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Samsung Portable SSD T7 short review – Compact storage with USB 3.2 (Gen 2)

The Samsung Portable SSD T7 aims to be an external hard drive for everything. It comes in three sizes and colors, features wide compatibility and promises high transfer rates thanks to its speedy USB 3.2 (Gen 2). We took a closer look at this compact all-purpose drive.
(photo: Daniel Schmidt)

The Samsung Portable SSD T7 (short: PSSD T7) is the direct successor to the PSSD T5 and it again comes in three variants: The version we are testing, namely the standard model, one with an integrated fingerprint sensor (T7 Touch) and the T7 Shield, which is even more resistant.

The 500-GB version of the Portable SSD T7 which we are testing originally had an MRSP of US$104.99, but is now available to order directly from Samsung for US$94.99.

The SSD is actually a little older, but last year's launch of the iPhone 15 series—which now all rely on USB-C—has put these compact storage dwarves back into the spotlight. We have put them to the test.


Capacity 500 GB/1 TB/2 TB
Connectivity USB 3.2 (Gen. 2)
Data transfer rates
(sequential, manufacturer indication)
Read: up to 1,050 MB/s
Write: up to 1,000 MB/s
Security AES 256-bit hardware encryption, password
UASP mode supported
Footprint 85 x 57 x 8.0 mm
Weight 58 g
Warranty 3 years
Firmware FXG42P2Q
Scope of delivery PSSD T7, USB cable (Type-A to Type-C, 0.5 m), USB cable (Type-C to Type-C, 0.5 m)

Case and connectivity - The PSSD T7 comes in credit card format

The Samsung Portable SSD T7 is pretty much the same size as a credit card—but much thicker at exactly 8 millimeters. Thanks to its rounded edges along the long sides, it fits nicely into your hand and can be stashed away easily into any trouser pocket. Its metal case also has a very high-quality appearance and looks really smart on our blue test model.

In addition to blue, the Samsung SSD is also available in black and red. You can choose between 500 GB, 1 TB or 2 TB storage for all three color variants. There is also a blue status LED next to the USB-C port.

Its interface is USB 3.2 (Gen. 2), which in theory enables data transfer rates of up to 10 GBit/s, which corresponds to a maximum of 1.250 MB/s.

The Portable SSD T7 has no certification to protect it from dust and water but is drop-proof up to a height of two meters. If you need more security, then you have to go for the T7 Shield, which can withstand an additional meter and is also IP65 dustproof and protected against water jets from all directions.

Technically, experienced users could also open up the PSSD T7, but you would then have to accept a loss of warranty. Its case is secured with four Phillips screws. Inside is a plastic frame to which the circuit board is attached with four additional Phillips screws. There is also some thermal tape between the two components to dissipate heat better. It sounds easy to perform maintenance on at first, but both the storage and the USB port are soldered to the circuit board.

 (photo: Daniel Schmidt)
 (photo: Daniel Schmidt)
 (photo: Daniel Schmidt)
Status LED directly next to the USB-C port (photo: Daniel Schmidt)
 (photo: Daniel Schmidt)
 (photo: Daniel Schmidt)
 (photo: Daniel Schmidt)
Size comparison: The Samsung PSSD T7 and a 1 Euro coin (photo: Daniel Schmidt)
Size comparison: The Samsung PSSD T7 and a credit-card-sized ticket (photo: Daniel Schmidt)

Operation – The external Samsung SSD with exFAT formatting

The Samsung Portable SSD T7 is ready to use straight out of the box and is formatted with the exFAT file system—which most PCs, Macs, iPhones, iPads, Android devices and games consoles can handle without any problems. Of course, the SSD can also be formatted with a different file system. Thanks to the PSSD T7's low power consumption, older smartphones or tablets should also work without any problems and without the need for an additional power source.

If you wish, you can protect your PSSD T7 with a password, which is protected with AES 256-bit hardware encryption. To set this up, you need either the Samsung Portable SSD software or Samsung Magician.

Now comes the sticking point: As mentioned at the beginning, Samsung also advertizes the Portable SSD T7 series for use with the iPhone 15 Pro and iPhone 15 Pro Max, in particular as a storage expansion for recording ProRes videos—which requires a data carrier connected via USB. This also works wonderfully, but only as long as no password protection is active. As the aforementioned programs are only available for Android, Windows and Mac OS, iOS cannot unlock the hard drive, resulting in the iPhone camera not even being able to access it in the first place. The T7 is then displayed in the file manager, but not as a writable medium (see screenshot). The visible data is limited to the PSSD T7's basic software and your own data is not visible. So if you want to use the Portable SSD T7 with the iPhone but still want to protect your data, you will have to use the T7 Touch, which features an integrated fingerprint sensor. 

