Top External Hard Drives for 2012

These days, we’ve gone highly digital with most of our photos, videos, documents and music. Because of that, there’s an increasing need for reliable add-on storage devices. This post covers five of the top-rated external hard drives of 2012.

1. Western Digital My Passport Essential
USB 3.0/2.0, Windows-ready

The WD My Passport drives are among the top-selling and best-rated external hard drives in the world. The My Passport Essential is a compact little device can fit in your pocket, but it provides a whole lot of storage space. It also protects your data with automatic, continuous backup. It powers up directly from your computer’s USB port – no need to be plugged into another power source. It can be used with USB 2.0 and is instantly compatible with a USB 3.0 port, which allows you to transfer files three times faster.

2. Western Digital MyBook Essential
USB 3.0/2.0, Windows-ready

The My Book Essential combines efficiency and security. It offers a large storage capacity and USB 3.0 / USB 2.0 technology. With automatic, continuous backup and a Kensington Security lock, you can trust that your data will be in a safe place. It happens to be aesthetically appealing too: It has a streamlined, glossy black shell with rounded edges. It looks much like a book and can blend perfectly with any workspace.

3. Toshiba Canvio 1.0 TB
USB 3.0 / 2.0, Windows-ready

It’s a convenient, plug-and-play device equipped with high-speed USB 3.0, but also usable with USB 2.0. It keeps your data safe with a full system backup and recovery, as well as a password protection feature. The Internal Shock Sensor and Ramp Loading Technology keep your files from getting corrupted or lost. Being pocket-sized and lightweight, it’s a great companion for laptops. It also has a sleek, ultra-modern design.

4. Seagate Free Agent Go Flex
USB 2.0/ upgradable to USB 3.0, compatible with Windows and MAC

One of the most secure external hard drives, the Seagate Free Agent GoFlex has notable safety features. It’s equipped with two passwords and a preloaded encryption software to keep your sensitive data private; the automatic lock operates once you disconnect it from your computer. It comes with USB 2.0 but is easily upgradable to USB 3.0 using a GoFlex adapter. It also has a highly user-friendly interface and customizable settings.

5. Buffalo Technology Ministation Stealth Portable External Hard Drive
USB 2.0, compatible with Windows and MAC

The Ministation Stealth is preformatted to be ready-to-use with either Windows or MAC. It’s a plug-and-play device with a slim, lightweight exterior, making it perfect for laptops or notebooks. It has a backup feature and restore function to protect your files. It’s equipped with Turbo PC which increases the speed of file transfer, making it two times faster than other USB 2.0 hard drives. It comes with the Buffalo Tools Utility Suite to make usage more convenient.

An example of the best external hard drive is those that not only have ample storage space, but also perform efficiently. Aside from that, they are appreciated for having a compact and slick design. With so many models available, there’s a lot to choose from – but it’s best to select something from a trusted manufacturer, one with good user reviews.

Update 1: The above link “best external hard drive” previously linked to which went out of business, as such we have updated the link above to reflect PCmag’s top external hard drives for 2016. Thanks to one of the readers, Thomas, who pointed it out

Are you aware of any great external hard drives not on this list? Why not comment below?


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