Toshiba has launched the new Canvio range of portable hard drives, with which it offers two storage solutions designed to accompany our laptop with all our data.
Not long ago we were talking about another portable solution, the Sandisk Portable SSD , and we were struck by how light and fast it was; But at the same time, a portable SSD is not the ideal solution for everyone, especially if you need a lot of storage space.
Although SSDs and HDDs are closer than ever to each other, the truth is that there are still important differences in the capacity / price ratio . A 1 TB portable SSD can cost 140 euros, while the cheapest Toshiba Canvio we have tested costs 56 euros for 1 TB; and the difference only widens as we get bigger.
The new Toshiba Canvio range demonstrates these advantages very well, with two different models, but very similar to each other that adapt to different types of users or uses. Both use internal 2.5-inch hard drives, so they are identical in size; they fit perfectly in a pocket , both pants and jacket.
The thickness has also been reduced, although with the size limitations of a hard drive. We can say that the technology has reached its end point, at least in this format, since I cannot imagine how it would be possible to make a 2.5-inch hard drive thinner.
The most complete is the Toshiba Canvio Flex, named for the “flexibility” it offers (although it is not the top of the range, that honor goes to the Canvio Advance); The idea is that this hard drive will offer the best performance, no matter what computer or operating system you use.
Technically, this translates into two aspects. On the one hand, the disk is formatted by default in exFAT, a file system compatible with both Windows, Mac and even Android. Therefore, we can connect it to any type of laptop, tablet or mobile to access our data.
Toshiba Canvio Flex
To achieve this, the Canvio Flex box contains two cables : one with a USB-C connection and the other with a conventional USB-A connection. The first allows us to connect it to a tablet, or to a laptop that only already has the new connections (there are more and more, like the ThinkPad X1 that we tested); with the second we can connect it to the computer or laptop.
No matter the cable we use, the performance is the same, and very acceptable; in our tests we have achieved speeds of 137 MB / s in sequential reading, and 144.28 MB / s in sequential writing. As expected on an HDD, the random read and write suffered a lot, with 0.54 MB / s.
For all practical purposes, all this means that this is a good HDD for copying large files , such as videos, but with which we will have to wait a bit to copy many small files, such as images; something that I have been able to verify in person with normal daily use.
In terms of aesthetics, the Canvio Flex stands out for its silver and white color, although I would have liked the two cables to be white; To differentiate them, the USB-A cable is black in color, and does not match the design of the hard drive at all. We have some blue lighting in one corner, to indicate that the disk is working.
In the Toshiba Canvio Ready we find a very similar hard drive, but more aimed at those who only want storage at a good price . In the box we only find a cable, USB-A, and the disk is formatted in NTFS; therefore, by default it will only work correctly with a Windows computer, but nothing prevents us from formatting the disk to exFAT or another system with better compatibility.
The advantage of NTFS is that we can simply connect the disk and start using it in Windows with the best possible performance, although the truth is that I did not miss that with the Canvio Flex.
In fact, in terms of performance this Canvio Ready is a bit below the Canvio Flex. In my tests, the sequential read was at 124.80 MB / s, although the sequential write was identical, as were the random accesses.
It is not something that you are going to notice in daily use, especially considering all the factors such as equipment and file size; so performance shouldn’t be a factor when choosing one drive over the other in this range.
The design of the Canvio Ready is based on two shades of black, with a brighter band that creates a very attractive contrast, at least a little more than if it were a simple black box. The operation indicator is smaller, a dot at the top that does not influence the design.
One aspect that I really liked about both models is how quiet they are; Even when I have put more “reed” into them, the vibrations typical of a hard disk have not been noticed at all, and I have not noticed that they have become too hot after long sessions of use.
On the other hand, a detail that I did not like very much is the lack of additions; the Flex is the only model that has something else, a second cable. Because they don’t have, they don’t even have free programs like those that many manufacturers include. It is true that many people delete them immediately to get the space, but a backup utility would have come in handy, especially considering the target audience for these discs.
The Toshiba Canvio Flex and Canvio Ready are good hard drives if we want to store a large amount of data cheaply . Therefore, they are ideal for a wide variety of users, from professionals who want to transport their videos or photos, or students to whom the internal storage of the laptop has fallen short.
The Toshiba Canvio Ready is available starting at 56 euros for the 1 TB model, 76 euros for the 2 TB, and 115 euros for the 4 TB. For its part, the Toshiba Canvio Flex is available from 62 euros for the 1 TB model, 82 euros for the 2 TB, and 120 euros for the 4 TB.