What Is the Best 1TB Portable External Hard Drive?

Best Thunderbolt 3 External Hard Drive

What Is the Best 1TB Portable External Hard Drive?

In our modern times, when renting loads of cloud storage comes at laughable prices (less than a dollar for 40-50 gigabytes of storage), spending anywhere from 60 dollars to hundreds of dollars for an external hard drive might seem like an unreasonable thing to do. However, many people do prefer having a physical piece of technology which they can plug in their laptop and gain up to terabytes more space. As technology improves, so have external hard drives. They are faster, larger, more durable, and also more stylish compared to their older counterparts, so it is understandable that people still do consider buying them. In this article, we tried to find the answer for one of the most frequent, standard questions in this topic: what is the best 1TB portable external hard drive? 

Seagate Portable 1TB External Hard Drive is the top external hard drive you can find out there. It is an all-round winner thanks to its sleek styling, fast and smooth usage, and reasonable price. 

However, there is a myriad of options to chose from, and as it is with modern technology, personal taste is usually what results in the final decision, not the actual specifications of the given gadget. If someone is searching for an external HDD on which they can store all photos during an adventurous trip to Asia, they might be better of prioritizing safety features and robust build, while someone in New York, running from one business meeting to another, might just enjoy a thin, stylish piece of equipment more. Yet again, a whole other group of people swears by SSD-s. Read on to find out more about some of the best external hard disks available now!

What Is the Best 1TB Portable External Hard Drive? 

As stated before, the Seagate Portable 1TB External Hard Drive is rated as the top product available on Amazon. It happens to be one that we have also spent some time using, so here is our review: 

We tried using this HDD in a variety of scenarios to truly test its capabilities. The fact is, HDD-s will never be as fast as SSD-s, the technology just isn’t the same and never will be. However, we didn’t have any significant speed issues with this model. 

We tested it as a means to increase memory space in our PS4. As soon as we connected them, the icon popped up and the storage was extended. It was very easy to organize the hard drive through the PS4 system, so it did hold up as a really good option for extending PS4 memory space. It is really exciting to learn that one can buy and install countless games and be far from filling their disk space, so we thought it was a must to test it from this aspect. 

The basic everyday use, naturally, works just fine. All modern hard disks, may those be HDD-s or SSD-s are perfectly capable of handling any usual situation that an average user might place it in, like transferring larger amounts of photos or documents, etc. No problems were noted here whatsoever, as expected. 

The only area in which the Seagate Portable Hard Drive lacks is professional use. This isn’t wonder either, seeing as though the price of one of these disks averages around 50 dollars, but it is important to mention that it probably isn’t the best idea for anyone getting into processing large amounts of data regularly. With large amounts, we mean like graphic designer, video editor, and producer amounts of data. If you are planning on spending the next couple of months or years working as any of the above, and also want to invest in an external disk you can count on, try looking for the more high-end, professional ones, since this is just too much of a budget-category device for those purposes. 

All-in-all, it is a great piece of equipment that will get you far with any everyday task or with expanding your game library on some console. The part that hasn’t been mentioned yet is the neat, sleek, elegant design. Many comments on Amazon are about the fact that it is almost unnaturally sleek and small compared to the usual 1TB hard disk. 

Another contender worthy of praise is the WD 1TB Elements Portable External Hard Drive. Another perfectly functional external hard drive with a sleek, lightweight design, We wanted to include it in the article since it delivers nearly as much as the previously mentioned Seagate disk but is just a couple bucks cheaper. Make sure to check it out as well!

A high-end, not-so-budget external disk that needs to be mentioned is the SanDisk 1TB Extreme Portable External SSD. It costs somewhere around 160 USD, but the good reputation of SanDisk exists for a reason: this hard drive compiles durability, speed, style and large capacity into one device, making it an attractive option for people who lean more towards the SSD side and would like something more than the average hard drive. 

