The atmosphere in the world of portable memory storage has always been competitive, but the intensity of today’s market is remarkable. Determined to make a name that consumers will associate with performance and quality, companies are releasing products here and there. Outfitted with the latest technology (most notably USB 3.0), these products compete to offer the largest storage space, fastest read and write speeds, and best portability. While not all three, the LaCie FastKey USB 3.0 creates its own niche and offers great look and decent performance to boot.
The LaCie FastKey is, however, innovative. Though it has the size and appearance of a USB flash drive, the FastKey is actually a solid state drive downsized to an incredibly small and light package compared to solid state drives in the market. The model’s USB 3.0 support is a nice bonus considering that it’s paired with DRAM cache technology. The pairing of the two technologies purportedly boosts the FastKey’s speeds to figures that clock around one hundred times faster than USB 2.0 (a significant increase from USB 3.0‘s ten-times-faster quote). But, it should be noted that this quote is theoretical in nature; expect real world testing to reveal lower speed performance. Nevertheless, it is nice to think that you can get up to 120 GB in storage with read and write speeds reaching 260 MB/s. What is nice about the FastKey is its security features. The model offers AES 256-bit encryption and gives you the freedom to encrypt a portion of the drive or the entire thing.
The growing trend towards sleek design isn’t lost in the FastKey’s brushed metal finish. Its casing and cap are made of light yet sturdy aluminum, and as a result, the device weighs only 1.16 oz. (33 g). A minor flaw, unfortunately, is that the FastKey is wide enough to block USB ports beside it. This isn’t a problem with stacked USB ports, but side-by-side orientation is the market standard. Price is also a problem. The 120 GB LaCie FastKey retails at $499, and the lowest capacity (30 GB) starts the hike at $149.99.
If you’re a fan of LaCie, this product is worth your savings. But if not, you might want to re-think about purchasing something as expensive as that. Don’t forget to make some shout-outs below.