Many believe that a computer’s internal memory is enough to store their data. It’s just if you have few elements to save. But with millions of bytes of files to store, more storage space is needed. Something you will have with an external hard drive. If you are looking for one, we offer you our ranking of the best models of this year. To cite only WD My Passport External SSD wireless drive which can directly duplicate your files on its 250 GB from an SD card reader. Also, you have Seagate Backup Plus Portable Hard Drive with 200 GB , with its Cloud connectivity and its large capacity of 4 TB.
Buying Guide – How to Choose a Good External Hard Drive?
Do you want to buy an external hard drive to save your computer’s internal storage space and/or to have a backup of your data on a PC? However, you don’t know which model to set your sights on? Worry not with our advice and buying guide for the best external hard drives in Canada.
The storage volume according to your needs
The models of external hard drives differ according to their storage capacity. This capacity is expressed in “bytes”. It varies from 250 GB up to 4 TB (4000 GB) for standard portable models. However, it can reach 6 TB for external desktop hard drives. To help you choose a given volume, you should consider your storage and usage needs.
For small office files, there is no need to look for a model of several hundred gigabytes. On the other hand, opt for a drive larger than 160 GB if you need to store photos and small MP3 audio files. For larger files (4K and Full HD videos, software, games, etc.), an external hard drive of 1TB or larger will work best.
Compare baseline performance
Here you can compare existing models based on the following:
Format and rotation speed : be aware that 3.5” format external hard drives are made for desktop computers. They weigh more than 1 kg and may require mains power. Their rotation speed can peak at 7200 rpm. They are very fast, but very greedy in electricity.
As for the 2.5” portable external hard drive and SSD external hard drive models, they are the lightest and most compact, as they weigh around 200g. They are self-powered via their USB port. They are suitable for a PC. In general, they rotate at 5400 rpm. Finally, you have the 1.8” formats for mobile devices (player, Smartphone, tablet, ultraportable PC, etc.).
Transfer speed and interface : Overall, 1.8” and 2.5” drives have a USB 2.0 port. This is the standard interface compatible with any PC. However, the speed of writing and reading data does not exceed 60MB/s here. If you are looking for the most efficient of all, opt for models with a new generation USB 3.0 interface (USB 2.0 compatible) charged with a transfer speed of up to 600 MB/s.
Or, choose one with an eSata (600MB/s), FireWire for Mac (up to 100MB/s), or Thunderbolt for Apple and high-end PC (1GB/s) interface. It should be noted that some computers are incompatible with these. A PCI expansion card may be required to read discs with these high-speed interfaces. You should also know that a disk can integrate two or even three interfaces at the same time.
More functions with current models
To find out which external hard drive to choose, also discover the various variants available on the market:
Multimedia: for storing files (photos, video, audio) and reading them, these discs connect directly to a television or Hi-Fi system. NAS or network: acting as a mini-server, their backup space is shared between several computers via a router. Model with Cloud: offering online storage solutions on Skydrive, Dropbox, etc. they must be connected to the internet via a box.
SSD: they are light, portable, robust, silent, fast and powerful. That said, they are very expensive: a 250 GB SSD costs as much as a conventional 2 TB hard drive. Wifi external hard drive: content accessible to several mobile devices via Wi-Fi, via an iOS/Android application or via a Web browser. Game System Models: Many users turn to PS4 external hard drive, Xbox One external hard drive, etc. in order to expand the storage and processing space of their game console.
Regarding the protection of the device, you have the so-called “rugged” discs with thick and solid edges. They are expensive, but are a safe bet for on-the-go use. Also consider a hard drive with integrated backup software to secure your data and have an automatic backup of your files. In this same light, consider the solution of disks with passwords.
To determine your budget, you can refer to an online price comparison tool. But be aware that a portable external hard drive is becoming cheaper and cheaper on the market. Now you know how to buy a better value external hard drive.
The 5 Best External Hard Drives (Reviews & Tests) of 2022
How to choose the best external hard drives of 2022? It’s simple, just refer to our comparison of the 5 best models of the moment. Seagate, WD or even Toshiba, each of these brands has its own advantages and disadvantages: cheap, efficient, all-in-one, basic, etc.
