Maybe nothing is worse than discovering that there isn’t enough room on your computer to store your new files. External drives can be a fantastic solution to this problem, and a convenient way to back up your most critical data and secure it.
Below are the best external hard drives for all needs including laptop versions, slimline portables, and matchbox-sized SSDs. Whatever your needs, whatever your budget, we’ve got the perfect storage outside for you.
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Best overall external drive
Inspired by its predecessor, the Samsung T5 is a compact, cheap, high-speed storage drive that looks like a top-quality portable storage device. Use Samsung’s new iteration of 3D V-NAND technology, it bundles up to 2 TB of storage space in a tiny build. At the same time, it shows up in a number of storage sizes at various rates.
The solid-state drive defeated the competition (and its predecessor T3) in reading and writing tests while keeping the same physical footprint, according to one study. Set in a sturdy case of aluminum, Samsung claims this external drive can stand a drop from as high as six feet.
Seagate Backup Plus Ultra Slim Portable
Most lightweight external drive
If you are looking for something portable that’s also reasonably priced, the Seagate Backup Plus Ultra Slim Portable will probably fit the bill. It weights 4.8 ounces of light and measures just 9.65 millimeters (0.38) “long. The enclosure is mostly made of black plastic, combined with a Platinum or Gold aluminum rim.
The velocities would not be equal to those of a solid-state motor. Still, given its highly compact size, some tests show that it can compete with any external mechanical device. You will get the 1 TB and 2 TB drive-in capacities.
Toughest external drive
Looking for a super-fast SSD drive with extra-last speeds? Look no further than Adata ‘s newer external SSD, the SE800. It boasts a read and writes feature with speeds of up to 1,000MBps using the 512 GB or 1 TB version. It connects via a USB-C port and supports USB 3.2 Gen2 (10Gbps), while USB 2.0 is backward compatible.
This drive features a solid enclosure complemented by a black or blue hairline polished finish. The company claims this drive meets the degree of impact resistance of the MIL-STD-810 G 516.6, is completely dust resistant, and can stay submerged in six feet of water for an hour.
Western Digital My Passport Ultra
Best budget external drive
The My Passport Ultra from Western Digital is not the lightest drive on the market. Nonetheless, it comes with a three-year guarantee and a reputation for speed. Best of all, the drive doesn’t need external power and has a sleek, stylish design, which may be why it’s the first budget option for many.
At this price, you can not expect to read and write speeds quickly. This includes a free WD Backup tool, password security, and hardware encryption capabilities with 256-AES. This is available with Blue or Silver finishes in capacities of 1 TB, 2 TB, 4 TB, and 5 TB. As compared to other drives on this list, it connects via USB-C.