup of about 30% for these new drives, and actually that's not too bad.

Still, the need-use case for one of these is fairly specific, so forget the average consumer. And while the markup is reasonable, you're still looking at $300 or $600 for 500GB or 1TB, respectively. I can buy a 2.5" 1TB portable HDD for $70. In fact, I just bought a 128GB flashdrive to supplement my laptop's 256GB and it cost me $40.

Nice review, Allyn. Please keep up the great work.

January 21, 2015 | 03:03 PM - Posted by BBMan (not verified)

I wished they would stop using the EVO label. It's becoming confusing. I've come to associate it with their lower/bottom tier stuff. This is a Pro packaged for external use. They can put in a tweak (defective or not) and say it's EVOvled.

January 22, 2015 | 02:42 AM - Posted by MyBanana212 (not verified)

They should put one of these inside the inadequately-sized 16GB iPhone 6 Plus.

March 23, 2015 | 12:08 PM - Posted by TomLowe (not verified)

I was wondering if you could flash the firmware and make it work just like an EVO mSATA drive? I recently received one of these as a gift and would get better use of it by installing it in my mSATA port on my motherboard. Any help would be appreciated!

September 1, 2015 | 04:43 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Does this work with Linux operating system?

September 9, 2015 | 02:50 PM - Posted by Jaypers (not verified)

I have tested the T1 on Ubuntu 15.04. Sadly it performs closer to a standard platter based HDD with speeds of 52MB/s when doing a dd between my SDD and the T1 from the Kubuntu live CD.

It appears the drive is optimised with a tweaked exFAT format proprietory to Samsung? Hopefully the source code gets leaked/reverse-engineered and adopted soon.

I get speeds closer to 250MB/s when doing an rsync using the exFAT driver in Linux but it sucks because I bought the drive for doing disk images and 52MB/s doesn't come close to the 450MB/s advertised.

I've tried tweaking the bs for dd but no luck :(

October 2, 2015 | 01:15 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

hi there, could you give some advise how to open the case?
i have some difficulty and wanted to put the msata into my notebook.

October 13, 2016 | 06:12 PM - Posted by Random Guy (not verified)

Hello Love the write UP!
Do you know where to get the password and can this be used as a boot drive in a laptop?

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