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What is the Best External Hard Disk? – Compatibility with OS, Reviews, Prices

Best External Hard Disk

External Hard Disk

What is the Best External Hard Disk? – Compatibility with OS, Reviews, Prices

What would you think if we told you that choosing an external hard drive for your PC or Mac is easy?

What you don’t need to do is search for hours or days to find the best one for your needs.

We have done the work for you and have created a special list of the 8 best external hard drives you can buy in 2019.

They are super-durable, fast and with a large memory capacity to save all your important files and documents! And that’s what you want, isn’t it?

Let’s take a look together at the list …

What is the best external hard drive?

WD Elements – Our Recommendation

WD Elements
WD Elements

Product Name: WD Elements

Product Description: Перевести вGoogleBingPortable drive WD Elements Portable capacity up to 2 TB will be the best companion for those on the road. USB 3.0 connectivity delivers maximum performance for transferring files to and from this drive. The WD Elements Portable drive comes with a trial version of the WD SmartWare Pro backup software, which allows you to save backup files to both the WD Elements drive and the Dropbox cloud system.Portable drive WD Elements Portable capacity up to 2 TB will be the best companion for those on the road. USB 3.0 connectivity delivers maximum performance for transferring files to and from this drive. The WD Elements Portable drive comes with a trial version of the WD SmartWare Pro backup software, which allows you to save backup files to both the WD Elements drive and the Dropbox cloud system.

Brand: Western Digital

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Summary

When the internal hard disk is almost full, the computer slows down. Do not delete files. Free up space on your internal hard drive by moving files to the WD Elements Portable drive, and your laptop will start working quickly again.

Overall
4.7
  • Portability
  • Value for money
  • Storage Capacity
  • Easy to use
Comments Rating 0 (0 reviews)

Pros

  • Our first recommendation as the best external hard drive
  • Portable 2.5 “HD that can hold up to 4 Tb
  • Fast data transfer: up to 5Gb / s for USB 3.0 and up to 480 Mb / s for USB 2.0, therefore excellent storage speed
  • Universal USB 3.0 interface, able to interact even with USB 2.0 devices
    The hard drive runs at a speed of up to 5400 rpm to attach to the PC or another medium
  • HD self-powered with lithium battery
  • Local backup software and on Cloud Western Digital in free trial
  • Lightweight and small-sized case, comfortable to carry safely in your pocket, built with solid materials
  • There is also a wireless version

Cons

  • Preformatted with NTFS file system
  • A longer power cable would have been useful

Read full review

WD My Passport – Maximum compactness

WD My Passport Review
WD My Passport

Product Name: WD My Passport

Product Description: External HDD WD My Passport has a non-trivial design and a storage capacity of 1-4 TB. With it, you can save important files, whether video, audio, images, etc. the Device comes with a USB cable, so you can quickly transfer information. The external HDD WD is executed in the attractive blue case. Storage capacity for information is up to 4 TB. It is possible to store all sorts of files, including audio, video and images. The device is equipped with a USB 3.0 interface, so you can quickly transfer data.

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Summary

External HDD WD My Passport  immediately attracts the eye with its strict conservative design. With the interface in 2.5 inch weight was only 160 g. The device is made in black plastic, without the “trinkets”. There is a decent amount of memory – 1-4 TB, which allows you to store a lot of necessary information.

Overall
4.7
  • Portability
  • Value for money
  • Storage capacity
  • Easy to use
Comments Rating 0 (0 reviews)

Pros

  • Self-powered 2.5 “portable HD that can hold hard disks ranging from 1 Tb to 4 Tb
  • Fast data transfer
  • Implement the WD Backup Software which allows an automatic backup, with the possibility of setting frequency and time
  • Maximum data security, thanks to 256-bit AES hardware encryption + WD Security software and ability to enter a password, for better protection of your data
  • You can easily download the data on your social media or cloud services through the WD Discovery software
  • Universal USB 3.0 interface, able to use it even with USB 2.0 devices
  • Automatic message with the contact details of the owner of the HD, useful in case of loss
  • Very easy to use, with the Plug & Play, and a convenient operating LED
  • Particular design, attractive and solid materials, available in many different colors

Cons

  • The software is slightly slow
  • The data protection software creates some problems when the HD is moved to different PCs

Read full review

Toshiba HDTB310EK3AA – The best seller

Toshiba HDTB310EK3AA
Toshiba HDTB310EK3AA

Product Name: Toshiba HDTB310EK3AA

Product Description: Your memories are protected. Easy to handle, lightweight and compact External HDD Toshiba 1Tb STORE.E Canvio [HDTB310EK3AA] is designed to free the loaded memory of your device from megabytes of data. A roomy device with a memory of 1000 GB is almost 600 of your favorite melodramas and blockbusters in decent quality.

