Best Small External Hard Drive For Mac

Posted By admin On 15.02.22
  1. Best Portable External Hard Drive For Mac
  2. Best Portable External Hard Drive For Macbook Pro
  3. Best Portable External Hard Drive For Mac 2018
  4. Portable External Hard Drive
  5. Top External Hard Drives For Mac
  6. Best Portable External Hard Drive For Mac And Windows

Welcome to our guide to buying the best external hard drive or backup hard drive in 2019. When looking to buy the best external hard drive for your needs, there are quite a lot of things you need to consider - and this guide will help you.

  1. The 4TB Seagate Backup Plus Portable Drive hard drive has more features and double the storage for $50 more, but if portability is your main concern, this drive is a straightforward and affordable.
  2. LaCie Porsche Design Desktop Drive STFE4000401 - Hard drive - 4 TB - external (desktop) - USB 3.1 With the LaCie Porsche Design Desktop Drive, LaCie offers a hard drive that's as powerful as it is beautiful. The LaCie Desktop Drive features a USB 3.0 interface for fast speeds plus a solid, aluminum casing that looks great.
  3. The newest hard drive like: best buy external hard drive for mac External hard disk drives are manufactured by all major pcs makers such as Maxtor, Western Digital, Sony, iOmega, Seagate and several others.
  4. If you’re looking for a rugged, Mac-friendly, super fast external hard drive that can handle plenty of bumps, dust, rain, and bounces, take a look at LaCie’s Rugged Thunderbolt USB-C portable hard drive. The distinctive orange rubber bumpers and brushed aluminum chassis stand out from the rest of the drives out there.

Shop for small tv external hard drive drive at Best Buy. Find low everyday prices and buy online for delivery or in-store pick-up.

Plus, with Amazon Prime Day 2019 rapidly approaching, there's a good chance that we're going to see some major price cuts to the best external hard drives out there. If you do find a killer deal for any of the drives on this best external hard drive list, then you can buy in full confidence that you're getting a brilliant external drive for your money.

When buying the best external hard drive for your needs, you need to make sure you get a device that can safely and securely store your important files. Reliability is of the upmost importance here, as you do not want to buy an external hard drive that fails on you - making you lose all your important backups.

The best external hard drives will also be quick - either because they use SSD (Solid State Drive) technology, or because they use the latest connectivity technology, such as USB-C.

The biggest deciding factors when it comes to data transfer rates is the connection the drive uses, and whether it is a standard hard drive or a solid state drive (SSD). Many external hard drives use USB 2.0 connections, but for faster speeds you'll want USB 3.0 or ideally the newer USB Type-C connection. You'll need to ensure your PC or laptop also has a USB Type-C port.

You'll also need to think about how much storage space you need. The best external hard drives offer a range of capacities. We'd recommend 500GB to start with, as that gives you plenty of space to store your files without costing too much money.

However, if you deal in large files, such as high resolution photos and videos, then you may want to consider buying a bigger drive, with external hard drives offering terabytes (TB) of storage space.

Buying the best external hard drive for your needs involves figuring out how much space you need. You don't want to buy an external hard drive that's too small, and end up running out of space, but neither do you really want to pay over the odds for storage space you'll never need.

So, we've listed the best external hard drives money can buy in 2019. Each external drive (or backup hard drive) on this page has been carefully picked to make sure it offers fast data transfer speeds – essential if you move lots of big files regularly – while also offering sturdy build quality so you don't have to worry about them breaking and losing your files.

When buying the best external hard drive for your needs, there are certain things you need to take into account. For example, you'll want to make sure you have a drive that offers fast data transfer speeds.

In this guide we list the best external hard drives with both traditional hard drives and faster (and more expensive) solid state drives.

Still, the best external hard drives are also dependable and rugged, so you can safely store your data without worry. The best external drives will also be light enough to carry in your bag, with large capacities so that you can keep your data safe when travelling.

There's a huge range of external hard drives on offer, so we've put together this list of the best external hard drives to help you find the perfect one for your needs.

1. Buffalo MiniStation Extreme NFC external hard drive

Wireless security

Capacity: 2TB Interface: USB 3.0

Today's best Buffalo MiniStation Extreme NFC 2TB deals
NFC security
Not the fastest drive

An external hard drive you can buy without breaking the bank, Buffalo's MiniStation Extreme NFC could be your match made in heaven.

With compatibility for both Mac and Windows machines, the Buffalo MiniStation Extreme NFC is very flexible, and comes with a rugged case that's dust and water resistant, along with a built-in USB 3.0 cable.

Not only is your data kept protected from knocks and drops with the rugged shell, but it's also got 256-bit AES security features and NFC (Near Field Communication) features as well.

