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Thread: Need advice on best type of external hard drive to go for...

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    Red face Need advice on best type of external hard drive to go for...

    Hi all,

    I need to reinstall my operating system and as a result I need to back up everything on my laptop that I want to keep.

    Can you please give me some advice on what is the best model to go for based on the following:

    • I'm looking for something that'll hold a lot (750GB-1TB), I intend to use it regularly and constantly add to it
    • Firewire 800 for fast transfers (or 400)
    • Doesn't need to be portable
    • Good all round reliability
    • Good warranty


    Any help is greatly appreciated, thanks for taking the time to read this!

    Niall

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    Senior Member watercooled's Avatar
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    Re: Need advice on best type of external hard drive to go for...

    WD Mybook drives are good, but are expensive. For example, the Mybook Home Edition has USB, Firewire 400 and eSATA http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/1TB-W...nal-Hard-Drive for a better value drive, consider a Maxtor OneTouch 4 Plus http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/1Tb-M...2-External-HDD they are both 1TB drives but the Maxtor is £30 cheaper, but at the cost of no Firewire/eSATA. I would suggest buying the WD if you can/will use eSATA as it is very fast. As far as I know Firewire isn't that much faster than USB so if you can't use eSATA, go for the Maxtor.
    Hope this helps

    Let me know if these drives aren't suitable and I'll try to help.

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    Smile Re: Need advice on best type of external hard drive to go for...

    Quote Originally Posted by watercooled View Post
    WD Mybook drives are good, but are expensive. For example, the Mybook Home Edition has USB, Firewire 400 and eSATA http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/1TB-W...nal-Hard-Drive for a better value drive, consider a Maxtor OneTouch 4 Plus http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/1Tb-M...2-External-HDD they are both 1TB drives but the Maxtor is £30 cheaper, but at the cost of no Firewire/eSATA. I would suggest buying the WD if you can/will use eSATA as it is very fast. As far as I know Firewire isn't that much faster than USB so if you can't use eSATA, go for the Maxtor.
    Hope this helps

    Let me know if these drives aren't suitable and I'll try to help.
    Thanks for the suggestion watercooled.

    I've been reading different opinions online and it seems one of the best available is the WD My Book Studio Edition 1TB, it appears to have everything I'm looking for. The only problem is that I think my brother once bought this product and had to return it as his PC (as well my laptop and PS3) would not detect it. It may have been faulty, but I'm wondering if maybe it was incompatible with all three, what do you think? If it was faulty then it leaves me less trustful of Western Digital, even though they are often hailed as one of the best brands (it was bought in a store and not from WD themselves, is that a factor?). Also, at the risk of sounding shallow it got 3 (out of 5) stars from 44 votes on Amazon, what do you make of that?

    According to this Firewire is considerably faster than USB. I own a Dell XPS M1710, it has a Firewire port but does that mean it's enabled for Firewire 800? I don't really need to go as fast as eSATA and can even live without Firewire if I have to.

    What about this Fujitsu Siemens 1TB USB 2.0? It hasn't got Firewire or eSATA though.

    Niall

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    Re: Need advice on best type of external hard drive to go for...

    As far as I know, the only difference between the home edition and the studio edition is the studio also has Firewire 800. Firewire 800 uses a different connector to Firewire 400, and from what I've read about your laptop, it has 400 and not 800 so I'd say go for the home edition as it is cheaper and will perform equally with your computer. It is likely that the one you had to return was either faulty or was damaged somehow before you bought it. I'm not too sure what to make of Amazon ratings, as I don't shop there myself but I do beleive WD MyBook drives are very good products. I haven't read any reviews about the Fujitsu Siemens drive so I wouldn't know but if you are happy with USB alone, go for the Maxtor.

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    Smile Re: Need advice on best type of external hard drive to go for...

    Quote Originally Posted by watercooled View Post
    As far as I know, the only difference between the home edition and the studio edition is the studio also has Firewire 800. Firewire 800 uses a different connector to Firewire 400, and from what I've read about your laptop, it has 400 and not 800 so I'd say go for the home edition as it is cheaper and will perform equally with your computer. It is likely that the one you had to return was either faulty or was damaged somehow before you bought it. I'm not too sure what to make of Amazon ratings, as I don't shop there myself but I do beleive WD MyBook drives are very good products. I haven't read any reviews about the Fujitsu Siemens drive so I wouldn't know but if you are happy with USB alone, go for the Maxtor.
    I think I'll go for the Home Edition, can you answer a few questions for me first though:

    1. Is it possble to use some sort of external peripheral to enable eSATA (or Firewire 800) on my laptop?
    2. I read this review on it and it notes on of the pros as being Triple Interface, what does that mean (I can't fnd it in the actual review)?
    3. In the same review another pro is Great Software, yet according to the first set of user reviews (I never read past the first page of them) the software is terrible, what do you think personally?

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    Re: Need advice on best type of external hard drive to go for...

    1. You can get expresscard (the laptop equivalent of PCI-E) eSATA and firewire 800 cards. You slot it into the slot at the side of your laptop. I'd recommend eSATA over firewire 800. Example: http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/Lycom...rt-ExpressCard

    2. Triple interface - USB 2.0, Firewire 400, eSATA.

    3. With an external hard drive, I wouldn't consider the software to be important - lots come with none. As long as it comes with the firewire drivers (it does) I wouldn't worry.

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    Re: Need advice on best type of external hard drive to go for...

    I'm going to go with the MyBook Home Edition based on what you've told me.

    I'm looking to see which online I can get the best deal from and LambdaTek seem very reasonable at £114.67. I don't see any mention of warranty though. Am I missing something or is it just not included?

    If it isn't included then I'll go with either Scan or Dabs.

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    Unhappy Re: Need advice on best type of external hard drive to go for...

    I've just placed an order with scan.co.uk for the WD 1TB Home Edition (came in at £139.74) but I have received an invoice. Granted, it was ordered about 20 minutes ago but usually when I order online the invoice comes within 1 minute. When I try to track my parcel the invoice number (given in the order confirmation page) isn't recognised. I paid through Paypal.

    What do you think?


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