The Best High-capacity External Hard Drives To Buy

Any portable hard drive, SSD, or flash drive will allow you to store, transport, and back up your files. Obtaining the best external hard drive or external solid-state drive for your specific needs is essential. A portable hard drive or solid-state drive (SSD) is an all-purpose storage device, a travel-friendly digital wallet that can carry large files (or many small ones) between PCs, Macs, and mobile devices, back up irreplaceable data, offload from a DSLR or drone while in the field, and more.

But with dozens of external storage options available, how do you determine which one to purchase? Should you choose a faster, more durable, and more expensive external SSD over a portable hard drive with relatively fragile spinning platters and an actuator arm? Or, would a slower, larger, and significantly less costly portable hard drive suffice for your storage needs?

This page contains our specific recommendations for the best portable SSDs and hard drives, based on our testing and reviews of dozens of external drives as they become available.

Whether you need the drive to work, school, or home, there are a few considerations before we get to the recommendations. Consider how durable your drive must be, how much storage space you’ll need, and where you’ll be able to connect it. A super-fast drive at home is useless if it cannot be plugged in at work or school. And you may not want to pay for additional speed if the ports where you use the drive the most are slow and outdated.

Our Top Picks

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Choosing the Ideal External Drive or SSD

Consider the following when shopping for an external drive or solid-state drive:

  • SSD or portable hard drive? Spinning platter drives are very affordable, with 1TB models frequently selling for less than $50 (£40). However, they are significantly slower and less durable than solid-state drives. If you do not require terabytes of storage and frequently travel with your drive, investing in a portable SSD is worthwhile. A portable SSD will also read and write large amounts of data significantly faster. However, suppose you need colossal amounts of external storage. In that case, a hard drive is typically the better option, as multi-terabyte external SSDs cost several hundred dollars, whereas 4TB portable hard drives can be purchased for less than $100 (£100).
  • Don’t Rely Solely on a Portable Hard Drive Backup. Because portable hard drives are composed of spinning glass or metal platters, they are a poor choice for your primary data backup, especially if they are portable. Here, portable SSDs are superior, but you should still back up your irreplaceable data on a desktop drive and in the cloud. Because hardware failure is always possible, portable drives are frequently small enough to be misplaced or forgotten.
  • Creating your portable SSD will save you money. You can purchase an external SSD enclosure and use an old M.2 drive you may have to lie around from a previous laptop or desktop upgrade, or you can find one on sale. Here, we explain how to construct your external SSD. A recent Silverstone Raven SSD enclosure is compatible with SATA and NVMe drives. If you choose this model, you will have significantly more drive options, and you can upgrade to a faster drive in the future.

The Best High-capacity External Hard Drives To Buy

In 2022, there will be external hard disks from hundreds of brands and nearly a thousand devices. Consequently, selecting the correct one can become a daunting task. Do not become confused. This article reviews the eleven best external hard drives currently available. You can choose whichever one best suits your needs.

1. Best overall: Western Digital My Book

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If you’re addicted to downloading videos and purchasing every game available online, you will likely need inexpensive, capacious storage to house everything. The 8TB Western Digital My Book ($249.99) can store thousands of hours of video or millions of MP3s or images. It is compatible with current and older Macs and Windows PCs, which is a plus as USB standards evolve. It is a shoo-in as our latest Editors’ Choice for desktop external hard drives due to its excellent capacity, price, and performance combination.

Most of us require a large repository for our data files, such as the tens of thousands or millions of photographs we’ve taken over the years, the music files we’ve collected, and the movies we’ve downloaded but have yet to watch. In this regard, the 8TB Western Digital My Book is an excellent choice, as its storage capacity is sufficient to last for years. It is more versatile than the Innov8, the only other 8TB drive we’ve tested in the mainstream market. And it is a better value than the Seagate Backup Plus thanks to a more effective capacity mechanism, a lower price per gigabyte, and a more extended warranty. We have no hesitation in designating the My Book as our most recent Editors’ Choice for external desktop hard drives.