Essentially it allows you to unlock the drive to get to your files quickly and easily by tapping the supplied NFC card onto the drive's body. Pretty neat!

  • This product is only available in the US at the time of this writing. UK and Australian readers: check out a fine alternative in the Western Digital My Passport Wireless Pro
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2. Western Digital My Passport Ultra 4TB external hard drive

Comes with Encryption and a long warranty

Capacity: 4TB Interface: USB 3.0

Large capacity
Suite of applications

The latest generation of the Western Digital My Passport Ultra range of external hard drives has landed, coming in sizes from 1TB to 4TB. It features cloud storage and 256-AES encryption, along with WD's own software suite.

It is a good performer when it comes to data transfer speeds but doesn't come near the top of the leaderboard. Unsurprisingly, it doesn't reach the top speeds of solid state external drives, but for external hard drives based on traditional HDDs, this is the drive to consider.

3. Samsung T5 SSD external hard drive

The best external SSD of 2018

Capacity: 250GB, 500GB, 1TB, 2TB Interface: USB Type-C

Incredibly fast
Expensive

If you'd rather have an external hard drive that took advantage of solid state drive (SSD) speeds, then the Samsung Portable SSD T5 is definitely the best external hard drive for you. Samsung has a brilliant reputation for external SSDs, thanks to products like the T3, and the T5 builds on its predecessor by adding a fast USB Type-C connection that ekes out every last drop of performance from the solid state drive inside. Of course, it's also backwards compatible with USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 if your PC doesn't have USB Type-C. It's expensive, but it's well worth the cash.

Read the full review: Samsung Portable SSD T5

4. Adata SD700 External SSD

Capacity: 256GB, 512GB or 1TB Interface: USB 3.0

Great performance
No USB Type-C

The Adata SD700 will suit those looking for a rugged storage device that can provide ample capacity without costing too much. It performs superbly well and remains the only SSD we’ve seen that is IP68 rated.

Thanks to the solid state drive that resides in this external hard drive, it's a lot faster than external drives that use traditional spinning hard drives - so you're getting great transfer speeds as well as rugged protection.

It also comes in capacities up to 1TB, so you don't have to worry about missing out on storage space just because it uses an SSD - this drive really does hit all the right notes.

5. WD My Book Duo 4TB external hard drive

Capacity: 4TB Interface: USB 3.0 x 2

Huge amounts of space
Expensive

If you're looking for the absolute largest capacity external hard drive, then the WD My Book Duo 4TB is the one to get, offering a huge 4TB (you can also get versions with up to 20TB) of storage space over two hard drives.

If you don't mind sacrificing some of the ample storage space you can set the drives up in a RAID array, so you have file backups of your files should one of the drives die.

This USB 3.0 drive has many of the features of a fully-fledged NAS device (including a high price), and if you have a router with a USB 3.0 port you could use this as a network attached storage device in its own right.

The device, which comes with two-year warranty, has 256-bit AES hardware encryption, and automatic backup software (WD SmartWare Pro).

Worth noting that the enclosure used is fully serviceable and that WD ships the drive already pre-formatted for Windows users (NTFS).

6. Buffalo MiniStation Thunderbolt external hard drive

Best Thunderbolt external hard drive

Capacity: 1TB, 2TB Interface: Thunderbolt, USB 3.0

Low price compared to other Thunderbolt drives

Best Portable External Hard Drive For Mac

Not SSD

If you have a device with a Thunderbolt port, then this is a great option, as it provides twice the speeds of standard USB 3.0 drives. It's also not especially expensive compared to other Thunderbolt drives. The price is kept down due to its use of a traditional hard drive, rather than an SSD, which limits the potential speeds. It also comes with a USB 3.0 port for people without access to Thunderbolt.

  • This product is only available in the US and UK at the time of this writing. Australian readers: check out a fine alternative in the WD MyBook Duo

7. Seagate Backup Plus Desktop Drive 5TB

Capacity: 5TB Interface: USB 3.0

Today's best Seagate Backup Plus Desktop Drive 5TB deals
Very fast data transfer speeds
You pay more for the Mac-formatted version

If you want to combine speed and capacity, then the Seagate Backup Plus Desktop Drive 5TB is definitely worth considering. It comes in a range of sizes up to 8TB and it beats the competition when it comes to read and write speeds as well.

On top of this storage and speed, you get a decent amount of peace of mind thanks to Seagate's lower than average failure rates, especially in bigger capacity hard drives.

You also get backup software, and the drive is compatible with both Windows and Macs, though it's formatted for Windows out of the box unless you go for a Mac-specific hard drive - though these are more expensive.

