What Is The Best External Hard Drive?

In today’s hectic world, finding ways to make your life easier can make a huge difference in saving time and hassle factor. One thing that has been making life easier for a decade or more is an external hard drive. These small, portable units have been helping businessmen, photographers as well as IT professionals take care of business by making information and data storage smaller and easier to transport. Not only is portable storage like this a lot easier to carry around, with encryption algorithms, data is a lot safer and secure as well. So which external hard drives are actually the best?

External Hard Drive

Image source verbatim-europe.co.uk

With advances in technology and with supply and availability, many 1TB external drives are available for less than $100 and 500gb drives available for just over half of that. This means that external storage has become extremely affordable for virtually any use. External drives are all utilizing much of the same connectivity technology – a hardwired connection through a USB port. These drives fall into two types of categories as well. External drives manufactured by the companies that make hard drives and those using hard drives from these companies but with their own enclosures.

External Hard Drive Manufacturers

The best external drives from hard drive manufacturers are (in no particular order):

  • Western Digital
  • Seagate
  • Hitachi
  • Toshiba

Third Party or Enclosure

The best external drives from third party or enclosure manufacturers are:

  • Kingston
  • Transcend
  • Verbatim
  • Memorex

External drives from third party companies and enclosure manufacturers take a hard drive from a known hard drive maker such as WD or Seagate and marries them with an enclosure, or the case the drive is stored in and protected by. Many times, drives from a third party or enclosure manufacturer are marginally less expensive than external drives from hard drive manufacturers so you can get the same quality and save a few bucks in the process.

The exception for this are external drives designed for extreme conditions. These drives usually use a SSD (solid state drive) instead of a conventional hard drive and are housed in an enclosure designed to protect the drive under conditions that would destroy any other type of drive. Generally, these drives are designed to withstand high G (gravity) conditions such as shocks or vibrations that would prevent an ordinary drive from functioning properly. On the whole, these drives are designed for industrial or military applications and have a premium price.

For most people, being able to carry your data around in your pocket or briefcase with an external drive the size of a fat smartphone is a convenience. For some, it is the only way to keep their data both secure and at-hand since it only takes a few seconds to connect and external drive to any laptop or desktop computer through the USB port and the data is immediately available. If you’d like that kind of safety, security and convenience for your data needs, then an external drive solution is certainly a great solution. And, today, its a very affordable solution as well.

Louis Rossmann is a straight shooting tech guy who specializes in repair and LCD replacement.  Contact him through his Rossman Group website.

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