Key Features
  • Massive capacity, up to 18TB capacity (1 1TB = one trillion bytes. Actual user capacity may be less depending on the operating environment.)
  • Includes software for device management and backup with password protection (Download and installation required. Terms and conditions apply. User account registration may be required.)
  • 256-bit AES hardware encryption
  • SuperSpeed USB (5 Gbps); USB 2.0 compatible
PROS
  • Comes in a variety of large capacities.
  • Three-year warranty.
CONS
  • Requires external power adapter.

2. Best Budget: Seagate Ultra Touch HDD 2TB External Hard Drive

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Seagate’s Backup Plus Ultra Touch external hard drives add a touch of elegance to a market saturated with plastic-encased storage devices. This portable drive ($89.99 for the 2TB model reviewed here) has a unique texture in mobile technology. 

It is covered with a woven fabric that makes it feel comfortable and familiar in hand. In addition, the Ultra Touch is password-protectable, and your data is encrypted with 256-bit AES hardware encryption so that you can rest easy. 

Overall, this drive is an excellent value for Windows and Mac users, distinguishing itself in a category that has long since reached commodity status.

Unsurprisingly, the performance of the 2TB Ultra Touch drive is comparable to that of any other similarly constructed 5,400rpm device from a major manufacturer. The specific benchmark results from PC Labs are provided below, but you’ll notice that the scores for each device fall within a narrow range. 

Seagate’s Backup Plus Ultra Touch portable drive is an excellent option for everyday backups and security-first applications, combining outstanding performance and robust encryption. Plus, a fabric coat adds appeal.

Key Features
  • SECURITY FIRST: Securely and easily manage photos, videos, movies, and more with password activated hardware encryption
  • STYLISH & SPACIOUS: Stylish tone-on-tone fabric design works seamlessly with USB-C and USB 3.0 laptops and PCs
  • PLUG & PLAY: The perfect external hard drive for Windows or Mac, simply back up files with a single click or schedule automatic daily, weekly, or monthly backups (Reformatting may be required for use with Time Machine)
  • MYLIO & ADOBE: Edit, manage, and share photos with a 1-yr. complimentary subscription to Mylio Create and a 4-mo. membership to Adobe Creative Cloud Photography plan (must redeem within 1-yr. of drive registration; not available in China)
PROS
  • Fabric-covered enclosure.
  • Small and light.
  • Seagate Toolkit provides handy backup/recover functions, as well as mirroring.
  • Data protected by password and AES-256 hardware encryption.
CONS
  • Fabric cover is a bit slippery to grip.
  • Seagate Toolkit a separate download.

3. Best High-capacity External Hard Drive: SAMSUNG T7 Shield 2TB Portable SSD

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Samsung’s T7 Shield is an incremental improvement over earlier models but features a newer, faster flash. Moreover, it has been optimized to maintain high sequential write speeds, which is crucial for external drives, and has been ruggedized for use in harsh, outdoor environments. It has an IP65 rating for dust and water resistance, and Samsung claims that it can withstand drops of up to three meters (9 feet, 10 inches).

Today, faster, more expensive 20 Gbps drives are available, and USB4 drives that are even faster are on the horizon. But at this time, the T7 Shield’s write consistency and reasonable price make it ideal for photographers and videographers, especially those constantly moving.

Key Features
  • Digital Storage Capacity: 2 TB
  • Hard Disk Interface: USB 3.2
  • RUGGED DURABILITY
  • KEEP COOL AT HIGH SPEED
  • MIGHTY TOUGH
  • COMPATIBLE WITH YOUR DEVICES
  • DURABLE YET STYLISH
PROS
  • Very consistent write performance
  • Durable enclosure
  • Good support, including software
  • 2TB capacity option
CONS
  • Limited to 10 Gbps
  • Doesn’t bring much new to the table

4. Best External Hard Drive: WD 5TB Portable External Hard Drive

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If you’re looking for a new external hard drive, WD’s My Passport is an outstanding option. With a proven track record, password protection, and storage capacities of up to 5TB, it is equipped to store and protect a substantial amount of your data, if not all of it.

