Samsung breaks own embargo by unveiling T5 Evo 8TB external SSD on its site for $650 — just be prepared for the sticker shock and the slow speed

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You can buy the world’s largest true 8TB portable SSD direct from Samsung for a mere $650 just in time for Black Friday (check our Black Friday SSD deals). Also available in 2TB and 4TB, the Portable SSD T5 Evo (also known as the MU-PH8T0S/AM) is now on offer with a 7-day delivery window but you can buy it for bit cheaper from ShopBLT and PCNation

The first of its breed, this external SSD adopts the Evo branding from Samsung’s own internal SSD range, which focuses on value for money rather than performance. It also has a new rectangular design that is markedly different from the flat design used by competitors – many of whom have repackaged 8TB 2.5-inch SATA SSD. 

It reaches speeds of only 460MB/s on read and write, which is what SATA-based portable SSD used to achieve about five years ago – so no, it is definitely not one of the fastest SSD but will almost certainly enter our list of the best external SSD

Despite this poor display, Samsung sells the Portable SSD T5 Evo at a steep premium. It is cheaper to buy two of its own faster Portable SSD T7 Shield SSDs (I tested and loved those). These come with a proper IP-rating which the T5 Evo lacks and support for USB 3.2 Gen 2 (rather than Gen 1).

Portable hard drives are the target

That said, Samsung targets another audience, one that has been relying on external hard drives which haven’t seen a jump in capacity for about five years thanks to the lack of investment in R&D from the major HDD manufacturers. Laptop HDD have plateaued at 5TB and it was only matter of time before someone comes up with a large 8TB SSD.

According to Samsung’s website, It comes with the company’s own Magician Software, a three-year warranty, plus a Type-C connector and cable (plus LED indicator). At 102g, it is lighter than expected given the fact that it has an extra handle and that’s likely due to the rubber design that allows it to withstand a fall of up to six feet. 

Samsung also claims that the T5 EVO is “optimized for large file transfers with improved Intelligent TurboWrite” although we can’t see much of an optimization when you reach speeds of under 500MB/s. It’s a shame that Samsung didn’t launch a faster 8TB SSD at a lower price but I can understand why they did it (i.e. to maximize their position and increase their profits).

For those who seek better value for money when it comes to external storage, buying an 8TB 870 QVO drive from Samsung with a third party enclosure will likely save you about $300 or, put it differently, bag you a stinkingly good BOGOF deal.

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