12 Best Buy External Hard Drives / Reliable External HDD 2021

12 Best Buy External Hard Drives / Reliable External HDD 2021

12 Best Buy External Hard Drives / Reliable External HDD 2021

Best Buy External Hard Drives 2021

Best Buy External Hard Drives 2021: There are many reasons to consider purchasing an external hard drive. This is the need to back up important data, and the need to finally organize a family archive with photos / videos, and the desire to always have a collection of your favorite films “at hand”, and a “shortage” of free space for games / music recordings, and much more. The best buy external hard drives 2021 are featured in our reviews. The tasks are different, for them there cannot be a universal solution and you have to either choose what is more important for you, or acquire a “park” of specialized external drives.

Which Company External Hard Drive is Better?

As for the manufacturers. Today, only three companies have their own “winchester” business: Seagate, Toshiba and Western Digital. At the same time, they also have rights to some well-known brands. For example, Seagate for LaCie and Maxtor, and WD for G-Drive. All other companies in their development use the HDD of the mentioned three, and in different batches of the same model of their external storage, “hard drives” of any origin can be found.

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How Do I Pick a Reliable External Hard Drive?

Let’s remember the HDD first. Several years ago, the existing magnetic recording technology exhausted its possibilities in terms of further increasing the storage capacity, and now there is an active search for new physical solutions. One of the massively used nowadays is Shingled Magnetic Recording (SMR), which has specific features.

In particular, in the process of storing a very large amount of data on such a disk, over time, a noticeable drop in speed occurs due to buffer overflow. In addition, after the formal completion of the recording, the disk itself continues to perform some internal operations. Moreover, they can be quite long, but they cannot be interrupted. It is practically pointless to recommend searching for models with HDD-PMR / CMR inside, because manufacturers are in no hurry to disclose their respective characteristics.

 

Let’s move on to the best buy external HDD drives themselves. As a first approximation, the whole variety of best buy external hard drives 2021 can be classified according to their suitability for work in the “field” conditions. As a rule, the first does not require its own power supply, but they are built on the basis of a single HDD with a 2.5 “form factor.

 

Obviously, in the second case, the maximum possible capacity is higher, since there are no fundamental restrictions for a desktop device either in size or weight, nor by the number of installed “hard drives.” If portable models can rarely boast a volume of more than 5 TB, then for stationary models it is not the limit and 24 TB. By the way, we note that now are not the best times to purchase external drives of large capacity.

 

Apart from the design options and the degree of exclusivity of the materials used, both designs may differ in the capabilities of the pre-installed software. In the simplest case, external disks contain only software for recovering deleted information. There is no limit to perfection, but you will have to pay extra for the service.

 

Another important nuance when choosing a hard drive is the interface for connecting a gadget… In the vast majority of modern reliable external hard drives, this function is performed by the third-generation universal serial bus.

Keep in mind that there is no point in chasing USB 3.2 Gen.2 support, since the high-speed capabilities of the Gen.1 protocol are enough for any HDD. Another thing is USB Type-C. For some Apple technology owners, the Thunderbolt interface is much more relevant. Such offers also exist (in particular from the already mentioned brand LaCie). And if someone is not allowed to sleep with extra wires, he can pay attention to best buy external hard drives 2021 with integrated Wi-Fi. Finally, it is worth reassuring the owners of not the most “fresh” laptops and personal computers. Any device with a USB 3. * port is compliant with the second revision of the specification for that interface. Unless you have to get a Y-cable,

 

We cannot categorize the models in our review by capacity (“Best 1TB external hard drives”, “Best 2TB external hard drives”, etc.). Each hard disk comes with a different memory capacity, you can choose the required modification yourself.

 

Best Portable External Hard Drives / HDD

Toshiba Canvio Basics

Toshiba Canvio Basics opens our review of the best external hard drives / hdd of 2021. Toshiba’s Canvio Basics lineup is responsible for entry-level external storage. Practical, but not impressive with a spectacular appearance and not oriented to use in automatic backup systems of important information. Conveniently transferring large files, storing home photos and video archives, movies for viewing on the go – this is a list of typical applications for Canvio Basics portable drives.

 

We do not see much sense in purchasing wearable “hard drives” of the minimum size, insofar as terabyte hard drives are literally several dollars more expensive. The purchase of such a “baby” is justified only if you simply never need a more capacious drive. Nevertheless, with the next update of its lines, the manufacturer did not abandon this position, i.e. there is still demand for 500 GB drives.

 

If we talk about Canvio Basics “hard drives” of 1 TB and more, the increased recording density made it possible to significantly reduce their thickness, and for wearable gadgets this change is quite significant.

 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • little weight;
  • non-marking matte case.

Cons
  • short and hard cable;
  • no anti-slip feet.

