LaCie has a new portable SSD drive designed to eliminate the confusion about USB-C connectivity. It is called the LaCie Rugged SSD Pro and promises compatibility with modern computers with Thunderbolt 3 ports with USB-C ports and those with non-Thunderbolt 3-USB-C ports. The ports look the same, but do not behave the same. The rugged SSD Pro eliminates all guesswork.
And because the name contains "Pro", you know that this portable SSD has to be good.
The new drive from LaCie is based on a Seagate FireCuda NVMe SSD with a transfer speed of up to 2800 MB / s when connected through Thunderbolt 3. Unfortunately, the company does not specify a transfer speed when the drive is connected through a standard USB port. However, another drive was announced – the cheaper Rugged SSD – which uses the same FireCuda NVMe SSD, but claims a maximum USB 3.1 Gen 2 speed of only 950 MB / s.
The port magic of the Pro model is made possible by Intel's JHL7440 Titan Ridge Thunderbolt 3 controller, which was announced in January 2018. "The LaCie Rugged SSD Pro is the first handheld device on the market to feature the latest Thunderbolt 3 technology." Intel's Jason Ziller next to the introduction of the drive. "With the JHL7440 controller, LaCie delivers industry-leading performance with Thunderbolt 3-based PCs and compatibility with legacy computers."
Not sure yet why this SSD is useful? Imagine being a filmmaker / creator, you've just spent hours recording 8K footage edited with your new MacBook Pro – a laptop with only Thunderbolt 3 USB-C ports. You will be taken to a customer site where you want to transfer the footage from your portable SSD to the Surface Book 2 – it is equipped with USB-C … Thunderbolt 3 is not supported. Do not worry if your footage is stored on a Rugged SSD Pro. The LaCie SSD connects easily to the SurfaceBook 2's USB-C port, while other fast Thunderbolt SSD drives do not.
The sturdy SSD Pro is dust and water resistant to IP67, so it is dustproof and can be immersed in one meter of water for up to 30 minutes. This is an industry first for Thunderbolt 3 storage, according to LaCie. It can also withstand 3-meter crashes. The drive costs $ 399.99 (1TB) and $ 699.99 (2TB) and is expected to ship next week.
And yes, a Thunderbolt 3 USB-C cable is included. You have to stay on it at least until USB 4 arrives.