SanDisk Professional Pro-Blade review: Fast, but an answer to a question nobody is asking



  • Reply 21 of 24
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 6,594administrator
    we'd stick with native Thunderbolt or USB4 at least for a few years until USB-C shakes out a little more. Acasis has a really nice USB4 NVMe enclosure that I'm personally using, which would deliver full speeds on the drives that are being used in this system. Sabrent has a nice Thunderbolt one for about $100. 

    Good point Mike about 40Gbps USB4 offering an even better speed improvement than 20Gbps Gen 2x2, on most/all? Apple Silicon Macs, and also for less-than-Thunderbolt prices. Looks like right now a USB4 enclosure like Acasis plus a fast PCIe 4.0 SSD would cost about $400-500 altogether, not bad at all really.

    For some reason I have a little superstition about putting a desktop SSD inside a portable enclosure, I have heard that portable drives can get different firmware to draw less power or otherwise operate well in a mobile context. But I have no evidence for this, and I know plenty of people do it, so I should probably just get over it! :)
    Don't even need the PCI-E 4 drives, if you can get a deal on a PCI-E 3 one. Thunderbolt is only going to address them as PCI-E 3 drives anyhow.
  • Reply 22 of 24
    B&H shows this hooked up to binder camera equipment, which is very enticing to me being a videographer. Really wondering/hoping this gets supported by Blackmagic and their Pocket Cinema Cameras because this seems like a really good workflow idea. Pricing isn’t bad either for what you’re getting.
    Yes, exactly, offering an alternative solution for digital video camera cards is exactly what this product seems intended for. 

    2TB CFexpress camera cards with similar read/write speeds range in price from $600 - $1000, with one currently on sale at B&H for $400. This Sandisk PRO-BLADE 2TB Mag at $230 is a bargain in comparison. 

  • Reply 23 of 24
    I watched this from day one. It could potentially make a nice 16TB SSD drive array with the Blade Station (albiet non standard drives). Whats strange is it was originally released with a Blade Station which a year later has never materialized. It's interesting the manufacturer either doesn't have the resources or the confidence in releasing the second half of the two piece solution. Instead they make you buy a $199 dock which is already lowered to $169 and is essentially a non standard cable to allow their drive to do anything. They missed their own launch. This doesn't go well for a new product launch trying to get everyone on your non standard format of connectors. Don't we have enough grief with all the USB-C formats? Why not buy a standard fast external ssd. They come much smaller than the blade and blade transport combined and are cheaper. I guess the previous poster was right its for camera people wanting to function like RED drives.
    edited February 16 watto_cobra
  • Reply 24 of 24
    Because I and some colleagues were so curious about the possibility of M2 supporting 20Gbps USB Gen 2x2, I actually got ahold of a Sandisk Extreme PRO Gen 2x2 SSD V2 (1TB) which advertises 20Gbps speeds, and took it to the Apple Store today. Sadly, I found the M2 Max MBP 16" only showed 10Gbps speeds on this Gen 2x2 SSD.

    I trust Mike's results on the PRO-BLADE Transport that showed 20Gbps speeds, so I wonder if the USB chip in the Transport reader is more of a USB4 chip, compared to the chips used in the older Extreme PRO V2 drive from 2021? Another reviewer actually claimed 30Gbps speeds with the PRO-BLADE on an M2 Air, which is strange but might lend credence to the USB4 hypothesis... (unless they accidentally tested their internal SSD rather than the PRO-BLADE like I accidentally did in one of my test runs today!)

    In any case I'd have to agree with Mike that Gen 2x2 remains a bit of a mess, and focusing more on USB4 (not to mention Thunderbolt) seems ultimately for the best.

    Testing methodology: Sandisk Extreme PRO V2 1TB purchased 2/19/23 from local Best Buy store, model # SDSSDE81-1T00.
    Cables: both included Sandisk USB-C cable (unmarked), and OWC 0.7m Thunderbolt 3 Passive Cable CBATB-002-070A.
    Computers: M2 Air 13" 8GB, M2 Pro MBP 14" 16GB, M2 Max MBP 16" 32GB, all on macOS Ventura 13.2.1 at the Apple Store.
    Testing Apps: Amorphous DiskMark 4.0(41) and Blackmagic Disk Speed Test 3.4.2, both with default settings.
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