 

Toshiba Canvio Basics 1 TB

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Toshiba Canvio Basics 2 TB

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Toshiba Canvio Basics 3 TB

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Toshiba Canvio Basics 4 TB

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ADATA HD650 External HDD

The line is a veteran of the external storage market, in the history of which there have been several reincarnations. In the latter, it formally received support for the USB interface specification (3.2 Gen 1 or SuperSpeed). In fact, there were no visible improvements, since the maximum bus transfer rate is limited by the current capabilities of the hard disk. Judging by the reviews of the owners, the company randomly equips its gadgets with “hard drives” of all brands.

 

An important advantage of ADATA best external hard drives is their high security. First of all, from mechanical stress. In the HD650 series, the manufacturer uses a clever three-layer structure: rubber bumpers on the sides of the disc – a polycarbonate honeycomb box – a silicone case. Alas, for the safety of fine mechanics you have to pay with increased weight. For a 2 TB model, the latter is about 200 g. Please note that this protection does not save you from moisture.

 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • good mechanical protection;
  • functional proprietary software;

  • interesting design and nice colors.

Cons
  • solid weight;
  • short and hard cable.

 

ADATA HD650 1 TB

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ADATA HD650 2 TB

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ADATA HD650 4 TB

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Transcend StoreJet 25M3C External Hard Drive

Continuing our roundup of the best Transcend StoreJet 25M3C external hard drives. Since Transcend does not have its own HDD production, the company is forced to use third-party hard drives, creating drives with improved performance on their basis. Sometimes it turns out pretty well. Anyway, the recommended StoreJet 25M3C best external hard drive has won the 2020 Taiwan Excellence Award. The model claims a three-stage protection system and meets the requirements of the MIL-STD-810G standard. Such a drive will endure accidental light blows and shaking without consequences (most likely).

 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • MIL-STD-810G certification;
  • convenient launch of the backup system;

  • removable SATA-USB bridge;

  • quite good speed characteristics.

Cons
  • price.

 

Transcend StoreJet 25M3C 500

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Transcend StoreJet 25M3C 2 TB

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Transcend StoreJet 25M3C 4 TB

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Seagate Expansion Portable Hard Drive

If you don’t like the simplicity of most reliable external hard drives in our review, take a look at this model from Seagate. The recommended device has an original design that combines the accentuated angularity and stylish embossed texture of the case. Moreover, the latter is present on both sides, but for some reason there was no place for the legs on them.

 

As for the “filling”. The manufacturer does not indicate anywhere on the basis of which discs the Expansion line is produced, so its “filling” can be very different. Moreover, Seagate is the leader in the number of absorbed HDD businesses of less successful brands. What pleases in this gadget is the ease of use or replacement of the “hard drive” itself, insofar as the controller of the recommended or best buy external hard drive is made in the form of a separate board. The disadvantage of such a solution (specifically from Seagate) is that it is far from the fastest adapter, besides, the firmware of the latter is not devoid of strange software bugs. In particular, limiting the functionality of the drive when working under Linux.

 

The Expansion line is the simplest in the Seagate lineup. It is not designed for storing particularly valuable information and operating as part of advanced backup systems, but is designed to conveniently expand the available disk space, as its name directly says. The advantages over the competitors are a nice design and a decent buffer size.

 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • removable controller;
  • nice design.

Cons
  • noticeable heating during operation;
  • no legs.

 

Seagate Expansion Portable 500GB

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Seagate Expansion Portable 2 TB

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Seagate Expansion Portable 3 TB

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Seagate Expansion Portable 5 TB

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Western Digital WD Elements Portable HDD

Not every owner of an external drive with preinstalled proprietary software for automatic backup, synchronization and other operations with important data generally uses its service capabilities. If the drive is planned to be purchased, for example, for a home photo and video archive or for a mobile film library, it makes sense to look towards the simplest model lines, one of which is WD Elements Portable. At the moment, two generations can be considered relevant here at once, the “fresher” one in the list below comes first. However, there is not much difference between them. Both have HDDs with SMR recording technology and USB controllers soldered on the board. It is believed that the budget proposals from WD write faster than their direct competitors from the Seagate brand (from the Basic line), but may be slower to read.

 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • acceptable “sagging” of the recording speed;
  • anti-slip feet.

Cons
  • the SATA-USB adapter is soldered on the disk board;
  • quite demanding on food.

 

Western Digital WD Elements 1 TB

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Western Digital WD Elements 2 TB

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Western Digital WD Elements 5 TB

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Western Digital My Passport External HDD

Despite the fact that the design of the updated version of Digital My Passport was clearly worked on, even the bundled cable “matches” the color of the case here (and there are only six options), not everyone will like this external drive.