Brand: Toshiba

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Summary

Toshiba Canvio Basics gives you the ability to quickly transfer files with USB 3.0 and store up to 1TB of data on an external hard drive. The device is completely ready to work with Microsoft Windows and does not require software installation, so nothing can be more convenient to store all your favorite files. In the office or on the road, its classic design will always be appropriate.

Overall
4.6
  • Portability
  • Value for money
  • Storage capacity
  • Easy to use
Comments Rating 0 (0 reviews)

Pros

  • Best selling external hard drive of 2019
  • Portable 2.5 “HD which can hold hard drives from 500 Gb to 3Tb
  • HDD type with 5400 rpm rotation speed
  • Universal USB 3.0 interface, also compatible with USB 2.0 devices
  • Internal connection between hard disk and Seria ATA III type houses with better performance in terms of speed
  • Fast data transfer, thanks also to SuperSpeed ​​technology
  • Silent and self-powered
  • Essential lines, convenient to always carry with you

Cons

  • Once purchased it is not immediately compatible with the Mac, initial formatting is required
  • The disc attachment tends to come off easily, so you need to pay attention to the position

Read full review

Maxtor Seagate – Best economic option

Maxtor Seagate Review
Maxtor Seagate

Product Name: Maxtor Seagate

Product Description: 2.5 inch external HDD Maxtor M3 STSHX-M101TCB attracts with its quality and stylish appearance. The device is designed to improve performance and optimize the operation of PC devices. A drive size of 1 TB is a major advantage. In this model, the spindle rotates at a standard speed of 5400 rpm. Maxtor M3 STSHX-M101TCB is equipped with an additional impressive cache of 16 MB. In addition, this HDD has a USB 3.0 interface. The body of the device is made in black from practical plastic that can withstand the load and protect against mechanical injuries. HDD in the room looks almost imperceptibly and does not attract too much attention to itself.

Brand: Maxtor

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Summary

Seagate portable hard drive is an easy-to-use solution for situations when you need to instantly add storage space to your computer and take your files with you. The portable hard drive installs easily by plugging in a single USB cord. You can start saving digital files to an external hard drive a few seconds after you remove it from the box. Windows automatically recognizes the drive, so no additional configuration or software installation is required. Built-in power management automatically ensures energy saving during operation.

Overall
4.5
  • Portability
  • Value for money
  • Storage capacity
  • Easy to use
Comments Rating 0 (0 reviews)

Pros

  • Hard disk for a really cheap price
  • Portable 2.5 “HD which can hold hard drives from 500Gb to 4Tb
  • Data protection guaranteed by SafetyKey protection
  • Universal USB 3.0 interface, also compatible with USB 2.0 devices
  • Self-powered HDD type
  • You have the option, with AutoBackup, to make customized backups
  • Fast data transfer, thanks to SuperSpeed ​​cable technology, up to 5Gbps
  • External hard drive compatible with both Windows and Mac
  • Excellent operating temperature range, between 5 ° and 40 ° C (working) or between -20 ° and 65 ° C when not operating

Cons

  • It would have been useful to add a carrying case in the package
  • The cable is a little too short, especially if you want to connect the external hard drive to a TV

Read full review

WD Elements Desktop – Better data protection

WD Elements Desktop Review
wd elements desktop

Product Name: WD Elements Desktop

Product Description: WD Elements Desktop drive with high-speed USB 3.0 interface. When the internal hard disk is almost full, the computer slows down. Do not delete files. Free up space on your internal hard drive by moving files to the WD Elements desktop drive, and your computer will start working quickly again. When connected to a SuperSpeed USB 3.0 port WD Elements lets you access and save files faster than ever. A two-hour HD movie can be transferred in just 3 minutes instead of 13.

