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Other Hardware and Peripherals Other Apple systems and peripherals discussion.

Which External Hard Drive should I buy/Do you suggest?


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Migraine

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fleurya View Post
I have to play devil's advocate on the firewire suggestion.

Unless you plan to move mass amounts of data often, not just initially and smaller stuff you accumulate here and there, I fail to see why firewire is so necessary. I have 2 USB MY Book drives and accessing info and files on it is instantaneous. I even watch full DVD rips on my MBP that I keep stored on my 500GB drive, and don't have any problems. If I had sprung for the extra speed of firewire, it would be totally wasted capability.

Unless someone can explain what the real advantages to the OP'er would be to have firewire in his situation, I say save some money and get a USB connected drive. You can get a 500 GB My Book for Newegg for $124 here.

But if you're bent on getting firewire. There's a cheaper option with more capacity here.

Oh, and if you decide to head back to a portable option, you can get a 160GB version of the same drive you were looking for, for $5 less here.

No disrespect, but despite what one person says and WD drives, many, many people use them and are quite happy with their performance, myself included.
I believe you need at least a Firewire 400 to be able to boot from an external hard drive. This is an important feature for me but NOT everyone.

Yes, USB 2.0 is faster than Firewire 400 (480Mbps Vs. 400Mps or 60MBps Vs. 50MBps).

I was going to order OWC Mercury Elite-AL Quad but decided to get http://www.4videoequipment.com/video...s/prodList.asp
G-Tech Q Drive instead.

Both drives are very good too! The OWC Mercury is available bare bones so you can add your own drive which would keep it in your buget too. I paid more just because I'm vain and like the way the G-Tech looks
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fleurya

 
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Yeah, they both look really nice. I'd probably go for something nice-looking like that if I didn't just keep my drives stored out of sight anyway.

I had heard that on paper USB 2.0 is faster than FW 400, but in reality it's not. I'm not sure on why though.

If you haven't already, you should post a pic of your setup on the official setup thread once you get the drive in place.

"Give so much time to the improvement of yourself that you have no time to criticize others"
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bobtomay

 
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Agreed with fleurya - WD makes some good drives. The only real reason you see so many negative posts about them, is the fact they spent many years as the leader in drive sales during a period of time when almost zero home users were maintaining back ups to their systems. Drives do fail, don't care what brand it is you end up getting. People that don't like any one particular brand, "most" of the time it has to do with them not having any back up and their only drive failed.

On the Intel Mac's, booting from an external via USB is supported.

USB is only faster than FW400 on paper. USB does not handle continuous high throughput as well as FW400. FW400 will beat it moving even 100MB files around. If you'll check my link in post 9 above you'll see some actual timed tests.

I believe G-tech does make some nice external drives. I have two issues with them however. 1) They don't tell you what drive it is they're putting into the case. 2) They give the same warranty on the case as OWC, but OWC passes the balance of the drive manufacturers warranty on to you, G-tech does not. Sorry, but I have to ask, why not on both cases.

Also, think fleurya is correct that for most people the USB only is probably fine. My personal use aside from my regular back up is in moving files of 4-9GB around. Waiting for USB for me, would not be acceptable.

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Migraine

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fleurya View Post
If you haven't already, you should post a pic of your setup on the official setup thread once you get the drive in place.
I don't know if I'll post my Mac setup, because I have way too much cr@p on my desk! I haven't had too much time to clean all my stuff off it. You see it's a controlled mess, I know where everything resides and I don't want to change my system just yet.

Oh, I have a PPC G5 PowerMac and I don't believe it will boot off USB like the newer Intel Macs.

Quote:
I believe G-tech does make some nice external drives. I have two issues with them however. 1) They don't tell you what drive it is they're putting into the case. 2) They give the same warranty on the case as OWC, but OWC passes the balance of the drive manufacturers warranty on to you, G-tech does not. Sorry, but I have to ask, why not on both cases.
I agree bobtomay, it would be nice if G-Tech offered the same as OWC. However, after the HD goes bad in my G-Tech when it's out of warranty, I'll get a Seagate or other HD that offers a 5 year warranty. Now if the case goes bad, then I'm really screwed! At least you can always replace the HDs inside the external units.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Irishfrost View Post
I am now currently a windows user and am probably going to be switching over to a mac book, My GF has a power book with OS X on there and i love the interface. I have a question about hooking up an external drive to my pc and then plugging it into a Mac Book, will there be any issues? Just mostly to move over itunes and pics
I have a 40GB Hitachi external USB drive and I use it both for my MacBook and Compaq laptop and have no problem switching between computers.
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deathtolife04

 
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OK so I've learned a bit more about external hard drives, and now I'm re-phrasing my question. ;-)


I've had my macbook for a little over a year now, and it only came with a 60 gb internal hard drive. Needless to say, that's not enough for a high school kid with tons of school stuff, photos, music, and videos!

