external hard drive recommendations

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by seedman76, Nov 6, 2014.

  1. seedman76 macrumors member

    May 4, 2011
    I'm looking for recommendations on an external hard drive for my MacPro. Features I want:
    --minimum 1TB
    --does not need to be portable...I'll only use it at home
    --mainly backing up photos
    --has to be very simple...I'd like a drive I can use like a flash drive...drag and drop files to it. I'm not a "techie" so if it's complicated to set up and back up to I won't use it.
    --prefer price <$100, $150 max
    There's so many options I'm hoping a few recommendations can help me weed through them. Thanks!!!
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere


    May 16, 2008
    I have a couple of the OWC Mercury Elite Pro drives. I've used them for years with zero problems.
    Any external drive will work like that. You can easily drag and drop files to/from it. The only thing you may have to do is format the drive in the format you prefer, using Disk Utility, which is in your /Applications/Utilities folder.
    • Format HFS+ (Mac OS Extended Journaled) if you will only use the drive with Macs.
    • Format FAT32 if you want to use the drive with OS X and Windows, and won't have any files larger than 4GB.
    • Format exFAT if you want to use the drive with OS X and Windows, and will have files larger than 4GB.
  3. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    How about something like a USB3/SATA docking station?

    With one of those, you aren't limited to using a single drive. You can swap bare drives around as needed.

    This is particularly good for backups. You can do one backup to keep locally, and another to keep somewhere "off-site".

    The docks cost only about $25, then use whatever drive you wish "in the slot"...
  4. furbzv1 macrumors 6502a


    Sep 17, 2014
    i don't think Seagate sells them anymore, but I'm using a GoFlex 2tb hard drive.
    Its connected to my network so i can easily access it thru any device with a browser.
  5. seedman76 thread starter macrumors member

    May 4, 2011
    This idea is intriguing but help me understand. What the advantages/disadvantages of going this route vs. buying a external hard drive? The eHD seem more popular for whatever reason. Thanks.
  6. matreya macrumors 65816


    Nov 14, 2009
    I wouldn't recommend a docking station for your use. You risk accidentally discharging static electricity on the controller board of a bare hard drive, and in one fell swoop losing all your data. One careless moment is all it takes.

    If you value your photos, I'd suggest getting two desktop hard drives, one for backing up the other.
  7. seedman76 thread starter macrumors member

    May 4, 2011
    Matreya, thanks for your suggestion. I wasn't aware of the static electricity issue. I certainly value my photos so my plan is to get two external hard drives just as you described. Then store one off-site for further safe keeping. Thank you.
  8. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    I've never once had any problem with "static electricity" using the docks I have.

    The main "disadvantage" of a dock is that it doesn't look as snazzy sitting on your desk as would an external enclosure.

    But the advantages of a dock are several:
    - can accommodate as many "bare drives" as you accumulate
    - if the drive shows signs of failing, just swap drives, a 30-second procedure
    - if the dock ever shows signs of failing, just replace the dock and keep using your existing drives
  9. arbrx macrumors newbie

    Mar 19, 2014
    I would stay simple - buy two portable USB 3, 1TB Seagate Drives for two backups. They're cheap and flexible - having duplicate copies is worth it.
  10. SaSaSushi macrumors 68040


    Aug 8, 2007
    Takamatsu, Japan
    I've never had a problem with static electricity when using my HDD docks either.

    If someone is that concerned, removing socks, avoiding standing on carpets and especially investing in a $5 anti-static wrist strap will pretty much negate the risks.

    I have this Inateck dock and recommend it highly.

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