Corsair Flash Voyager Mini 4GB USB drive review

4.5 out of 5
£15

For

Compact, great design, can withstand physical abuse

Against

Not much

With USB drives being common as proverbial muck these days, you really can afford to be a little choosy. But can memory masters Corsair tempt with their Voyager Mini? We go postal on a memory stick to find out.

Coming in a compact design (34 x 20 x 8mm), the Voyager Mini features a tough rubber-coated body with a slide out USB connector making this one of the smaller and funkier drives on the market. The USB connector slides out from the body with a satisfying click to it, so satisfying, you’ll find yourself sliding it back and forth all day long.

To keep the size small, the connector is the cut-down USB style, so it lacks the top half of the casing you’d normally find on a connector. This does mean that if you don’t line it up properly against the slot it won’t instantly fit in, but such is the compromise for size, and an increasingly common feature on this type of device.

But this isn’t just about size. As part of the Voyager range from Corsair, it is rubber coated to make the drive shock resistant, so is aimed at those with "active lifestyles". We’re not sure your average surfer will be taking their USB drive out to ride the waves, but all this protection means it survives sitting on a key ring and being thrown across the kitchen table by your toddler and so on.

Corsair boast that their Voyager sticks have been baked, boiled, laundered, frozen and run over, without compromising the data on the drive. Certainly, with the compact size and the connector out of the way, this is a hardy little device.

If I was Quentin Tarantino, perhaps I’d say something prophetic like "we got Medieval on it", but being an Englishman, lets just say "we gave it a jolly hard time" (dropped in a cup of tea, assaulted with a cucumber sandwich, and so on). Corsair’s claims appear to be true: this really is shock and water resistant and at that point we decided that we liked it so much, we didn’t want to boil or freeze it.

The rubber housing has the added advantage of being secure in the hand, so it doesn’t slide away, but Corsair have kept the width realistic, so can be plugged alongside another USB device in a neighbouring slot with no problem.

We tested the 4GB version, which will give you about 1000 songs or photos, or plenty of documents. And found it took about 180 seconds to write just over a gigabyte of information, so not the fastest of results, but more than acceptable.

At one end of the drive is a loop in the rubber housing, which attaches to a clip so it can be easily attached and removed from a keyring, which is not a bad idea considering the size of the drive.

The price isn’t to be sniffed at either, as this diminutive giant is available for under £15 online. You don’t get any of the fancy features or pre-installed software: this is just good solid storage that will handle a few knocks on your keyring or at the bottom of your bag.

Verdict

We love devices that just work and live up to their claims and if you have become accustomed to travelling around with data be it to school, the office or up K2, then the Corsair Voyager Mini is well worth a look.