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Old Nov 10, 2012, 12:18 PM   #1
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Best External Drive

Have a MAC Pro tower with Lion. I have had two G-Tech drives fail. On one of them, the power supply failed, not the disc.
I just bought a new G-Tech drive 2tb. Use it on Time Machine (have another internal back up drive using Carbon Copy Cloner and a portable LaCie drive, also using CCC, which I keep offsite).
I have had problems with the new 2tb G-Tech. Time Machine was showing error messages. The drive wouldn't erase my data. I called G-Tech. The tech worked me through setting up the unit, and it worked fine. He told me that it was their newest version, and they had sent them out from the factory incorrectly configured.
Worked well for a week....got failed back up messages again today. I ejected (had to force eject the drive), and rebooted. It's working again.
I want reliable external drives, since I use them to protect my data.
What is the most reliable MAC compatible drive out there?
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Old Nov 10, 2012, 02:09 PM   #2
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First off, don't put so much emphasis on it being Mac compatible. It's a hard drive, it doesn't know the difference. Any drive that is formatted correctly will work perfectly fine with a mac. Companies just like to slap "Mac Compatible" on the box to jack the price up.

As far as good harddrives, it's hard to say really. What is good for one person may not be good for another, especially since the drive itself could just be **** while the company is fine. Basically, one might work for me but you might get a **** drive. Personally I can say that I have 2 harddrives that work great. I have:

Seagate 2TB Firewire800 Drive: http://www.seagate.com/external-hard...plus-desk-mac/

This is an updated version but the same basic drive. Firewire 800 is nice and fast but not always needed. This isn't my backup drive, it's my video editing drive. For backups I have:

Western Digital 3TB USB 3.0 Drive: http://www.bestbuy.com/site/WD+-+My+...&skuId=1261281

USB 3.0 doesn't help much with older macs but it's backwards compatible so it still works. It's not as fast as firewire 800 but for backups it's plenty quick.

I've had the Seagate drive about a year now and the WD for about 6 months. Obviously those aren't huge time frames but I've had no problems at all with either one so that that for what it's worth.


With all that said, if you really want build quality you will never beat "building" it yourself. If you want to do that you could easily buy a 2-3TB bare harddrive (whatever speed and brand you like) and then a good quality external enclosure with whatever interface you prefer. Sometimes this route is a little more expensive but you can get the top quality parts you want rather than whatever drive and enclosure a company like WD or Seagate or whatever says you should have.

Personally I think I'll go this route for my next harddrive with a nice 7200RPM drive and a fast, cool enclosure.
21.5" iMac (Mid 2011), 2.8GHz i7, 20GB of RAM, 1TB HDD | 13" macbook (Early 2008), 2.4 GHz C2D, 2GB RAM, 60GB G-Skill SSD | 16GB iPhone 5S | Apple TV | 16GB iPod nano (7th Gen)
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Old Nov 10, 2012, 02:19 PM   #3
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I really like the Seagate Backup Plus external drive - 1TB, USB 3.0 (part number: STBU1000200)
Got it for $89. The best external drive I have ever had. And the excellent price for the value!
My Mac has USB2.0 only, but thanks to USB -> Thunderbolt adapter, I can achieve the full speed.

By the way, if you want to increase the overall reliability, don't use just a single device.
Much more efficient, convenient and reliable is to have several 1TB drives, instead of a single big drive.
This way is slightly more expensive, but totally worth it.
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Old Nov 11, 2012, 02:37 AM   #4
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Join Date: May 2007
Location: UKô
Hi, connected to my mac pro I have a a couple of WD 4TB external mac editions, set up in raid 01, never had an issue, they do a 2,4 and 6tb version, works really well, connects via FW800 and once you install the manager set up as raid 0 or raid 1, and your good to go, but i'd recommend more drives in a raid 01, just for the extra security,


not the cheapest solution but one of the simplest

good luck
Nick - Photographer & Cash Cow for the kids
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