As prices on the street have begun to fall, it has become more affordable than ever. It has an attractive appearance and a generous 3-year warranty. In addition, it offers superior AES 256-bit hardware encryption password protection to safeguard your data from prying eyes.

Those looking to spend less on a portable hard drive and who don’t require 5TB of storage should also consider Seagate’s Backup Plus Ultra, which includes a good software suite, AES 256-bit encryption, and USB-A and USB-C adapter support.

Key Features
  • Designed for Mac
  • Software for device management and backup with password protection. (Download and installation required. Terms and conditions apply. User account registration may be required.)
  • 256-bit AES hardware encryption
  • SuperSpeed USB port (5Gbps); USB 2.0 compatible
  • 3-year limited warranty
PROS
  • Competitively priced
  • AES 256-bit hardware encryption
  • Solid software suite
  • 3-year warranty
CONS
  • Dated Micro USB connection
  • Slides around on your desk

5. Best Professional-grade Portable USB 20 Gbps SSD: SanDisk 1TB Extreme PRO Portable SSD V2 with Case

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SanDisk’s Extreme Pro v2 is designed for the professional market and is priced accordingly. It features a secure, durable construction. When paired with modern systems that fully support its USB 20 Gbps connection, it offers file transfer speeds comparable to those of its Thunderbolt 3-based competition. Extreme Pro v2 has a WD SN730E PCIe 3.0 x4 M.2 NVMe SSD and an ASMedia ASM2364 USB Gen 2×2 bridge chip.

This is safeguarded by a rigid aluminum chassis covered in silicone that absorbs impact. Even the hard drive is IP55 water and dust-resistant. It is quick, well-designed, and secure, featuring AES 256-bit full-disk encryption and password protection for those who must keep their data hidden from prying eyes.

If you like the idea of a 20 Gbps SSD but cannot afford SanDisk’s Pro v2 drive, Kingston’s XS2000 is not as fast, particularly under sustained workloads. However, the 1TB capacity is priced at roughly $50 less.

Key Features
  • SanDisk 1TB Extreme PRO Portable USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C External SSD (V2) – USB-C to USB-C Cable – USB-C to USB-A Adapter – Safety Guide – SanDisk 5 Year Limited Warranty – Slinger Hard Drive Case
  • 1TB Storage Capacity
  • Fast and Dependable
  • Work Faster and Longer
  • Travel Worry-Free
PROS
  • Hardware-based AES 256-bit encryption and password protection
  • Responsive USB 3.2 Gen 2x2 performance
  • Weather-resistant rugged design
  • 5-year warranty
CONS
  • Short cables for desktop use
  • Expensive

6. The Best Rugged Portable Hard Drive: LaCie Rugged Raid Pro 4TB External Hard Drive

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Despite being on the pricier side, LaCie’s Rugged RAID Pro is not overpriced when its market position and data redundancy are considered. LaCie includes a free one-month subscription to all Adobe apps, a $79.49 (£61) value. Moreover, the drive consists of three years of complementary data recovery protection. Occasionally, this service can cost thousands of dollars.

You should check out this model if you are a creative professional looking for an external HDD. There are few rivals: Most other HDD solutions are significantly more extensive, and flash-based SSDs do not yet offer comparable capacity or value-adds. The LaCie Rugged RAID Pro 4TB’s unique features and accessories make it a convenient and versatile travel companion.

