Ten Best USB 3.0 Flash Drives (2017 Buyer’s Guide)

best-usb-3-flash-drive-review-guideWhile cloud storage is quickly becoming the ideal way of to store files on your computer, flash drives still serve a purpose in this world. For instance, if you’re in a situation in which you don’t have internet access, you’re not going to be able to access your cloud storage. However, if you have your files saved on a flash drive, you will be able to access them quickly and easily without the use of the internet. The premier flash drives on the market today are USB 3.0 flash drives.

USB 3.0 flash drives work more efficiently than USB flash drives have ever worked before, reducing lag and loading times. Regardless of who you are, a USB 3.0 flash drive can help to make your life a great deal easier.

What is a USB 3.0 Flash Drive?

To put it simply, USB 3.0 flash drive is a small device capable of storing and transferring data files to and from your computer. These devices plug into your computer’s USB port, and can be stored away easily in your pocket, backpack, or keychain.

Equipped to work faster than any other type of USB flash drive around, USB 3.0 flash drives allow you to access your files with little to no waiting time. Available with different amounts of storage, these flash drives are the ideal devices for quick and convenient external data storage.

What are the Benefits of a USB 3.0 Flash Drive?

USB 2.0 drives are more than capable of storing and transferring data files externally, USB 3.0 flash drives are capable of doing so in a much quicker and more convenient manner. While USB 2.0 flash drives can operate at a maximum of 480 Mbps, USB 3.0 drives can operate at a maximum of 5 Gbps; an exponentially faster speed.

If you want to quickly store and transfer data files externally, a USB 3.0 flash drive is the ultimate way of doing so.

Who are the Contenders for Best USB 3.0 Flash Drive?

SanDisk Extreme PRO CZ88 128GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive – With a sleek, grippable, metallic exterior, this SanDisk USB 3.0 flash drive is ridiculously easy to handle and hold onto. Capable of retracting its USB jack into its housing, it can be stored quickly and safely at all times. Possessing 128GB of storage, this flash drive also comes with software that allows for advanced password protection.

Lexar JumpDrive S45 128GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive – A compact, easy-to-store device, this Lexar flash drive is as easy to transport as any flash drive you’re going to find. Available with 16, 32, 64, or 125GB of storage, there is a Lexar USB 3.0 flash drive for every purpose you can think of. Compatible with both PC and Mac operating systems, it’s an excellent little device to have on your side.

Samsung 128GB BAR USB 3.0 Flash Drive – With a tough, grippable, plastic exterior, this Samsung USB 3.0 flash drive is ridiculously easy to handle and store. Waterproof, shock-proof, magnet-proof, temperature-proof, and X-ray proof, it can withstand just about anything you throw at it. Possessing 32, 64, or 128GB of storage space, there is one available for all purposes.

Considerations for Choosing the Right USB 3.0 Flash Drive

If you purchase a USB 3.0 Flash Drive based on appearance alone, you could very well get a low-quality product. Almost everything you should consider when choosing a USB 3.0 flash drive has to do with its data-transferring capabilities. However, that doesn’t mean that you should ignore physical appearance entirely. A flash drive’s physical construction contributes greatly to how and where it’s able to be used. So what all should you consider when trying to choose the right USB 3.0 flash drive? The most important aspects are its lifespan, its construction, its size, and any additional feature it possesses.

Size

USB 3.0 flash drives come in all different shapes and sizes, with some of them spanning around an inch in length, and others being so small that you can leave them in your desktop or laptop computer at all times. Make sure to choose yours according to your specific needs.

Lifespan

Every different flash drive possesses a different lifespan. Flash drive lifespans are usually determined by the number of times you save and transfer data to and from them. While some flash drives will only last around 7 years with regular use, others can make it to 10 years, and sometimes even more.

Construction

Because you’re going to be transporting your flash drive in backpacks, pockets, and a variety of other storage devices, you want to make sure that it’s equipped to withstand physical wear and tear. While most flash drives are made out of tough plastic, some are made out of even tougher metals.

Special Features

Special features in USB 3.0 flash drives include everything from plug retractors, to carrying cases, to safety encryption, and more. While none of these features are an absolute necessity, they do make the use of your flash drive simpler, safer, and more convenient.

Size

Lexar JumpDrive S45 128GB

Measuring in at about ¼ of an inch by ½ inch, this Lexar USB 3.0 flash drive is about as small of a flash drive as you’re going to find. This makes it ridiculously easy to store as you can just leave it in your computer at all times if you wish.

Samsung 128GB BAR

Measuring in at 0.5 inches x 1.57 inches x 0.43 inches, this Samsung USB 3.0 flash drive is just between the Lexar and SanDisk in terms of size. This makes it beyond easy to store and transport from place to place.

SanDisk Extreme PRO CZ88 128GB

Measuring in at 2.79 inches x 0.8 inches x 0.45 inches and weighing just 0.6 ounces, this SanDisk is not quite as small as the Samsung and Lexar flash drives in our top 3, but still very small nonetheless. This makes it very easy to store and transport.

