WD My Passport Studio 500gb

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Ioannis79, Dec 2, 2009.

  1. Ioannis79 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2009
    #1
    Hi,

    I am thinking buying an additional external drive and I was considering the WB My Passport Studio 500gb, mainly for its F800 cable and its 5 year guaranty.

    I already have a WD My Passport 500 gb, which I use as a backup device. So far I haven't had any issues with it. However, I've read many controversial comments on the US Apple store about the WD Passport Studio 500gb. Many customers have reported problems with the firewire chipset and cable. Some even lost their backup. Since I want this external drive mainly for backup purposes, I would like your opinion. Has any of you bought this drive?

    Thanks,

    I.
     
  2. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2005
    #2
    I'm rather surprised to see those reviews. I went to Amazon and found similar issues with the FW. My Passports are USB only and they've been good. That would also be solidified by the reviews where people speak of the drives being good but say nothing about the FW connections. Perhaps you can find a date range and see if perhaps it was a bad batch of drives. I'd venture to guess that was the case and if the reports are that wide spread I would think WD would have done something about it.

    As for the drive, it's a good drive but I don't quite understand how a FW chipset failing correlates to the loss of data on the actual drive. Perhaps a loss of connection preventing data from being backed up, but not a total loss of data. Perhaps I just can't see how that's possible.

    I also found this review in MacWorld where people speak against the drive; surprising again.
     
  3. dernhelm macrumors 68000

    dernhelm

    Joined:
    May 20, 2002
    Location:
    middle earth
    #3
    I got the equivalent of the MyBook Studio Edition II early last year. I can't say enough good things about it. I configured with two 1 TB drives in a RAID 1 (mirror) configuration.

    It uses the "green" drives so it doesn't require a 100% on fan even when I'm pounding it. The unit is pretty quiet, but I imagine the cylon light might bother you if you were using it in a dark room. I've placed all my media on the drive (movies, photos, music), so my time capsule is free to back up documents and stuff.

    The drive spins down when the computer sleeps, but spins up quickly enough (for me anyway) when it is needed. This should reduce some wear and tear on the disks (other RAID 1 solutions I looked at did not always spin down the disks when OS/X was sleeping). The RAID software is also dirt simple to get up and running, I've never had it glitch once.

    The one thing I do recommend, is to plug a drive like this into a good UPS-type unit. In general, I don't think surge protection is quite enough, and anyway it's handy not to lose what I'm doing if the power flickers. When the UPS detects power down, it keeps everything running, but signals my Mac to shut down, which in turn spins down the drives cleanly. So even if I'm not home, when the power goes out, the whole system shuts down in a way that won't damage the components.

    I know this isn't the exact drive your are looking at, but I had such a good experience with this one, I thought I'd pass it along.
     
  4. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem

    GoCubsGo

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2005
    #4
    What am I missing? The WD My Passport Studio is the portable 2.5" drive in a housing that supports multiple interfaces (FW 400/800 USB 2.0). There doesn't appear to be an A/C plug. On the two I own I know there is no power going to them, but again they're not FW.
     
  5. Ioannis79 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2009
    #5
    It doens't need an external power cable. It is powered either from the USB or the FW port.
     
  6. dernhelm macrumors 68000

    dernhelm

    Joined:
    May 20, 2002
    Location:
    middle earth
    #6
    You are missing nothing. The Passport Studio is exactly as you say. Bus Powered. The unit I was discussing is not bus powered.

    Sorry if my (kinda off-topic) review was confusing.
     
  7. thegoldenmackid macrumors 604

    thegoldenmackid

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2006
    Location:
    dallas, texas
    #7
    I was in the market for a portable drive not to long ago. I strayed away from the My Passport Studio and went for the Passport Mac Edition (it was the same price as the non-Mac) because of the comments. I use the drive for occasional storage and didn't feel that the need for Firewire was that pressing as so much to buy a drive that had some shaky reviews. I'm actually shocked with the speed I can get out of it considering the USB connection and given your needs it seems that this would be fine. If I was rendering via the drive - we'd be having a different conversation, but even playing an occasional .avi file off the drive presents no problems.
     
  8. Ioannis79 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2009
    #8
    Thanks to all of you. I also ordered the WD My Passport for Mac "thegoldenmackid". It's the only one offering 3 years of guarantee. The newest WD My Passport drives are only given 2 years, even though they claim in their website that they are slimmer and safer... :)
     
  9. cderalow macrumors 6502

    cderalow

    #9
    I've got a passport studio 500GB, and can mimic the firewire issues at first.

    When i first bought it, it had issues connected over FW800 with the included cable. using a longer belkin cable it has 0 issues, on usb it's fine.

    my issue was that it would randomly disconnect/powerdown when connected via FW800.

    not sure why.
     
  10. spacepower7 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    May 6, 2004
    #10
    I've have not had any problems with 5 different WD Passport USB drives.
    I never bought the "Mac" version bc it's usually overpriced but since you found a good deal, Kudos.

    As far as firewire chipset failing, I have seen some disasters. Granted, it was awhile back, but I have seen firewire chipsets fry the ATA chipsets on the actual drive. No Mac/Windows/Linux utilities could access the drive. We had to take one to a local place with a cleanroom and to put the platters into an identical drive. Talk about pricey. Client paid.

    The other two instances, we had backups so after much useless effort, we took a hammer to the drives.

    So I've seen it 3 times out of 100+ firewire drives, and they all occurred between 2003-2007

    It's not something that I would worry about but it does happen.
     

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