As technology advances, computer data storage drives have become smaller and smaller. More portable flash drives are in the market, one of which is flash drives. If you are looking for one of these, you may be overwhelmed with the diverse options, the reason we have this post. It will help you find the best product.
Why Should You Buy The Best Flash Drive?
Flash drives are external data or file storage devices. They allow you to backup, store, or transfer your files from one computer to another.
Flash drives come in all shapes and sizes, but not every product is reliable. Some people have regretted buying them because some fail after just a short time. Quality differs from one manufacturer to the next. Also, counterfeits in the market make it nearly impossible to get the best value for your money.
Buying the best flash drive is crucial. If you don’t invest your time choosing the right product, you may lose your data or even get dupped.
Consider the following factor when buying flash drives to get the best product for your need:
- Memory Quality – reputable brands are preferred.
- Storage Capacity – depends on the size of your data or files
- Chip Format – can be USB 2.0 or USB 3.0, with the latter preferred for high-speed data transfer
- Connector Options – can be USB type A, B, C, or a combination of two. What you choose depends on the USB port on your computer.
- Security – this depends on the type of data you want to transfer. Some may not require encryption. But if you have top-secret files, security is a must-consider factor.
- Other factors – include price, warranty, brand, and style. These are not a must-consider but still necessary.
The Best USB Flash Drives
Here is a summary of our best USB flash drives to buy in 2022. We will discuss them in detail in the following section.
- Best Overall: Kingston DataTraveler Max
- Runners Up: SanDisk Extreme PRO USB 3.2 Flash Drive
- Best for Content Creators: Corsair Flash Voyager GTX
- The Best for Compatibility: Samsung DUO Plus USB Type-C Flash Drive
- Best for iPhones and iPads: SanDisk iXpand 128GB Flash Drive
- Best On Budget: Kingston DataTraveler G4
- Largest Storage Capacity: PNY Turbo
- Best for Data Security: Kingston IronKey D300S
Detailed Description of the Best Flash Drives to Buy in 2022
Why have we included the above products on our list? We have highlighted the main disadvantages, but let’s get deeper into the fine details that make them the best. If you are looking for a flash drive, read on for information about our best picks.
Best Overall: Kingston DataTraveler Max
Kingston DataTraveler Max has it all! This drive tops our list for its high data transfer rate and storage capacity, this flash drive. It comes in different sizes for you to choose from, ranging from 256 GB to 1 TB of data.
This flash drive has what it takes to keep your documents safe and for a long time. Kingston DataTraveler Max is made up of fast TLC flash memory from Micron and interfaces with your computer through USB 3.2. This combination gives it unrivaled performance.
The performance of Kingston DataTraveler Max USB 3.2 is comparable to a solid-state drive but more portable and without additional cables. Besides, its price is competitive with other brands.
According to Kingston, this USB flash drive can achieve a read speed of up to 1 Gbps and a write speed of slightly below that. It has performed superbly in all performance tests. If you have the budget, choose Kingston DataTraveler Max.
- Features compact design
- Has high data storage capacity
- High read/write speed
- Available in different memory capacity
- Reasonably priced
- No data security features
- Use limited to hosts with USB type C ports only
Runners Up: SanDisk Extreme PRO USB 3.2 Flash Drive
SanDisk is one of the reputable brands worldwide. The company manufactures reliable solid-state drives, and it never disappointed when it came to flash drives. SanDisk Extreme PRO is one of the best choices you will find in the market today.
The SanDisk Extreme PRO flash drives boast high read/write speeds of 420/380 MB/s. They come in different data storage capacities ranging from 128 GB to 1 TB, the highest you will ever find.
SanDisk Extreme PRO is your best choice if you are a video creator. They support full HD or 4K video files and use the old USB type A connector for compatibility.
- High data transfer speeds
- Available in large capacity of up to 1 TB
- Retractable USB plug
- 128-bit data encryption
- Backward compatible with USB 3.0 and USB 2.0
- Only available in USB type A
Best for Data Security: Kingston IronKey D300S
Kingston IronKey D300S drives beat all others when it comes to data security. If you have top-secret files, you have reasons to choose this product.
The Kingston IronKey D300S flash drive relies on advanced security features and a rugged, waterproof design to keep your data safe and away from prying eyes. You set a password to be protected by a 256-bit AES hardware encryption method.
All the encryption and decryption happen on the flash drive with no trails on the host computer. The Kingston IronKey D300S also formats itself after 190 unsuccessful attempts.
