on July 14, 2014
To answer most of your questions, this is a great product that every single macbook user should buy, regardless of how much internal storage you have.
This review is all based on personal experience with the product.
1. It actually has a little bit more than 128gb on the card free.
2. It does not unmount when the computer is put to sleep, even in the middle of a download.
3. It does not unmount when restarted.
4. It is barely noticeable in the SD card slot and just feels like theres something covering the SD card slot.
I have a 2013 macbook air 13.3". I have been able to use it for my Time Machine back-ups, and planning to install a windows virtualization machine, either bootcamp or parallels on it.
Although the computer recognizes the drive the moment it is inserted, it does need to be formatted to a mac os only format to take full advantage of it. It is formatted the same way you would format your SSD. MAC OS (journal extended).
on October 22, 2014
I got this JetDrive card hoping I could launch Windows 7 from it, thereby preserving the internal drive space of my Mac Air with a 128 SSD. It works! An encrypted Win 7 Pro VM on VMWare Fusion 7 moves pretty quick. Probably couldn't run any games or anything super intensive on it, but looks to be fine for general use.
Here's a photo that shows how flush it sits in the slot compared to a small logitech receiver next to it.
Very pleased. I'll update this review later if anything changes.
on March 1, 2015
I purchased the “Transcend JetDrive Lite 130 128GB Storage” after running across it while searching for 128GB flash drives. Wow, what a fantastic find!!
The Transcend JetDrive Lite 130 is an inexpensive way of increasing your storage, and is a great concept. I just bought a new 2014 MacBook Air with a 120GB internal hard drive thinking that this would fulfill my laptop storage needs. However after uploading all of my digital photos to my new computer, I soon realized that I didn’t have much storage left on my hard drive. I tried inserting a SD card in the side of my MacBook Air, however it stuck out to far. I also tried a mini USB flash drive, which also stuck out more than I liked. Additionally, I don’t think they make a USB mini flash drive any larger then 64GB, if they do I couldn’t find one.
The Transcend JetDrive Lite 130 128GB Storage was the perfect solution as well as the least inexpensive option per gigabyte. The JetDrive allowed me to double my storage space, and it sits completely flush, leaving no chance of being caught on something and being broken off.
The read write access times of the JetDrive are pretty good, with 95 MB per second read and 60 MB per second write. These read write speeds are actually fast enough to run virtual machines directly from the Transcend JetDrive. I have a 32 GB Windows 7 virtual machine and a 16 GB Linux virtual machine running directly off of the JetDrive. If I were to store both of these virtual machines on the native internal hard drive it would need to take 40% of the 120GB internal hard drive which I would not be able to do without removing all of my digital photos. Placing my virtual machines on the JetDrive was a great option.
You can also use the Mac operating system to encrypt the data on the JetDrive just like you would the internal drive. The JetDrive is more reliable and sophisticated than a standard SD card or USB flash drive because of the “Built-In Error Correction Code (ECC)”. The Transcend JetDrive mounts and dismounts automatically when you turn on or off your MacBook.
I have used Transcend storage products in the past and have always been satisfied in the value and quality. For anyone who wants to add another 128GB to their MacBook, the Transcend JetDrive products are an incredibly great buy.
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on June 21, 2014
I love this idea, and ordered one as soon as I heard about it.
Speeds are slower than promised on my mid-2012 MacBook Air, with both read and write speeds averaging around 30 on the Black Magic disk speed test.
But -- most surprising -- when the Mac sleeps, the JetDrive Lite unmounts. When my Mac wakes up, there's an error message ("The volume was not properly ejected"), and the drive has to be *physically removed and reinserted* to mount the drive again.
This is, at best, inelegant, and at least, impractical. It's certainly a disappointment. If you're thinking this will be a "pop it in the SD slot and have what amounts to another disk drive" solution, think again.
on June 8, 2014
This is an excellent idea and I was very happy for the opportunity to expand my Macbook Air 13"'s memory inexpensively. I've always had a good experience with transcend memory in the past. The "drive" sits in the expansion slot completely unobtrusively and is no hassle at all to use. I've had it for about a week, and the only surprises were (1) the transfer speed, when transferring a large number of files and photos (50 gig or so of documents) was very slow, and (2) after my computer ran out of power and went to sleep yesterday the drive was unmountable and, according to disk utility, needed to be reformatted. Running disk utility a second time, however, allowed me to repair it. So just make sure you have a backup! One last thing - reformat the Drive for Mac when you get it. I left it as ExFAT and due to this the files take up much more room on the JetDrive than on my hard disk; 40 gig of files ended up taking 70 gig of space on the JetDrive.
on June 5, 2014
*Edited my review after 1 full month of use. Down from 5-stars to 3-stars. The reason being is that my battery life has drastically reduced. Typically on my MBA 2013, I was getting around 8-11 hours while traveling. Now, I'm only maxing around 3.5 hours at full charge. The battery drainage compared to what this card offers is just not worth it. So as a secondary card, I really like the speeds as I reported. However, to always have it mounted as an external, completely not worth it.
I purchased the JetDrive Lite 130 128GB here on Amazon for my 2013 13" MacBookAir.
First, it is formatted in ExFAT and I had to research to understand why. It seems it does have a speed edge over HFS+ so I'll be keeping it as is (plus the I don't have a PC if I want to reformat back to ExFAT). I have no problems with Read/Write, works right out of the box so not sure what the issue is of others reporting that it's write only. I renamed the drive and have copied files back and forth.
I ran BlackMagic Speed Test and I'm getting avg 52MB/s Write and 85MB/s Read as you can see the photo I uploaded. I ran this with a 5GB file.
