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Appeared on: Friday, June 01, 2007
Corsair FlashVoyager GT 8GB


1. Introduction

The Corsair Flash Voyager family of USB drives is rugged, stylish, compact, and reliable, making them ideal for transporting MP3s, digital images, presentations and more. Flash Voyager drives are fully Plug and Play with most operating systems and are backward compatible with USB 1.1. Their durable rubber casing is easy to grip and water resistant.

- Corsair Flash Voyager GT 8GB

The Corsair Flash Voyager family now comprises two outstanding lines of products. The Flash Voyager GT is designed from the ground up for speed, optimizing transfer rates of both reads and writes. Flash Voyager now moves down into the price/performance segment and is available in capacities ranging up to 16GB!

The Flash Voyager GT product line is enclosed in the Corsair proprietary all-rubber Flash Voyager housing, boasting water-resistant properties. These drives allow users to carry more valuable data and applications without compromise. Several reviews of the Flash Voyager products have demonstrated the ruggedness, durability, and reliability of the Flash Voyager family. The Flash Voyager has been shown laundered, baked, frozen, boiled, dropped, and even run over by a SUV in many third party reviews. After all the punishment it receives, the drive continues to work.

Corsair Part Number / Density:

- Features


2. Retail package

The Corsair FlashVoyager GT 8GB drive can be bought at the retail price of €107. The price is much higher than other 8GB USB sticks. We will have to wait and see if the performance justifies the increased price. The retail package is simple:

Corsair has included a USB extension cable since due to the size of the device, it is possible the Voyager GT 8GB may not fit in the USB ports if there are other, adjacent devices connected as well.

Let's now examine the USB drive a little closer.

The contrast of black and red giving a special tone to the USB drive. The rubber sleeve exterior protects the USB flash drive from accidents and damage that may occur from improper handling. You can throw this USB drive against the wall and it will still remain intact.

And this how the USB stick looks like after removing the protective cap:

The cap isn’t attached to the body of the drive by some type of chain which means that it is possible to lose it if you are careless...


3. Tests

In order to test the USB drive, we used two systems:

And the second system is based on the Intel C2D

Under Windows XP, we were able to test the RAW performance of the Corsair Voyager GT 8GB USB Stick

Below are the test results. As we can see, almost flat, constant performance for both reading/writing functions

The USB stick was able to read all data at 25MB/sec, while its writing performance was very close to 23MB/sec.

Under Windows Vista, we used Sisoft Sandra 2007 XI SP2 for the two available tests:

Physical Disk Benchmark

Flash Disk Benchmark


4. Windows VISTA ReadyBoost

The Windows Vista AutoPlay dialog gives you the choice of enabling the ReadyBoost function which we will see in a while. The USB stick also includes TrueCrypt, a software to encrypt your data with AES-256 encryption. TrueCrypt is free, open-source disk encryption software for Windows Vista/XP/2000 and Linux. Users who carry sensitive data will find it useful.

ReadyBoost provides disk caching to help improve system performance.From the ReadyBoost tab you can set the amount of memory allocated.

After enabling the ReadyBoost function, we ran several tests to see what kind of change we would see in our test system:

Without ReadyBoost

With ReadyBoost

 

The 4GB reserved by VISTA for ReadyBoost has improved the Drive Index for the main HDD, C:, while reducing the Random Access Time also. We saw a similar improvement in the Memory bandwidth (Buffered) tests with Sisoft Sandra 2007 XI SP2. However, the loading times for Windows were not improved. Microsoft doesn't suggest using more than 4GB for ReadyBoost.


5. Conclusion

Corsair's top flagship series for USB flash drives comes in the name of "Voyager GT". With 8GB of capacity, this USB stick can hold almost two DVD5 or one DVD9 discs. The increased reading/writing performance (around 24MB/sec) is very good for the specific category of device. The retail price is around €107.

Using the USB stick under Windows VISTA, we saw some improvement after using almost half the capacity for pre-fetching with ReadyBoost. The rubber sleeve exterior protects the USB flash drive from accidents and possible damages, Corsair even "claims" that the product is water resistance, although we didn't try it to be honest. Concluding this review, we saw no real drawbacks with the Corsair Voyager GT 8GB product. It's fast, its small, it offers more protection than other products and if only the price was lower, it would be a highly recommended product.



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