External Hard Drive for Time Machine

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Ash9414, Aug 6, 2011.

  1. Ash9414 macrumors 6502

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    #1
    So I am currently looking for an external hard drive that will be used to backup my Mac (shown in signature) via Time Machine. I was wondering if there are any drives in particular that you would suggest. Perhaps ones with lesser failure rates or greater value for money.

    Thanks for your time.
     
  2. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #2
    No platter-based hard drive is better than the other. Once you've decided on what size you want or how much you want to spend, the only important factor is the length of the warranty period. The industry-standard is 5 years; anything less than that is something to avoid.
     
  3. Peteman100 macrumors 6502

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    #3
    Not really true... The industry standard is three years, with the "professional grade" drives getting the bump to 5 years. Both Hitachi and Samsung are currently considered to be the best in terms of durability.
     
  4. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #4
    No, not really. 3-year warranty periods are becoming more common, but 5 years is still the standard for acceptable-quality drives. And I've never seen or heard any evidence supporting the theory that Hitachi/Samsung drives are the "best." If anything, Seagate pre-Maxtor drives were considered the most reliable and durable.
     
  5. Ash9414 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #5
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_1 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/532.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/4.0.5 Mobile/8B117 Safari/6531.22.7)

    Umm, I'm not too sure what size I'm looking for but I guess with a 250GB HD in my MBP, then a 500GB external drive would be plenty. I'm looking for a portable drive rather than a desktop based one, does this bring any advantages?
     
  6. BasilFawlty macrumors 6502

    BasilFawlty

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    #6
    What about factors like speed (7200 vs 5400 RPM), cache size, or how many and what types of interfaces it has? (USB 2, USB 3, Firewire 400, Firewire 800, etc). I would think those sorts of things would also be factors to consider. Also, once you arrive at a few possibilities, do some research for "real" reviews of each drive.
     
  7. BasilFawlty macrumors 6502

    BasilFawlty

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    #7

    I'll tell you what I did I upgraded my MacBook with the Seagate Momentus XT 500GB. Then I bought a cheep case for the 160GB (in your case 250GB) I removed and now use it as an additional storage device. The XT incorporates 4GB of SSD and made a huge difference in my MB performance. Boot times went from 41-42 seconds to 17-19 seconds (running SL). Now my MB has much more in-case storage and is faster than ever. I see Best Buy sells it for $139, but I know you can get it at OWC for $114 and I've seen them on Amazon for $99. But since you're spending points and rewards at BB, then the increased cost probably isn't a big deal. (By the way, BB sells the iOsafe 2TB (fire proof external) for $399.00!!!!! I bought the exact same drive at Costco for $199 and it came with an extra year of "recovery service" should you ever not be able to recover data from this drive. Seems Best Buy isn't necessarily the best buy.
     
  8. Ash9414 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #8
    Umm, well I don't think USB 3.0 is compatible with my Mac? And Firewire 400 is slower than USB 2 I believe, so I'd be looking at predominantly USB 2.0 drives but Firewire 800 would also be nice although not vital. What is meant by cache size? And I'm not too bothered about the speed because once the first backup has been done then it won't make too much difference to the future incremental backups.
     
  9. Ash9414 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #9
    Well I'm in the UK so I'm not sure if any of those sources are still applicable but thank you anyway. :) I did look at upgrading to an SSD in the future but I'd want at least a 256GB drive and the cost is still too high for me. That would then still leave me with the 250GB HD already in my Mac to be used as an external backup drive. The Momentus XT looks interesting but I've heard it's noisy and I'm not too confident with opening up my MBP even though I've watched countless videos about doing so. Do you also see an improvement in app launch times with that hybrid drive?
     
  10. BasilFawlty macrumors 6502

    BasilFawlty

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    #10
    Mine, which shipped with the latest firmware, is not at all noisy and yes, I have noticed an increase in opening speed for most apps I use.
     
  11. Scope1230 macrumors member

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    Jan 16, 2011
    #11
    +1 I just did it like this except I now have a windows since osx sucks in general.
     
  12. Ash9414 thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #12
    It's probably not a good idea to say "OSX sucks" on a Mac-orientated forum. :p Hmmm, I will look up the Seagate hybrid drive but I'd probably prefer to say up the extra money to just buy a SSD which may end up lasting longer and could always be transferred if I needed to buy a new computer.
     

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