Best Hard Disk for External Library?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by JellyFish, Jun 23, 2007.

  1. JellyFish macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2007
    Does anybody have any good recommendations for an external hard disk to hold a media library? I'm looking for the biggest and I guess fastest possible.

    I am quickly learning that my new Apple TV addiction is going to insure that I use up storage FAST! So I want to get ahead of the curve and buy a huge hard disk to hold all of my media files.

    Any recommendations? Brand? Place to buy it? Speed?

    Thanks in advance for any thoughts. :)
  2. Kamera RAWr macrumors 65816

    Kamera RAWr

    May 15, 2007
    I'm where I need to be
    You should check out the Western Digital "My Book Pro" or however its called. I've seen it go up to 1TB. You can choose either Raid 0 or 1, depending on what you want... Also supports triple interface: Firewire 400, 800 and USB. Many people seem to speak highly of it :) . Hope that helps a little:eek:

    Edit: Just looked at WD's website and they now seem to be offering a 1.5TB My Book Pro II "Premium Edition." Although it is $600.
  3. bmb012 macrumors 6502

    Jul 25, 2006
    From my experience, My Books don't support firewire 400 on OS X, on windows you have to download drivers to get the firewire to work, some sort of instant on on plugging in that I'm guessing wouldn't work with normal firewire drivers, either way it's bull.

    I have an old seagate that's been perfectly fine, though.
  4. JellyFish thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2007
    Thanks, guys. I will check them out. I can't believe how fast I'm filling up my hard disk!!!! And I'm just getting started!!!!!!

    I love my apple TV!!!! I am so glad I cancelled cable. I was paying a fortune every month for a lot of **** programming I never watched. Now I just have the stuff that I like available, whenever I want it! :D:apple::)
  5. JellyFish thread starter macrumors regular

    Jun 15, 2007
    One other question, once I get my new hard do I tell Itunes that's where my media is? And how should I move my stuff to it? Any particular way to to do it to get itunes to know where it is?
  6. sammich macrumors 601


    Sep 26, 2006
    I was looking for an external just like the OP, I came across the WD My Book Pro 1TB and thought, "wow, that's really awesome value". There's got to be a catch, sure enough, I looked up Amazon, and at least half of the reviews (out of a bout 50), must have included the words, "hard drive failed" or "failed in a few hours" but my personal favourite "the manual didn't mention that the front button (the power on button) was an 'erase all data' function!".

    Just my 2cents, I'm avoiding that drive like the plague.
  7. Kamera RAWr macrumors 65816

    Kamera RAWr

    May 15, 2007
    I'm where I need to be
    Eeekk... :eek: I had heard a few people speak of saying not to use Raid 0 on it and such so that if one of the drives failed, you'd lose your info, etc... but I've also read that quite a few people loved theirs. I guess all I can say to anyone when buying anything is to do your research... just as the OP is doing :)
  8. janey macrumors 603


    Dec 20, 2002
    sunny los angeles
    The thing is the part about raid0 is true. For a lot of people, it will never fail, and it will be an awesome product. You just have to be in the know that if in the event a hard drive DOES fail for some reason, all data is pretty much gone (unless you want to pay up the *&#$ for recovery services).
  9. Cave Man macrumors 604

    Cave Man

    Feb 12, 2007
    Neander Valley, Germany; just outside Duesseldorf
    In iTunes preferences, deselect the keep organized option. Then, all you have to do is open the folder your ripped files are in and drag and drop them onto iTunes. Make sure you've selected Movies in iTunes before you drag and drop.
  10. blackbones macrumors member

    Oct 24, 2003
    hard drives fail. thats why i've learned to not trust any of the amazon reviews. When purchasing a drive about three years ago i went by the amazon reviews and picked up a lacie drive. With in 3 days of using it the drive failed and had to use a rescue service as mentioned about (about $1200 to rescue the info off the drive). I switched over to seagate drives, have purchased 4 of them, ranging from 200gigs - 600 gigs and havent had one fail. But im willing to bet that if you checked the amazon reviews you'll find a good amount of negatives.

    The Western Digital "mybooks" where a hot item at BestBuy for a long time, i bet they still are. I would be willing to wager that since they have been so popular they are getting an abnormal amount of reviews on amazon.

    I've used Seagate and Newer Technology drives and have been very happy with both.
  11. plinden macrumors 68040


    Apr 8, 2004
    I've had a 500GB My Book for about a year now. It worked out of the box with OS X. I immediately reformatted it to HFS+ but that was when connected with firewire.

