Top positive review
272 people found this helpful
Good value, good performance
on May 30, 2012
The Lexar Jump Drive S73 (32 GB, orange) is a lightweight, plastic bodied USB 3.0 flash drive. I would not personally describe it as cheap, no more so than most of the flash drives I have owned which are typically made of plastic, and this plastic, while lightweight, seems quite durable. I have been using this flash drive daily for a week, and have encountered no problems during use. I typically place a portable browser on my day-to-day flash drive and run that at work so I don't leave web droppings (cookies, cache files, etc.) on my work PC. I occasionally download files also, nothing huge, so I run the drive pretty much 8 hours a day, with frequent reads and writes to the drive.
In general, I have to observe that it is important to do a bit of research before one hits the "Confirm Order" button. Wikipedia will tell you everything you want to know, and more, about the USB standards, and it takes only about 5 minutes to look over the speed section. It doesn't seem fair to fault a product for being deceptive when it states the operational speeds right on the product packaging and web site.
Anyway, back to the review ... in testing, I obtained the results listed below. Some people will give you benchmark results, which are certainly valid data, but are usually misleading since they do not account for all the many factors that exist in real-world use. I try to do comparisons that emulate real world use: copying files from a PC to a USB drive, in this case, using different file sizes and quantities of files. Both of these factors can have a big influence on the speeds observed when copying files.
My comparison was this product (Jump Drive 3.0=JD3) against a Lexar USB 2.0 Jump Drive (JD2), and a Lexar Triton USB 3.0 (LT3), all in corresponding ports. Testing was performed in a Dell XPS8500 PC with 8 GB of RAM and a Core i7 Ivy Bridge processor. All times are averages of 2 copy operations. The drive being reviewed is bolded.
Copy single 98 MB file:
JD3 4s (note: took 5s when inserted in USB 2.0 port)
LT3 Avg. <1s
Copy 10 files, 250 MB total:
JD3 10s (note: took 12s when inserted in USB 2.0 port)
Copy a single 650 MB file:
JD3 21s (note: took 28s when inserted in USB 2.0 port)
Copy ~4,400 files (~915 MB total):
JD2 9m 15s
Faster than USB 2.0: In my testing, the Jump Drive USB 3.0 is typically 4x faster than a Lexar USB 2.0 flash drive, except on the torture test of copying over 4,000 files at a time. It was still more than 2x as fast as the USB 2.0 drive on that test, and about 2x as slow as the more expensive Triton drive. This Jump Drive 3.0 even tested faster than the USB 2.0 drive when it (JD3) was inserted in a USB 2.0 port, which kind of makes it worth considering even if you don't yet have USB 3.0 in your PC.
Color Coded by Size: Helps you distinguish among your flash drives if you keep multiple sizes.
Slide mechanism seems sturdier than most: I have used a half dozen or more different makes of flash drives with these sliding connectors. I generally do not like most of them. Many of them have no real stop mechanism, and actually retract as you push the connector into the USB port. One even does it deliberately ... a true paragon of poor design. However, this Lexar mechanism does have a secure "catch" once extended. You can push on it quite forcefully and it will not retract until you slide the actual retraction button.
3-year Warranty: More expensive Lexar drives, such as the Triton drive used in my product comparison, offer a lifetime warranty. This Jump Drive comes with a 3-year warranty. Really cheap drives come with a 1-year warranty.
"Slow-ish" USB 3.0: Well, the USB standard states "up to 5 Gigabits/sec," (=625 MB/s) where USB 2.0 is "up to 480 Megabits/sec" (=60 MB/s). So those who state that this is a USB 2.0 drive are not correct, since the spec does not say that a drive must perform at the maximum speed. The product packaging and advertising state clearly that it is 3x faster with speeds of 45 MB/s (read) and 20 MB/s (write) than "standard Jump Drive USB 2.0 drives." And consider that the price is quite a bit lower than the ultrafast USB 3.0 drives. One could argue that this Jump Drive does offer increased speed over USB 2.0 at a budget price. Since Lexar does offer other faster USB 3.0 drives, it's clear that that is exactly the intent of this particular line of drives. Note, however, that in my testing, this Jump Drive 3.0 was typically 2-4x slower than the very fast Lexar Triton USB 3.0 drive I used for comparison.
Somewhat Wide Body: Like with the Triton USB drive, the body of this Jump Drive is a bit wide. While many PCs (e.g. Dell's XPS 8500) orient USB ports on the front of the case vertically (like this: ||), laptops and USB hubs often orient them horizontally ( - - ), and with the wider body that these flash drives have, it can be impossible to plug in 2 devices at the same time. Not just 2 flash drives, but one of these flash drives and anything else. I measure the width at about 2.3 cm.
Lexar is Still Using the World's Tiniest Lanyard: Honestly, it just makes me smile. I have no idea what use a lanyard this small has.
In daily use, I have found the Lexar Jump Drive to perform well and without any glitches or hitches. The speed in file copying operations is typically 4x faster in operation than a USB 2.0 flash drive, though about 2x slower than the more premium Triton flash drive. Still, with a performance boost even when used in a USB 2.0 port, and costing only half of the Triton drive, you get more bang for the buck with this all-plastic Jump Drive. If performance is of utmost importance, you might look to the Lexar Triton flash drives, which typically perform 2-4x faster than this drive.