8. Western Digital My Passport Wireless Pro external hard drive

Capacity: 2TB Interface: USB 3.0 and Wi-Fi

Today's best Western Digital My Passport Wireless Pro deals
Wireless AC
Good battery life
Expensive due to Wi-Fi features

Even if we had mixed feelings on past versions of the My Passport Wireless, the 2016 “pro” variant of the external HDD restores faith in the Western Digital name. The design, for one, has been overhauled and no longer resembles the My Passport Ultra or My Passport for Mac. Instead, there’s now a more premium feel to the My Passport Wireless Pro. It resembles an external DVD drive, but considering the onboard SD card slot, don’t worry about getting it confused with anything else. For photographers, this will make the Wireless Pro stand out.

For everyone else, there’s a massive 6,400mAh battery built into the device. This lets the drive be used completely free of wires over 2.4GHz or 5GHz channels. When it’s wired up, however, don’t expect cutting edge connection tech, as the My Passport Wireless Pro uses only USB Type-B to Type-A. Completely absent is the latest and greatest USB-C connection.

Where the My Passport Wireless Pro compromises on affordability, it’s able to benefit in just about every other area. Of course, not everyone needs a wireless hard drive or SD card support, but for those who do, it’s almost essential.

Read the full review:Western Digital My Passport Wireless Pro

9. LaCie Porsche Design Mobile Drive 4TB

Capacity: 4TB Interface: USB-C

Today's best LaCie Porsche Design Mobile Drive 4TB deals
Fast USB-C connection
Expensive

You may have stumbled upon the LaCie Porsche Design Mobile Drive when perusing the Apple website for USB-C accessories. There’s a reason for that: the Porsche Design ships with both USB Type-C to Type-A and USB Type-C to Type-C connectors, making it a worthy candidate regardless of your setup.

It’s expensive for an external hard drive, don’t get us wrong, especially if you’re in the market for the top-end 4TB option. On the other hand, this is an HDD that could theoretically output speeds of up to 5Gbps, if it weren’t hindered by the limits of SMR (Shingled Magnetic Recording) technology.

Comprising five 800GB platters in a 15mm form factor, the LaCie Porsche Design Mobile is an excellent challenger to the Seagate M3, though it’s notably bigger in both weight and dimensions.

Sure, it packs an extra convenience factor in the form of USB-C, but it should be noted that the Porsche Design Mobile is still limited to USB 3.0 speeds. Plus, even an aluminum finish can’t prevent it from clashing with your Rose Gold MacBook. Nevertheless, LaCie’s offering is the best USB-C external HDD money can buy, at least for the time being.

Read our full review:LaCie Porsche Design Mobile Drive 4TB

10. iStorage diskAshur 2TB external hard drive

Best for security

Capacity: 2TB Interface: USB 3.0

Physical security
Expensive

Typically, iStorage hard disks cater best to governments and multinational organizations around the world, for good reason too – they offer tight security like no other drives around.

For

If someone tries to tamper with your iStorage drive, you can configure it to self-desturct. What's more, the data is encrypted by the 256-bit AES protocol, with multiple forms of protection in place to ensure the bad guys don't get in no matter how persistent. When you consider all that extra security, the prices won't scare you away either.

Sure, it's still expensive, four times the price of an equivalent 2TB drive, and unlikely to be the most nimble performer. But, you're paying for a product that's virtually uncrackable. Bear in mind, though, you'll get no help from the manufacturer if things go awry and you lose your password.

Read our full review: iStorage diskAshur DT

Best Portable External Hard Drive For Macbook Pro

Gabe Carey and Matt Hanson also contributed to this article

BestUSB-C Hard Drives for MaciMore2019

The current line of MacBook Pro only has Thunderbolt 3/USB-C ports, but that's OK, because USB-C is fast, future-proof, and will likely replace standard USB, HDMI, DisplayPort, power, and more. A USB-C hard drive is the perfect storage box to locally back up all of your most essential files, including photos, documents, music, movies, and anything else that's important to you. Save your Mac's hard drive and pick up a USB-C hard drive. Here are a few options to get you started on your search.

Fan favorite: G-Technology G-Drive 1TB

Mick's Favorite

The G-Drive by G-Technology is a great USB-C hard drive for most people. It has 1TB of storage and features a quick drive speed of 7200RPM, with transfer rates of up to 136MB/s, thanks to USB 3.1. It comes in silver, as well as Apple-exclusive colors: gold, rose gold, and space gray.

From $71 on Amazon

Best Portable External Hard Drive For Mac 2018

Best for speed: Samsung T5 SSD 250GB, 500GB, 1TB, 2TB

Lory's Favorite

Samsung's T5 SSD is a solid-state drive that provides way faster transfer rates than physical hard drives. Solid-state drives don't have moving parts, so if you happen to drop this one, there's less to break! SSDs are more expensive, but with this one, you get write speeds of up 540MB/s, which is over three times faster than many hard drives. If you like to store TV shows and movies on your hard drive, consider a solid-state drive!

