Toshiba Can­vio Con­nect II

£104 inc VAT (3p per GB) • toshiba.co.uk

PC Advisor - - CONTENTS - Jim Martin

Not every­one needs the blis­ter­ing speeds of a por­ta­ble SSD and if you’re just af­ter a large-ca­pac­ity drive to store back­ups of your videos, pho­tos and mu­sic, it’s a bit point­less to pay the high prices that solid-state drives cur­rently cost. The Can­vio Con­nect II may be larger, heav­ier and less stylish than its SSD-based ri­vals, but it still has a lot to of­fer.

Price

The 3TB ver­sion costs only £104, which means it’s just 3p per GB. This is the top ca­pac­ity: there are also 500GB, 1TB and 2TB mod­els. You also get a choice of colours: red, white, gold, black or blue.

Fea­tures and de­sign

There’s lit­tle you can do with a 2.5in hard disk in terms of de­sign, but the Can­vio isn’t ugly. The glossy plas­tic cas­ing has a slightly domed top and an ac­tiv­ity LED in the corner. On one end is a Mi­cro-USB 3.0 con­nec­tor, and a stan­dard USB cable is pro­vided.

It’s not amaz­ingly light at 230g, and it’s un­likely to fit in your pocket, measuring 109x78x19.5mm. But it’s still em­i­nently por­ta­ble – just take care of it as it won’t ap­pre­ci­ate be­ing dropped: me­chan­i­cal hard drives are pre­ci­sion-made de­vices, which are frag­ile.

Toshiba is gen­er­ous with soft­ware, bundling NTI Backup Now EZ and Po­go­plug PC. The lat­ter lets you ac­cess the con­tents of the drive re­motely, but only if the PC it’s con­nected to is left turned on. If you want re­mote ac­cess, you’re bet­ter off buy­ing a proper NAS drive. Still, you get 10GB of cloud stor­age with Po­go­plug, so there are ben­e­fits. The drive is for­mat­ted with NTFS, but the Tux­era soft­ware al­lows you to con­nect the drive to your Mac with­out re­for­mat­ting it.

Per­for­mance

Thanks to a USB 3.0 in­ter­face, the Can­vio can stretch its legs. It’s nowhere near as quick as an SSD, but we saw 131MB/s when read­ing large files and 135MB/s when writ­ing them in Crys­talDiskMark’s se­quen­tial tests. This is rea­son­ably good for a 5400rpm hard drive.

For small 4KB files, per­for­mance falls off a cliff and the Con­nect II could only man­age half a megabyte when read­ing and 1.2MB/s when writ­ing such files.

It’s a mi­nor point, but you can hear the drive spin­ning so bear in mind that it’s not si­lent like an SSD.

Ver­dict

Aside from speed, the Toshiba Can­vio Con­nect II is a bril­liant all-round pack­age. It of­fers acres of space for your back­ups and me­dia li­brary, it’s cheap and it comes bun­dled with gen­uinely use­ful soft­ware.

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