Brand: WD

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Summary

WD Elements Desktop – reliable desktop drives for the fastest data transfer. External hard drives of this series are available in a beautiful glossy black 3.5 inch format. SuperSpeed USB 3.0 high-speed interface provides fast opening, saving and transferring of multimedia files. Devices weighing less than 1 kg with power supply meet all the requirements of reliability, which makes them practical in everyday use.

Overall
4.9
  • Portability
  • Value for money
  • Storage capacity
  • Easy to use
Comments Rating 0 (0 reviews)

Pros

  • Very reliable current powered hard disk
  • Memory capacity up to 10 Tb
  • Rotational speed of 7200 rpm
  • Fast data transfer, also thanks to SuperSpeed ​​technology which guarantees a speed up to 5 Gbps
  • Connectivity guaranteed by USB 3.0, backward compatible with USB 2.0
  • Easy to use, thanks to the Plug & Play feature that makes it instantly detected by the PC as soon as you connect it
  • It has the possibility of using the lock cable, which is often used in offices to prevent access mechanically
  • In the event of non-use, after a few minutes it automatically goes into stand-by
    Solid and resistant structure with simple lines

Cons

  • It is born preformatted in NTFS, so if you use a Mac you must remember to reformat it with another file system
  • The power cord is a little fragile
  • The on / off button by many people is considered useless

Read full review

WD My Book – Increased storage capacity

WD My Book Review
WD My Book

Product Name: WD My Book

Product Description: Equipped with two WD Red hard drives, the My Book Duo provides impressive capacity and twice the speed of data transfer. By combining the performance of your drives, you get up to 324mb/s transfer speed, making it easy to copy full HD videos or your entire media collection. Set up your own schedule to copy updated files or back up new folders automatically using WD SmartWare. The backup program runs quietly in the background, so that your data is protected while consuming the minimum amount of computer resources. WD SmartWare also works with Dropbox, so you can even save files to the cloud.

Brand: WD

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Summary

The WD My Book is your personalized digital storage. Thanks to its high capacity, you will have enough space to centrally store your entire media collection and important documents in perfect order and absolute security.

Overall
4.7
  • Portability
  • Value for money
  • Storage capacity
  • Easy to use
Comments Rating 0 (0 reviews)

Pros

  • Exceptional memory capacity between 3 and 12 Tb for the Duo version
  • HDD type powered by current
  • Connectivity guaranteed by USB 3.0, backward compatible with USB 2.0
  • WD Backup software that performs automatic backup and is also compatible with Time Machine
  • Implement data encryption and security software with which you can enter a password
  • High speed data transfer
  • Particular and very attractive design

Cons

  • Preformatted in NTFS, so if you use a Mac you have to remember to reformat it with another file system
  • The LED light is missing
  • It turns out to be a little noisy

Read full review

Toshiba HDTB420EK3AA – Great basic

Toshiba HDTB420EK3AA Review
Toshiba HDTB420EK3AA

Product Name: Toshiba HDTB420EK3AA

Product Description: Feel what it's like! To be secured, to have a huge amount of virtual memory that you even have nowhere to spend. Now you do not have to painfully think about which of the files to delete or about whether to record a particular game in 4K-format due to the fact that it weighs a lot. The black design of this HDD drive is simple and guarantees Toshiba Canvio Basics [HDTB420EK3AA] easy to storage. The speed of interaction and information transfer provided by USB 3.0 Type A. It is very convenient that this HHD drive requires no additional power. At the same time its form factor 2.5 and it is easy to transport and store. How could it be otherwise? After all, this HDD-drive weighs only 149 grams. And its size: 109x78x14 millimeters.

Brand: Toshiba

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Summary

With the help of External HDD Toshiba Canvio Basics [HDTB420EK3AA] you feel your virtual security. The provision of so much memory, thanks to which you can download any movies, games and programs, without thinking about how much they weigh. After all, thanks to amount of memory, you can easily create a collection of hundreds of movies, media files, games and everything you want. Do not limit yourself in desires.