However, you don’t buy it for speed or data storage capacity. It’s only 4GB and has a low data rate. You can choose it only if data security id your primary goal.
- Data encryption
- Tamper-proof seal
- Rugged protection
- Expensive per data storage space
- Low data rates and capacity
Best for Content Creators: Corsair Flash Voyager GTX
Content creators rely on the speed and storage capacity of a flash drive. The Corsair Flash Voyager GTX is just the right choice for that purpose. It comes in different storage capacity, ranging from 128Gb to 1TB.
Corsair Flash Voyager GTX uses high-speed 3D NAND memory technology that clocks at a maximum read and write speed of 440 MB/s. It also uses USB 3.2. These features make it possible to edit your content right from the flash drive. Hence, saving your time moving data back and forth.
Corsair Flash Voyager GTX should be your best option if working with large media files. The flash drives are available in high memory capacities of up to 1 TB. However, you have to pay more for this product than other brands.
- Backward compatible with USB 3.0 and USB 2.0
- High data rates
- High memory capacity
- Data safety guaranteed
- Available in different data storage capacity
The Best for Compatibility: Samsung DUO Plus USB Type-C Flash Drive
Samsung DUO Plus flash drives are designed for average users regardless of the industry. The memory capacity varies from 32 GB to 256 GB and are universally compatible. That means you can buy them for any model of your PC. Their compatibility is enhanced by including USB type A and C. Many people call it a 2-in-1 flash drive.
The Type C USB connector makes it possible to use Samsung DUO Plus on your tablets and phones for data transfer. It is the ultimate choice for a seasoned traveler who likes using the phone for taking photos and videography.
The Samsung DUO Plus guarantees you data safety. All your content will be safe regardless of external conditions.
- Both USB types A and C
- Backward compatible with USB 3.0 and USB 2.0
- Small in size
- Universal compatibility
- Relatively low memory capacity
- Lower memory capacities are slower
Largest Storage Capacity: PNY Pro Elite
The highest memory capacity of flash drives is 1 TB, and PNY Pro Elite gets there. Most brands have the same data storage space, but PNY Pro Elite does it at a much lower price.
PNY Pro Elite flash drives are designed for high data speed performance. PNY is among the few products within the same price range that clocks at 400 Mb/s. However, its data writing speed is much lower, reaching up to only 180 MB/s.
PNY Pro Elite flash drives allow you to store or transfer your media files and documents quickly and faster. And due to its high storage capacity, you can backup many large video files.
- High storage capacity
- USB 3.0 support
- Protective sliding collar
- USB type A only
- Relatively low write speed
Best for iPhones and iPads: SanDisk iXpand 128GB Flash Drive
iPhone and iPad users can also smile with this SanDisk iXpand flash drive. The product comes with a twin connector: one end gets into your PC’s standard USB port while the other connects with your iPad or iPhone. Additionally, the connector is made of a flexible strap for ease of use.
The SanDisk iXpand drive has software for backing up your phone. You can also choose to transfer individual files that the flash can hold. They come in varying memory capacity, ranging from 32 GB to 256GB.
SanDisk iXpand pulls double duty with a USB 3.0 and lighting connector. However, it is not the fastest flash drive in the market. We guess that won’t be a concern if you own an Apple device.
- High data transfer rates
- Lighting and USB type A
- Automated backup
- For PC, iPhone, and iPad
- Relatively low speed
- Less durable
Best On Budget: Kingston DataTraveler G4
If you are limited on budget, you can still have a reliable flash drive for data transfer and backup. The Kingston DataTraveler G4 gives you the best value for your money while still offering stunning features, including 16 GB of data storage space.
For just a few dollars, you can buy a low-capacity Kingston DataTraveler G4 flash drive for the intended purpose. It features a USB 3.0 connector, meaning the data transfer is relatively fast. And your data will be safe from external elements such as water, shock, and heat.
The Kingston DataTraveler G4 flash drive comes with a key chain to reduce the chances of losing the device. It may not be the best out there, but it is the best in its category.
- Cap protects plug
- Compact and highly portable
- Supports USB 3.0
- Standard data speeds
- Relatively low storage capacity
Best USB Flash Drives to Buy: The Verdict
You can save by buying an appropriate flash drive matched to the purpose. We have given you the best recommendations per category to pick. But if you need to consider other options, use the stated factors at the beginning of this article. But remember, the most expensive is not always the best for your application.