If you want a secure and extremely fast portable data storage unit, then you definitely have to get a portable SSD. These are the fastest and best options around, even though they are a bit pricier than regular external HDDs.
External SSDs have many advantages though, the main one being their incredible speed both when writing and reading from the disk. This means that your operating systems will boot up a lot faster and everything that involves reading/writing on the disk will be much faster as well.
External SSDs are lighter, smaller and extremely durable when compared to regular external HDDs which tend to have a shorter shelf life.
In order to make things a lot easier for you, we’ve gone through a ton of external SSDs and we’re here now to share with you the best external SSD for the money in 2020.
In other words, we’re keeping an eye on the budget and only recommend lower priced external Solid State Drives. They are still high quality products but will usually offer less storage space than your top tier portable SSDs. But they still have enough space to be extremely useful – and on a budget.
Even more, if you want more storage than what our recommended products below have, you can get that as well since most of them have higher capacity options available and they’re just as good.
So without further ado, let’s check out below the best external SSDs in 2020! The products below are listed from the cheapest to the most expensive at the moment of writing this article.
[Update Notice:] This article was updated on June 23, 2020.
Please note: Our blog gets commissions for purchases made through links in this article.
If you don’t want to read our in-depth reviews of each of the recommended SSDs, you can just look at the table below to choose your favorite:
|SanDisk Extreme – Best Budget||1TB||Write: 400 MB/s|
Read: 456 MB/s
|Click here to buy|
|Seagate Barracuda||1TB||Write: 450 MB/s|
Read: 450 MB/s
|Click here to buy|
|VectoTech Rapid||2TB||Write: 400 MB/s|
Read: 420 MB/s
|Click here to buy|
|Samsung T5 – Editor’s Choice||2TB||Write: 400 MB/s|
Read: 450 MB/s
|Click here to buy|
Now let’s get into the details and find out why each of these Portable SSDs has made it onto our list!
SanDisk Extreme Portable External SSD
Best Budget Choice
At the moment of writing this article, this is the cheapest external SSD on the list. But this doesn’t make it a poor choice, on the contrary. This is the best selling external SSD on Amazon at the moment. With a rating of 4.7 Stars out of 5, from over 11,600 reviews, it’s clear that everybody loves it.
You have a ton of reasons to love it. It is very fast: you will get writing speeds of up to 400 MB/second and read speeds of around 456 MB/second.
The advertised speed is of up to 550 MB/s, but consider the numbes we shared above the realistic ones. Still very good for the price.
It also has a nice storage capacity: the recommended product offers 1TB of storage, but if you have a higher budget, you can get the 2TB option instead. It also offers password protection to make sure that your stored data is always safe.
It works on PCs and Mac computers. It has a few nice touches, like the ruggedized design. This makes it dust and water resistant, as well as able to whitstand shocks. This makes it a perfect option for those who travel constantly.
It is small and light and has a really pleasant design. It comes equipped with an USB Type-C cable, but also an USB Type-A adaptor that works with older computers and ports. However, the transfer speeds will be lower if you’re not using the USB Type-C.
With all these in mind, we can safely say that the SanDisk Extreme Portable External SSD is a perfect choice it the 1TB capacity range, offering a lot of the money.
Seagate Barracuda Fast SSD
Very similar to the previous recommendation, the Barracuda Fast SSD from Seagate is charming and reliable. Using USB 3.0 technology, it can reach incredible speeds of up to 540 MB per second.
You can expect it to average around 450 MB/second writing and reading speeds based on our testing. You might get to the advertised speeds as well, but even if you don’t, you still get an incredibly fast portable drive for the money.
It has a really nice design as well, with a green LED stripe making it really unique. It is very thin and light, but needs to be handled with more care than the previous product, as it is not ruggedized. That’s not a problem, though: you’re getting extra speed for the money!
The model we’re recommending also offers 1TB of storage. It connects to your computer with an USB-C cable, but it also has an included USB Type-A adapter to ensure maximum compatibility.
It also has Seagate’s proprietary back-up and mirroring software in case you want to use automated backups and not do everything yourself. We prefer the latter for full control.
All in all, this is a high quality, durable external SSD with a really nice design that literally makes it shine. A really good price too!
VectoTech Rapid 2TB External SSD
We’re now moving up in terms of storage and checking out the first budget external SSD that offers 2TB of storage. And even though we’re not talking about the most famous brand out there, this portable Solid State Drive is fast, reliable and durable.
It does have a cheap look, indeed, and doesn’t really stand out in any way, but it gets the job done and that’s all that matters. It is also larger than most products on our list, but it is still very light and highly portable.
It is also shock and vibration resistant, up to 1,500 g, which is equivalent to a 6-ft drop. It uses an USB Type-C cable, but also comes with a Type-A adapter in case you don’t have a type-C port.
It’s advertised transfer rates are of 540 MB/sec. However, during our tests, we got writing speeds of around 400 MB/s on average and around 420 MB/s reading speed.
This is still good, having in mind that we’re talking about double capacity compared to the previous models. All while the price doesn’t also double!
Samsung T5 Portable SSD – Editor’s Choice
In my opinion, this is the best option on our list. This external SSD works flawlessly and has been tested over and over again by thousands of people, getting great reviews and feedback. On Amazon alone it has an amazing rating of 4.7 stars out of 5 based on over 7,000 reviews. That tells a lot about its quality!
Compact and very light, Samsung’s external SSD is highly portable: it fits on your palm and weights just 1.8 ounces. Still, it offers shock resistance and secure password protection despite its small size.
The model that I am recommending is a 2TB one and even though it’s a bit pricier than most, you are paying for high quality here. It is really fast, with an advertised speed of up to 540 Mb/second.
For us, it achieved lower numbers, but still respectable: over 400 MB/sec writing and around 450 MB/sec reading speed. But we also got to highs of around 480 MB/second in both categories.
It comes equipped with a Type C to Type C cable, as well as a type C to Type A adapter, making it backwards compatible with older devices.
As I said already, I’d consider this the best option for you if the budget itself won’t be a solid enough reason for you to cross it off the list.
These would be our recommended external SSDs. All great products with incredible speed, high durability and nice designs. You will be satisfied with your choice, no matter which one you choose.
If you’re interested in internal Solid State Drives for your computer or laptop, you should click here to see our recommendations as well!