With OWC’s Envoy Pro Ex with USB-C, another company is promising to deliver the full potential of USB external storage via NVMe SSDs. OWC claims 980MBps of sustained throughput, which is very fast, though we’ll verify that when we test it.
The drive, which is Mac- and PC-compatible, starts shipping Tuesday. The Envoy Pro EX with USB-C will be available unpopulated for $95, but it’s a better deal with an NVMe SSD pre-installed: 250GB for $130, 500GB for $180, 1TB for $250, or 2TB for $430. The drives will be warrantied for three years, and may be purchased at OWC’s (Other World Computing) site.
One key spec OWC didn’t specify was the transfer protocol used. USB-C is a connector, not a transfer technology. We’re assuming it’s not Thunderbolt, which currently uses a Type-C connector and would be faster, or USB 3.1 Gen 1 (5Gbps), which would be slower. That leaves USB 3.1 Gen 2 (10Gbps), as 980MBps is around what we saw from the recently reviewed Fledging Shell, another USB 3.1 Gen 2 external SSD.
Based on the photos provided by OWC, the Envoy Pro Ex with USB-C’s case is attractive and is sealed, like the case for Samsung X5 Thunderbolt drive. The shell is made of durable anodized aluminum. OWC claims the drive can survive for 30 minutes under 1 meter of water, though we wouldn’t recommend that you test that claim.
Jon Jacobi is a musician, former x86/6800 programmer, and long-time computer enthusiast. He writes reviews on TVs, SSDs, dash cams, remote access software, Bluetooth speakers, and sundry other consumer-tech hardware and software.