Key Features
  • Rugged Raid Pro offers the best of all worlds raid versatility, an integrated SD card reader for on the spot transfers, and extreme drop, dust, and water resistance
  • Shuttle large scale projects with 4TB of capacity, and directly ingest files with fast speeds of upto 250MB/s
  • This portable external hard drive makes raid 0/1 configuration easy with the step by step wizard, and it works seamlessly with Thunderbolt 3, USB C, and USB 3.0
  • Take advantage of a one month complimentary membership to Adobe Creative Cloud All Apps Plan for access to awesome photo and video editing apps
PROS
  • Solid sequential performance
  • Rugged Build
  • Data recovery service free within the warranty period
  • Easy-to-use and effective software suite
CONS
  • Uses wall power for systems without TB3 / USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type C
  • Expensive

7. Most Conveniently Secure Portable SSD: Samsung MU-PC500K/WW 500GB T7 Touch

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Samsung’s T7 Touch is an innovative portable SSD that combines USB 3.2 Gen 2 performance with AES 256-bit hardware security that can be unlocked with the touch of a finger. The fingerprint scanner is the most convenient way to access your data that we have yet to discover. The design is elegant and of a higher quality than that of a typical portable drive. The aluminum construction is solid, and various color options are available to suit your unique taste.

G-recent Technology’s ArmorLock drive gives Samsung a run for its secure storage money by using an app and key that are stored on your Android or iOS phone to unlock your drive. It may be less convenient than swiping your finger across a sensor on your external SSD, but it may be more secure.

Key Features
  • Digital Storage Capacity: 500 GB
  • Hard Disk Interface: USB 3.2
  • Connectivity Technology: USB
  • Hard Disk Form Factor: 2.5 Inches
  • Color: Black
  • Hard Disk Size: 500 GB
  • Read Speed: 1050 Megabytes Per Second
  • Cache Size: 500
PROS
  • AES 256-bit hardware encryption
  • Built-in fingerprint scanner
  • Attractive aesthetics
  • Available in capacities up to 2TB
  • 18-inch USB-A and USB-C cables
CONS
  • 3-year warranty
  • Small write cache

8. Best Thunderbolt 3 Portable SSD: Samsung X5 Portable SSD

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Powered by an OEM variant of a Samsung 970 EVO and an Alpine Ridge Thunderbolt 3-to-PCIe bridge, the Samsung X5 is the fastest portable Thunderbolt 3 SSD we’ve tested. In addition to accelerating your workflow, it comes with an additional layer of AES 256-bit hardware-based encryption and password protection for those who must meet compliance requirements. The three-year warranty is insufficient for the professional market, and we wish the company offered additional color options similar to the T5 and T7 portable SSDs.

Key Features
  • First-ever NVMe-based portable SSD from Samsung featuring Thunderbolt 3 technology
  • Sequential read and write performance levels of up to 2,800MB/s and 2,300MB/s respectively
  • Features a full metal body with glossy top and non-slip bottom mat
  • Shock-resistant internal frame make X5 withstands drops of up to 2 meters
  • Compatible devices: Television
PROS
  • Fast Thunderbolt 3
  • Sequential read and write performance
  • Full hardware-based encryption
  • Attractive design
CONS
  • Slow write speed after write cache fills
  • Lacks AES hardware encryption or IP rating

9. Best Budget Thunderbolt 3 External SSD: Sabrent Rocket Thunderbolt 3 External SSD

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Using QLC NAND, the Rocket XTRM-Q from Sabrent aims to undercut most of its TLC-based competition while still delivering storage functionality. The Rocket XRTM-Q is not only available in large capacities, but it is also extremely fast, performing well on both Thunderbolt 3 and USB hosts.

The Rocket XTRM-Q is an excellent choice if you intend to use it with multiple devices and across various platforms. It is surprisingly inexpensive at lower capacities, undercutting the majority of other TB3 drives. And if you’re in the market for something as dense as the Rocket XTRM-Q from Sabrent, there isn’t much competition for you right now.

Although it is expensive at 8TB and the QLC NAND flash can be slow at times, the Rocket XTRM-competitive Q’s pricing, quick performance, and attractive, durable design make it one of the best portable SSDs on the market.

