We may earn a commission if you make a purchase through one of our links. The newsroom or editorial staff was not involved in the creation of this content.
The Best SATA to USB Cables for Quickly Accessing Drives
Last updated: 14 Jun 2022
SATA to USB cables are one of the most useful accessories when it comes to computers and laptops because they allow communication between two of the most common interfaces. Almost all computers these days come with a USB port, and Serial Advanced Technology Attachment, more commonly known as SATA, is used on almost all the internal drives found in computers. These include hard disk drives (HDD) and solid-state drives (SSD). These SATA to USB cables can help with various tasks from recovering data in case of a hard drive failure to upgrading to a faster and more advanced SSD.
Due to their many advantages, there are a lot of manufacturers developing SATA to USB cables. It is easy to become overwhelmed by the number of options available, especially if you are a beginner. In order to make the selection process easier for you, our team has broken down the most functional SATA to USB cables for 2022.
Buyer’s Guide for the Most Premium Sata to USB Cable
This SATA to USB cable guide is ideal for both beginners and experts as it will help you choose one from the multitudes of brands available in the market.
How Do You Choose a Sata to USB Cable According to Your Specific Needs?
There are many considerations that you will need to be mindful of when browsing for SATA to USB cables. We have discussed a few major ones so that you can make an informed decision.
The first thing that you will need to consider is whether the cable you want to buy is compatible with your drives and computer. Check the size of your HDD or SSD and make sure that the cable you purchase works with that particular size. Usually, a SATA to USB cable that is compatible with 2.5” drives does not support 3.5” or 5.25” drives. You also need to keep the storage space of your drives in mind, because some USB to SATA cables will only support ones that have up to 2TB of space.
The operating system of your device also needs to be compatible with the cable. Some cables support all operating systems including old ones like Windows Vista and XP, while others work only on Windows 8 and above. If any of the abovementioned factors are not mentioned on the manufacturer’s website, make sure you contact them and confirm their accessory’s compatibility before you purchase it.
This feature is a dealbreaker for some people, especially those who are looking for a compact and portable option that they can use anywhere. Most SATA to USB cables are plug-and-play, meaning they do not need any installed drivers or external power supply to operate. This is convenient as you can just put the cable in your laptop bag and carry it with you. However, a few cables that are designed for 3.5” or 5.35” SSDs or HDDs require a 12V power supply in order to operate. If this is the case, make sure that the power adapter comes with the cable itself so you do not have to go through the hassle of looking for a compatible one.
Speed is also an important consideration because, in today’s day and age, people are always looking for quick response times. This includes read and write speeds as well as data transferring speeds. If you want a fast cable, make sure that it comes with the UASP technology. This allows you to transfer data at a much faster speed than the conventional USB 3.0. However, make sure that the operating system on your device is compatible with UASP. Without this feature, you can only enjoy about 5 to 6 Gbps per second, which is almost 70% slower than UASP.
The Neeyer SATA to USB cable is a very portable accessory as it does not require any external power. It comes with the UASP technology which allows you to transfer data at a 70% faster speed than the conventional USB connector. You just need to make sure that your device is UASP compatible. The transfer speed via USB 3.0 provided by this cable is 5Gbps. It can be connected to a 2.5 to 3.5 inches HDD or SSD, which allows you to perform certain tasks like adding storage, transferring content, implementing recoveries and performing backups. A 12V power adapter is included which will need to be connected through the DC jack port if you are using a 3.5” drive.
This SATA to USB cable is another great option for quickly connecting your laptop or computer to an external SSD or HDD. This cable is only compatible with 2.5” drives, but you have the option to choose one that is compatible with 3.5” drives as well. This cable is also equipped with the UASP technology which can provide a 40% faster write speed and a 70% faster read speed than conventional USB connections. It is fully plug-and-play as you do not need to install any drivers or connect the accessory to a power source, which means that switching between different devices is convenient. The company provides a 2 year warranty along with a free lifetime technical support.
What makes the BENFEI SATA to USB cable stand out from others is compatibility with all versions of different operating systems including Windows, Mac OS, Linux, PS4 and Xbox. Since it does not come with the UASP technology, you can use this cable even if you are using an old operating system like Windows Vista. It is also compatible with most SATA drives. The design is very compact, so it is easy to use and carry. The connectors are made from durable materials and are resistant to corrosion while being rigid, which ensures improved and uninterrupted signal performance. This cable is not compatible with 3.5” or 5.25” drives and can only provide transfer speeds of up to 5Gbps.
This SATA to USB cable comes with LED lights that can show the status of the cable at all times. The red light is the power light, which turns on as soon as you plug the device in. The blue light shows the activity status, which blinks at first and then becomes constant when you are copying files or transferring data. The short length of the cable makes it portable, but you will need to keep the devices next to each other. It is compatible with 2.5” drives only and 3.5” hard drives or SSDs cannot be connected to this. The UASP technology allows fast transfer speeds, which makes it a very convenient option if you use a 2.5” SSD or HDD.
Last but not least, this SATA to USB cable is another suitable option if you want to transfer files or add drive space to upgrade your laptop. This accessory provides a transfer speed of up to 6Gbps, which is faster than the other cables we have reviewed. This is also reverse compatible with USB 2.0 and 1.1. No drivers need to be installed and a power source is not needed, so this is very convenient to use. It is ideal for several operating systems including Dell Optiplex. Also, you can choose from 2.5” and 3.5” drive compatible cables depending on your HDDs or SSDs. The LED lights allow you to know the activity status of the device at all times.
Just like any other cable, if used frequently, SATA to USB cables will degrade over time. Plugging them in and out repeatedly can cause them to become damaged, but those made from durable materials will generally last you a long time.
What are the different types of SATA cables?
SATA cables can be categorized into three types. SATA 1 provides 1.5 Gbps speed, SATA 2 provides 3.0 Gbps and SATA 3 provides 6.0 Gbps speed. Other than the speed, these cables are not very different from each other and are backward compatible.
How do I know if my SATA to USB cable is working?
If you are unsure if your computer has recognised the drive, check to see if the drive is spinning or vibrating. If it is completely still, it means that the drive did not start. Investing in a cable that comes with LED lights is useful because it can show its activity status at all times.
As a computers and information analyst, Denise McNamara constantly finds herself trying the latest and greatest tech products. Her extensive personal experience with electronics allows her to share her findings with others online.