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meerkt
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SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 12:51 pm

Just had the displeasure of copying some files to a brand new SanDisk 64GB Cruzer Edge (SDCZ51-064G).

Write: It's dead slow. Writing a single big file, on a practically empty FAT32 partition that holds just some encryption software provided by SanDisk, the speed periodically sweeps from 1.7MBps to a peak of about 7MBps:
Image

Read: Speed is about 12MBps, and mostly constant. Not as bad as writing, but far from good.

Capacity: 62.7GB (base 10). Not the first time I see such a thing, but I still think not providing the advertised capacity is cheating.

Physical: Also the physical design is questionable. I thought the outside of the USB connector is supposed to act as ground?

For comparison I checked a 16GB noname UFD. It peaks at just 6.5MBps but the speed is constant, so on average it's faster than the SanDisk.
At least the SanDisk is faster (I think?) than a 1GB noname UFD I have, which writes at 3.5MBps. But the noname's speed is stable.

Image
Image
Last edited by meerkt on Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 1:13 pm

I dislike speaking the obvious but... the orginal post, while curious (it caught my eye), is bereft of the details needed to assess your findings.
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 1:21 pm

B-grade TCL Flash with only two channels is slow? I never would have guessed!

Side note: You should test from a RAMdisk source to get good transfer numbers. There are other things that can go wrong with a Windows file copy besides slow Flash.
 
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 1:30 pm

The longer pins are power/ground, the grounds are generally tied together in the port anyway.

That said, I don't see any advertised performance numbers - in general cheap flash is slow, and that stick definitely qualifies.
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meerkt
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 1:35 pm

Advertised speed or not, 1.7MB/s half the time from a brand name?

Bereft of what details? Slow UFDs are slow UFDs, unless you mean the speed undulations.
The computer is an Ivy Bridge laptop running Win8. The speed is the same on both USB 2 and 3 ports.
It's also the same, as far as I can estimate, on an old AMD computer running WinXP.

RAM drive? I'd say with high probabily my source media can sustain more than a few MB/s. :) And it's constant with the noname UFDs.
 
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 1:44 pm

Yuck.

That's not out of line with what I've seen over the years though. Unless a thumbdrive quotes sustained write speeds in the specs, it's gonna suck. Massively. I've had drives that claimed to be USB 3.0 that didn't even come close to saturating a USB 2.0 interface, and USB 2.0 drives that barely pushed the limits of USB 1.x.

As far as the connector design goes, I've seen similar ones on other thumbdrives; the "half plug" thing isn't that uncommon. Pin 4 (at the bottom in your pic) is ground, so having a grounded shell isn't electrically necessary, though it probably provides some additional ESD protection when the drive is being transported and plugged in.

Verbatim sells a line of thumbdrives called "Clip-It" that have an even more minimalist connector than that:
Image

While I wondered about the lack of ESD protection, I've been using them for several years and have yet to have one fail (the above pic is of one I just happened to have at my desk). The thin form factor makes them perfect for putting in your pocket or wallet. I use them for sneakernetting small files around and bootable ISOs (where they're essentially treated as read-only once you've written them, so slow writes aren't much of an issue).

Edit: Also, whether you've got "optimize for quick removal" set for that drive in Windows can make a big difference for thumbdrives. Disabling the Windows file cache (which is what that option does) imposes a severe write performance penalty, and since you're dealing with a device with sucky write performance to begin with...
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TwistedKestrel
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 1:54 pm

I wouldn't pay money for a Cruzer Edge, they are about as cheaply made as you can get. Connecting them without retracting the connector can get annoying.
 
meerkt
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 1:58 pm

I am familiar with these shell-less plugs, but this UFD is both thick enough to accommodate a standard connector, and it does include a half-shell, just made of plastic.
I do wonder if it's a spec violation.

Regarding the speed, the copy was of a single big file, so I don't think write caching would matter?
But anyway, it's the same settings I use with all UFD. The others perform faster, or at least consistently.

There were a few more things I'd test, but the UFD is back to its owner now.
 
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:04 pm

YGWYPF (You got what you paid for)

Cheap flashdrives suck.
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meerkt
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:13 pm

I got better ones for free.
 