Key Features
  • AUTOMATICALLY detects USB or Thunderbolt 3 connections.
  • THUNDERBOLT 3 mode transfer speed up to 2700 MB/s (Actual performance varies by capacities, host device, user applications, and other factors). USB mode transfer speed up to 900 MB/s.
  • SOLID ALUMINUM construction for durability and maximum heat dissipation. INTEGRATED temperature and health monitoring system.
  • INTEGRATED temperature and health monitoring system.
  • PLUG & PLAY, no drivers and no external power supply needed.
PROS
  • Affordable
  • USB and Thunderbolt 3 compatibility
CONS
  • Slow write speed after write cache fills
  • Lacks AES hardware encryption or IP rating

10. Best High-Capacity Thunderbolt 3 External SSD: SABRENT Rocket XTRM-Q 16TB External Aluminum SSD

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With its most recent SSDs, Sabrent has surpassed the industry’s leaders in terms of flash speed and storage capacity. When we first reviewed Sabrent’s 8TB Rocket XTRM-Q, we believed that 8TB of flash storage was niche and extreme enough for most prosumers and enthusiasts. However, the company is now doubling and pushing capacity to new heights with its 16TB model.

The new variant doubles the storage capacity to 16TB, but its more prominent form factor and higher power requirements make it less portable than the 8TB model. While the original XTRM-Q contained a single Rocket Q M.2 NVMe SSD, the new 16TB model includes two behind a slightly different Thunderbolt 3 bridge, providing a massive amount of flash storage and potentially bus-saturating performance for those who require it. The 16TB Rocket XTRM-Q is not only one of the highest-capacity storage devices we’ve tested but also one of the most expensive due to its Intel Optane-like price of $2,899.99. Nothing else comes close to matching its capacity and performance at this price. But if you have a smaller budget and require USB support in addition to Thunderbolt, one of the lower-capacity XTRM-Q drives will better serve your needs.

Key Features
  • Capacities: 16TB
  • Drive Type: SSD
  • Transfer Protocol: Thunderbolt 3
  • Sequential Reads: 2,800MBps
  • Warranty: 3 Years
PROS
  • Highest-capacity Thunderbolt 3 SSD
  • Competitive performance
  • Lengthy included Thunderbolt 3 cable
CONS
  • Short 3-year warranty for the price
  • Slow write speed after write cache fills
  • Runs warm, but within spec
  • No USB support

How to choose an external hard drive

When learning to choose an external hard drive, you must consider what you intend to do with the drive, how quickly you need to access the drive, and how much data you need to store on it. There are external hard drives with ample physical protection against the elements, external SSDs that provide blazing-fast data transfer, and enormous external hard drives more suitable for long-term backups. Often, the best external drives meet the majority of these criteria.

If it’s unclear what type of external hard drive you need, or if you need something that can do a little bit of everything, here are more in-depth guidelines for selecting an external drive.

Storage capacity

Storage space is arguably the most critical factor when purchasing an external drive. Buying a high-speed device with encryption and remote access is useless if it cannot store all of your data. You also do not want to overpay for a drive that you will never come close to filling.

What is the optimal external hard drive size? That is up to you.

A USB flash drive, such as the Corsair Survivor Stealth, could be helpful if you need a device for transferring documents, photos, or other media from one device to another or if you need a few tens of gigabytes of space to transfer files from system to system. They cost only $25 and provide 64GB of storage, sufficient for sharing tens of thousands of photos or several hundred videos between devices.

Western Digital’s My Passport Ultra is an excellent drive with decent performance and multiple terabyte capacities if you need something with a few terabytes of storage but are not overly concerned about speed. It is perfect for serving as a longer-term backup for your photos and videos or transferring thousands of them between devices.

Obtain the Western Digital My Book Duo if you require the maximum storage space. It is more of a NAS than an external hard drive, but with tens of terabytes of storage space, it has more than enough space for anything.

SSD vs. HDD

There are two types of external drives: HDDs and SSDs. SSDs are fundamentally faster than HDDs, even though they perform various tasks differently. They are also more expensive.

