You might wonder why anyone would actually spend money on a USB flash drive when companies hand them out for free at trade shows. The answer is speed—a free flash drive copies files slower than a tired snail. You can always spend hundreds on a fast USB 3.0 flash drive to speed up file copies, but even the most expensive option can't compare to the speeds you'll get from VisionTek's new compact SSD drives.

They might look like a bulky flash drive complete with a USB 3.0 port on the end, but inside you'll find an LSI SandForce controller which realizes write speeds of up to 440 MB/second, and read speeds up to 455 MB/s. In comparison, Sandisk's Extreme PRO USB 3.0 flash drives are considered to be some of the fastest on the market, but top out at read and write speeds of 260 MB/s and 240 MB/s respectively.

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What's even more impressive is that the new VisionTek drives, available in 120GB and 240GB capacities, actually seem to be a cheaper option. Sandisk wants $160 for its 128 GB Extreme PRO flash drive, where as the faster 120GB VisionTek drive is just $100. And the 240GB version seems like an even better deal at $175. They're more expensive than a free drive, for sure, but isn't the time you'll save not having to wait for file copies worth it? [VisionTek]