Sunday, 20 March 2022 20:56

The SanDisk Professional G-DRIVE ArmorATD is the ruggedised USB HDD for the adventurer in us all


SanDisk Professional's new G-DRIVE ArmorATD is a ruggedised portable hard drive that is lightweight yet robust. It is rated against crushes, drops, rain, and dust, and provides tremendous peace of mind for your data’s safety no matter where you find yourself.

Portable USB-based hard drives have been a great invention for easy backups, moving large quantities of data around, sharing photographs and other memories, providing technicians with a bunch of valuable tools for any PC they might come across, and more. Yet, at the same time, they’re vulnerable to drops, shakes, dirt, water, and all kinds of shocks and inadvertent damage. Frustratingly, the very thing that makes a portable external drive so useful is simultaneously its greatest weakness. Well, normally. Here’s where the SanDisk Professional G-DRIVE ArmorATD comes in.

The drive comes in 2.5" 1TB, 2TB, 4TB, and 5TB capacities. And with that much data in your bag, in your pocket, in your hand, you most certainly want confidence it’s going to survive your journey. Fortunately, SanDisk Professional has your back. While ruggedised disks are not, in themselves, new, SanDisk Professional has upped the ante with an impressive range of features.

The drive is encased in a premium anodised aluminium enclosure which gives strength you can feel, surrounded by an easy-grip protective bumper for durability you can trust. What this means is the drive’s housing has a layered, tough, defensive build but yet is easy to hold onto.

It's been rated as up to 1,000 pounds crush-resistant - which is over 453kgs - and 1.2m drop resistant for the 1TB and 2TB models; the 4TB and 5TB models are 1.0m drop resistant. All models are rated IP54 for rain and dust resistance rated against the Ingress Protection standards. Note that’s number five, number four, meaning it is rated 5 (out of 6) for dust protection which means it’s not vacuum-sealed but it’s pretty darn tight against dust, and that it will stand up against splashing of water but you won’t want to let it get stuck in the path of water jets or be immersed completely in water. There’s a weather-resistant port cover to seal up the USB-C 5Gbps port for good measure.

Of course, it's not all about standing up to the environment when you’re out-and-about Bear Grylls style. It’s a fast and effective high-capacity USB disk too! It can read at up to a whopping 140MB/s, letting you suck 50GB files in under eight minutes. You can read the full range of specs here but ultimately, It’s an excellent drive for backing up and storing your files - and then transporting them safely no matter whether you are flying, driving, walking, cycling, hiking, or mountain climbing.

In fact, iTWire tried it out. I copied several hundred gigabytes of files onto the disk, then took the disk for a walk around the top of Mount Sugarloaf. The disk was snug in my pocket as I puffed, wheezed and sweated around walking tracks and ascended the 412m summit. There was some rain; I squeezed through some tight sections, climbed others, and jumped down from even more. On returning home, the drive looked none-the-worse for wear and all files were still showing, and their MD5 checksums validated correctly showing no corruption or damage to the disk in any way.

The G-DRIVE ArmorATD comes with a three-year limited warranty. The box includes a USB-C cable and a USB-C to USB-A adapter. It is ready for use out-of-the-box with Windows and macOS and is compatible with macOS Time Machine.

What price would you put on your data - your memories, your unposted invoices, your backups? Well, no doubt lots; fortunately, pricing starts at just over $134 for the 1TB model and for that price, why risk your data on something less robust?


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David M Williams

David has been computing since 1984 where he instantly gravitated to the family Commodore 64. He completed a Bachelor of Computer Science degree from 1990 to 1992, commencing full-time employment as a systems analyst at the end of that year. David subsequently worked as a UNIX Systems Manager, Asia-Pacific technical specialist for an international software company, Business Analyst, IT Manager, and other roles. David has been the Chief Information Officer for national public companies since 2007, delivering IT knowledge and business acumen, seeking to transform the industries within which he works. David is also involved in the user group community, the Australian Computer Society technical advisory boards, and education.

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