Are you looking for an external HDD to store files on your computer? If you do not have more space to store data on your PC or if you are afraid of losing your data and you want to back it up, the right choice is to buy an external hard drive. It will store as many files as you can bring with you and view on any computer.
In order to buy a great HDD that’s perfect for you there is no need for special skills. Just concentrate on some fundamental aspects of these devices. In particular, you should consider the following:
- the capacity
- the quality (the brand)
- the rotation speed
- the speed of data transfer
- power consumption
Before starting with the analysis of the main features of a HDD, I suggest you to check the available prices on an online store. This way, you will be able to learn about the promotional prices that are practiced online. Many such online store have a feature that allows you to compare the prices and the features.
Important characteristics of an external HDD
If you need a device that is easy to carry around and is ready to use simply by connecting it with the USB cable to the PC, you have to opt for a self-powered 2.5-inch external HDD. On the other hand, if you want the alternative, you should know that there are 3.5″ that are powered by a normal power plug. Usually, bigger HDDs have rotation speed reaches 7,200 rpm against 5,400 rpm of 2.5″.
A data that may interest you is the speed of data transfer. Almost all of them are equipped with the USB 3.0 cable that implements the movement of files at a speed up to 5 Gbps, with an effective 625 Mbps per second. If you have a PC with USB 2.0 ports there are no problems of adaptability since they are back-compatible, obviously with a downgrade in terms of speed.
Lately, a new format of USB cable called USB 3.1 has become really popular. They promise to get up to 10 Gbps (in more advanced versions) but you have to pay attention to the connector that may not be adaptable to your PC. The connection cables could in fact be USB Type-C that differ from the normal USB because of the fact that they fit in the two sockets, and are normally found in compact laptops.
There is also the Thunderbolt connection (3rd generation) that has been implemented for Apple computers, with a data transfer that reaches up to 40 Gbps.
Other features that may be of interest are related to shock impact resistance. In this case it is necessary to look at the manufacturer’s label. This particular feature should be more based on the user experience, so it is better to check the internet for user reviews on the HDD model you plan to buy.
The back up function is sometimes included in the software that comes with the HDD. There is also a similar feature that’s already included in the Windows system and macOS.
In order not to miss anything, I want to talk to you about portable SSDs. Solid-state disks are really popular right now, especially for their high speed of reading and writing data. Their cost is much higher and they do have some limits for writing data. Their use is suggested only if you need a data transfer rate that is noticeably superior to the standards of traditional external HDD. Most user prefer to choose a SSD in order to run the operating system in a laptop instead of having one as an external HDD.
The brands that are now the most popular are Toshiba, Maxtor and Verbatim. With $50-$70 you get to buy a good external 2.5″ HDD with a capacity of 1 TB. The advice is to evaluate the capacity according to the needs. A good choice may be the 2 TB which does not cost much more. For the speed of data transfer you have to deal with your computer, in general a 3.0 connection based HDD is the right choice for you.