It makes no difference if you’re an expert or a student, a gamer or a small business owner. If you use PCs, you’ll need an external storage device that you can trust. Check out this list if you want to provide your data the storage and security they deserve.
We’ve all experienced the frustration of a slow PC with nearly full RAM. Although hard drives have existed since the dawn of computers, they have evolved into machines we have never seen before. Modern SSDs are smaller, less expensive, and far more powerful than previous generations. Carrying your Instagram or YouTube videos on a hard drive is no longer a difficult task.
- Crucial X6 Portable SSD
My favourite portable drives are Crucial drives. They’re both inexpensive (for a portable SSD) and fast. The Samsung T7 (see below) was the only drive I tested with greater read speeds, but it costs $90 more. They’re also compact, making them great for working away from home. I use one to save video clips, and it’s quick enough for me to edit them immediately off the disc. The plastic composition is the only drawback. It won’t be able to withstand numerous drops.
- T7 Portable SSD by Samsung
If money isn’t an issue and speed is all that matters, these Samsung portable drives outperform anything else I tested. They’re small and light, yet feature metal casings that make them quite indestructible. The price, though, is the catch. The cost per gigabyte is the greatest in this comparison. You’ll have to pay if you want anything portable and quick.
- SSD OWC Envoy Pro Elektron
The OWC drives are the best choice if you require a drive that can withstand being carried in a backpack or camera bag, becoming wet, or being dropped into hard surfaces. Because there are so many good options, picking a winner is difficult, but OWC’s Elektron drive won decisively out the competition in benchmark tests. I particularly like that the drive within the metal casing can be replaced out (it’s easy to unscrew), which indicates that in two years, the drive will still be functional, you’ll be able to pick up a quicker bare SSD and plop it into the Elektron.
- Rugged SSD by LaCie
The aforementioned go-anywhere drives are a great option for photographers and videographers who need to make backups on the go. This padded drive from LaCie, on the other hand, has long been a favourite among travellers who want an extra comfort level. Both an SSD and a regular spinning drive are available from LaCie. The cheaper rotating disc makes more sense if speed isn’t a factor, such as when performing nightly backups. The SSD version is what you want if you’re backing up in the middle of a picture session or another situation when you need it to happen quickly.
- Encrypted Desktop Hard Drive diskAshur DT2 by iStorage
The iStorage diskAshur DT2 Encrypted Desktop Hard Drive will keep your files safe. Because this device is hardware encrypted, anyone attempting to open it will be required to provide a PIN. You’ll appreciate how quickly data is sent and how simple it is to use.
- Seagate Backup Plus Portable
Seagate’s Backup Plus Portable is our runner-up in this popular sector. It’s a USB 3.1 Gen 1 (5Gbps) drive, just like the WD above, with plenty of bandwidth for the hard drive within. The drive’s maximum capacity is 5TB, although it’s also accessible in 1TB, 2TB, and 4TB capacities.
We observed the Seagate to be marginally faster than the WD in large file transfers (think movies), but slower in tiny transferring data in our tests of the 4TB version (think Office documents). Nonetheless, it’s a deserving runner-up.
Read the rest of our Seagate Backup Plus Portable overview.
- Drive for iStorage Secure Hard Drive Ashur PRO2
The iStorage disc is a removable storage device. Another wonderful choice on our list of the best external media is the Ashur PRO2 Secure Hard Drive. The 256-bit security on this memory stick has military-grade clearance, and it is unlocked with a unique PIN.
Advice on Purchasing a Hard Drive
When it comes to choosing the correct hard disc, three factors must be considered: speed, size, and pricing. If you’re doing nightly backups, speed and size aren’t likely to be an issue. Up to a point, go for the cheapest drive you can find. Although drives do not survive indefinitely, some do last significantly longer than others.
When would you choose an SSD over a traditional hard drive? If you can buy it, the answer is nearly always yes. But especially for any disc you use on a regular basis, such as your primary boot drive, an external drive you use to modify documents from, and even backups if you need them to happen quickly.