Portable SSD drives aren’t new but they have definitely been getting smaller. While smaller is nice, it makes it easier to misplace them or for them to go walking. Depending on what kind of data you are storing on them, losing your portable drive could be a security risk to you and/or your employer.
Our VAVA Portable SSD Touch review takes a look at a small portable hard drive that also has password and biometric fingerprint security. Read on for our full review!
The VAVA Portable SSD Touch has the following features and specifications:
- The built-in fingerprint reader secures and unlocks your critical files with a touch of a finger, backed by AES 256-Bit Hardware Encryption.
- Up to 540 MB/s transfer speed, 4.9x faster than a standard hard disk drive (HDD)—Transfer 10GB of data in just 20 seconds!
- Sleek, fully-enclosed design is strong and shock-resistant—preventing any data loss from drops up to 4 feet.
- Available in 6 different colors and capacity combinations, to fit your storage needs and complement your devices.
|Interface||USB Type-C Port: USB 3.1 Gen 2 (10GB/s), backwards compatible|
|File Format Supported||NTFS/FAT32/exFAT, SATA III Data transmission|
|Data Transfer Speed||Up to 540MB/s|
|Capacity||512GB, 1TB, 2TB|
|Compatible System||Windows 7 or higher, Mac OS 10.12 or higher, Android KitKat (Version 4.4) or higher|
|Dimensions (LxWxH)||102 x 30 x 8.5mm (4.0 x 1.2 x 0.3 inches)|
What’s in the box
- VAVA Portable SSD Touch
- USB Type-C to USB Type-C cable
- USB Type-C to USB-A cable
- Carrying pouch
The VAVA Portable SSD Touch has a very classy design. The top and edges are constructed from metal while the bottom is a petty durable shiny piece. To be honest, I’d be fine with a full metal enclosure, but it does look nice as it is. Our review unit was the blue color version, there is also a grey version available.
The top of the drive has the VAVA logo printed on it towards the left side of the stick. The square fingerprint reader is on the right half of the stick and has an LED border around it. The only other thing on the stick is the USB Type-C port on the right edge.
It’s a little bigger than a stick of gum (think Juicy Fruit). The drive is 4-inches long, about 1 3/8-inches wide, and only 3/8-inch thick. A pair of cables (USB Type-C to USB Type-C and USB-A to USB Type-C) are also included. They are pretty standard far, plastic coated and a bit short at about a foot long each.
There really isn’t much to it, aside from its sleek look and compact size.
While the VAVA Portable SSD Touch works out of the box, you’ll need to install the VAVA SSD Touch software to gain access to the security features. The software is included on the drive so there’s no need to go searching for it.
Once installed, the main screen shows an overview of the total space remaining on the drive and a settings button. The first time you click the settings button, you’ll be able to toggle Security Mode on. Once toggled on, you’ll be prompted to set a password between 4 and 16 characters long. Once set, you can then access the Fingerprint Unlock feature.
If you’ve set up a fingerprint unlock before, this works the same. Simply follow the instructions in the app to set up your fingerprint by repeatedly touching the sensor while moving your finger around. You can enroll up to 10 fingerprints. One thing to note, you need to use the password to add or remove fingerprints or change the password. You cannot use a fingerprint to access those settings.
If you have security set up, whenever you plug it into a computer you’ll be prompted to enter your password. Alternatively, you can use your fingerprint to unlock it. The fingerprint is stored on the drive so you can easily use it on other computers without having to install the VAVA SSD Touch Software.
VAVA SSD Touch screenshots
Ease of Use
As mentioned above, the VAVA Portable SSD Touch is easy to use. Simply plug it into your computer, Android, or iPad Pro device. If you have security enabled, you’ll need to enter your password or use your fingerprint, if not you’ll have instant access to your files.
VAVA claims up to 540MB/s read/write speeds with the VAVA Portable SSD Touch. Of course, depending on your system and set up, your speeds will vary.
To test performance, we connected the drive to a laptop via USB Type-C. I also did a couple of tests over a USB-A port and the results were pretty similar.
|AS SSD Seq Read||416.53 MB/s|
|AS SSD Seq Write||405.75 MB/s|
|ATTO Disk Benchmark Seq Read (max)||424.42MB/s|
|ATTO Disk Benchmark Seq Write (max)||417.72 MB/s|
|CrystalDiskMark Seq Read (Q8T1)||443.99 MB/s|
|CrystalDiskMark Seq Write (Q8T1)||430.57 MB/s|
While benchmarks are great for geeks, real-world performance is more important. On that note, file transfers were nice and zippy, from transferring larger 2GB files or multiple files under 50MB at once.
As for fingerprint performance, I had no issues with the fingerprint sensor recognizing my correct finger or thumb and not unlocking when I tested using it with a non-registered fingerprint.
The LED indicator also changes color based on different events:
- Solid blue: plugged in/idle
- Blinking blue: read/write
- Fade in/out blue: SSD locked, needs to be unlocked
- Blinking red: Fingerprint unlock failed
- Solid red: Hardware error
- Blue indicator off: No data reading/writing (indicator will turn off in 20 seconds)/disconnected
With both password and fingerprint protection, the VAVA Touch SSD uses AES 256-Bit Encryption, which is pretty much the standard these days. During testing, I was unable to access the data stored on the drive unless I entered the proper password or used the correct finger. While the drive won’t lock you out, if you forget your password you cannot recover it and the drive will need to be factory reset, deleting all data stored on it.
There is no visible way to get into the enclosure either and I wasn’t about to start trying to pry it open to see if it was easy or hard to. You’ll basically need to destroy the enclosure to access the physical SSD drive inside and even then you still have the encryption to bypass.
The drive is also nicely enclosed and VAVA claims it is strong and shock-resistant—preventing any data loss from drops up to 4 feet. I’d believe their claims based on the sturdiness of our review unit.
With an MSRP starting at US$132 for the 512GB version up to $415 for the 2TB version, t’s not exactly cheap. However, it does come with both alphanumeric password and biometric fingerprint security.
Available on Indiegogo’s InDemand having successfully reached its campaign goal, there are still a number of perks available. This means you can still snag the 512GB version for as low as US$89, 1TB for $149, and 2TB for $269. These prices are much more reasonable and VAVA is even offering bundles with their 9-in-1 USB-C Hub for added value.
As with any crowdfunding campaign, there is a risk of supporting them. We’ve recently heard about several that we’ve written about that have failed or are having issues. Our reporting on Kickstarter, Indiegogo, or other crowdfunding campaigns does not mean we support or are affiliated with them. Support at your own risk.
That being said, the campaign is fully funded and the company does have a good track record with releasing products.
While a bit more expensive than other portable SSD drives, the VAVA Portable SSD Touch offers up enhanced security with a password and/or fingerprints.