    And I sync my backups on to another 500GB external drive since any HDD can fail at any time.

    On the other hand, for the best bang for your buck, I suggest getting the biggest 3.5" internal HDD you can find and buying a firewire enclosure and building your own.
  12. bobnugget macrumors regular

    Nov 15, 2006
    Kent, England
    Seconded here, I did this, got two Firewire/USB 2.0 combo cases (for about 15 UKP each) and put a couple of 320 Gb drives in. I've set them up using OS X Mirrored RAID (over Firewire 400). It's been good so far, and Firewire seems much much quicker than USB 2.

    If you have the hardware knowledge to set two external cases + drives up (It's pretty easy), it's a much cheaper and more customisable option than using pre-built drives. I couldn't find a pair of matching spec USB/Firewire drive for the same price when I looked.

  13. manchild macrumors newbie

    May 29, 2007
    At home
    500 GB is the best bang for your buck right now (GB/$). Otherwise I agree with pLinden. My plan is to get 2 500 GB drives. One for multimedia the other for backup. In a few years I'll get a 1 TB drive and use the 2 500 GB drives for backup. Few more years a 2 TB drive and the 1 TB and 2 500 GB drives for backup and so on. possibly the other way around keeping the most reliable/newest as the backup. At least that's the plan for now. Slower drives are theoretically more reliable due to heat generation and I doubt you'll need the fastest configuration for your use anyway. If you were editing video then you probably would need the fastest option and in that case you would probably be looking at an internal RAID in a Mac Pro.
  14. moez macrumors regular

    Jun 6, 2007
    Ive been using 500GB WD My Book Pro for the last couple of months... seems to be working great. Am planning to buy another one soon for more data backup. Check eBay. You could get some good ones for 40-50$ below retail price.
  15. banjomamo macrumors regular

    May 9, 2006
    You dont need a RAID 0 for an itunes library. The data rates for all the files is well within the range of a regular drive since theyre compressed. The only real advantage would be that it wouldnt take as long to import a movie to the library. But if youre truly wanting a safe and more reliable setup use a mirrored RAID. Also get the most storage you can afford.

    One more thing to consider: heat is what kills hard drives (aside from dropping them of course). When they are spinning all the time they get pretty warm. I would look into an external drive that has some kind of fan inside. If youve got the dough check out GTechnology or Caldigit external firewire drives. They are much more durable and reliable than the consumer stuff you can buy at Best Buy.
  16. KingYaba macrumors 68040


    Aug 7, 2005
    Up the irons
    Could you not stick your external drive into the refrigerator to quell the "heat issue?" :p
  17. banjomamo macrumors regular

    May 9, 2006
    hahaha thats a thought.
  18. Mac In School macrumors 65816

    Jun 21, 2007
    In the past 3-4 years I've had drives from Seagate, Maxtor and LaCie (I know, they just make the enclosures) fail. WD all the way for me now.
  19. joshwest macrumors 65816


    Apr 27, 2005
    i have a my book pro 500 giger and the firewire both 400 and 800 there is no lag whatsoever it backs up my mac pro great.
  20. nickweston macrumors member

    Mar 16, 2006
    external drives

    Iv'e been using Other World Computing's drives for a few years and like them. They seem to be a bit more "pro" in their design and build quality.

    The LaCie drives have a FUNKY power jack that is easy to knock or jostle out, which is really bad. It is also very fussy in fit, and it's easy to bend the pins when plugging in. Won't buy another one of those.

  21. soLoredd macrumors 6502a

    Mar 12, 2007
    I'm going to be doing something similar come this winter and I've already decided that using an external enclosure is the way to go for me. I did this with my old PC, took the 160GB IDE drive and bought a FireWire enclosure for it. It's been working as expected. The enclosure I bought was a generic enclosure from CompUSA (since I wanted a solution quickly).

    I'm sure everybody has different opinions on what works or what they feel comfortable with, so my suggestion would be to just try it out. When I got the FireWire enclosure I still had a copy of my iTunes library on my USB Maxtor external just in case. Not to mention, if you have experience with hardware or aren't afraid to learn, you have more control of what goes in that enclosure. That just me, though :)
  22. Jimmdean macrumors 6502

    Mar 21, 2007
    Get something with a 5-Year warranty. That might limit you to Seagate on external drives, but that's a good thing...
  23. kixsand macrumors regular


    Jan 25, 2007

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