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Old January 16th, 2013, 09:43 AM   #1
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External Hard Drive Recommendations

Hi all - I want to buy a couple of 2TB drives to use with my laptop which has firewire and USB 3.0 - I will be wanting to edit the footage on the drives - they won't be just for storage - any recommendations?
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Old January 16th, 2013, 02:22 PM   #2
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Re: External Hard Drive Recommendations

Well I use the WD My Books. I have two 1Tb drives and two 2Tb drives, all USB3 and surprisingly fast. I have actually lost one of them, in all fairness, but they are very effective, and usable in most workflows.
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Old January 16th, 2013, 03:44 PM   #3
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Re: External Hard Drive Recommendations

You may want to consider something like this: Plugable| Plugable USB3-SATA-U3 USB 3.0/2.0 SATA Hard Drive Docking Station (ASMedia 1051E Chipset)

The increase in versatility one of these provides is quite astounding.

Basically, you have just one (or in your case, two) docks but as many "bare bones" hard drives as you need, if you check the "gigabyte per pound" figure in the UK you can save a bundle by just buying the drives that give the most bang for your buck.

Something like this should be in the running I reckon: Seagate ST1000DM003 Barracuda | Seagate

In case this option hasn't passed you way before, the drive simply plugs into the top of the "toaster", just like a slice of bread, you hit the power switch and hey, presto, a new drive on the system.

Finished with the drive? Simply hit the "Detach connected hardware" icon bottom right of your screen, wait till it gives you the ok, then power the dock down and remove the "toast" from the "toaster".

Slot in another drive for a second/ third or fourth application and off you go again.

Should be pretty quick on a USB 3 connect.

They're magic for doing rolling backups, which is what I use mine for.

Think of it as 1 TB floppy discs, but ONE HECK of a lot faster!


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Old January 17th, 2013, 03:28 AM   #4
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Re: External Hard Drive Recommendations

Chris I've never seen these before - I'll see If I can find a UK supplier - I was looking at Seagate Expansion 2TB drives but cannot determine the RPM - even Seagate don't know - here is there response to my question

"we cannot determine the speed of a hard drive inside and external enclosure. when it comes to external hard drives, the internal speed "5400-7200" does not matter, since they are designed to operate at USB2.0 or USB 3.0 speed."
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Old January 17th, 2013, 02:27 PM   #5
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Re: External Hard Drive Recommendations

To quote a well known phrase or saying: What utter cobblers!

Every drive is quite clearly marked with its rotational speed, the one I pointed you to yesterday is most definitely 7200 rpm.

The speed of an external drive is no less relevant than the speed of an internal drive, especially as USB 3 is pretty well the same interface speed as Sata 3.

I am not, however, suprised at what you reported them saying, it is not the first time Seagate have opened their mouths and instantly stuck both feet straight in.

Just to expand on my comments on docking stations, a trawl of the net will quickly throw up that they can be had with (just) about any interface known to man, a Thunderbolt is on the way as I type.

Some only have one, some two, some 4 (though I'm struggling to remember what the 4th is).

As I said yesterday, do investigate the cost per gigabyte of the available drives on the market, here 1 TB is by far the best bang per buck, so, in effect, you can buy 3 X 1 TB drives for the same price as 1 X 2TB drive, or pretty close.

Do make note that although most** of the docking stations will take up to a 4 TB drive, Windows XP limits any hard drive partition to 2 TB, so you're on a bit of a hiding to nothing buying larger than 2 TB if running that OS.

** = Some will only take a max 2 TB drive. Check.

Oh, and all the docking stations I have investigated will take both 2 1/2" and 3 1/2" drives.


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Old January 21st, 2013, 01:05 PM   #6
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Re: External Hard Drive Recommendations

based on my experience, i do NOT recommend WD MyBooks; neither will play nicely on my USB 3.0 slots (Rampage III Gene; everything else works fine) and they BOTH have a habit of dropping out and i have to power cycle them.

However, if one were to buy them and gut the hard drives, i can say the bare drives themselves are perfectly reliable. sadly the external USB 3.0 ones i purchased were cheaper than internal 3TB drives.
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Old January 21st, 2013, 01:11 PM   #7
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Re: External Hard Drive Recommendations

Every failed external drive I have ever purchased was a WD MyBook... so I stopped. LaCie exclusively in my edit bay right now. I've had 2 power supplies fail but no drives.

