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Top 10 Best Portable SSD Hard Drives for Photographers: Reviews

What’s the best travel hard drive for photographers? An SSD (solid-state drive) hard drive, of course. It’s a improvement version of the HDD (hard disk drive).

For most travel photographers, what we need most is digital storage to keep all their photographs. Having the best SSD hard drive is essential for most of us. Why do photographers should adopt this new SSD hard disk technology? The reason is simple: just like a memory stick, there are no moving parts within an SSD hard drive. So you’ve got both reliability and high performance for photo and video editing. I’ll go through some of the best portable SSD hard drives by looking into two main factors, speed and reliability.

A List of Top 10 Best Portable SSD Hard Disks for Travel Photographers

1. SanDisk Extreme 900 portable SSD

Top of the notch SSD hard drive from global brand SanDisk, the Extreme 900 portable SSD is unbeatable in term of speed. This SanDisk SSD hard drive can read up to 850 MB/s and write up to 850 MB/s, using USB 3.1 Gen 2. This is amazing. Photographers with high-end DSLR camera love this kind of high-performance portable SSD hard drive. The Extreme 900 portable SSD is completely compatible with PC & Mac computers. You don’t even need drivers when connecting your computer to the hard drive. The other important feature we should not overlook is temperature and impact-resistant.

2. Samsung T3 Portable SSD

Second after SanDisk, we’d recommend Samsung T3 Portable SSD. The Samsung SSD T3 works well with PC, Mac, and even Android operating system. It’s very compact and lightweight. This sleek SSD hard drive fits well in your pocket, so you can take all your photos with you anywhere you go. This external SSD hard drive from Samsung allows you to read-write up to 450 MB/s of your high-resolution photos. If you really want to achieve the best performance with USB-C cable, make sure you have a USB-C cable support at least 5Gb/s transfer speed.

3. VectoTech Rapid 2TB External SSD USB 3.0 Portable Solid State Drive

This portable SSD hard drive is a great addition to your storage needs. It’s easy to use; it’s plug and play. The SSD drive offers fast transfer speeds. Slick and lightweight is usually preferable by travel photographers. In addition, VectoTech Rapid Portable SSD is shock and vibration resistance, so it’s a plus when you move around a lot. Surprisingly, the VectoTech Rapid Portable SSD comes with 2-year manufacturer warranty.

  • Super fast Read/Write speeds up to 450Mb/s
  • Shock and vibration resistant

4. PNY Elite Portable SSD

This external Solid State Drive is ideal for photographers, videographers, graphic designers who needs to back-up or transfer large files. It was built with performance and reliability in mind. The PNY Elite SSD hard drive can read up to 430 MB/s and write up to 400 MB/s. It’s also probably one of the most compact SSD hard drives in portable SSD class. Look, feel and quality of material is good. It works on MAC and Windows out of box. Plug and play. The down size is storage capacity available, unlike the above reviewed portable SSD hard drives, which offer more capacity.

5. WD 2TB My Passport SSD Portable Storage – USB 3.1

What I really love about this WD My Passport SSD hard disk is its shock-resistance, compact storage in a durable design. The automatic backup feature is useful for most photographers. Overall, it’s the best SSD portable hard drive for Macs.

  • Read speeds up to 540 MB/s
  • USB Type-C and USB 3.1

6. U32 Shadow External 2TB USB-C (3.1 Gen 2) Portable Solid State Drive SSD

The Thunderbolt 3 compatibility makes the U32 Shadow External SSD drive outstanding for its speed and performance. On the other hand, this SSD hard disk is quite portable, which makes it easy to pack and travel.

  • Compatible with USB 3.1/3.0 and Thunderbolt 3
  • Durable build and design with aluminum housing

7. LaCie Rugged 1TB Thunderbolt and USB 3.0 SSD Portable Hard Drive

If you travel a lot for photography purpose, LaCie Rugged Portable Hard Drive will survive extreme data security in most circumstances.

  • Shock, dust, and water resistant for all-terrain use
  • Speeds of up to 387 MB/s

8. Seagate Portable 4TB External Hard Drive USB 3.0

Seagate has been popular for years as a hard drive maker. This external SSD hard drive is quite affordable for most photographers. What’s more? You won’t sacrifice the reliability with this Seagate brand. Overall, it’s the best cheap external SSD hard drive everyone can buy.

  • Lightweight and compact design
  • Plastic top cover
  • Mac compatibility

9. Samsung T5 Portable SSD

  • Compatible with Windows, Mac OS, and Android devices
  • Metal design
  • Read-Write speeds of up to 540 MB/s
  • Comes with USB Type C to C and USB Type C to A cables

10. SanDisk Extreme 500GB Portable SSD: The Best Waterproof

If your ultimate choice is the best water-resistant external SSD hard disk, you should not look further. The SanDisk Extreme 500GB is my favorite.

  • Up to 550MB/s read speeds
  • IP55 for water and dust resistance

Good to Know

I chose the best portable SSD hard drives over normal external hard drives because of these two factors: reliability and speed. These features are what we need to pay attention to before buying an external hard drive to store and backup our photos. The best portable SSD hard drives will make photographers easier for use in the home studio or travel. There are times we our normal external hard disks are having issues due to its old technology. With the best portable SSD hard drives you’ll feel more comfortable storing your valuable photos.

What’s else? If you’re looking for a gift idea for your friend who’s a passion photographer, giving the best external SSD hard disk is a great choice. The list above gives you a variety of options for either Windows or Mac users.

Disclaimer: All recommendations are impartial and based on user experience, with no bias to the products or the brand. The products in this post contain affiliate links which help support