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:16 pm

DrDominodog51 wrote:
YGWYPF (You got what you paid for)

Cheap flashdrives suck.

True, but even so that it's USB 2.0 would've been my full stop for 'No.'

Of course any flash drive is going to be slow dealing with small files, but I will never touch USB 2.0 storage again.

(Looks like the Cruzer Edge was first available in 2011 too. so uhh...yeah.)
And now I'm no longer primarily a PC gamer. *shrug*
 
whm1974
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:19 pm

Geez, I just brought a SanDisk 16GB flash drive for less than $10 not that long ago.
 
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:28 pm

My current flash drive. Bought in April 2012. And yes, it meets/exceeds 70MB/s when writing large files. I paid $40 for the thing back then!!!
$12 for 32GB drives are enough to saturate usb2 writes at around 30MB/s
double that to $20-$25 and you can be nearing 100MB/s writes.
There are some $15 for 32GB drives that will land somewhere between those. I didn't dig real hard for good deals. Clearly this thread isn't looking for that.

If you care about speed, read newegg reviews, most of the even halfway decent thumb drives will have a reviewer that posts the read/write speed.
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:41 pm

meerkt wrote:
I am familiar with these shell-less plugs, but this UFD is both thick enough to accommodate a standard connector, and it does include a half-shell, just made of plastic.
I do wonder if it's a spec violation.

Oh, probably. Ditto the Verbatim-style connector. Most thumbdrives don't even have the official USB logo on them, so they're probably not bothering to get them certified, even when they do have a standard connector shell.

FWIW the SanDisk micro-SD card I had in my phone until a few months ago got swapped out because it started randomly corrupting files. Color me unimpressed.
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:47 pm

meerkt wrote:
I got better ones for free.

Yeah, you probably paid too much for the one you've got, considering that the Cruzer Edge USB 2.0 64 GB and the Cruzer Ultra USB 3.0 64 GB are both selling for nearly the same price right now, but unfortunately SanDisk has been selling multiple lines for some time and you have to buy the better one to get the best performance. The same is true for other flash products like SD cards, too.

For comparison, this is a SanDisk Cruzer Ultra USB 3.0 32 GB from about two years ago, currently about half full, reading from and then writing to a mostly-full Samsung 830 SSD (256 GB). I made sure to perform a disruptive operation between these two events so that Win10 wasn't working from a cache. Note that the sustained high speed only occurs because a single 3.5 GB file is being copied:

Image

Next, here is a 4.5GB directory of over 1600 files being copied to the drive, and the transfer speeds vary from 3.5 MB/s to 15 MB/s over the duration of the small-files copy, then jumps to about 25 MB/s when handling a directory full of large image files. It is then deleted including its parent directory and even that takes half a minute to handle:

Image

Lessons:
1.) Flash drive quality matters, but also...
2.) Workload matters.
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:53 pm

I expect ~5MB/s write speeds from a cheap USB flash drive; Anything more than that is a bonus!

There's a reason most manufacturers don't list write speeds and unlike SDcards there's no performance classifications like C4, C10, U1, U3 etc.

I tend to buy Kingston SE9 USB3 thumbdrives because they're cheap, have a fully-shelled USB connector, they're made from a single piece of aluminium so they're bombproof and I can pick them up for under £2.88 each (8GB) Yeah, they're slow at about 12MB/s on large files but it's better than a lot of junk at that price.
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 3:02 pm

Chrispy_ wrote:
I expect ~5MB/s write speeds from a cheap USB flash drive; Anything more than that is a bonus!

There's a reason most manufacturers don't list write speeds and unlike SDcards there's no performance classifications like C4, C10, U1, U3 etc.

I tend to buy Kingston SE9 USB3 thumbdrives because they're cheap, have a fully-shelled USB connector, they're made from a single piece of aluminium so they're bombproof and I can pick them up for under £2.88 each (8GB) Yeah, they're slow at about 12MB/s on large files but it's better than a lot of junk at that price.


I got burned by a few thumbdrives recently, not DOA, just slow-slow-slow.

