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Review: Kingston XS2000 Lightning-Fast USB 3.2 Gen2x2 SSD

The Kingston XS2000 portable SSD exhibits all the characteristics of a successful product. However, we are left pondering why the company opted for USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 when USB 4.0 is on the cusp of becoming mainstream. Nevertheless, it remains a solid choice if your system is already compatible.

NewForTech Opinion:

Advantages:

  • Exceptional speed for compatible systems.
  • Generous 5-year warranty.
  • Excellent value for the price.
  • Robust build quality with an IP55 rating.

Disadvantages:

  • Requires specific hardware to maximize performance.
  • Can be costly if you seek abundant high-speed storage.
Kingston XS2000 Portable SSD Review
(Image credit: Kingston Technology)

Kingston XS2000 Portable SSD Review


The Kingston XS2000 is often touted as the world’s fastest native USB SSD, emphasizing its native USB 3.2 Gen2x2 compatibility. To clarify, it operates at a brisk 20Gbps and necessitates a matching port for optimal performance. While it’s likely to work with the forthcoming USB 4.0 update, the choice might leave some questioning its wisdom.

Market Insights:
(Image credit: Kingston Technology)

Market Insights:

Insiders suggest that this product caters to a niche audience, particularly those deeply invested in storage or flash technologies, primarily suited for desktop PCs rather than notebooks. Interestingly, big players like Samsung and Crucial have refrained from launching USB 3.2 Gen2x2 products.

Product Overview

However, the XS2000, much like the recently reviewed Data Traveler Max USB Flash Drive, offers exceptional storage capabilities at an affordable price. It boasts water resistance, shockproof features, compact dimensions, and an impressive five-year warranty.

Pricing and Options:

The Kingston XS2000 is available in 500GB, 1TB, and 2TB variants, priced at $100, $160, and $285, respectively, on Amazon US. Adata’s SE900, which sells at a similar price point, features RGB lights but is physically larger and has a shorter warranty.

Pricing and Options:
(Image credit: Kingston Technology)

Design:

Kingston claims the XS2000 is water-resistant, dust-resistant, and shockproof, thanks to its included rubber sleeve. Although it lacks IP67 certification, it adheres to the IEC/EN 60529 IP55 standard, necessitating cleanliness and dryness before use. The drive’s body is a combination of plastic and, most likely, aluminum, rendering it lightweight (29g), compact (13 x 31 x 67mm without the sleeve), and minimally adorned.

Hardware:

The device utilizes the SM2320, a native USB 3.2 Silicon Motion controller, paired with 3D TLC NAND chips, likely Micron’s 96-layer variant. Beyond the included cables and sleeve, there’s not much else to note.

Hardware:
(Image credit: Kingston Technology)

Performance:

Benchmarked on the Bleujour Kubb Gen 11 Intel Mini PC, which lacks USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 compatibility, the XS2000 couldn’t achieve its headline 2GBps read/write speeds. Instead, it performed above average on USB 3.2 Gen 2 but requires a compatible system to reach peak speeds.

Kingston XS2000 Portable SSD Review: Benchmark Results

Here’s how the Kingston XS2000 performed in our benchmark tests:

BenchmarkRead SpeedWrite Speed
CrystalDiskMark1062MBps999MBps
Atto1019MBps957MBps
AS SSD954MBps893MBps
AJA951MBps909Mbps

Compatibility with Thunderbolt:

Kingston clarified that the XS2000 isn’t compatible with Thunderbolt 4 or Thunderbolt 3 due to different technology specifications. The Type-C connector for Thunderbolt allocates some pins for video signals, leading to slower data transfer speeds compared to USB 3.2 Gen 2×2.

Compatibility with Thunderbolt:
(Image credit: Kingston Technology)

Software and Services:

Notably, there’s no bundled software or data recovery services with the XS2000, making it an economical choice for those focused on price.

Buying Recommendations:

Consider purchasing the Kingston XS2000 if you have a USB 3.2 Gen 2×2 compatible device. Its competitive speeds make it a compelling option, backed by a lengthy warranty, compact design, affordability, and IP rating.

Buying Recommendations:
(Image credit: Kingston Technology)

Consider Other Options if:

You’re seeking the absolute lowest price. At the time of writing, more budget-friendly 2TB USB 3.2 Gen 2 drives are available, such as the Crucial X8, which is significantly cheaper than the XS2000. Another alternative is the VAVA Portable SSD Touch, which includes a fingerprint scanner.

You may want To read: Review: Kingston XS1000 External SSD – Unleashing Performance

Conclusion:

In summary, the Kingston XS2000 is a versatile choice, ideal for users with compatible systems seeking high speeds and reliability. However, price-conscious consumers may find more budget-friendly options on the market.

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