OWC Envoy Pro SX review

OWC added yet another model to its Envoy Pro lineup with the SX. The SX, as it turns out, doesn’t differ much from its sibling, the FX. It is the same size, has a Thunderbolt 3 cable included and is a tad faster when used with newer Thunderbolt and USB4 equipped computers. Unlike the FX, however, it’s black and doesn’t support USB prior to USB4.

The Envoy Pro SX comes with an Acronis Cyber Protect Home Office 1-year subscription. It has a top speed rated at 2870MB/sec. On my mid-2017 iMac, the drive achieved a respectable highest speed of 2210MB/sec and AJA’s System Test Lite reported fewer throttled-back frames than the FX model. The Acronis software subscription is a nice addition to a drive that has top-notch performance. Acronis Cyber Protect combines cloud backup — a generous 250GB of space is included in the 1-year subscription — with protection against malware, viruses and data loss in general.

The Envoy Pro SX’s OWC Aura Pro SSD storage technology with TRIM support is meant to deliver fast and reliable performance, which is perfect for audio/video production and photography directly streamed to the drive or offloaded for data storage/backup. It’s the first drive that I received with an Acronis subscription licence card in the box, but although you can use the Envoy Pro SX for backup only, I’m sure many people will want to use it as their primary data drive.

It’s lightweight enough to carry with you if you’re a photographer or video shooter and, as with the FX, the SX is bus-powered and no bigger than a SATA SSD, although it’s a bit thicker. Its aluminium enclosure ensures the drive is certified dust tight and waterproof (up to 30 minutes 1 meter deep) (IP67). It’s also drop proof (dropped over 25 times at every angle from a height of 120cm by a third-party testing and certification service), on concrete. At least, I think it can be dropped on a hard floor — OWC doesn’t explicitly state it — as carpet drops don’t need a drive that robust.

Its heat dissipating aluminium housing makes a cooling fan redundant and it supports macOS and Windows built-in encryption technologies. Just as with the Envoy Pro EX and FX, the SX has a front bezel mounted LED for confirmation of power and activity status, which is no luxury as I experienced with drives that don’t have it or have a tiny one that barely glows.

While the Envoy Pro FX will work when you connect it to a USB port, the SX will only work when connected to a Thunderbolt port. If you do connect it to USB, macOS Big Sur throws a warning it is incompatible.

The Envoy Pro SX comes with OWC’s 3-year limited warranty and retails at $349 for the 1TB version on MacSales.com or OWCShop.eu doesn’t carry the drive at the time of writing (note: Visuals Producer is affiliated with neither online shop).