Buffalo MiniStation Lite USB 3.0 review

The MiniStation Lite is a good USB3 disk, but there are cheaper and faster alternatives available

26 Sep 2010
Buffalo MiniStation Lite USB 3.0
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
inc VAT


500GB hard disk, USB3, 129x81x14mm

The MiniStation Lite is Buffalo's first USB3 portable hard disk. Although the glossy black and matte grey case is made of plastic instead of metal, like some other portable disks we've seen, it still feels reassuringly rigid and robust.

The MiniStation was fast at transferring small files, writing them at 34MB/s and reading them at just under 61MB/s. Although it was also fast at transferring large files, writing them at 59MB/s and reading them at 64MB/s, we've seen other USB3 disks that are even faster. Buffalo claims its bundled TurboCopy program can boost file copy performance, but there was no difference in our tests.

Other bundled software includes a basic backup program that supports both scheduled and incremental backups, though wizard-style interface won’t suit everyone. Curiously, a RAM disk utility is also included, but this will be of limited interest to most people.

The MiniStation Lite is a good USB3 portable disk with a very reasonable price per gigabyte of 16p. Unless you can find a cheaper drive, it's a good buy.

Basic Specifications

Rating ****


Hard disk Samsung HM500JI
Capacity 500GB
Formatted capacity 465GB
Price per gigabyte £0.16
Disk size 2.5in
Interface USB3
Power connector USB from host
Spindle speed 5,400rpm
Cache 8MB
Seek time 12.0ms
Weight 182g
Size 129x81x14mm
Power consumption idle N/A
Power consumption active N/A

Buying Information

Backup software included Buffalo Backup
Price £80
Warranty two years RTB
Supplier http://www.kikatek.co.uk
Details www.buffalotech.com