The Weme External USB 3.0 Enclosure vs. the Sabrent

📅 May 12, 2016
weme01Does the type of USB 3.0 enclosure affect speed?

I really liked the Sabrent USB 3.0 external enclosure. Simply insert a 2.5″ SATA drive, screw it together, and plug it in any USB port. Presto! You have recycled a SATA drive into a portable USB drive!

The Sabrent cases have worked well for me, but I wanted to try a different brand to see if it made any difference in data transfer rates.

After running some benchmarks, it turns out that there is definitely a difference in speed between the two enclosures.

Here are my results with CrystalDiskMark and Disks in Linux Mint 17.3.

The Weme Enclosure

The Weme (however that is pronounced, Weem? WE-may? we-MAY, WEI-mei? WEE-MEE? WEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE-me?) is a plastic external USB 3.0 enclosure. Model MST-007 ships in a plain brown box and includes a short USB cable.


Weme external USB 3.0 enclosure. Do you have a spare 2.5″ hard drive? You can easily put it to good use with this.


3/4 view of the Weme.


Port-side view of the Weme. There is a micro USB 3.0 port, a blue activity LED, and an optional 5V jack for hard drives the need more power. A power supply is not included, and I found it unnecessary. The USB 3.0 port sufficiently powered an SSD and a 2.5″ 5400 RPM drive.

The Weme is slightly larger than the metal Sabrent USB 3.0 case.


Weme on top, and the Sabrent on the bottom. Between the two, the Sabrent possesses a sleeker appearance due to its brushed finish.

Assembly is incredibly easy. The top slides off. Slide the SATA drive in, and then slide the top back on. That’s it. No screws or other assembly required.


Weme disassembled. The top portion (left) slides off and on and snaps in place. The port seen on the right is a standard SATA connection.

It the Weme Compatible with Linux?

Yes. Even though Linux s not mentioned (that I could find), this is nothing more than a SATA-to-USB adapter. Linux detects and uses it automatically.

How Does It Perform?

At first, you would think that a USB 3.0 enclosure would mean that it would reach USB 3.0 speeds no matter the maker. Not so. If you use a 2.5″ 5400 RPM mechanical drive in a USB 3.0 adapter, you will see the same read and write speeds no matter the enclosure because the USB 3.0 interface far exceeds the throughput of a spinning drive. The real test is with a solid state drive (SSD).

To ensure that the hard drive used inside the case would not be the limiting factor, I used a spare Samsung 840 SSD. This reliable little toy produces 500+ sequential read speeds, but the writes are far lower (~130MB/s).


Samsung 840 SSD in the Weme. The Weme case can accommodate 9.5mm hard drives, so this 7mm SSD has room to spare. To prevent rattling, use foam or a plastic SSD standoff to ensure a snug fit.

Using this drive in both the Weme and Sabrent cases (one at a time) connected to a USB 3.0 motherboard in Linux Mint 17.3 and Windows 7, would there be any difference in throughput?

Yes, there is a difference. Which is faster?


I connected the Samsung 840 SSD directly to a SATA 6Gbps port for both operating systems and then compared the USB 3.0 results with that. Let’s start with the CrystalDiskMark benchmark in Windows 7.


CrystalDiskMark 5.1.2. Direct motherboard connection is the fastest at 500+ MB/s. The Weme and Sabrent show different read speeds. Write speeds are about the same.

Let’s try a mechanical drive using a Seagate Momentus 5400.6.


Weme with a 2.5″ Seagate Momentus 5600.6.


The Seagate Momentus shows identical performance with all three tests: SATA 6Gbps, Weme, and the Sabrent. This is because the Seagate Momentus is a 2.5″ mechanical drive spinning at 5400 RPM, and it cannot max out the throughput limitations of either SATA or USB 3.0. Therefore, it performs the same no matter the interface or enclosure used.

Gnome Disks Utility (Disks)

Moving to Linux Mint 17.3, I tried an equivalent test with the Disks benchmark. The Samsung 840 SSD was used for all tests.

SATA 6Gbps Motherboard


How does the Samsung 840 perform when connected directly to the motherboard via a SATA 6Gbps connector? These numbers are correct because I have used this SSD for almost two years, and I am familiar with its capabilities.

Weme External USB 3.0 + Samsung 840


Samsung 840 in the Weme shows lower numbers than a direct connection to the motherboard, but this is to be expected. USB 3.0 is slower than SATA 6Gbps.

Sabrent External USB 3.0 + Samsung 840


What’s this? Oh, Sabrent, how could you? You look so stylish, and yet you perform so…lackluster.


The Weme is definitely faster than the Sabrent (~420+ MB/s reads vs. ~280 MB/s reads).

This result was consistent across operating systems and tests. Apparently, not all USB 3.0 external enclosures are created equally–even though I only tested two. At least these two are not created equally.

If you want high read speeds, then the Weme is faster than the Sabrent, and you will be able to take advantage of your external SSD’s potential. However, if you want a slimmer, sleeker, prettier USB enclosure, then the Sabrent wins, but its USB 3.0 performance is lower.

If you are using a mechanical 5400 RPM drive, then it does not matter. Both the Weme and the Sabrent will offer the same performance due to limits with fragile, tender, delicate spinning hard drives.

Once again, my assumptions about USB 3.0 interfaces are dashed. USB 3.0 is USB 3.0, right? Apparently, not. USB 3.0 performance is not the same for every gadget, and there is a difference between manufacturers and USB 3.0 interfaces as shown here.

Regardless, both performed reliably without any sudden disconnections, and external enclosures are useful to have around. Just know the limits of the drive you wish to use, and choose the appropriate case.



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