The BitBox02 comes in two versions: the bitcoin-only edition or the multi-coin edition.Read our review
Backed by Binance Labs, the SafePal S1 uses a 100 percent offline air-gapped signing mechanism.Read our review
Ledger Nano X
The Ledger Nano X offers secure cold storage and ease of access via the Ledger Desktop or Mobile App.Read our review
Ellipal Titan is a product of Ellipal, a Hong Kong-based company founded in 2018.Read our review
We’ve all heard stories about intensely private folks who stash their cash under their mattress for a rainy day. With the well-publicized failures of centralized exchanges, more crypto investors are following the lead of “off the books” wealth storage by storing their tokens in cold wallets.
In this case, a cold wallet is the crypto equivalent of storing your money under your mattress… with the bonus of protecting against common attacks that threaten crypto enthusiasts worldwide.
Our editors rated and reviewed the top cold wallets for 2024, rating them on reliability, ease of use, and user reviews. If you want to keep your crypto safe, keep it cold. Read on.
Best Overall: BitBox02
The BitBox02 comes in two versions: the bitcoin-only edition or the multi-coin edition. They retail for the same price. Both versions come with a microSD card for automatic backups. The BitBox02 is compatible with Windows, macOS, Linux, and Android. The multi-edition supports over 1,500 assets and retails for $149.
(BMJ Score: 4.5)
We gave BitBox02 a score of 4.5 because it is incredibly user-friendly. Additionally, it has top-tier security, as the wallet comes with three secret data points that a potential hacker would need to access to compromise its security.
Best Value: Safepal S1
Backed by Binance Labs, the SafePal S1 uses a 100 percent offline air-gapped signing mechanism, giving the user truly cold storage. It uses QR Codes with no USB, WIFI, Bluetooth, or NFC connections. The app works with iOS and Android. Roughly the size of a credit card, it supports over 30,000 digital assets. At just $49.00, it’s also the most inexpensive hardware wallet on the list.
(BMJ Score: 4.5)
We gave Safepal a score of 4.5 because it is incredibly affordable and supports the most assets from any wallet on this list.
The Ledger Nano X offers secure cold storage and easier access by connecting your device through the Ledger Desktop or Mobile App. At $149, you get the best features without breaking the bank.
Ledger released the Ledger Nano S in 2016, quickly becoming a favorite among digital asset investors. The Ledger Nano X is the most recent model, with more functionality than the original (and cheaper) Nano S.
The Nano X can support up to 100 apps, has a larger screen, and has Bluetooth connectivity. It’s compatible with Windows, Linux, macOS, Android, and iOS and allows you to hold over 1,800 digital assets.
(BMJ Score: 4.0)
We gave Nano X a score of 4.0 because it comes with a user-friendly mobile app and allows Bluetooth connectivity. It also allows for NFT management and DeFi access.
Arculus is another air-gapped solution that is shaped like a credit card. This cold storage wallet is protected by 3-factor authentication: a biometric lock, a 6-digit pin, and a tap-to-transact function. Since your smartphone’s screen is the interface, it is easier to interact and navigate transactions than most traditional hardware wallets. Users can send and exchange crypto for fiat or swap crypto for crypto through their app. Arculus supports many top digital assets such as bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, and USDC. At just $99, it’s one of the cheapest wallets on the list.
(BMJ Score: 4.0)
The size of a credit card, the Cool Wallet Pro can fit in any wallet. Produced by CoolBitX, the CoolWallet Pro works with Android and iOS devices and connects via Bluetooth. It allows you to hold 55 digital assets and has the support of some of the biggest names in the industry. It currently retails for $149.
(BMJ Score: 4.0)
We gave the CoolWalletPro a score of 4.0 because it offers exceptional security and has a strong battery life (2-3 weeks after a full charge). The only downside is that it only supports 55 digital assets.
Ellipal Titan is a product of Ellipal, a Hong Kong-based company founded in 2018. The company provides an air-gapped hardware wallet solution. The Ellipal Titan is physically, electronically, and electromagnetically isolated from other networks to prevent remote attacks. Instead, Ellipal only uses QR codes to sign transactions since it is designed to be incompatible with connections such as Wifi and Bluetooth. It features a 4-inch touchscreen, supports 41 blockchains and 10,000+ tokens, and retails for $169.
(BMJ Score: 3.5)
We gave the Ellipal Titan a score of 3.5 It is user-friendly and supports many crypto assets. However, it is bulkier than other cold wallets and has limited third-party integrations.
Best For Bitcoin: Trezor Model T
The Trezor Model T is our pick for the best cold wallet for bitcoin. First released in 2019, the Trezor allows its users to access third-party exchanges on a secure touch-screen device, initially designed by a company to store bitcoin.
The original Trezor One, launched in 2014, was a hardware wallet that quickly became a favorite with bitcoin investors. The latest version, the Model T, comes in black with a color touchscreen.
All input for the Trezor Model T is done via the device, thus preventing any risk of hacking by a keystroke logger. The Trezor Model T is compatible with Windows, macOS, Linux, and Android. It supports over 1,200 crypto assets.