HDDs (hard drive disks) use spinning magnetic disks to store data. Read/write heads modify the data as necessary, resulting in their signature spinning sounds. Solid-state drives (SSDs) utilize tiny gate transistors in cells that can turn on or off in response to electric pulses. No moving parts are present, hence the name.

In many cases, SSDs are significantly faster than HDDs but are very expensive. HDDs are less costly but more extensive, slower, and more susceptible to damage. SSDs, such as the outstanding Samsung T5, offer incredible speed and durability for external hard drives.

Transfer speed

Not always are the most significant external hard drives the best drives available for purchase. Transfer speed is also critical. If you frequently transfer files to and from a large drive, you do not want to wait forever for the transfer to complete.

The speed of your hard drive is determined primarily by its underlying storage technology and connector.

Although some drives are faster, SSDs can typically process data faster than HDDs. External SSDs generally are more expensive and have less storage capacity than comparable HDDs. You do not need to choose between the two, as larger SSDs are available for a premium price.

A number of standard options are available regarding the connection between your external drive and your computer or mobile device. The majority of modern drives use a USB interface, but the most recent generations have notable differences, most notably in terms of transfer speed.

USB 2.0 is an outdated standard, and you should avoid using it for anything other than infrequently transferring small files, as its maximum transfer speed is only 480Mbps. On PCs, the port is typically not color-coded.

Beyond 2.0, USB connections can become somewhat confusing. There may be specifications listed as USB 3.0, USB 3.1 Gen 1, and USB 3.2 Gen 1. All three offer speeds of up to 5Gbps and are typically designated by the color blue. Similarly, USB 3.1 Gen2 and USB 3.2 Gen2 are identical, are color-coded red, and offer 10Gbps data transfer speeds.

USB 3.2, or 3.2 22, offers speeds of up to 20Gbps.

USB-A is the most common (read: archaic) connector type, featuring a rectangular box and a connection that can only be made with the correct orientation. USB-C is newer, more compact, and rounded, with a reversible connector. Attached to this port is the DisplayPort video output protocol. Some USB-C connectors operate with the Thunderbolt 3 or Thunderbolt 4 protocol at transfer speeds of up to 40Gbps.

Some older devices use alternative connectors such as eSATA and Firewire, but they should be avoided due to their diminished utility.

It would help if you had a Thunderbolt NVMe SSD, such as the Samsung X5, for the quickest external drive transfer speeds possible.

Portability and durability

If all you need is an external hard drive for storing backups at home, network-attached storage (NAS) devices may be a better option. Typically, they exist as a stand-alone, wired device on your local network and contain multiple drives and storage modes. Only Promise Technology, QNAP, and Synology are NAS-device-specialized manufacturers.

However, portability is essential if you want to carry your drive when you are out and about. It must be lightweight and compact to be stored in a pocket or bag for immediate access. Additionally, you should prefer one that does not require an external power cable.

The vast majority of external hard drives are lightweight, and some are even miniature, such as the Samsung T5, which offers enormous digital storage capacity despite its diminutive size. SSDs, on the other hand, are typically smaller than their hard drive counterparts due to the absence of stacked magnetic discs.

Durability is another reason to consider an SSD over an HDD. Even though rugged casings frequently protect modern external drives, the two technologies have very different physical compositions. SSDs are more resistant to drop damage than traditional hard drives because they contain no moving parts. As a result, SSDs are considerably more durable.

Security

Encryption is recommended if the data stored on your external drive is sensitive. Numerous drives are compatible with software encryption solutions, which are sufficient for most users.

Those who take data security more seriously should seek a storage device with hardware encryption. If you are highly safety-conscious, you could choose a physical security system, such as the pin-code input on the ApricoBuy at Dellrn Aegis Padlock drive.