First, its body appears to be composed of two completely different parts. And secondly, one of them has a glossy surface that perfectly collects fingerprints. If the listed features did not scare you, we will briefly outline the advantages of the model. The rubber feet compensate well for the vibration of a working hard drive and resist slipping. The device comes with three proprietary utilities that allow you to set up automatic backups, protect saved data with encryption and access password, and monitor the status of the disk. Well, the speed of work. Not a record, but decent enough. More than a hundred megabytes per second for both reading and writing. Of course, via the USB3.

 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • six colors;
  • rubber feet;

  • useful bundled software.

Cons
  • part of the case has a glossy surface;
  • thick enough.

 

Western Digital My Passport External 1 TB

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Western Digital My Passport External 2 TB

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Western Digital My Passport External 5 TB

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Seagate Basic External Hard Drive / HDD

The simplest series of best buy external hard drives 2021 from Seagate, budget cousin to the Backup Plus line. Nothing superfluous, maximum emphasis on the usability of the drive. In principle, in the case of Seagate Basic, one can only complain about a very short bundled cable. The device works quite quietly, and heats up moderately. If you do not try to “use” it without taking into account the class (as in one of the negative reviews – with video editing), it will be extremely pleasing.

According to experts, modern affordable Seagate drives (and here there is an ST5000LM000 inside) write slower than competitors and need “rest” after this process is completed. But then they are read faster than others.

 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • good read speed even with strong file fragmentation;
  • low noise level during operation;

  • practical non-marking body.

Cons
  • noticeable drop in write speed when the buffer is full;
  • the SATA-USB bridge is soldered on the board;

  • short complete cable.

 

Seagate Basic External 2 TB

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Seagate Basic External 4 TB

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Toshiba Canvio Ready External Hard Drive

Toshiba Canvio Ready should also be included in the ranking of the best buy external hard drives or reliable external hdd. Despite the fact that the pseudo-embossed dots visible on the images of the device are actually glossy, such a design of the case perfectly masks fingerprints.

In short, Canvio Ready’s appearance is both effective and practical. The developers of the model did not forget about the rubber feet on the bottom. By the way, they not only prevent sliding on smooth surfaces, but also partially dampen the inevitable vibration. Of course, the design of the device provides damping pads for the hard drive, but two levels of compensation are clearly better than one. One of the interesting features of the reliable external HDD drive is support for improved power management.

The essence of the “chip” is to stop the rotation of the HDD platters during prolonged inactivity, and the “improvement” consists in the ability to set the permissible downtime, and in a very wide range. It is noteworthy that this has almost no effect on the overall performance.

 

Another “plus” in favor of choosing this particular drive model is support for Ramp Load technology. With moderate shocks and shocks, your data is safe.

 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • stylish and rational design;
  • the possibility of improved power management;

  • Ramp Load technology support.

Cons
  • with some controllers, USB2 may not work with a single port connection.

 

Toshiba Canvio Slim II 1 TB

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Toshiba Canvio Slim 2TB

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Toshiba Canvio Advance 3TB

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ADATA HD330 External Hard Drive

If you’re looking for a reliable external HDD / hard drive, check out the ADATA HD330. The blows of fate to the hard disk are contraindicated, especially those received during operation. If you want to reduce the likelihood of its failure due to accidental shock, look for rugged external storage models. It seems to us that ADATA came closest to the best combination of price, reliability and acceptable weight and dimensions with its line of HD330 hard drives.

Its representatives are only a little more expensive than ordinary portable drives. The silicone case plays the role of a kind of damper, damping part of the force impulse and giving time for the electronics to operate, which parks the head according to the signals of special sensors. Moreover, the thickness of the entire device is about 16 millimeters, and its weight is less than two hundred grams.

 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • protection against mechanical stress with good ergonomics;
  • multifunctional software;

  • good read / write speed.

Cons
  • short cable.

 

ADATA HD330 External 2TB

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ADATA HD330 External 4TB

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Silicon Power Stream S03 External HDD

The design of this best buy external hard drive resembles a notebook with a rounded edge and one trimmed corner where the indicator is located. The LED clearly shows which interface is used for exchange: USB 2.0 or USB 3.0. In the first case, the indicator color is red, in the second – blue. The body of the drive is plastic, with a practical matte surface, on which fingerprints are not visible. The disc is installed in a casing with rubber seals and is thus protected to a certain extent from impacts. The drive supports hardware encryption; to take advantage of this feature, you need to download a special utility from the company’s website. In addition to cryptography, it allows you to configure the backup of documents from the main computer folders, including emails.

 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • Pros:
  • Hardware encryption

  • High speed serial communication

  • Strict yet original design

Cons

     

    Silicon Power Stream S03 1TB

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    Silicon Power Stream S03 2TB

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    Best Fixed External Hard Drives / Reliable External HDD

    Seagate Backup Plus Hub

    Tasks like regular backups of large amounts of information are most conveniently solved with the help of external stationary drives. Firstly, these gadgets usually work on the basis of larger “hard drives” (the laws of physics have not yet been canceled, and the average linear speed relative to their heads is higher). Secondly, such devices are powered by their own adapters, which allows them to be seamlessly connected to routers and other low-power data sources. Thirdly, they can have additional useful functionality. The recommended model is just one of those: a 5900 rpm hard drive and a two-port USB hub.

