External Hard Drives (1 product)

Most external hard drives are very light and easily portable which makes them ideal for safely transporting valuable digital files when you're out and about. It's a fantastically simple way to give your PC storage an extra boost without having to worry about installing a new piece of kit.

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Lacie 24TB 8big Rack Thunderbolt 7200

  • Up to 1330MB/s speeds for 4K video editing
  • 8 bays in a 1U rack for superb storage density
  • Dual Thunderbolt 2 ports for storage expansion
  • Hardware RAID, opt. enterprise-class drives and full component...
Call for pricing 01430 433 780

Lacie 24TB 8big Rack Thunderbolt 7200

  • Up to 1330MB/s speeds for 4K video editing
  • 8 bays in a 1U rack for superb storage density
  • Dual Thunderbolt 2 ports for storage expansion
  • Hardware RAID, opt. enterprise-class drives and full component...

QuickFind: 824241

Mfr part code: STGM24000400

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01430 433 780
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Why do I need an external hard drive?

In a word? Convenience. Nowadays, most modern PCs and laptops come with a massive amount of storage space. But eventually, you might find that you have a need for extra space, especially if you work with large files and need to take them with you when you're out and about. An external hard drive is the easiest way to add extra storage to a PC. It can provide secure storage for back-up files and can massively expand the storage capacity of a PC or Mac.

While you could invest in another internal hard drive, selecting an external hard drive is a simpler way to expand your computer's storage without going through the finicky process of opening your tower up and installing a new component.

Instead, external hard drives are simple plug and play devices. Connect it up to your system and you're good to go. And if you purchase a portable hard drive, you can take your files and media downloads with you wherever you go. They're much more reliable than cloud storage as you never have to worry about having internet access and they'l only ever be stored on the drive.

External hard drives are an incredibly useful piece of kit, providing secure storage while being a handy and small place to store or backup files. A hard drive can easily and massively expand the storage capacity of your PC, laptop, or Mac, giving you the extra space you might need to house video, audio recordings, or every little aspect of a major project.

How do external hard drives work?

Like its internal counterpart, an external HDD hard drive saves data by magnetically recording it on a rapidly spinning disk that can then be read and written to pull data in the same manner as a normal hard drive. However, an external hard drive also combines this with the USB elements of flash drives.

Most of us will have used a flash drive. These external hard drives drives are a similar basic concept but are designed to be more permanent and have far larger capacities that flash drives. Essentially, an external hard drive takes the storage and recording capacity of an internal hard drive and blends it with the portability and USB connection of a flash drive, giving you the portable USB hard drive equivalent of your internal HDD that you can plug into any other machine with a matching port.

What's the difference between an external HDD and an SSD?

If you're familiar with any form of computer storage, you've probably heard of SSDs (solid state drives). Unlike traditional mechanical digital storage, an SSD stores your data in a similar way to modern flash drive. Individually accessible memory cells hold the various pieces of data which can then be instantly pulled for use.

When compared to HHDs, SSDs are faster, require less power to function, and in most cases, can match an external HDD in terms of storage capacity. So, why would you buy an external hard drive instead?

Simply put, HDDs are a cheaper option and fulfil the same function as an SSD. Unless you're planning to run apps and software off your portable drive, you're better off sticking with an external HDD. While faster speeds are nice, if you're simply using it as a backup and file storage device, read and write speed isn't going to be a huge issue.

Portable hard drives

Most of us, when looking for an external hard drive, will want a light, portable model. And here at Ebuyer.com we have a large range of portable hard drives. And, though they typically have lower capacities than the desktop variety, they still have more than enough space from most of us and can easily store hundreds of videos and thousands of other media files. And, for those who value speed above everything else, there is also the option of portable hard drives.

What's the difference between a gaming hard drive and a portable hard drive?

Gaming hard drives are very similar to standard internal hard drives. Usually, they're installed inside your rig, but sometimes, if you need that extra boost, you can get models that sit on your desk. These can act as a repository for your games and be activated as an when needed. Gaming hard drives can be moved but they're more suited for remaining in one location as a permanent addition to your setup.