(BMJ Score: 3.5)
Opolo gets high marks for security and user-friendliness. First, Opolo has an EAL6+ (Evaluation Assurance Level) for hardware and software, the highest certification level for hardware wallets. Second, Opolo features a 3.2-inch LCD touchscreen that lets you enter passwords and passphrases easily. Third, it offers users five magnetic mnemonic cards to store backup data. At least three of these cards are needed to restore your data. Currently, it supports 126 coins and up to 283,000 tokens and retails for $199.
(BMJ Score: 3.5)
We gave Opolo a score of 3.5 because it retails for higher than the average cold wallet. However, it supports many crypto assets and is very user-friendly.
Secux recently released two flagship cold wallet variations, the V20, and the cheaper W20 version. The V20 version has a nice-looking rounded design, while the W20 has a standard rectangular design. Both offer satisfactory screen sizes to navigate through transactions. Bluetooth and USB facilitate the connectivity of SecuX wallets. The SecuX wallet app is available on both iOS and Android. Their hardware wallets support over 1000 cryptocurrencies and can manage up to 500 accounts for $139.
(BMJ Score: 3.5)
We gave SecuX a score of 3.5 because it comes with solid customer support and a sleek design.
Best Security: NGRAVE ZERO
The NGRAVE ZERO is the world’s first crypto hardware wallet with the highest security certification, Evaluation Assurance Level 7. The NGRAVE ZERO was 2021’s winner of the Crypto Wallet Solution of the Year at the AIBC Summit. Completely air-gapped and equipped with biometric sensors, the NGRAVE ZERO is our top pick for the cold wallet with the best security.
First released in 2020, the NGRAVE ZERO may seem unassuming, but its graphene build is resistant to fire, flooding, corrosion, and electrical shocks. With two-factor biometric security, it’s complicated to hack the NGRAVE ZERO. As a bonus, the device seamlessly integrates into the rest of NGRAVE’s ecosystem for easier and faster transactions without exposing your keys online.
(BMJ Score: 3.5)
We gave NGRAVE ZERO a score of 3.5. The wallet supports NFTs and has strong security features. However, it is much more expensive than the average crypto wallet, which retails at $498.
The BC Vault wallet was launched in 2022 by REAL Security, an IT company that has been in business since 2002. Seeing as the wallet is the product of an IT company, it’s safe to say that you can expect top-notch security from this hardware wallet. The wallet has various safety features to keep your crypto safe, including a global password and PIN and a wallet-specific password and PIN.
The wallet is usable as a U2F authenticator, and it comes with an encrypted Micro SD Card. It also comes with a QR paper code backup.
The BC Vault is compatible with Windows, MacOS, and Linux desktop applications.
BMJ Score: 3.5
We gave the BC Vault a score of 3.5 because it is still a very young wallet. However, it offers the best safety and security features.
The KeyStone Pro is another hardware wallet that looks like a cellphone with its large full-color touch screen. It’s another air-gapped option with no NFC, WIFI, USB, or Bluetooth connectivity. Like Trezor, you can use it with bitcoin-only or multi-coin firmware. If you like fingerprint security, the Keystone Pro offers this security function. They also offer cheaper and more expensive versions (starting at $169). The Pro version works with Android and iOS devices and supports over 1,000 digital assets.
(BMJ Score: 3)
We gave the Keystone Pro a score of 3 because its app is well-designed and easy to navigate. However, it is a bit on the pricier end.
What is a Cold Storage Wallet?
A cold storage wallet (or hardware wallet) is a physical device that stores your cryptocurrency offline.
Since cold storage wallets don’t connect to the internet (as opposed to “hot wallets” that remain connected to a crypto network), the chances of being hacked are significantly reduced. The tradeoff is in responsiveness, as cold wallets won’t allow you to buy or trade tokens immediately.
One compromise is storing the bulk of your crypto in a cold wallet and the rest in a hot wallet for day-to-day transactions.
In our cold storage guide, you can learn more about effectively utilizing cold-wallet storage.
Cold Storage Wallet Pros and Cons
Cold storage wallets have several advantages over their hot counterparts, mainly focused on security and resilience:
- Ease of Recovery: Should you lose your physical wallet, you can access your assets by inputting your seed phrase into another storage device.
- Multi-Currency Support: Many cold wallets offer support for over 1,000 asset classes. Access different assets from a single device, no matter what network they operate on.
- Better Security: Cold wallets are characterized by their capability to store keys offline. This feature makes a cold wallet less susceptible to cyber attacks, as transactions never expose your keys.
- Expensive: Where hot wallets are often free, cold wallets require you to pay between $50 – $200.
- Illiquid: As cold wallets are offline, it might take time to access in-device currency. Cold wallets are suboptimal for day traders and quick transactions.
- Susceptible to loss: While cold wallets are more secure, they could be lost, damaged, or broken. While you may be able to recover your funds, consider the cost of purchasing another hardware wallet.
Remember to always buy directly from the manufacturer or a reputable retailer. Once you set up your wallet, store the wallet and any backup or recovery codes securely. Keep these details private from everyone, as they can be used to access the funds held in your hardware wallets.
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