The G-Drive Mobile with Thunderbolt is one of the first “affordable” Thunderbolt hard drives to hit the market. While it’s not as fancy as some of the dual drive RAID options out there, it still offers some speed and convenience benefits over its USB and Firewire counterparts.
As a G-Drive product, it bears the common design cues from the Apple MacBook lines with the signature aluminum enclosure and smooth lines we’ve come to expect from Apple-centric accessories.
It features a single Thunderbolt ports and a USB 3.0 port, both of which deliver bus power to the drive, allowing it to operate without the need to plug in an AC adapter. The downside of a single Thunderbolt port, however, is that you cannot daisy chain additional devices beyond the G-Drive Mobile. Accordingly, it must reside at the end of the Thunderbolt chain.
The G-Drive Mobile with Thunderbolt features a 2.5″ 1TB 7200 RPM drive inside. It is rated to deliver up to 136MB/s transfer rates over Thunderbolt.
While I never saw the 136MB/s speeds, I got close with write and read speeds around 125MB/s using a Thunderbolt connection.
It is slightly better on Thunderbolt than USB 3.0, which yielded around 117MB/s read/write speeds.
For the sake of comparison, internal 2.5″ spinning drive speeds of my MacBook Pro run in the neighborhood of 50MB/s. The best I ever saw out of the best FW800 drives is around 80MB/s. Most FW800 drives I tested were in the 60-70MB/s range.
The G-Drive Mobile with Thunderbolt is the fastest single stack spinning drive in a portable configuration that I have ever used. It retails for $219.95; however, it can be found for under $195 at the time of this review. Check it out here at B&H Photo.