1. WD My Passport 250GB USB 3.0 SSD Wireless External Drive
Western Digital can be considered the best brand of external hard drives. It is known for its wide range of quality models. A quality that we find without surprise in this model.
This is characterized by its SSD technology. It has a durable internal structure that is resistant to shocks and falls. Durability enhanced by exterior protective bumpers.
It also stands out for its write and read speed of up to 390 MB/s. This model has a one-touch copy button to directly import photos and videos, without using a computer or software (via its built-in SD card reader or a camera).
This device allows the streaming of 4K video content and the viewing of photos with the MyCloud application (using its integrated 802.11ac Wifi modem connection). It can also export RAW images from third-party apps like LumaFusion.
With an internal SSD drive and external protections, WD My Passport withstands vibrations and shocks well.
This device can operate independently of a computer or dedicated software. Its SD card slot and one-touch button make it easy to import photo and video files directly.
With 10 hours of battery life, this wireless external hard drive promises trouble-free use for an entire day.
We regret that its interface only has a micro USB 3.0 port and not a USB-C port.
Check the price on Amazon.ca!
2. Seagate Backup Plus Portable Hard Drive with 200GB
Before asking the question “where to buy the best external hard drive?” », it is still necessary to know which one to choose. There are different models on the market. And the brands do not fail to present ever more efficient variants, including this model Seagate Backup Plus Portable Hard Drive.
This article is graced with a large capacity of 4 TB. It is compatible with mobile devices (iOS 7 or above, Android 2.3 or above), Windows PC and Mac OS.
Portable, it weighs only 245 g and has a 2.5” format. Its case is made of metal and adopts a silver color (silver). On the interface side, it includes a USB 3.0 port with an average speed of 120 MB/s.
This device goes hand in hand with Seagate Dashboard management software. Among the functions of this tool: perform and schedule continuous automatic backups (in the Cloud or locally), share your media data on/from Facebook, Flickr and YouTube.
Plug&Play, Seagate Backup Plus works immediately as soon as it is plugged into a PC or MAC via its ports.
With its 4 TB, this device offers large storage possibilities. It can be used as expansion memory of game systems, multimedia bank, etc.
The launch cost of this external hard drive is relatively high for a 2.5” format.
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3. Toshiba Portable External Hard Drive 2TB
What is the best external hard drive on the market? To be able to claim such a title, the major brands offer state-of-the-art and up-to-date products.
To stand out, they demonstrate great ingenuity. As for the Toshiba brand, it comes with this 2to external hard drive model.
This disc is available in different colors, but this model is blue. Canvio Advance style, it adopts a vibrant design. It is a portable player in 2.5” format.
It weighs only 150g and measures 10.9 x 7.9 x 1.4 cm. Its Serial ATA interface is coupled with a USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 port. This disc is Windows PC compatible. On Mac, it requires reformatting before being operational. On Windows, this storage device pairs with Toshiba Storage backup software.
In the range of 2.5” external hard drives, this model is one of the lightest. Featherweight, it is not bulky and is very compact.
Toshiba Storage Security Software secures your data with a password.
Toshiba Portable External Hard Drive 2TB works on Mac only after reformatting. Also, the dedicated Toshiba Security and Backup software is unavailable on Mac.
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4. Western Digital My Passport portable external hard drive-usb
Western Digital never ceases to surprise us with its ever more efficient means of storage. It offers models with their own specificities. For those who want the best external hard drive here is the: Western Digital My Passport portable external hard drive-usb.
This Standard Finish style black disc features a more vibrant and elegant design. It is light, small (11 x 8.2 x 1.6 cm) and portable. It weighs only 168g and fits in the palm of your hand.
With a capacity of 1TB, this device embeds multiple functions. In particular, its WD Backup software allows it to launch automatic data backups.
To protect your files, it uses password security with built-in 256-bit AES hardware encryption. With WD Discovery, easily import your data and Cloud (Facebook, Dropbox, GoogleDriveTM). This software also allows disk management with WD Drive Utilities.
This model is small and sturdy. In addition, it effectively secures your data with its password protection and automatic Backup software.