    Moreover, no one forbids the use of portable electronics for recharging. Unfortunately, it does not support Quick Charge technology. We remind you that drives larger than 2TB are managed through a partition table (GPT), which not all TVs understand. There are reviews on the network that, unlike the low-volume versions, the first 10K models of this series were equipped with high-speed “hard drives” of the Barracuda Pro line.

     

    Pros & Cons

    Pros
    • good speed performance;
    • dual-port USB 3.0 hub.

    Cons
    • large dimensions and weight;
    • weak natural ventilation;

    • fast charging by ports is not supported.

     

    Seagate Backup Plus Hub 4TB

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    Seagate Backup Plus Hub 5TB

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    Seagate Backup Plus Hub 8TB

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    Seagate Backup Plus Hub 10TB

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    Seagate Backup Plus Hub 12TB

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    Seagate Backup Plus Hub 14TB

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    Western Digital WD Elements Desktop

    Continuing our roundup of the best buy external hard drives Western Digital WD Elements Desktop is one of them. If the occasionally connected external drive can be forgiven for an unsightly design, then the desktop version of such a gadget, as a rule, is used on an ongoing basis, is located in the visibility zone and does not always “fit” into the interior. From this point of view, the line of Western Digital’s Elements Desktop drives seems to us elegant enough and at the same time strict enough to look natural in a wide variety of environments.

    Even the lack of additional functionality is justified here, insofar as the glossy body of the drive perfectly collects prints and it is better not to touch it again. Judging by the reviews, the 4 terabyte Elements Desktop are equipped with Blue series hard drives (5400 rpm). The “hard drive” itself contains a trial version of the proprietary SmartWare Pro utility. On the one hand, they seemed to be greedy. On the other hand, not everyone will need such software, and they will definitely take money for a license.

     

    Pros & Cons

    Pros
    • good read / write speed;
    • stylish appearance.

    Cons
    • easily soiled case;
    • large size and weight.

     

    WD Elements Desktop 1TB

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    WD Elements Desktop 3TB

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    WD Elements Desktop 4TB

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    WD Elements Desktop 5TB

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    WD Elements Desktop 12TB

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    WD Elements Desktop 14TB

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    Seagate Expansion Desktop Drive

    Choosing an external reliable HDD device over an internal storage device is usually determined by the nature of the tasks for which it is purchased. It is one thing to conduct intensive calculations with active disk operations, and quite another to “throw off” various archival copies and other digital materials on auxiliary media, which are not supposed to be accessed in the near future.

    As a rule, an external drive of such a plan rarely “travels”, so the simplest model based on HDD 3.5 “with separate power supply seems to be a more reasonable option. Seagate has the Expansion Desktop Drive line for this segment, and it is interesting because resellers still ship with Barracuda Pro series honest perpendicular recording (CMR) hard drives.

     

    Pros & Cons

    Pros
    • comparatively good reading speed;
    • high write speed (for models starting from 10 TB).

    Cons
    • bulky and noisy.

     

    Seagate Expansion Desktop 1TB

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    Seagate Expansion Desktop 4TB

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    Seagate Expansion Desktop 6TB

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    Seagate Expansion Desktop 10TB

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    These are the top best 12 Best Buy External Hard Drives available in the market. For a relatively long time, there have been statements that the time of external disks has come to an end. Say, unreliable, slow, heavy, and so on. However, there are no more available tools for backup or archive storage tasks yet.

    In terms of reliability, there are plenty of offers on the market with enhanced protection against damage. In addition, you should not neglect the elementary rules of working with the USB interface and programmatically disconnect drives before physically disconnecting them. Considering the trend towards placing the SATA-USB bridge chip directly on the HDD board, such a precaution is not at all unnecessary.

     

    There is really no problem of choosing between best buy external hard drive, a traditional flash drive and an external SSD. If you need an affordable device for long-term storage of large amounts of information, a reliable external hard drive is best suited for this.

    External SSD-drives are faster and, in terms of unit of usable volume, are significantly more expensive, so the choice of such a device is justified if it is necessary to regularly perform data processing with it. This does not mean frankly budget models, whose write speed may even be inferior to the corresponding indicator of modern classic hard drives. Well, a flash drive is a flash drive. Everyone uses it according to their needs, although it is better suited for transferring relatively modest amounts of data from case to case.

     

    Probably, it will be appropriate to remind about the cost of recovering important information via Best Buy External Hard Drives, should there be a Big Trouble. Sometimes it is simply technically impossible to “extract” data from a faulty SSD or flash drive!

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