In this article, we’ll be exploring all of the different external hard drives on the market. In our usual fashion, we have broken this article down into several sections to help you find the perfect product, based on your needs.
With external hard drives, there are so many different applications, ranging from backups to something you can throw into a bag and be on your way.[contents h2]
Best external hard drive for photos
Keeping memories safe is one of the most important things to some of us. If you love your camera, like me? You’ll know how you can quickly accrue a vast amount of photos that you want to keep without the fear of loss.
There are so many solutions out there for backing up your photos. We suggest that with something so important, they aren’t just stored in one place. These external hard drives have all been chosen for their incredible backup options and extensive safeguarding technology. Here are our top picks:
Best external hard drive is most reliable
Reliability is something that should be considered above all else, but these are the drives that have been built with reliability in mind. Here are our top picks for reliability:
Best external hard drive is best for backup
Backing up data is one of the main reasons storage was created. These are some of the best hard drives on the market that come with functionality to allow for simple, easy to use backup. These are our top picks for backups:
Best external hard drive with cloud access
Some of the external hard drives on the market can tap into the cloud. This allows users to access their files from around the world. These are our top picks for drives that are great for backing up to the cloud:
Best external hard drive with firewire
Firewire allows for high transfer speeds, meaning that devices that are firewire enabled can enjoy transfer speeds of up to 800Mbps! These are our top picks for drives that come with a firewire port:
Best external hard drive with multiple USB ports
If you are connecting multiple devices to one external drive, you can use an external drive with network functionality, but if you want the higher transfer speeds that USB can offer, these are the drives for you. These are our top picks for drives that offer multiple USB ports:
Best external hard drive without ac power
Sometimes you want a device that doesn’t require AC power to function. Quite a few of the products on the market require additional power from an external source. Drives that don’t need external power sources are often smaller drivers in the 2.5″ form factor. These are our top picks:
Best external hard drive with fan
If you plan on using your hard drive thoroughly, then it might be worth considering an option that comes with a fan installed to ensure everything is kept cool during operation. These are our top picks:
Best external hard drive with USB c
With the new USB format released, quite a few companies are making the leap away from the USB 2.0 / 3.0 format. This means it might be worth future proofing with USB C. These are our top picks for drives that come with USB C:
Best external hard drive with ethernet
If you want to connect your hard drive to a network, then these drives are for you. With a NAS (Network Attached Storage) you can access data anywhere on the network, and these can even be routed through external networks to access your data elsewhere. These are our top picks for drives that come with ethernet ports:
Best external hard drive with encryption
Storing sensitive information on your external hard drive? These drives feature encryption, meaning they require a password to unlock them. Perfect for business users, or simply those who want to keep people off your data. These are our top drives if you want to keep that data safe:
Best external hard drive with cloud backup
These external drives can connect to the internet, and then backup the local data onto a cloud location. This means that your data will always be safe, these are our top picks:
Best external hard drive with Thunderbolt
For those who love their Apple products, you will know that sometimes the market doesn’t always cater for you. But these external hard drives come with all the Thunderbolt connectivity you could ever want:
Best external hard drive with sd card slot
Oddly enough, sometimes external hard drives do come with additional ways to add storage. This can be in the form of an SD card, or a USB port for USB flash devices. These are some of the drives that the market has to offer.
Are external hard drives easy to use
One of the questions we get asked quite a bit is how easy an external hard drive is to use? In truth, they work in the same way as your internal hard drive, except, you have to plug them in with a cable.
Are external hard drives the same as internal
Yes. Except for an enclosure is used to aid in connectivity.
Are external hard drives as fast as internal
No, and Yes. Depending on the interface that is being used the transfer speeds will be limited to the connection type. For example, an internal drive is connected via SATA which has a huge amount of bandwidth. USB, on the other hand, doesn’t offer the same speed!
Are external hard drives universal
Are external hard drives compatible with ps3
Yes, but you need to format the drive to FAT32.
Are external hard drives compatible with ps4
Yes, but you can’t install games onto them. We also recommend formatting the drive to FAT32.
Are external hard drives compatible with Xbox one
Yes, and you can install all of your games!
Are external hard drives compatible with Xbox 360
Yes, but you cannot install any games onto the external hard drive. But you can watch all of your films and play music straight from the device.
Are external hard drives allowed on planes
Yes, however, for security sakes we recommend placing it in your carry on luggage near your laptop.
Are external hard drives good for gaming
On consoles, there are several studies that indicate that hard drives load games faster. However, if you are a PC gamer we recommend sticking to internal hard drives!
What to do when external hard drives fail
If your drive fails, we recommend removing it from the enclosure and trying it withing a computer. This can remove a faulty enclosure from the equation.
What to do when your computer crashes when external hard drive plugged in
If your computer is crashing when the drive is plugged in, there could be a problem with the drive itself and not your computer. But we recommend trying it on a different computer, and again, remove the drive from the enclosure.