Which external drive to buy?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Sarah L, Sep 23, 2015.

  1. Sarah L macrumors member

    Oct 22, 2014
    I have a storage problem with iMovies because they're using about 600GB of my 1TB and I need to get them off my iMac and onto an external drive.

    I'm looking at 4TB and am used to Western Digital but am a bit put off by reviews that say WD is complicated to set up.

    Does anyone have an external drive that they use with iMac that they are very happy with and would recommend (or, conversely - is there a drive out there that you would advise me to steer clear of?)

  2. MCAsan macrumors 601


    Jul 9, 2012
    That can not be much complicated about connecting an external drive via USB, Thunderbolt, or even antique FW.. At the most you use Disk Manager to format it, especially if it was delivered with NTFS file system installed. That has nothing to do with brand...Seagate, WD...etc.

    Personally I use a set of LaCie drives set up as RAID 0 as my 6TB data library. I have separate 6TB Lacie drive that Time Machine uses for backup. Don't forget the backup. ;)

    You can check prices and sort by reviews on sites such as Newegg, B&H, Amazon...etc.
  3. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    Just grab whatever size USB3 drive you want for the best price. They are all pretty much the same.

    Every drive company out there has either been purchased by or merged with WD or Seagate and one is as good as the other.

    Just format any drive you buy to Mac OS Extended (Journaled) in Disk Utility and it will work fine.
  4. laragheast macrumors member

    Jun 22, 2015
    I bought LaCie 3tb for my movies to keep them off my iMac , but the noise drove me mad so now I use it for time machine
    And have bought a Samsung ssd I think
    You would be better off buying a 1tb ssd
    When your budget allows it .
  5. Ray2 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 8, 2014
    For video storage? That's quite a budget.
  6. Ray2 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 8, 2014
    I don't understand the need for a 4tb drive if 600gb of video is the issue. A few thoughts:

    You will need backup as well, so that's 2 drives unless you have other externals with sufficient space.

    The budget approach is 2 2.5" drives and a cheap enclosure. My son uses an Oyen digital dual bay enclosure with 2 2tb Samsung Spinpoints in it set to JBOD (individual drives). He does video. Edits on his ssd, moves to the spinners when he's done. One spinner backs up to the other. Nice set up. Small, very nice build quality, quiet, space efficient, cheap, easy future expansion.

    For streaming, you don't need a fast interface. USB 2 will do just fine for HD content.

    The expensive approach is my setup. A dual bay Thunderbolt enclosure (OWC) and 2 4tb spinners. I needed the space (have 2 of them). Went with HGST drives as they've always worked for me.
  7. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    I'd suggest buying (or building) -two- 2tb drives.

    One as the "primary storage" drive.

    The second will be a backup of the primary drive.
    Use either CarbonCopyCloner or SuperDuper to maintain it.
  8. CaptainWD macrumors newbie


    Oct 6, 2014
    Hey there Sarah L,

    The external drives from WD are simply plug-and-play and shouldn't be complicated to use.
    Depends on how much storage space, connection and speed you are looking for I could suggest checking out some specific WD drives that should do the job perfectly fine:
    WD My Passport Pro is a great portable drives that are actually two separate drives in the same enclosure and it supports RAID0 for speed, RAID1 for redundancy and JBOD for simple massive storage. It also uses the Thunderbolt connection which gives it additional speed boost: http://products.wdc.com/support/kb.ashx?id=E2ottS
    WD My Book for Mac is also a good and simple massive storage drive that could do the job. It uses the USB3.0 connection: http://products.wdc.com/support/kb.ashx?id=vJnlQh
    WD My Book Pro is a newer drive with two HDDs inside and like WD My Passport Pro it supports RAID configuration and uses Thunderbolt 2 connection, offering very fast transfer speeds: http://products.wdc.com/support/kb.ashx?id=KJ5nPH

    Generally any internal drive with an enclosure or a docking station or an external drive should do the gob.

    Feel free to ask if you happen to have questions :)

  9. Buerkletucson, Sep 28, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2015

    Buerkletucson macrumors 6502


    Sep 12, 2015
    WD My Book Pro is what I just purchased.........sweet drive with USB 3 & Thunderbolt 2 capabilities.
    I intend to use mine in RAID1 mirror configuration to further protect my data.

    I like the dual interface capabilities so I can use Thunderbolt 2 now on my iMac but can also use it on a Windows machine (USB 3.0) in the future, if I so desire.

    Not a cheap option though......but a very solid backup solution with high quality 7200 RPM WD Black SATA drives.

  10. Badrottie Suspended


    May 8, 2011
    Los Angeles
    Seagate is better they usually offer 3 or more years warranty...Peace of mind.
  11. Buerkletucson macrumors 6502


    Sep 12, 2015
    Better than what?

    WD My Book Pro has a 3-year warranty.....
    Sorry, but I won't touch another Seagate drive.......their reliability is very questionable in my experience.

    We have 100's of WD drives at work and about 20 Seagate drives............guess which brand has way more failures despite the limited numbers? :rolleyes:
  12. Floris macrumors 68020


    Sep 7, 2007
    And you are thinking rightfully so .. http://hardware.slashdot.org/story/15/09/07/1832244/backdoor-discovered-into-seagate-nas-drives
  13. Sarah L thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 22, 2014
    Thanks for all your replies, folks.
    My WD My Book Duo (2 x 2To) arrived yesterday. I had to reformat to OS X (googled how to) but it's up and running now. Set to RAID 1 , which, if I've understood correctly, means that all data will be saved simultaneously on both drives.

    I also googled how to move my iMovie library to an external drive. Apple site said to drag & drop from the finder window but this seems to have only copied the file, not moved it to free up space on the internal drive.
  14. Ray2 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 8, 2014
    That's normal when going from one drive to another. You now have to delete the one you don't want. After you make sure the backup works.
  15. jermy4 macrumors demi-god

    Jun 27, 2010
    When you open iMovie go to file -> open library -> iMovie library and point it to the new drive and make sure everything works then you can remove the library on your local drive.
  16. Sarah L thread starter macrumors member

    Oct 22, 2014
    Thanks, I've now deleted the iMovies library folder that was on the internal drive and also emptied the trash having checked that I can open the folder that's stored on the external drive.

Share This Page