Comparing USB 2 vs UBS 3 sticks (aka flash drives)

Just a quick test to see how USB 2 and USB 3 memory stick compared in various ports.
Comparing USB 3 to USB 2, across a few different sticks: 
The sticks:

OCZ rally 2 (USB 2)

Adata S102 (USB 3)

Adata UE700 (USB 3)

Sandisk Extreme (USB 3)

The test:
 not particularly sophisticated, but the results bear out my general impression. Copy and read back a 1.52 GB video file.

USB 2 ——
For comparison, a mid-range USB 2.0 stick:
OCZ rally 2  (no practical difference between hubs)

in USB 3 hub
W: 2:09  (that’s 2 minutes and 9 seconds)
R: 0:55 (that’s 55 seconds)
In USB 2 hub:
W: 2:11
R: 0:52 

USB 3 sticks in USB 3 & 2 ports——

Adata S102
in USB 3 hub
W: 1:10
R: 0:22

In USB 2 hub:
W: 1:10
R: 0:36

Adata UE700
in USB 3 hub
W: 0:35
R: 0:07

In USB 2 hub:
W: 0:36
R: 0:37

Sandisk Extreme
in USB 3 hub
W: 0:17
R: 0:05

In USB 2 hub:
W: 0:37
R: 0:36

Looking at this, several things pop out:

USB 3 is faster
USB 3 sticks are faster in both USB 3 and USB 2 ports
USB sticks do have different speeds, by a lot
If you have a USB 2 port, there is a point at which getting a faster USB 3 serves no purpose.
Write speeds are surprisingly similar within the same port type… unless you get a really fast stick and are using USB 3.

Of course I’m generalizing here from a -tiny- sample of a simple test. No doubt these things vary with random access and so on.

What does seem to stand out is that USB 3 sticks perform significantly better in USB 2 ports than sticks marketed as “USB 2”.



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