If we have mentioned an outstanding higher-end piece of equipment, it is only fair to do the same with a budget external hard drive as well. Enter the Toshiba Canvio Basics 1TB External Hard Drive USB 3.0. Averaging around 40 dollars, this HDD will give you the most bang for your buck. Naturally, it lacks in the speed, design, and reliability departments compared to more expensive alternatives, but getting 1 TB of space for around $40 seems like too good of an offer to refuse.  

Should you get an external SSD or HDD?

Mentioned above are some primary options from both the HDD-s and SSD-s available, but which one should you get? We suspect most people reading this article are aware of the differences between HDD and SSD technology, but for those of you who aren’t, here is a quick recap on the main points: 

HDD technology relies on actual, physical disks which get data written on them using a certain type of magnets, called ferromagnets. An arm (or more arms, usually) magnetizes the particles in this ferromagnet in one of two directions, usually referred to as “up” and “down”. One of these represents 0-s and the other one represents 1-s, thus recording binary code is made quite simple. The most obvious downside of HDD-s is the speed of this technology. However fast these little arms move, it is still a mechanical process, which can never be sped up to the same extent as electric components and systems can. HDD-s are also quite fragile. The ferromagnetic coating can be damaged quite easily, just like all the other minuscule, high-precision elements found in one. They are quite easy to make, however, and thus have lower production costs than SSD-s. 

SSD-s represent the new era for storage hardware. There is hardly anything HDD-s are better in than SSD-s, except the price. SSD-s rely on flash technology to store information, which consists of tiny cells containing bits of information that can be accessed immediately by the controller. They are faster, smaller, and more durable than HDD technology. 

So why is then HDD technology still popular and all over the external hard drive market? Affordability. Most often, getting 3 HDD-s for the price of one SSD isn’t unrealistic. SSD external drives with 1TB of space usually cost north of 120-150 dollars. It is quite rare to find one around $100, and even then it is reasonable to doubt the quality of the given product. 

When looking at the numbers, the performance difference between an SSD and an HDD is actually stunningly large. The copying process of a larger file, like a movie, might be the action where this difference is the most visible. The speed of such a process with an HDD is around 30-150 MB/s, while on a normal SSD it is around 500 MB/s. On new NVME SSD-s, it can even go up to 3000-3500 MB/s. This way, a 10 GB movie would take about 5 seconds to transfer to an SSD, while an HDD would need around a minute at least. The difference expressed in numbers and ratios is, as presented, quite significant. However, in our everyday lives, the difference between 5 seconds and one minute isn’t so stark. That is the very reason why HDD-s still dominate the market. For a third or sometimes a quarter of the price, copying a movie in 1 minute instead of 5 seconds isn’t too big of a sacrifice to make. 

Which one should you get? Well, that depends on what you want to use it for. For the general population, the speed of an HDD is more than enough, and spending fortunes on unnecessary technology might not be the smartest of actions to take. However, if you are a graphic designer, a movie or music producer, or something similar, i.e. someone who requires large files to be transferred on a daily basis, SSD-s are the only feasible option for you. Transferring 700 GB or more of raw footage when compiling a video would just take way too long even with a higher-end HDD for someone to do it regularly. In summary, most people are well off with an HDD, but do make the decision based on your needs for optimal results!

Is SSD external hard drive worth it? 

The question at the end of the day that probably every person wanting to buy an external disk will ask is: is SSD worth it? Clearly, it has its advantages, but are those enough to spend so much money on one? Again, we must repeat a point made previously: tailor your purchase to your needs, nothing more, nothing less. With such an immense amount of hard drives to choose from, it only makes sense to choose one that suits your specific needs. SSD is definitely not going to be worth it if you want a place to store your vacation photos for years to come, since an average HDD will be more than enough for that job, but if you need to transfer high-quality material, and lots of it, daily, do consider investing in a good quality SSD. It might set you back a couple hundred, but it will serve the purpose you bought it for perfectly. 

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