Sandisk Professional G-Drive Project Review

My latest review is of the Sandisk Professional G-DRIVE Project, a new external hard drive that caters to the needs of professionals. It has an enterprise-grade mechanical hard drive along with a built in slot for Sandisk’s Pro-Blade system.

The G-Drive Project distinguishes itself with its exceptional build quality. While it certianly feels rugged, the mechanical drive inside is not so it’s best to use the drive only when it’s safely sitting on a desk or table. Inside, it features an Ultrastar Enterprise hard drive from WD, a mechanism that is typically found on datacenter servers. My review unit had a 6TB drive inside, and there are versions that offer up to 24TB of storage.

The drive offers a Thunderbolt interface that supports daisy chaining other devices when it’s connected to a Thunderbolt or USB 4.0 port. The design of the exterior casing makes it suitable for stacking multiple drives on top of each other. It will also work with USB 3.0 devices but the daisy chaining features will not work on those older interfaces. The drive is externally powered through its included 65 watt power supply, and there’s enough power budget to charge smaller ultrabooks like my M2 Macbook Air.

Performance-wise, while it may not match the speeds of SSDs, it delivers respectable transfer rates for a mechanical drive, making it suitable for backups and large file storage rather than rapid data transfer. I measured roughly 250 megabytes per second in both reads and writes in my testing.

However, I found the Pro-Blade slot to be less impressive. Despite supporting the high-speed NVMe Pro blades, the Pro-Blade reader operates over a built-in USB 3.0 hub, limiting the potential speed of these blades to about a third of their potential performance.

Despite these limitations, the G-DRIVE Project is a reliable choice for professionals who need a durable and flexible storage solution. It supports hot-swapping of Pro blades, adding convenience for those in the field or in a studio setting. While it may not offer the fastest transfer speeds, its capacity and build quality make it a useful tool for content creators.