PNY LEGO USB Flash Drive Review – We have reached peak LEGO. The evidence is overwhelming: The plastic brick factory hauled in $2.03 billion in the first half of 2014, putting it a 1×1 brick ahead of Mattel as the top toy maker in the world, and earlier this year “The LEGO Movie” grossed almost half a billion dollars on a meager $60 million budget. That’s good news for the LEGO Group, creative children, creative man-children, and Chris Pratt. It’s probably even a positive development for those weirdos who actually prefer Mega Bloks.
But we digress. PNY, hoping to capitalize on LEGO mania, recently introduced a 16GB USB flash drive that hides within the confines of a standard 2×4 LEGO brick. Naturally, the PNY LEGO USB Flash Drive has a cap-less design; a slider underneath the drive summons the USB connector (this particular USB drive does its business over a USB 2.0 interface) when you need to connect the drive and shuffle your data this way and that. When you’re all done, the USB connector retreats back into its shell, and the LEGO USB Flash Drive returns to looking almost exactly like an unassuming LEGO brick. (There’s a small plastic loop on one end of the block to attach the included lanyard if you want to add this flash drive to your keyring.) PNY also includes a bonus 2×4 LEGO brick, a $0.30 value.
Because we are who we are, we decided to test this little flash drive masquerading as plastic masonry. We plugged the LEGO Flash Drive into a test system featuring Intel’s new Core i7-5960X wunderchip, a GIGABYTE GA-X99-UD5 WIFI, and 16GB of DDR4-2133. We started by running CrystalDiskMark’s Sequential Read and Write tests, since the vast majority of a flash drive’s typical workload will be sequential. Then, we ran a couple of timed file transfers—the first being a monolithic Ubuntu ISO (984MB), and the second being a 2.5GB folder stuffed with an assortment of Office docs, images, and videos. These files were stored on a 240GB Intel SSD 730.
In CrystalDiskMark, the drive posted 19.36MBps and 9.72MBps reads and writes, respectively. We transferred the ISO from SSD to flash drive in 1:00.13 (minutes:seconds, 16.36MBps), and then transferred it back in 1:51.51 (8.82MBps). Our folder of mixed files flew from the SSD to the flash drive in 5:47.23 (7.78MBps) and made the return trip in 10:58.15 (4.11MBps).
So, the LEGO USB Flash Drive works just fine as a USB 2.0 thumbdrive, but let’s be honest: Throughput isn’t the reason you buy a drive like this. You do buy a drive like this because now you can actually download the Death Star plans to your LEGO Star Wars Tantive IV. That’s this flash drive’s real piece of resistance.
PNY’s LEGO USB Flash Drive might be the first bricked drive we wouldn’t mind owning.
PNY LEGO USB Flash Drive Specifications
- Capacity: 16GB
- Interface: USB 2.0
- Dimensions: 0.22 x 0.5 x 1.2 inches (HxWxD)