Home & Office
Why you can trust ZDNET : ZDNET's expert staff finds the best discounts and price drops from reputable sellers on a regular basis. If you buy through our links, we may earn a commission. Our process

'ZDNET Recommends': What exactly does it mean?

ZDNET's recommendations are based on many hours of testing, research, and comparison shopping. We gather data from the best available sources, including vendor and retailer listings as well as other relevant and independent reviews sites. And we pore over customer reviews to find out what matters to real people who already own and use the products and services we’re assessing.

When you click through from our site to a retailer and buy a product or service, we may earn affiliate commissions. This helps support our work, but does not affect what we cover or how, and it does not affect the price you pay. Neither ZDNET nor the author are compensated for these independent reviews. Indeed, we follow strict guidelines that ensure our editorial content is never influenced by advertisers.

ZDNET's editorial team writes on behalf of you, our reader. Our goal is to deliver the most accurate information and the most knowledgeable advice possible in order to help you make smarter buying decisions on tech gear and a wide array of products and services. Our editors thoroughly review and fact-check every article to ensure that our content meets the highest standards. If we have made an error or published misleading information, we will correct or clarify the article. If you see inaccuracies in our content, please report the mistake via this form.


These Crucial portable SSD drives are up to 60% off on Amazon

If you need large amounts of external storage with blazing-fast read speeds, a Crucial drive might be just what you're looking for. You can pick these up on Amazon at nearly 60% off the retail price.
Written by Jack Wallen, Contributing Writer

When the drive containing your operating system fills up, things can go a bit wonky. On top of that, should an OS upgrade go sideways, data loss can occur. Those are just two of the reasons why I depend on external drives to ensure my files don't wind up vanishing or inaccessible. 

Currently, I have four external drives between two different machines. I use each drive for a different purpose, which gives my setup a bit of flexibility and even more assurance that my data won't be lost.

Also: I found the ultimate external SSD - and it can even self-destruct

Fortunately, the peace of mind that comes with using external drives doesn't have to cost a small fortune. And, thanks to Amazon, you can buy these for up to 60% off regular retail.

Take, for instance, the Crucial X6 portable SSD, which can be had with up to 4TB of storage (enough for up to 20,000 photos, 100 hours of video, 6,000 songs, or 400GB of documents…with room to spare). These drives have been significantly discounted, so you can purchase enough to serve your needs.

View at Amazon

The specs

  • Read speeds up to 800MB/s
  • Small form factor - 2.72 x 0.43 x 2.52 inches
  • Works with Linux, macOS, Windows, Android, iPhone, iPad Pro8 (For PS4, Xbox One, and USB-A computer, you must purchase a separate USB-A adapter)
  • Interface - ‎USB 3.2 gen 2
  • Case material - hard plastic
  • Weight - 1.43 ounces
  • Rated for up to a 6.5' drop
  • Shock and vibration proof
  • Extreme temperature resistant
  • 3-year limited warranty

The cost of these drives depends on the size, which is:

  • 500 GB - $42.99 (43% off)
  • 1 TB - $53.99 (50% off)
  • 2 TB - $79.99 (10% off)
  • 4 TB - $169.99 (60% off)

It should also be noted that not every drive offers the same level of read speeds. For example, the 1/2/4 TB drives have read speeds up to 800 MB/s, whereas the 500 GB drive speeds rate at 540 MB/s. So, if you want the fastest drive, skip the 500 GB version. Besides, given the 1 TB drive is only $11 more than the 500 GB, it makes sense to go larger.

These drives are also backed by Micron, which is one of the largest manufacturers of flash storage in the world. I've used plenty of Crucial devices over the years (both internal and external drives and RAM) and have always found their products to be reliable. Had I a need for yet another external drive, I would jump on the 4 TB version. And given the tiny size of these drives, they are easily packable.

The only caveat to these drives is that they don't offer encryption or any sort of biometric security. If you carry these drives with you, you'll want to make certain to not lose them or leave them lying about (especially if they hold sensitive data). Of course, you could always use third-party software to encrypt the data on the drive. Beyond that, these drives are a steal.

Editorial standards