Your mileage may vary.
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Old January 21st, 2013, 03:07 PM   #8
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Re: External Hard Drive Recommendations

Seems it does Shaun and not because we're over 14000 miles away :)

All our drives are WD 7200rpm, never had a real problem. Basically I don't think the WD external drives have enough internal cooling.
Probably a size, noise and cost thing and over long sessions the internal heat does build up.

Even though the post studio has good aircon, we run additional fans.

Cheers.
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Old January 21st, 2013, 05:00 PM   #9
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Re: External Hard Drive Recommendations

Allan that's an interesting point about the WD externals and heat. I've mentioned losing one of my four WD USB3 externals, and they are all lined up cheek to cheek in a row, and do get a bit warm sometimes.

Good gracious. I just peeped behind the big monitor that hides those drives, and there was a box sat right across the top of them, completely blocking the vents! They are not at all warm at the moment, but they would obviously warm up when used.
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Old January 21st, 2013, 07:31 PM   #10
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Re: External Hard Drive Recommendations

Trevor, good catch :) Leave as much space as you can, minimum 5-6cms between each drive.
And if anyone else uses the room, check everything before powering up.

A poorly designed enclosure can drive the heat up. Despite the cooling arrangements
and testing it by placing your hand on it, that won't tell you how hot it is inside the drive.

The first clue some get is a faint burning smell, even before the drive malfunctions.

And Murphys law says it'll drop dead the day after the warranty runs out.

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Old January 21st, 2013, 11:39 PM   #11
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Re: External Hard Drive Recommendations

Quote:
Originally Posted by Allan Black View Post
Basically I don't think the WD external drives have enough internal cooling.
Probably a size, noise and cost thing and over long sessions the internal heat does build up.
As well, the WD MyBooks I had made no allowance to keep them from spinning down. After a period of no access, they would spin down regardless of power management settings, which pretty much made them useless as media drives (most of my work is long form). Not sure if WD has made any changes to the firmware to avoid drive spin down in recent releases...
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Old January 22nd, 2013, 03:36 AM   #12
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Re: External Hard Drive Recommendations

i've had a Lacie Big Disk Extreme 1T (replaced power- still doesn't work...) and a Lacie Rugged 500gb fail. That's close to $1000 for two bricks. And a Keiser 500gb failed. and another 250gb that i forget the brand.
Pretty frustrating and some data trapped or lost. Unfortunately i have 4 other Lacie Ruggeds full of data that i no longer trust.
I am now trying out a Glyph portagig which 'seems' solid and has a fan. I also have two iomega 500gb that have outlasted the Lacie 'professional' drives. that said, i am finding it harder to trust any drive...
would love to know what the rate of failure is for hard drives and if there is an 'expiry date'???
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Old January 22nd, 2013, 04:55 AM   #13
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Re: External Hard Drive Recommendations

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Soucy View Post

Every drive is quite clearly marked with its rotational speed, the one I pointed you to yesterday is most definitely 7200 rpm.
Guess what? The WD Green series do not have speed ratings, but are said to go 'up to 7,200' depending on the requirement. I burned a hole through the wrapping trying to find the speed rating on it.

I have never had a WD drive fail on me, nor a Sandisk drive. For moving around, I highly recommend Sandisk shockproof drives, I even like the finish.
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Old January 23rd, 2013, 03:06 AM   #14
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Re: External Hard Drive Recommendations

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Soucy View Post
Basically, you have just one (or in your case, two) docks but as many "bare bones" hard drives as you need, if you check the "gigabyte per pound" figure in the UK you can save a bundle by just buying the drives that give the most bang for your buck.
Where I live external USB HDs cost less than bare bones internal drives. I guess the reason is related to a high number of warranty covered returns on internal drives. Either that, or maybe the external drives grow on trees and it takes the manufacturer additional labor to crack the shells open to get the bare drives out!

I bought an SATA to ESATA bracket for about $3. This allows the internal SATA ports in the computer to be used with external enclosures that have ESATA connectors. It works great for video.
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Old January 23rd, 2013, 03:24 AM   #15
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Re: External Hard Drive Recommendations

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Originally Posted by Brian David Melnyk View Post
i am finding it harder to trust any drive...would love to know what the rate of failure is for hard drives and if there is an 'expiry date'???
My experience is about 1 out of 5 disks fail within 5 years. I had good luck with 250GB drives purchased a few years ago and with 2GB drives from ages ago, but not nearly such good luck with recent 1TB drives. Keeping a disk running at a constant temperature seems to increase the life expectancy.
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