From $90 at Amazon

Rugged pick: Glyph Blackbox Plus 1TB

Portable External Hard Drive

The Glyph Blackbox Plus is a rugged, portable hard drive that can keep up with you wherever you go. It's surrounded in rubber to protect from drops and has enough capacity for all your backups and then some. You get write speeds of up to 140MB/s from just 5400RPM, as well as a 3-year warranty in case anything goes wrong. It also features fan-free heat dissipation, so it's nice and quiet.

$120 at Amazon

Best for video: Samsung 5X Portable SSD

With read and write speeds of up to 2,800MB/s and 2,300MB/s respectively, this portable drive is perfect for videographers. It's designed for rendering and compiling high res photos and videos with up to 40Gb/s data transfer. It also looks like the Ferrari of external hard drives.

From $489 at Amazon

Top External Hard Drives For Mac

Most stylish: LaCie Porsche Design 2TB

LaCie is widely recommended for Apple users (they even sell LaCie products on Apple's site!) The Porsche Design external hard drive is a great-looking solution to your USB-C needs. The mobile version comes in 2TB, while the desktop version is available with 4TB of storage. If you have older devices you'd like to use as well, this hard drive is also compatible with USB 3.0 ports.

$80 at Amazon

Upgrade option: SanDisk Extreme 900 SSD 480GB, 960GB, 1.92TB

SanDisk's Extreme 900 SSD is a powerhouse solid-state drive that offers up to nine times the transfer speeds of external hard drives. It's made of durable aluminum and rubber, and the solid-state core is shock-proof. So, this is far less likely to die on you should you drop it (compared to hard drives).

Best Portable External Hard Drive For Mac And Windows

From $182 at Amazon

Best value: G-Technology G-Drive SSD R-Series

With a low price for 1TB, G-Technology's G-Drive SSD is one of the more versatile solid-state drives on the market, and it comes recommended by Apple itself. You'll get transfer rates of up to 560MBps, and it comes with both a USB-C to USB-C and a USB-C to USB-A cable.

$240 at Apple

Long-lasting: LaCie Rugged 2TB

The LaCie Rugged of yesteryear got me through my entire post-secondary education, and now that there's a USB-C option, it'll help get you (and maybe even your children!) through school or work with reliability and that fast connection. The body is rubberized to help it stand up to daily wear and tear, and 2TB should be more than enough for all of your files, documents, Final Cut projects, and much more. There's a 2-year warranty on these, which includes data recovery services.

$120 at Amazon

Durable and reliable: CalDigit Tuff 2TB

CalDigit's Tuff hard drives are rugged, colorful 2TB drives that offer USB-C connectivity and there's even a USB-C to USB-A cable for backward compatibility. With an IP57 rating, these drives are water-resistant in three feet of water for up to 30 minutes. They're dust-resistant, so you can take yours with you anywhere knowing that your data is safe from the elements.

From $120 at Amazon

Compact pick: SanDisk Extreme SSD

You may know SanDisk for its SD cards, but its hard drives are excellent as well. This solid-state drive is smaller than the average smartphone and has a hole in it so that you can clip it to a bag. It's shock-resistant and ruggedly designed, so it's perfect for life on the move.

From $72 at Amazon

Budget pick: WD My Passport

Western Digital makes some of the best hard drives around, and its 4TB USB-C hard drive fits right in with all its other excellent drives. This one can be found for under $120 and comes in six colors. This hard drive, however, is not inherently a USB-C drive — it's 'USB-C ready,' so it'll connect to your USB-C ports no problem, though it does not have a USB-C port itself.

From $60 at Amazon

Waterproof-ish: G-Tech All-Terrain Drive

For the extreme outdoorsmen and women, this rugged hard drive does more than protect your external hard drive from scratches and breaks. It's watertight, so you can drop it into a pool of water up to one-foot for 30 seconds without anything seeping in. The tethered Thunderbolt cable means you don't have to bring any extra cables, too.

HardFrom $153 at Amazon

Our personal favorites

External hard drives are must-have peripherals for anyone with a computer. They give you additional storage space, which can fill up fast on laptops, and are essential to backing up your data safely and securely. Every one of the drives on this list is easy to set up and start using right away. All you have to do is plug one into your Mac.

Lory's go-to external hard drive is Samsung T5 SSD because SSDs are much more reliable, and this one, in particular, has super-fast data transfer speeds. The G-Drive is Mick's favorite portable hard drive because it's affordable and reliable.

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