I want to purchase an external hard drive so I can BACK-UP ALL of my stuff, as well as to store extra music/movies/photos that won't fit on my internal hard drive.

I want it to sync everything AUTOMATICALLY. Like, when I save a file, I want it to automatically sync to my external hard drive.*

I also would prefer one that would look good next to my mac. Looks aren't a HUGE deal though. I mean, if I could get one ridiculously cheaper if it didn't look good next to my computer, then I'd totally go for the cheaper one. But my desk is my favorite part of my room, so I'd rather not have a huge ugly bulky external hard drive.

I want to spend somewhere around $200, and I'd like it to have at least 200 gb of space. And it'd be nice if it had firewire, cuz I've heard USB is really slow.

*I want one that does it automatically, OR one that you just push a button and it backs up what I just added without a whole lotta hassle.

I'm looking into this one, but it's a little more expensive than I'd like: http://www.wdc.com/en/products/produ...71&language=en

Last edited by deathtolife04; 12-05-2007 at 01:30 AM.
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deathtolife04

 
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* bump
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500 GB drives are the sweet spot of the price points where you get the most storage per dollar. It's really the only size I recommend for those with a budget large enough to get them.

The following are all 1 yr warranty.

USB only - $120
USB, FW400 - $153
USB, FW 400, eSATA - $180

The following have longer warranties. Considering the cash flow of most high school age people, this may be as important to you as the initial price.

USB, FW400: 2yr case - 3 yr drive - $188
USB, FW400, has USB hub & FW hub; 2 yr case & 5 yrs on the drive - $200

You can browse around each of the sites if you like one design in particular for less storage space and naturally less money.

How to set up the drive is another post.

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fleurya

 
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I'll second what bobtomay said. 500GB is the size to go with for best value. You could probably find something a little cheaper in the 200GB range, but you can always use more capacity. Trust me. I bought a 250GB drive thinking that would be fine and only a few months later I was shopping for a 500GB drive. 200GB seems like a lot now, but as soon as you get it you'll be filling it up fast!

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deathtolife04

 
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OK. So should I get one especially formatted for macs? Like that western digital mybook studio edition? or does that even make a huge difference?
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Migraine

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deathtolife04 View Post
OK. So should I get one especially formatted for macs? Like that western digital mybook studio edition? or does that even make a huge difference?
Doesn't make a difference, just use Disk Utility, under Utilities in Applications to format an Hard Drive to Mac OS Extended (Journaled) and your set. If you want other PCs to access it then you might want FAT32 instead but I don't believe Disk Utility can do this type of format but a Windows PC can.

Hope this helps.
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bobtomay

 
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No, it doesn't matter what format the drive is shipped with. As Migraine said, the formatting is easily done with Disk Utility.

See now after looking a little more, WD has a 5 yr warranty on the Studio edition of the My Book series. That and the quad interface will make it a pretty good buy at $181 for the 320GB. Amazon has the 500GB for $204.

Don't know anything about the backup software that comes with the WD drives though.

Although you won't be able to take advantage of the FW800 or eSATA with your MacBook, if you can afford the up front price difference of the quad interface, imho, it will be worthwhile in the long run.

the only thing I have not found about the smaller drives in the Studio is the speed of the drive. The 1TB Studio edition is a 5400 rpm instead of 7200, which will make it slower than most other externals at that size. It could be they all are the 5400, and why WD is offering the 5 yr vs the 1 & 3 yr warranty on their other external solutions. It is also unlikely that you would notice the difference in speed using a USB or FW400 interface.

I cannot be held responsible for the things that come out of my mouth.
In the Windows world, most everything folks don't understand is called a virus.

Last edited by bobtomay; 12-07-2007 at 08:02 AM.
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deathtolife04

 
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Would any of the drives on this page be good for my purposes?

http://www.buymemory.com/products/pr...sp?Package=PHD

That place is based out of Omaha, where I live, so it'd be pretty easy for me to order from them. Cuz I can't order anything off the internet. I just got 2GB of RAM from them for like $56, and it has a lifetime warranty. So I feel like I trust them and I've heard good things about them.
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bobtomay

 
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Buffalo has been around for awhile - the 500GB at $157 with USB and FW is not a bad price - doesn't list the warranty on that one, but the USB only is listed at 3 yrs so it probably is also

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deathtolife04

 
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OK

There are so many options! Now I'm looking on Best Buy's site and they have some good deals, too it seems.
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