Kingston 32GB DataTraveler microDuo 3C Flash Drive Review

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Many of you are aware by now that USB 3.1 drives are becoming available in two connection types – Type-C and the standard Type-A that has been around since the beginning of USB connectivity. Kingston sent us a USB 3.1 flash drive that offers both connection types, which ensures compatibility with all USB 3.1 capable devices. The 32 GB DataTraveler microDuo 3C is on tap for us to explore today, so let’s get to it.

Features/Benefits/Specifications

The DataTraveler microDuo 3C is available in three capacities – 16, 32, and 64 GB. Kingston touts transfer speeds of up to 100 MB/s read and 15 MB/s write. The Type-C connector will be handy if you have a newer smartphone or tablet because it’s becoming more prevalent on devices like those. The device is very small and is only about an inch long. The microDuo 3C is compatible with all current operating systems including Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, and Chrome. Kingston offers a 5-year warranty on the microDuo 3C, which is a pretty stout warranty period for a device like this.

kingston_microduo3c (1)

Here is what the Kingston marketing folks have to say about the DataTraveler microDuo 3C.

Dual interface for USB Type-A and USB Type-C ports.

DataTraveler® microDuo 3C has a dual interface that works with bothstandard USB and USB Type-C™ ports. It’s an ideal way to provide up to 64GB of extra storage for the latest smartphones, tablets, PCs and Mac computers, which may have limited expansion ports, and it’s easier than sharing files via online services. It’s plug and play and fast, with speeds up to 100 MB/s read and 15MB/s write, and it has a rotating cap to protect the reversible USB Type-C connector.

*Dual interface accommodates USB Type-A and USB Type-C Ports
*Additional storage for newer devices with limited expansion ports
*Fast data transfer speeds up to 100 MB/s read and 15 MB/s write

Retail Packaging/Product Tour

The DataTraveler microDuo 3C comes in a clear plastic clam-shell case with a cardboard insert to explain some of the product’s features. Nothing too fancy here, but effective nonetheless.

Retail Packaging - Front

Retail Packaging – Front

Retail Packaging - Back

Retail Packaging – Back

Looking closer at the flash drive itself, we can see a retractable cover that protects the Type-C side of the drive. There is also a small bracket built into the body that’s most likely for attaching to a key chain or lanyard of some sort. It’s actually a pretty nifty little device that would work well for people who need storage on the go.

MicroDuo C3 - Cover Closed

MicroDuo C3 – Cover Closed

MicroDuo C3 Cover Closed - Opposite Side

MicroDuo C3 – Cover Closed – Opposite Side

microDuo - Cover Open - Typte-C Sdie

microDuo – Cover Open – Type-C Sdie

microDuo C3 - Cover Open - Type-A Side

microDuo C3 – Cover Open – Type-A Side

Benchmarks

We tested the DataTraveler microDuo 3C on the ASUS TUF Sabertooth X99 motherboard, which uses the ASMedia ASM1142 USB 3.1 controller. First up is a run of ATTO Bench, which was run at QD4 and QD10. There was very little difference between the different runs, but the flash drive exhibited speeds well above what Kingston’s claims are. We recorded read speeds in excess of 130 MB/s and write speeds well above 50 MB/s. Kingston claims up to 100 MB/s read and up to 15 MB/s write, so they could be selling themselves short on the performance capabilities. We suppose that’s better than making claims that are unobtainable though!

ATTO Bench QD 4

ATTO Bench QD 4 Results

ATTO Bench QD10

ATTO Bench QD 10 Results

CrystalDiskMark was next on the list. Here we again see the drive exceed advertised speeds during the sequential read/write test, although not quite as dramatic when compared to the ATTO write test.

CrystalDiskMark

CrystalDiskMark Results

Finally. we performed a run of Anvil’s Storage Utility, which again showed sequential read/write speeds above what’s advertised.

Anvil's Storage Utility

Anvil’s Storage Utility Results

Conclusion

If you need a USB 3.1 flash drive that offers both connection types, fast data transfer, and is easy to carry along with you, then Kingston has a great offering in the DataTraveler microDuo 3C. The 32 GB version, as tested today, can be found for less than $20 if you shop around. We found it at Rakuten.com for just $17.74 with free shipping. If you prefer to buy it directly from Kingston, the price there was under $20 at last check.

A nifty device that performs well and is priced right… what’s there not to like?

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Dino DeCesari (Lvcoyote)

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