Some drives are packaged in sturdy enclosures to prevent physical tampering. The Ironkey flash drives from Kingston do not have the same storage capacity as full-sized drives, but they have a secondary security layer embedded in the printed circuit board (PCB) and dipped in resin. This design makes it difficult for unauthorized individuals to access the memory chips within the drive physically.

Compatibility

External hard drives are typically formatted for a specific operating system out of the box. For instance, an external drive formatted for Windows 10 may experience compatibility issues with MacOS and vice versa. Additionally, some hard drives are formatted exclusively for Linux.

However, this setup is not irreversible. You can reformat or partition a hard drive to give it different capabilities. But if you want to avoid the hassle, ensure that the external drive is compatible with the operating system you intend to use.

Gaming

Want an external drive for mobile gaming or to increase the storage capacity of a console? Your needs may differ slightly from those of the typical user.

Here, SSD speed is even more critical, as a slower drive can lengthen wait times and reduce game responsiveness. Owners of Xbox Series X and S can use the Seagate Expansion Card to emulate its internal storage speed. Other external SSDs are compatible with older Xbox One and Xbox 360 games but not those from the Xbox Series S/X.

Sony PlayStation 5 games can only be played on its internal SSD, whereas PS4 games can be played on an external SSD or HDD. If possible, using an SSD instead of the PS5’s faster USB-C connection is preferable because games load much more quicker on an SSD.

Some models, such as the Silicon Power Armor A60 drive, have built-in cable storage and military-grade protection, which are convenient for mobile users.

Extra features

Despite thoroughly researching the product, you should also consider any additional features before making a purchase.

A warranty extension is a feature you should look for. This can help cover the cost of a new drive if this one fails, and some companies, such as Seagate, offer discounted data recovery packages.

It would help if you also noted the cables are accompanying your hard drive. Some modern smartphones and laptops use USB-C or Thunderbolt 3 connections, but the desired drive may come with a USB-A cable. If so, you can still purchase the drive, but you will also need a different cable or adapter, increasing your total cost.

It’s also good to check out modern drives with cutting-edge capabilities such as USB cable charging and Wi-Fi connectivity.

FAQs

When purchasing an external hard drive, storage capacity — and the cost — is the most critical factor for most buyers. It all depends on how much data you need to back up and how much space you wish to increase.

Hard drives are available in many memory capacities, giving you many options for hard drive capacity. The average capacity of the smallest external hard drives on the market today is 128GB. However, the largest can be as large as 10 TB — a difference of nearly 10,000 percent!

In the absence of physical damage, the average lifespan of an external hard drive is between three and five years, depending on the brand, model, and storage conditions. If you use an external hard drive to back up your data, you should consider replacing it every few years to ensure the security of your data.

The interface speed ranks external hard drives. All modern drives will support either USB 3.0 or USB 3.1 Gen 1. Both standards permit throughputs of up to 5Gbps. Newer storage devices will support USB 3.1 Gen 2, which allows 10 Gbps.

As with any physical device, an external hard drive is susceptible to damage, theft, and hard drive failure. This may encourage you to utilize cloud storage, which uses a cloud service to keep files secure at all times.

Hard drives are composed of magnetic fields, which degrade without use over time. This is one of the primary reasons why new hard drives fail.

SSDs are typically the best option for external drives due to their smaller size, faster speeds, and overall durability. The primary disadvantage of SSDs is that they cost more for the same storage capacity as HDDs. However, as technology advances, SSD prices will continue to decrease.

Conclusion

This guide describes the best External Hard Disk currently available on the market. Choosing the best among them will always be the most challenging task. There are numerous factors to consider, and reviewing each device, and its reviews will take time. The primary objective should be to select one that meets your gaming needs, has ample storage space, and has quick read/write speeds.

If this takes up a small portion of your day, do not fret. Using the preceding list of the best hard disks, it is possible to find your preferred product. You can also refer to the comparison table for a quick overview.

The WD Elements Portable External Drive is currently the best external hard disk on the market. It features a 1 Gbps transfer rate and 2 TB of storage space.



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