Overall
4.5
  • Portability
  • Value for money
  • Storage capacity
  • Easy to use
Comments Rating 0 (0 reviews)

Pros

  • Great hard disk easy to use
  • Memory capacity between 500 Gb and 3 Tb
  • Immediately ready for use, with the plug & play system
  • High speed data transfer, up to 5 Gbps
  • Connectivity guaranteed by USB 3.0, backward compatible with USB 2.0
  • Lightweight, portable, compact external hard drive
  • Simple and classic design, matt black color

Cons

  • USB interface soldered directly to the disk, so it is not possible to change the interface to which the HD is connected
  • When it works for a while it tends to warm up

Read full review

Seagate Expansion – The style in a hard disk

Seagate Expansion
Seagate Expansion

Product Name: Seagate Expansion

Product Description: Digital photos, video files, and music files can exhaust your computer's storage resources and degrade performance when the internal hard disk is full. These features of the Seagate Expansion portable hard drive make it easy to use the drive as soon as it's out of the box. It is enough to connect the supplied USB cable to your computer and Windows will automatically recognize the drive, so additional settings and software installation are not required. To save files, simply drag and drop them to the Expansion portable drive. Built-in power management automatically ensures energy saving during operation.

Brand: Seagate

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Summary

The reduced speed of rotation of the disks made the product economical – it does not need a separate power supply – for full operation it is enough to connect to USB 3.0, which will allow to exchange information with high speed. There is a mode of saving energy consumption. The Expansion needs no special software – Windows operating system immediately will recognize, and it is ready to work. To save data, simply drag and drop it onto Expansion.

Overall
4.7
  • Portability
  • Value for money
  • Storage capacity
  • Easy to use
Comments Rating 0 (0 reviews)

Pros

  • HDD type hard disk with a beautiful and particular design
  • Memory capacity between 500 Gb and 4 Tb
  • Connection / power cable with USB 3.0, compatible with USB 2.0 devices
  • Possibility to manage the backup in a fast way through the Seagate Dashboard: you can program the files to be backed up and the cadence to which you want to perform it
  • High storage speed
  • Easy and intuitive file backup
  • Easy to install, thanks to plug & play

Cons

  • Short cable but not very short
  • The shock does not seem to be particularly resistant

Read full review

Factors to consider when purchasing an external hard drive

And here we are, after taking a look at the best external hard drives of the best brands, trying to figure out how to identify the best hard drive for you. To help you answer the question “how to choose”, we will analyze some of the most important factors that are useful to consider when evaluating the purchase of a portable external HD.

Analyzing these factors will allow you to have clearer ideas about the world of external hard drives and will provide you with all the tools to easily decide which HD is best for you. As you read individual points, consider how important that factor is to you and don’t forget to take notes! We are ready? And then let’s go!

Data storage capacity

When you are going to evaluate the purchase of an external hard drive, be it laptop or desktop, one of the first questions that surely you have to ask yourself is: how much space do I need? Yes, because on the market you can find external hard drives with different data storage capacities ranging from a few GB to 10 TB.

In order to understand what is the best storage capacity you need, ask yourself what you would like to save on the external hard drive. If you need to carry out constant PC back ups, surely you need a fairly large hd, in line with the amount of data in your computer. Obviously the greater the capacity of the HD, and the better the quality, the higher the price, even if it is difficult to arrive at particularly prohibitive figures.

If you want to create a multimedia library, surely you need more storage capacity. Consider that in 1 Gb there are about 200 tracks, but this value varies depending on the quality and possible compression of the saved files. Consider buying a slightly larger hd than your current needs because in a short time the amount of things to archive increases, and external hard drives, even the best ones, quickly become “small”.

SSD vs HDD

SSDs and HDDs are different types of memory units. SSDs are solid-state drives, while HDD is a hard disk drive. Both allow you to store data either inside the PC or on the unit itself, or outside.
The SSD (Solid -State – Drive) is a memory unit organized in a very similar way to a USB stick, therefore with many flash memories connected together. There are no moving parts and they have a better reliability, but also a very high reading and writing speed with less danger of data fragmentation. Moreover they are very compact between them and therefore easily usable in tablets or laptops.