Samsung Magician (Windows)
Samsung Portable SSD Software (Windows)
Samsung Portable SSD Software (Windows)
Password entry (Windows)
Samsung Magician (Android)
Samsung Magician (Android)
Samsung Magician (Android)
Password-protected PSSD T7 in the iOS file manager

Performance - The portable SSD T7 is slower than expected

The Samsung Portable SSD T7 has a USB 3.2 port (Gen 2), which allows for a theoretical data transfer rate of up to 10 GBit/s. The T7 series relies on V-NAND storage technology with NVMe support and is available with 500 GB, 1 TB or 2 TB. Our test device is the 1 TB version.

Samsung states that the PSSD T7's data transfer rates can reach up to 1,050 MB/s (sequential reading) and 1,000 MB/s (writing). In our test with an AS SSD, it delivered very fast read rates that came very close to the manufacturer's specifications—but its write rates fell well short of these. A Kingston XS1000 can do better.

Blackmagic Design's Disk Speed Test, which primarily tests how well a hard drive is suited for video editing, showed the opposite picture. With the smallest data block (1 GB), its write rates came above the technical possibilities of the connection—this may be because parts of the data are recognized and cached by the system. In return, its read rates were lower here. When a large data block (5 GB) was selected, its write rates dropped both sharply and to a realistic level. In both cases, however, the external T7 SSD remained below the options offered by Samsung. However, this may look different with a different test tool. 

Connection: USB 3.2 (Gen 2) | File size: 1 GB
Connection: USB 3.2 (Gen 2) | File size: 1 GB
Connection: USB 3.2 (Gen 2) | File size: 5 GB
Connection: USB 3.2 (Gen 2) | File size: 5 GB
Connection: USB 3.2 (Gen 2) | File size: 10 GB
Connection: USB 3.2 (Gen 2) | File size: 10 GB
Connection: USB 3.2 (Gen 1) | File size: 1 GB
Connection: USB 3.2 (Gen 1) | File size: 1 GB
Connection: Thunderbolt 4 | File size: 1 GB
Connection: Thunderbolt 4 | File size: 1 GB
Connection: Thunderbolt 4 | File size: 5 GB
Connection: Thunderbolt 4 | File size: 5 GB


The Disk Speed Test is also ideal for being used as a stress test for data carriers, as it can run endlessly. So we connected the Samsung Portable SSD T7 to a MacBook Pro 14 (TB 4) and started the benchmark.

After around half an hour, the T7 had warmed up noticeably, and the Flir thermal imaging optics certified a surface temperature of up to 42.3 °C on the Samsung SSD; we measured around 43 °C in the hotspot using an IR thermometer. This is warm but absolutely harmless.

Its transfer rates remained constant most of the time—only when writing data did they occasionally fall below 500 MB/s, but then increased again.


 +  optional password protection (AES 256)
 +  wide compatibility
 +  compact and robust case


 –  only 3-year warranty
 –  slower than expected












Verdict - A compact allrounder with minor flaws

Samsung Portable SSD T7 review. Test device provided by Samsung Germany.
Samsung Portable SSD T7 review. Test device provided by Samsung Germany.

Samsung's Portable SSD T7 is a compact and fast external storage device that is well-equipped for many applications. Thanks to its exFAT formatting, the T7 can be used directly with almost all devices without having to be set up—whether it be a console, tablet, smartphone, computer or smart TV. This is also thanks to its low power consumption. Its optional password protection is a nice extra, but cannot be used with all platforms. 

The Samsung Portable SSD T7 impresses with a wide range of applications, high speed and a fair price. 

Although the PSSD T7 is fast, it was slower than expected in our test. If you work a lot with large amounts of data, this can be seen as a dealbreaker—but for most users, it should hardly be noticeable in everyday use. While the hard disk is very robust, it does not feature an IP certification.

The T7 also shows its age when it comes to its maintenance options, as both the storage and USB port are permanently soldered to the circuit board. In addition, its warranty is comparatively short at just three years.

Alternatives include the Kingston XS1000 or, if even faster speeds are required, the PNY Elite X Pro.

Price and availability

The Portable SSD T7 can be purchased directly from Samsung for US$94.99 (500 GB). You can also get it from major online retailers such as Amazon for the same price.


The present review sample was made available to the author as a loan by the manufacturer or a shop for the purposes of review. The lender had no influence on this review, nor did the manufacturer receive a copy of this review before publication. There was no obligation to publish this review.

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> Expert Reviews and News on Laptops, Smartphones and Tech Innovations > Reviews > Samsung Portable SSD T7 short review – Compact storage with USB 3.2 (Gen 2)
Daniel Schmidt, 2024-04-29 (Update: 2024-04-29)