The SanDisk Extreme Pro Portable SSD is Missing One Big Thing

With the SanDisk Extreme Pro Portable SSD being announced today, I’m scratching my head a bit.

It’s CES 2020. And that means that new tech is being announced. The photo industry isn’t doing a whole lot. But everyone else is. Take today’s latest perplexing announcement. The SanDisk Extreme Pro Portable SSD lineup has been popular and respected for years now. We’ve tested the predecessors, and they surely do the job you need. But they’re surely frustrating in the long term. Maybe I’m spoiled by LaCie’s rugged RAID drives. However, it’s baffling to me why the SanDisk Extreme Pro Portable SSD isn’t adding this one crucial thing for photographers.

SanDisk Extreme Pro Portable SSD Specs

These specs have been summarized from the Western Digital website.

  • IP 55 rating, which is far better than most cameras. According to the association’s website, “An IP55 rated product is protected against dust ingress that could be harmful for the normal operation of the product but is not fully dust-tight. It is protected against solid objects and water jets projected by a nozzle (6.3mm) from any directions.”
  • Promising a read and write speed of 2000 megabytes a second
  • It can be dropped from around 6 feet high
  • Aluminum chassis
  • Password protection
  • USB C
  • USB 3.2 Gen 2 x 2
  • It’s a little longer than 4 inches and slightly wider than 2 inches. These things are typically very thin.
  • They can have anywhere from 1 terabyte to 4 terabytes of storage.

We’re not sure about the price point yet. 

It’s Missing This

Make no mistake. I think that the SanDisk Extreme Pro Portable SSD lineup is a fantastic idea. And I also genuinely believe that they’re handy tools, if not a bit annoying. Here’s the thing: photographers have to bring around enough cables and dongles. Lots of us still use Apple devices. Sure, there is a fair share of you who use PCs and read this site. But do we really need more cables with us? On a standard business trip, I’d bring a charging cable for my phone, one for my watch, one for my computer, one for my camera, a surge protector with an international converter if needed. one cable for my beard trimmer, another to keep my headphones charged, another for a hard drive, etc. But why? This is the age of superfluous cables and dongles that Apple and the others have left us with.

That’s bringing me finally to my big point. SanDisk, please build a cable into this device. I’ve asked for you folks to do that in previous coverage. Besides the performance specs internally, hard drives are pretty much all the same devices. Of course, that’s usually based around the genres. My Drobo 8D doesn’t work like the LaCie Rugged Raids or the SanDisk Extreme Pro Portable SSD. The SanDisk is really hitting home on portability. But they could’ve done a better job by making it a bit thicker and having a cable or sliding male USB plug inside. If they kept this in addition to the USB port, photographers would have more versatility. They could connect to a USB-C device or others with an optional cable.

Arguably though, the SanDisk Extreme Pro Portable SSD are some of my favorite options. LaCie’s drives in the past few years have failed me so much. They’ve caused an unnecessary amount of mental anguish during some of the busiest seasons. But the SanDisk drives don’t do that. I’ve never had one fail on me, and that’s wonderful.

Chris Gampat

Chris Gampat is the Editor in Chief, Founder, and Publisher of the Phoblographer. He also likes pizza.