Even in the computer startup phase, the SSD ensures that the computer is up and running in seconds. Another advantage of the best SSD is its extreme solidity even at external stresses because, having no moving parts, there are fewer dangers than breaking.
The HDD is the most widespread storage method at the moment and consists of a spinning disk, so it is a type of mechanical data storage / reading. Clearly it is more fragile and subject to breakage, but it is also the currently most convenient system. It has a storage capacity from 500 Gb to some Tera. Even the SSD can have high storage capacities, but the cost of these memories is very high. HDD is the best choice if you want to store large amounts of multimedia files.

Transfer speed

One of the important values ​​to consider when you need to purchase the best external hard drive, regardless of the brand, is the speed with which it is able to store data. This speed is important because, especially if you use the external hard drive every day, you can’t wait too long whenever the data needs to be updated.

One of the factors related to data storage speed is certainly the type of external hard drive you are working with. If we talk about the best external SSD hard drive the speed of data access and its transfer speed are very high.

Speaking instead of HDDs, here the transfer speed is very much influenced by the type of interface used. If, in fact, they use a more dated USB, the data transfer speed will not be excessive, maximum 480 Mbit / s. This type of technology is, as anticipated, rather dated and therefore involves a lower initial cost and can be fine if it is customary to transfer light files, such as text files or calculation files.

Currently the most widespread technology is USB 3.0, which guarantees a much better data transmission speed, up to 4.8 Gbps. It is certainly a more reliable technology, but expensive, but highly recommended for those who need to archive multimedia files or particularly heavy ones.

Lately, an even better technology was born, the Thunderbolt, capable of moving data at an extraordinary speed of 40 Gbps. At the moment, however, it is implemented in a few devices and is decidedly expensive.

Portability

Portability is a feature you need to take into consideration after you have answered the question: what should I do with this external device? And above all where and for what will I use it? In terms of portability on the market, there are essentially two types of external hard drives: laptops, small in size, maximum 2.5 “and no more than about 2 cm thick, and desktop hard drives, fixed.

If you use it essentially at home, like an extension of your PC, to lighten it and make it more fluid, rather than as a real multimedia archive, then the best solution for you is an external device that is not necessarily portable.

If you use it to continuously transport data from one device to another or to store information on the move, the best solution is a portable external HD. In the case in which, instead, you think you have to keep it mainly inside your home or office, in a rather fixed place, our advice is to opt for the desktop type.

Safety

In terms of security, some of the best external hard drives protect the data that is entered by encrypting them. In other cases there are special software that prevent intrusions by others and give the possibility to set a password that, therefore, protects even more the access to the information contained in the hard disk.

The software available is many and often proprietary. Some better external hard drives, especially desktops, sometimes also have the possibility of inserting a clamp that prevents the hard disk from opening and tampering, preventing the case from opening.

Ease of use and reliability

Since the hard disks must contain data and are back-ups that must remain intact, it is certainly essential to take the reliability of the product into consideration. The more reliable a product is, the more guarantees will be given that this external hard drive will keep our data in the best possible way, without fear that it may be lost or broken.

This value is easily identifiable in part by the reviews, but above all by the opinions and testimonies of those who have been using that hard disk for some time. Consumers will be able to give you the best testimony on its reliability over time.
Ease of use is also important, of course, in line with your technological skills. To understand the ease of use of a hard disk, based in part on its functionality: the less it is processed, the easier it will be to use.

Compatibility

Most of the best hard drives are compatible with all devices. What you can encounter, as a difference, is the initial formatting of the hard disk, which in some cases is done with an NTFS file system, specific for Windows. In these cases compatibility is also guaranteed with Apple devices. Simply reformat it with another file system, often compatible with both Apple and Windows. It’s a simple and fast operation.

And how much space do you need?

At this point you will have read about many portable external hard drives and you will have analyzed which are the important points to take into consideration when you decide to buy the best external hard drive.

To make a better purchase, combine this information with your real needs and combine the opinions of network users who are already using that external hard drive, perhaps for some time. You will then have a complete picture for each of the external hard drives and you can easily decide which products to go back to after an initial skimming.

All done? And then you just have to decide which one to buy. Make the last considerations, look for the most reliable one for you and proceed with the purchase. Whether you want to backup your PC or want to create a multimedia archive, you’re just a step away from your goal. Review the reviews, decide how much memory you need and proceed. The best external hard drive for you is just a click away.

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