Overall, I'm quite happy with it. My only complaint is how I might use this. I was so excited to get it I didn't really think through what I would store on here. Because of how almost flush it fits, it's not good for sharing files as it'll be incompatible to place into other SD supported devices. It really is just a secondary hard drive. And since I primarily use my laptop at home connected to a Thunderbolt display with a Thunderbolt drive, I don't need it as a scratch drive (my Thunderbolt drive gets 240MB/s Write and 320MB/s Read speeds so no need to change). I might just store it with movies and such that I might need while traveling.
Anyway, if my only problem is finding what to put on it, then I'll be fine. I was thinking of using it as a Time Machine backup but it's too small compared to my internal HD size. But then again, to always have it mounted might be a good thing.
on November 19, 2014
Doubled my available storage! While this is no SSD and you shouldn't expect the performance to be anywhere near it, it is great for bulk storage for movies, TV shows, downloads, music etc. It came formatted as EXFAT (FAT64) which is readable and writable in OS X and Windows, Windows cannot view HFS+, OS X had issues with NTFS so this is a great file format for both operating systems. I split my SSD in half for bootcamp so I have a limited amount of space to work with, the Jetdrive changes everything. Its more than fast enough for media consumption and bulk storage.
I have never had an issue with read speeds not being fast enough, from actual file transfers it tops out at about 80Mbps, writes feel like early USB 3.0 speeds and hover somewhere between 25-40mbps which is plenty fast enough for my use case. These are not benchmarks, they are observations of actual file transfers (700Mb movie files.)
Many people have problems with it being ejected every time you wake from sleep, I had a similar issue so I downloaded the utility from the Jetdrive website, I haven't had an weird issues since, though making a favorite folder in the sidebar in the Finder will not work for removable storage.
I haven't had any problems using it in other SD card readers but there will be some that you cannot use it with because of the non-standard size. On a MacBook Air it sticks out about a millimeter, its almost completely unnoticeable unless you really look. Haven't had any problems with it not staying in place. Removal can be a bit of a pain if you don't have finger nails to wedge it out.
Overall very satisfied with my purchase, I am hoping as time goes on this will update to a faster SD card standard and more storage, but as it stands I give it 5 stars. Would highly recommend to anyone with a MacBook Air.
on November 1, 2014
I only wish they could make these in 256GB capacities. I use it strictly for holding my iTunes library (music only) and I've never had a problem with it randomly disconnecting or ejecting. My MBA reads from it just fine with no hiccups during music playback. Just make sure you format it as soon as you get it and most likely you'll be fine. I was able to load a fair chunk of my music library at 192Kbps with only 1.3GB free and it hasn't bogged down the reading speeds at all. Way cheaper than all the other alternatives too.
Edit: Just thought I would put this here as I've been asked about it by several others. I have 23,191 music files at a lowered bitrate of 192 kbps with an average length of 4 mins. Hope that helps.
on March 1, 2016
This was an easy storage upgrade for my 2014 MacBook Air so I love it. Couple things to note
1) I love how flush the card is when inserted
2) Don't forget to format your card (not sure why they this isn't done) when you purchase it. Command + spacebar and type "disk utility". Then click on the card, select erase, and select the OS X Extended (Journaled) option
3) Download the JetDrive Toolbox from Transcend. [...], click on support > support & download. Then click on "Apple Solutions" and work your way down (like Jet Drive lite on the left for my macbook air)
4) Once that is installed, for my MacBook air, click on the JetDrive Lite tab at the top, and make sure under "Power Save" you have it clicked to On.
At first, it was strange because I assumed the Transcend drive would be seen like my normal hard drive, but if you are waking from sleep there is a slight delay before the drive appears on the desktop. Speaking of that, if you wake from sleep and don't log on right away (say wait 3 minutes before logging on) you won't see the drive. For it to mount you need to promptly log-in at the screen
on July 8, 2014
Disclaimer up front: 1 star knocked off because the first one I received was defective and would not mount in my slot or a USB reader.
HOWEVER, I received excellent customer service from both Amazon and Transcend, and my replacement arrived promptly and worked perfectly with zero set up or effort. For full disclosure, I wills state that Transcend took several days to get back to me at first, but I take this as being due to a holiday weekend, which I take as an indication they are keeping their customer service dept domestic, which is very good. After they got back to me, the communication was quick and they were very fast to offer a full replacement, but I had already gone that same route through the Amazon return service.
When the new one arrived, I popped it in the slot on my Macbook Air, and it mounted immediately. The transfer rates are excellent for an SD card. The sizing fits the slot exactly they state - there is a thin plastic "lip" that keeps it from going in too far, but otherwise, it is flush with the body of the computer. It's flush enough that you need fingernails or a tool to get it started when you want to remove it - but that's a good thing: no chance of it coming out accidentally.
I can't speak for long-term durability yet, but will try to remember to come back and update you. This product is advertised as doubling your hard drive space. Yes and no... and also even more than that. My MBA has a 128GB SSD (as do most). This adds 128GB. So yes, it doubles your drive capacity. But, rather than a simple double up, it is both less and more than that.
It acts as a D: drive - a second and separate drive. Not all apps are friendly to that, so you'd be wise to take a little care what you put on it. So far, my iTunes has no trouble - which is my biggest memory hog, and I only keep a small portion of my music on my computer.
But... it also MORE than doubles your drive capacity in a way because zero space is taken up with your operating system or required applications. So it is a clean 128GB of storage space, instead of the <120 you get on your SSD after installing an OS and some applications. My MBA has less than 100GB remaining after I load just the OS and the programs I absolutely need. So really, this doubles me up AND give me 28+GB in addition. Not too shabby.
Thanks to Ms. Wong at Transcend and to Amazon for pleasant customer service experiences as well.