Corsair Voyager GT 16Gb and Voyager 4Gb USB Stick Review

Storage/Other by jmke @ 2008-07-01

The Voyager GT is the high speed cousin of the well known Corsair Voyager USB stick. In this review we compare its performance to several other USB drives as well as the original Voyager.

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Test Setup and Comparison Material

The Voyager USB sticks were compared to:
  • Kingston DataTraveler 2.0 4gb
  • Sandisk Cruzer Mini 512Mb
  • Kingston DataTraveler HyperX 4GB
  • Sandisk U3 Contour 4Gb
  • Sandisk U3 Cruzer Micro 4Gb
  • SuperTalent Pico UT165 8Gb
  • OCZ Rally2 32Gb
The following test setup was used with Windows XP SP2 installed; we used ATTO HDD Benchmark v2.34 and HDTach 3.0 to measure performance:

Intel Test Setup
CPU Intel Core 2 E6400 @ 2.8Ghz (from CSMSA)
Cooling Coolermaster Hyper TX
Mainboard Intel 975X Bad Axe (Modded by Piotke)
Memory 2 * 1Gb PC6400 OCZ
  • XFX Geforce 8800 GTX
  • Coolermaster Real Power M520 520W PSU
  • 2x Western Digital 74Gb Raptor SATA HDD

  • Performance

    Let’s start with the HDTach’s random access time test:

    Madshrimps (c)

    Both Corsair sticks have very low access times, at below 2ms these flash devices are a world apart from the old generation.

    Madshrimps (c)

    In the read test we see the Voyager 4Gb come out as the fastest USB stick tested to date, followed closely by the Kingston DT HyperX. The Voyager GT is not far behind though and clocks in at 30+Mb/s average read speed!

    ATTO HDD Benchmark allows you to test the performance of a storage media by measuring the time it takes to read or write a file of 256Mb; the difference with other HDD benchmark is that ATTO will read/write that data file in different size chunks, going from 0.5Kb to 8192Kb. In our test we used 4kb to 8912Kbsetting.

    The smaller transfer sizes are applicable for overall Windows operation like Page File actions (~4kb) and small file transfers (.inf , .ini, .dll files). Larger 100Mb+ files are transferred in much larger chunks. Normally you can expect that hard drives do rather well with small chunks, better than SSD in any case, once the file transfer size increases performance will go up for SSD/HDD and USB sticks.

    If you want to run an applications straight of your USB stick, high performance at small transfer size is important. If you plan to use it primarily to transfer large files, file transfer speed at chunks of 512Kb are more important.

    Let’s see how these USB sticks did in the READ test:

    Madshrimps (c)

    Quite a lot of data to sift through, if you look at the 64~8192Kb scores you’ll notice that these pretty much match the results we got from the HDTach read speed test. If we look at the smaller transfer sizes you’ll see the Voyager 4Gb has a very nice lead over the competition, only the SuperTalent PICO drive is able to keep up. The Voyager GT is far from bad but is slower in the read tests.

    Madshrimps (c)

    Here we separate the men from the boys, while most affordable USB drives excel in read speeds, in is with write speed where the more costly products prove their worth. The Voyager GT is on par with the Voyager up to 16Kb, at larger file chunks the performance of the GT starts increasing a lot, writing data at twice the speed of the Voyager 4Gb. The only other USB drive able to keep up with the GT is the Kingston DT HyperX, this is also a dual channel stick.
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