To help us provide you with free impartial advice, we may earn a commission if you buy through links on our site. Learn more

Transcend ESD400K review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £206
inc VAT

A compact and good-value SSD, but we’re disappointed with its small-file transfer speeds


Capacity: 512GB, Interface: USB3, Claimed read: 410MB/s, Claimed write: 380MB/s

Thanks to fast connection ports such as USB3, portable SSDs are becoming more common, especially as the price of SSD technology continues to drop. One company hoping to capitalise on our growing taste for fast portable storage is Transcend, with its EDS400 range. The drives are available in capacities from 128GB to 1TB with prices ranging from £72 to £440. Speed is one benefit of using an SSD, but another key benefit is size, and the ESD400K measures a slight 10.5x62x92mm (HxWxD), making it eminently portable. The bundled carry pouch adds very little bulk, but that’s mainly because it has little padding and is best used if you simply want to avoid scratching the ESD400K’s casing.

The only connection port on the ESD400K is USB3, and a cable is included. There’s also a button for one-touch file backup and a tiny LED that blinks when data is being transferred to and from the device. To use the one-touch backup button you’ll need to download Transcend’s Elite backup and encryption software from its website. Elite is available for both Windows and Mac platforms and is less than 9MB in size, which makes us wonder why both versions couldn’t have been included on the ESD400 itself for extra convenience. Elite worked well, and has a comprehensive set of backup, recovery, encryption and synchronisation options. You can even run Elite from the ESD400K directly, so it’s worth keeping on the SSD at all times so you can use it anywhere.

The ESD400K performed very well in our large file tests, writing large files at 237.2MB/s and reading them at 265.9MB/s to score 251.6MB/s overall. Sadly, the ESD400K didn’t perform as well as we’d hoped it would when copying small files, writing them at a low 28.6MB/s and reading them at 70MB/s for an average of 49.3MB/s overall. The ESD400 certainly performs better than the Freecom Toughdrive SSD (see Reviews, Shopper 315) when copying large files, as the Toughdrive scored 208.8MB/s in that test overall. However, the Toughdrive scored 90.2MB/s overall in our small file test, which is almost twice as quick as the ESD400K.

The ESD400K is much better value than the Toughdrive SSD, though, as the 256GB version of the Toughdrive that we reviewed still costs £239 inc VAT while the 512GB version of the ESD400 reviewed here is just £204. The ESD400K is also much more compact than the Toughdrive, making it much easier to pack in a bag or carry in a pocket.

We’re disappointed with the small file speeds of the ESD400, but it’s still good value and we like the Elite backup utility. It’s a good buy if you need to transport large files such as video footage around.

Claimed read410MB/s
Claimed write380MB/s
ControllerTranscend TS5600
NAND flash type20nm MLC
Mounting kitN/A
Buying Information
Price (including VAT)£206
WarrantyThree years RTB
Part codeTS512GESD400K

Read more