You can hold this external hard drive in the palm of your hand or slip it into a pocket. It is small enough for that.
This storage device must be configured before it is operational. On a Windows PC, you must install the WD Discovery software on PC via the reader.
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5. Seagate Backup Plus 1TB 1TB Portable External Hard Drive
With capacities ranging from 1 TB to 4 TB, it’s not always easy to know how and where to buy a new external hard drive.
Especially when you know that it’s not just the size of the device that matters. Among the good references, this 1to external hard drive has everything to please.
It has an all black case. Its look is minimalist, discreet and elegant. It is graced with a brushed finish. Mini and slim in size, it weighs 127g and measures 11.5 x 7.8 x 1.2cm.
Its interface includes a USB 3.0/USB 2.0 port. It is compatible with Windows and Mac. However, if you have a Mac, it may require reformatting to use Time Machine software. Backing up files can be done manually with one click.
With its 127 g, this external hard drive is very light. In addition, its restricted and thin size makes it easy to store and transport.
Saving data locally is done in one click. And using its Seagate Toolkit automatic backup software is easy.
The build quality of this disc is decent. However, the material of its case may suggest a short life.
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frequently asked Questions
Q1: How do I back up to an external hard drive?
In general, copying data from device to external hard drive is just one click away. You can do this by copy-pasting or dragging/dragging files from one window to another. However, it is possible to proceed otherwise: with a brand-specific backup tool (Seagate Dashboard for example), with specific Windows/Mac backup software (Backup and Restore with Windows, Time Machine with Mac OS) or, with free or paid third-party software and applications (FreeFileSync, AOMEI BackUpper, etc.).
Q2: How to format an external hard drive?
To format an external hard drive on Windows, here are the steps to follow:
– connect the drive to the computer via a USB cable
– open the “computer” folder then right click on the name of the external hard drive
– on the tab that appears, click on “manage” and “format” to open the formatting wizard
– select the “File system” tab
– choose a format: NTFS (for Windows), FAT32 (for Windows and Mac disks of 32 GB maximum), exFAT (like FAT32, but without limit)
– always uncheck the “quick format” box for a first format
– press “start” and “OK”
Note that the FAT32 and exFAT formats are the most reliable.
Q3: How to format an external hard drive on Mac?
To format a Mac external hard drive, here is the procedure to follow after detecting the device:
– open “Finder”
– go to “utilities” and double-click on “disk utility”
– click on the disc icon in the sidebar on the left
– select the “delete” tab then choose “format”
– choose a format by clicking on it: exFAT (recommended), Max OS Extended (default format for Mac), and MS-DOS (FAT) for a 4GB capacity disk
Q4: How to repair damaged external hard drive?
The fastest solution to fix a damaged external hard drive is to format it. However, you can also repair only its bad sectors. To do this, first restore important files using lost data recovery software (like EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard). Then choose one of these three troubleshooting methods:
– deletion of corrupted sectors with partitioning software (EaseUS Partition Master or Disk Management)
– using the Windows tool (right click on the disk icon>Tools>Check>Repair device>Scan and repair device)
– run CMD by typing: Win+R>diskpart>disk list>disk 0>clean>create primary partition>quit (each step is validated with “Enter”)
Q5: How to partition an external hard drive?
To achieve this, here is what to do after recognizing the disk with no allocated space:
– in the disk manager of the computer, right click on the external hard drive
– select “reduce volume” or “compress volume”
– provide the characteristics of the primary partition, including the size in MB
– click on “Reduce”
If needed, create an additional partition by doing the following:
– in the disk manager, right click on the external hard drive
– choose “New simple volume” or “+”
– fill in the characteristics of the partition: size, letter assignment, file system
– click on “Finish”
Q6: How to recover data from damaged external hard drive?
To recover your data from a damaged external hard drive, test it using a USB cable or a PC other than you usually use. If the disk is recognized and readable, move your data immediately. Otherwise, download and use recovery software. This type of tool can extract your data with ease. Among the software available and the most reliable on the market, you have EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard (under Windows 10/8/7) and Stellar Phoenix Windows Data Recovery.