Leef Copper Edition Surge 64GB USB Flash Drive Review

I love my 15″ MacBook Pro retina, but I still kick myself for settling on the 500GB model when I should have waited and bought the 750GB version. Now the MBPr is available with 1TB, but I’m not ready to upgrade. External memory is my best option, so I’ve been trying the Leef Copper Edition Surge 64GB USB Flash Drive.

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I’ve kept a memory card in my MBPr as a semi-permanent fixture before, but it didn’t work out because I was using the SD slot; the MBPr has only one SD slot, but it has two USB ports. Unless I’m traveling, I seldom find myself connecting anything to my USB ports, but I do access my SD slot regularly. So for me, keeping a small and unobtrusive memory device in the USB port makes good sense. That’s why I had high hopes for the Leef Copper Edition Surge.

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  • Available in 16 GB, 32 GB, and 64GB
  • Tiny compact USB Flash Drive
  • Built with Leef’s PrimeGrade Memory which is waterproof, shockproof, and dust proof

Leef also makes the Surge in black or white, and prices for those models are a few dollars less. The extra bit of flash that the copper wrapper gives to the drive is really eye-catching and nice, but you are the only one who’ll be able to decide of it is worth the couple of extra dollars.

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I received the 64GB version, which is the perfect size for storing photos, documents, and other items I don’t want cluttering my main hard-drive, especially when those items are things that I might still need access to on a regular basis.

The Leef Surge is listed as being “High-speed USB 2.0 Compliant, USB 3.0 Compatible”, but that doesn’t exactly tell you what speeds you should be able to expect, right? So here are some transfer time examples:

I transferred 30.66 GB of movies from my SSD to the Leef Surge; it took 40 minutes and 35 seconds. If my math is correct, that equals 31,395.85 MB transferring in 2435 seconds, which equals a rate of 12.89 MB/second. My laptop is supposed to have USB 3.0 ports, but that was the fastest rate I could transfer. Hmmm.

Granted, that was a pretty big job.

So next I transferred 8.57 GB of photos from my SSD to the Leef Surge; that took 25 minutes and 12 seconds. Again, assuming that my math is correct, that equals 8775.68 MB transferring in 1512 seconds, which equals a rate of 5.80 MB/second.

I’m not sure why transfer rates from my laptop to the Surge are so poor. For the way I am using the external drive, it’s probably not that big of a deal, but if you regularly transfer larger files, you’ll definitely find it too slow.

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If you need a bit of extra room on your laptop, but you don’t want a big thumb drive because you aren’t planning on regularly pulling out the memory to move files from one place to another, then you might want to consider the Leef Surge. It’s small enough that it won’t bug you when attached to the side of your laptop, but big enough that you’ll notice it if you drop it on the ground. If you need high-speed transfers, however, then you will need to consider something else.

Leef Copper Edition Surge 64GB USB Flash Drive is available in 16GB, 32GB, and 64GB sizes; you can purchase yours on the Leef site.

MSRP: $49.99 for 64GB (as tested); also available for $14.99 for the 16GB size and $24.99 for the 32GB size.

What I Like: Incredibly small; available up to 64GB; copper finish adds a nice flash of metallic color; also available in black or white for less money

What Needs Improvement: The Leef Surge may be compatible with USB 2,0 and 3.0, but the best I could coax from it were USB 1.1 speeds; in other words … it is not fast at all

Source: The Leef Copper Edition Surge 64GB USB Flash Drive was a manufacturer supplied review item

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About the Author

Judie Lipsett Stanford
Judie is the co-owner and Editor-in-Chief of Gear Diary, which she founded in September 2006. She started in 1999 writing software reviews at the now-defunct smaller.com; from mid-2000 through 2006, she wrote hardware reviews for and co-edited at The Gadgeteer. A recipient of the Sigma Kappa Colby Award for Technology, Judie is best known for her device-agnostic approach, deep-dive reviews, and enjoyment of exploring the latest tech, gadgets, and gear.