Lifespan

SanDisk Extreme PRO CZ88 128GB

Sporting a lifetime limited warranty, this SanDisk USB 3.0 flash drive is guaranteed for life after you have purchased it. If it does not get physically damaged, it will typically last upwards of 10 years.

Samsung 128GB BAR

Coming with a 5-year warranty, this Samsung USB 3.0 flash drive is built to last for around 10 years of regular use. Of course, if you use it less, you will run through fewer data transfer cycles, prolonging its life.

Lexar JumpDrive S45 128GB

While it comes with just a three-year limited warranty, this Lexar USB 3.0 flash drive is equipped to last between 8 and 10 years of regular use. While this isn’t quite as much as the Samsung and SanDisk drives in our top 3, it’s still plenty long.

Construction

SanDisk Extreme PRO CZ88 128GB

Constructed out of tough metal and plastic, this SanDisk flash drive can withstand a great deal of wear and tear. Due to its plug-retracting trigger, it allows you to keep it safe and protected during storage and transportation.

Samsung 128GB BAR

Made out of tough, durable plastic, this Samsung USB 3.0 flash drive can withstand a great deal of wear and tear. With a sleek, grippable design, it’s beyond easy to handle and store away when necessary.

Lexar JumpDrive S45 128GB

Sporting a small plastic stub and a USB plug, this Lexar USB 3.0 flash drive isn’t the most protected flash drive on the market. However, because it can be kept in a USB port at all times, it’s very easy to keep stored safely.

Special Features

SanDisk Extreme PRO CZ88 128GB

Equipped with file encryption and password protection software, this SanDisk USB 3.0 flash drive will keep all of your files safe and protected. With a retractable plug, you won’t have to worry about it getting damaged during transportation.

Samsung 128GB BAR

Because its USB plug is built into its body, this Samsung flash drive keeps itself safe at all times. Equipped with password protection and file encryption software, it also does an excellent job of protecting your files.

Lexar JumpDrive S45 128GB

When it comes to special features, this Lexar flash drive falls just below the SanDisk and Samsung flash drives in our top 3. Though it possesses no physical special features, it does encrypt files so that they remain safe and protected at all times.

Conclusion: Our Flash Drive Reviews

Kingston 16GB USB 3.0 DataTraveler Flash Drive – Best Cheap

large-kingston-digital-16gb-data-travelerPerhaps you’re interested in buying a nice USB 3.0 flash drive, but are on a budget. If so, you might consider purchasing this Kingston USB 3.0 flash drive. With 8, 16, 32, 64, or 128GB of storage space, it is capable of transferring most types of data files. Encased in a tough, plastic housing, this flash drive’s plug will be protected regardless of how you transfer it. If you’re looking for the best flash drive at an affordable price, you should take a look at this one.

Pros:

  • Encased in a tough plastic housing
  • Possesses a keychain loop
  • Available with 8, 16, 32, 64, or 128GB of storage space

Cons:

  • Not as fast as some USB 3.0 flash drives

Lexar JumpDrive S45 128GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive – Best for the Money

large-lexar-jumpdrive-s45-128gbFor a USB 3.0 flash drive in its price range, this Lexar USB 3.0 flash drive is the best USB 3.0 flash drive you’re going to find. As compact and easy-to-store as can be, it can be transported via your pocket, your backpack, or your computer’s USB port. Available in 16, 32, 64, or 128GB, there is sure to be one that suits your intended purposes. If you’re looking for a great USB 3.0 flash drive at a reasonable price, this is the one to look at.

Pros:

  • As compact as any USB 3.0 flash drive you’re going to find
  • Available with many different amounts of storage space
  • Protects files and passwords

Cons:

  • Slower than some USB 3.0 flash drives

SanDisk Extreme PRO CZ88 128GB USB 3.0 Flash Drive – Best Overall

large-sandisk-extreme-pro-cz88-128gbThough there might be some debate, we’re going to go with this SanDisk flash drive as the best USB 3.0 flash drive on the market today. Containing 128GB of storage space, it’s capable of transferring just about any number of files you throw at it. Sporting a retractable USB plug design, transport it as safely and as conveniently as possible. If you’re looking for the best USB 3.0 flash drive on the market, you need to consider this one by SanDisk.

Pros:

  • Safe and durable design
  • Outstanding 128GB of storage
  • As fast as any USB 3.0 flash drive you’re going to find

Cons:

  • Possesses no data activity light

Conclusion

While online clouds are undoubtedly great ways to store data, flash drives allow you to store data without the use of the internet. A USB 3.0 flash drive will not only externally store data without the use of the internet, it will do so as fast as technologically possible.

Compact and easy-to-store devices like the SanDisk Extreme PRO CZ88 make it easy to store and transport data files at your convenience. If you own a computer, you would be well-served by a quality USB 3.0 flash drive.