PRO-G40 review: SanDisk’s new 2700MB/s portable Thunderbolt SSD is one of the best, but it’s going to cost you

SanDisk PRO-G40 review

It’s time to take a closer look at the new SanDisk portable SSD, officially known as the PRO-G40. The SanDisk portable solid-state drive lineup is easily one of the best and most popular out there. Previously headlined by the generation 2 Extreme and Extreme Pro variants, the Western Digital brand updated its offerings last fall with new SanDisk PRO-G40 – one of the fastest models yet with its usual rugged sensibilities and modern spec sheet. We have been lucky enough to go hands-on with the new PRO-G40 over the last few weeks to give it a run for its money and detail the experience for prospective buyers down below. 

SanDisk PRO-G40 SSD Review

In short, the SanDisk PRO-G40 SSD is once again offering a quality product that will withstand all but the most rugged environments. Whether you’re in the field on a drone shoot, capturing footage on site, lugging it around town in a bag, or putting everything together back at the home base, it is more than ready and capable of getting the job done. 

Much like the Extreme lineup we reviewed previously, the construction quality here is entirely evident the second you pull it out of the not so impressive packaging. It’s the kind of thing that feels like it deserves an Apple-like retail packaging treatment to me, but SanDisk is purely focused on the tech and very much not the box it comes in – obviously none of this actually matters, I’m just a sucker for a good box these days.  

It is compatible with macOS 10.13 and up (Time Machine compatible) and Windows 10+ with a quick reformat as well as shipping with a very short little 8-inch Thunderbolt 3 cable (40Gb/s). 


The PRO-G40 SSD measures out at 4.36 by 2.28 by 0.47 inches – for comparison, that’s barely larger (about 0.02 inches larger to be exact) than the Extreme Pro model on each side – and weighs 0.27 pounds. In other words, SanDisk has essentially maintained the compact form-factor while enhancing just about every other aspect of the build over the Extreme lineup. 

The trim rectangular form-factor sports attractive beveled angular corners this time alongside a similar combination of a mostly rubberized outer shell and an aluminum core that “pulls heat away from the internal drive to help maintain super-fast transfer speeds.” It feels particularly solid in your hands and also delivers even better specs on the protection side of things than the Extreme Pro and other models in that lineup.

It features an “ultra-rugged” IP68 dust/water resistance, is rated for 4000-pound crush resistance, and can withstand drops up to 3 meters – all of which outdo the pro model Extreme drive. While you’re not going to catch me driving a truck over it to test that out entirely, I did give it a few good drops onto carpet/hardwood floors from about a meter+ up (and wasn’t happy about having to do so), but there were no issues or loss of data. The same goes for lugging it around in the brisk winter weather for several days in a backpack or jacket pocket as well as some outdoor file transfers, again with no issues at all.  

Speeds – Thunderbolt 3 in action

These days we are used to seeing internal drives clocking up to 7,000MB/s or faster, but most of the best portable options have been stuck in the 1,050MB/s to 2,000MB/s range. While there are some faster models out there, like the speedy WD Game Drive Thunderbolt model SSDs, many of the non-gaming variants from the big name brands are yet to crack the 2,000MB/s range – even the mid 2022 Samsung T7 Shield released at 1,050MB/s. The PRO-G40 SSD is taking things up a notch. 

Sporting what SanDisk refers to as dual-mode NVMe tech with both Thunderbolt 3 (40Gb/s) and USB 3.2 Gen 2 (10Gb/s) support, PRO-G40 clocks in at up to 2700MB/s read and 1900MB/s write speeds. SanDisk says it is capable (under ideal conditions on both ends of the transfer over Thunderbolt) of “moving 50GB in 30 seconds or less,” but let’s put it to the test for ourselves:

Not that there’s anything wrong with previous tests, I just personally favor what I call a real world speed test over those apps that measure input/put speeds. Not only was the drive more than capable of housing basic video, image, and audio assets for a film editing project without any problems, but actually copying data to and from the drive was more than fast enough for my needs. 

Let’s take a folder filled with audio, Logic Pro, and Final Cut project files, as well as the assets, session-based samples, text documents, Apple Numbers charts, and other files they are made from and go from there. Copying a 33.12 GB folder from my Mac mini over to the drive took just shy of 22 seconds. For me personally, that’s about as fast as I could ever need. 

And here’s a quick look at the Black Magic speed test for those interested:


Much to almost no one’s surprise, the latest from the Western Digital SanDisk Professional arm has delivered once again. The PRO-G40 is a well-made and, thus far, an entirely reliable solid-state solution that moves at notable speeds and provides a wonderful storage and asset streaming device that can take more of a beating than most folks will ever require. 

It’s hard to find even one thing to knock it for. Sure, we always want our drives to be as fast as possible and the Thunderbolt cable it ships with is almost laughably short for me, but that’s about it here. I guess SanDisk could have employed some kind of USB-C/Thunderbolt port cover to ensure dust and debris can’t get in there in between uses, not unlike the SanDisk ArmorATD we reviewed last year, or maybe offer up some color options like the T7 Shield. But they didn’t, and I for one am not particularly bothered by any of that. 

The only real issue I can foresee some folks having here is the price. This is not an affordable solution. While it is currently seeing its very first price drops on Amazon (at the time of writing), you can land a 2TB 2,000MB/s Extreme Pro SanDisk portable SSD for less than the price of the $300 MSRP on the 1TB SanDisk PRO-G40. So as much of a fan as I have become during my hands-on time, it’s hard to recommend purchasing one until the prices start to drop even lower for all but the most hardcore pro users who need it right now – it is also only available in 1TB and 2TB configurations, further limiting its usability for professional video workflows as well. But if the portable solid-state market is anything like last year, it is safe to say that purchasers will have ample opportunity to scoop one up with major deals throughout 2023, even before the big end-of-year savings events. Pricing aside, the PRO-G40 will almost certainly land in my personal picks for the best portable SSDs on the market and easily sits atop the higher-end options out there. 

SanDisk PRO-G40 Portable SSD

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