Portable Hard Drive Reviews
When it comes to portable hard drives, USB wins with its 100-percent penteration in laptop and desktop market. USB 3.0
dramatically improves bandwidth and for the first time offers several times more speed than what the latest crop of 2.5" hard drives can match. This category is currently dominated by USB 3.0 drives from LaCie, Seagate, Toshiba and Western Digital.
As of this writing, the largest drive you can get is 2TB
and the fastest is close to 110MB/s. And none of the drives requires auxiliary power (usually from another USB cable) if you plug them into a USB 3.0 port.
Interestingly, Western Digital ships their drives in a unique package in that their drives skip the USB-to-SATA bridge
and go with native USB interface. This has two advantages: reducing the physical size of the enclosure and lowering latency associated with the bridge. Seagate, on the other hand, embraces modular interfaces
so you can easily swap between USB, FireWire and Thunderbolt for your drives. This inherently allows for zero-hassle upgrading but at the same time makes the enclosure larger than the others.
ioSafe Rugged Portable
June 2011With its combination of ease of use, portability and great speeds (thanks to its use of a 7200rpm hard drive), the ioSafe Rugged Portable drive is a no-brainer choice for anyone who is "risk adverse" when it comes to their data.
Western Digital My Passport Essential SE
May 2011While the My Passport Essential SE USB 3.0 is not the fastest (with its 5200-rpm drive), it should satisfy most people need for portable storage and at the same time boasts both waifish dimensions and massive capacity.
Seagate GoFlex Slim
April 2011From performance to form factor, GoFlex Slim is a significant upgrade from previous models - only limited by its capacity. If 320GB of blazing fast 7200-rpm speed is enough room for you, the Slim is what you want.
LaCie Rikiki USB 3.0
February 2011LaCie Rikiki USB 3.0 still posts some pretty decent numbers despite of its 5400-rpm drive. It is for those who are looking for something wrapped up in a small package that is both sexy and speedy.
Seagate FreeAgent GoFlex Portable
November 2010GoFlex Portable line does exactly what it claims to do: simple, painless upgradeability all backed by a reasonable price. With minimum effort, you can customize any size drive's interface to suit your changing needs.
Iomega eGo USB 3.0
October 2010Iomega eGo USB 3.0 certainly is more robust than most portable drives, yet it also has a stylish good looks that leaves most looking like ugly ducklings in comparison. Its weakest link however is its rather slow 5400-rpm drive.
Lenovo ThinkPad Secure
March 2009Built with a focus on security and durability, ThinkPad USB Secure Drive comes highly recommend for home and corporate users, who like their data secure and encased in Lenovo's trademark durable soft touch rubber paint.
Apricorn Aegis Bio
January 2008While the Aegis Bio has a lot of strong points, issues with peripheral features like the length of the connection cable, the software and the overall price mean this drive doesn't have enough to set it apart from the rest of the pack.