Since it costs the same, I've been using class-1 rated micro-SDXC cards, as an added bonus they work in Android phones if needed.
 
meerkt
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 3:06 pm

There are bad UFDs out there, that's a given. But the point of the thread was a brand name that performs worse than nonames: model sold in stores today, irregular writes speeds even when writing a single continuous file, very slow writes combined with 64GB capacity.

Here's an old 8GB Kingston DataTraveler DT100 of mine. A cheap model from back then.

Writing one big file into a half-full and maybe a bit fragmented partition results in flat 13+MBps:
Image

Reading is flat at 18-19MBps:
Image

I would expect a contemporary SanDisk drive, positioned about the same in the market, 8 times larger, to at least match the above if not exceed it some. And definitely to be able to maintain a consistent write speed. Now, don't know how likely it is but maybe that SanDisk is defective.

BTW, in that 8GB Kingston, also, the capacity is no less than the stated. That's how it should be.
 
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 3:15 pm

The Kingston was probably MLC and the Sandisk is almost surely TLC. Race to the bottom.
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meerkt
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 3:21 pm

More likely, 3rd-order TLC rejects: phone TLC QA fail -> SSD TLC QA fail -> normal UFDs TLC QA fail -> cheap UFD TLC from companies that don't give a damn. :)
Maybe combined with a downgraded controller that dropped the SoC BOM from $0.5 to $0.3.
Last edited by meerkt on Tue Jun 06, 2017 3:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 3:23 pm

Looks like Newegg calls out MLC on some of their drives, such as this Mushkin 64GB. It costs about twice as much as the SanDisk model we are discussing and includes all the metal a person could want.
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 3:26 pm

just brew it! wrote:
The Kingston was probably MLC and the Sandisk is almost surely TLC. Race to the bottom.


Also, keep in mind that the Kingston controller was probably overspecced. They have purpose-built controllers for B-grade TLC Flash now. No point in spending money on a part that won't be fully used...

Also, keep in mind that Flash package sizes keep going up, and Flash is only fast because of internal channels. I can't wait to see the performance level of a 32GB thumbdrive that's using a single chip of 3D-TLC. The entire drive with only a single channel...
 
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 3:50 pm

meerkt wrote:
brand name

That is why a "brand name" does not mean much. Every brand has their stinker line(s).
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 5:16 pm

If you want to try for more performance, format it as EXFAT with large sectors (I think they go up into the megabytes, and if you're storing primarily large files, it can be a huge boost to write speeds).

Going from 4K FAT32 sectors to 512KB -> 1MB sectors with EXFAT should be a nice boost and keep those writes up higher even with "quick eject" enabled.
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 5:22 pm

Waco wrote:
If you want to try for more performance, format it as EXFAT with large sectors (I think they go up into the megabytes, and if you're storing primarily large files, it can be a huge boost to write speeds).

Going from 4K FAT32 sectors to 512KB -> 1MB sectors with EXFAT should be a nice boost and keep those writes up higher even with "quick eject" enabled.

Ahh, I hadn't thought of that. Using a sector size that is more commensurate with the flash block size certainly has the potential to be a HUGE win, depending on how smart (or stupid) the flash controller in the drive is.
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whm1974
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 5:34 pm

I thought SanDisk is one of the better companies to get flash storage? of course I wouldn't know since I don't buy flash drives or memory cards very often.
 
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 6:51 pm

They used to be. I'm not so sure any more.
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 9:11 pm

They're still one of the biggest manufacturers, and WD technically owns them. I have lots of their stuff.

This just happens to be crappy old product, which is why it's cheap.
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 9:35 pm

ludi wrote:
Looks like Newegg calls out MLC on some of their drives, such as this Mushkin 64GB. It costs about twice as much as the SanDisk model we are discussing and includes all the metal a person could want.


Wha? Does it come preloaded with good music and encased in U238?
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whm1974
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Re: SanDisk Cruzer Edge is *horrible*

Tue Jun 06, 2017 9:46 pm

Waco wrote:
They're still one of the biggest manufacturers, and WD technically owns them. I have lots of their stuff.

This just happens to be crappy old product, which is why it's cheap.

So which models are the good products then?

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