Small, Fast, Ruggedized NVMe SSD

Review by Erik Vlietinck 

CalDigit has released the Tuff Nano Plus and, like the other Nano drives, it’s incredibly small and lightweight, yet IP67 waterproof and made of ruggedized aluminum. It’s the fastest Nano available with speeds that reach up to 1088MB/s. 

The Tuff Nano range is popular with users of iPad Pro’s (2020 and 2021), MacBook Air, and geeks like myself who like the small form factor and the silicon rubber bumpers. The Tuff Nano Plus is about 20% bigger than the Tuff Nano which is because of the higher performing NVMe SSD inside that connects to your computer with USB 3.2 Gen 2. 

The performance test showed a maximum throughput of 918MB/s, both read and write speeds, which is rare. I was interested to see whether the unit would throttle back when put under pressure, so I measured with AJA System Test Lite and found no throttling at all. The test also showed that not a lot of frames were dropped throughout this continuous test. All in all, the Nano Plus did better than the Tuff Nano, which did well when I reviewed that one. 

The Tuff Nano Plus is waterproof, drop-proof up to 3 meters, and it’s also dust tight. I’m always a bit wary of trying out the waterproof claim, but have yet to come across a CalDigit device that doesn’t live up to its specs, and the Tuff Nano Plus is no exception. 

My final thoughts are that the Tuff Nano isn’t much slower than the Tuff Nano Plus, so it depends on what you’ll be using the drive for the most. The Nano does come in smaller capacities of 500 GB and 1 TB and its write performance is less smooth. The Tuff Nano Plus, though, is available in 2TB, meaning it’s more suitable for storing larger files such as video. In addition, it has butter smooth write performance which means you could even edit video files right from the Tuff Nano Plus. ■