Gaming and desktop hard drives in general tend to be larger than portable models and can massively increase the storage capacity of your computer, the largest models being able to hold up to 12TBs of data. This makes them ideal for gamers, creatives, and homeowners with expansive digital movie collections.

Portable hard drives on the other hand are literally designed to be moved and used on the go. Lightweight and compact, any good portable hard drive will be protected by a shock absorbent cover, which makes them ideal for safely transporting valuable digital files or simply taking movies round to a friend's house. While they typically have lower capacities than the desktop variety, portable models still have more than enough space and can easily store hundreds of videos and thousands of other media files.

How much storage do I need in an external hard drive?

There's no set recommendation for external hard drive storage and the amount you need depends on what you intend to store on it. If you're only after a device to store files, then a 500GB model such as the Toshiba Canvio will be more than enough. If you're looking to store a large amount of digital media on the other hand, at least a 1TB external hard drive might be required to store your entire collection.

How do I find a mac specific external hard drive?

Buying an external hard drive for your mac is almost exactly the same process as buying one for your PC or laptop; with one very important exception. The more recent Mac computers now only come equipped with Thunderbolt 3 ports. While Thunderbolt 3 adaptors are available for some external hard drive models, the choice is rather limited, meaning you might have to pay extra to get a hard drive that works for you.

However, if you have an older Mac laptop equipped with USB-C ports, most external HDDs will work. Other hard drives might be entirely wireless making potential connection problems irrelevant.

Other than that, storage capacity is probably the most important consideration when choosing a new hard drive as well as its power source, and of course, the price.

Most popular uses for an external hard drive

1. Backup

This is just a copy of all your work, so if anything happens to your computer, you won't have lost it all. There are lots of things that can damage your computer and in turn, damage your hard drive. By always having backup you can easily transfer all your work over to a new computer. It is also vital in case your computer ever gets stolen. By having an external hard drive, you'll be up and running with all your data in no time! The most advanced versions will have an automatic backup function - it will update several times per day.

2. Editing

An external hard drive is a necessity when you are digitally editing - which include: Video editing, Photo editing, Digital illustration, 3D rendering, Audio editing and Advanced simulations. All these are the most intensive tasks that your computer can do as they require huge amounts of data processing.

3. RAID processing

RAID stands for 'redundant array of independent disks'. This is when you connect two or more external hard drives, but they operate as one. This means you can save all your data on multiple hard drives at one, so if one happens to crash, you'll still have the date on the other!

4. Data sharing

An external hard drive is the perfect way to transfer large amounts of data. Most people use USB sticks (Flash drives) but these are not ideal for sending large files. If you need to move many gigabytes of data, you'll soon get frustrated by how slow it is. The Cloud can handle much more data, but even then, upload and downloads times can be long and laborious. An external hard drive means you can move data fast. It's basically like a huge USM stick only with masses more storage.

5. Gaming

Modern PC games are so full of graphical detail that they take up much more space on your hard drive. If your hard drive is getting clogged up with games, then an external hard drive is the perfect lution. If you're low on space, your computer won't run as fast, and that's a fact. So, an external hard drive could significantly boost your gaming performance. Which means you have more chance of winning. Result!

If you're going to use an external hard drive for gaming, then go for one with either a Thunderbolt or USB-C connector. USB Ty-A is too slow and won't be able to quickly transfer information from the hard drive to your computer, so you'll suffer from severe lag. Thunderbolt and USB-C, on the other hand, are high-speed connectors that will minimise performance issues when you're gaming on an external drive. Thunderbolt or USB-C connectors are a must. If you play console games, then you can also use an external hard drive. Both PlayStation 4 and Xbox One support external hard drives via a USB 3.0 connector.

Great external hard drives at great prices

To help you narrow your search you can use our handy filter features on the left of the screen to select the different options that are available. Whichever hard drive you choose you can be confident that you'll get the best deal online right here at Ebuyer.com. We stock a huge range of external hard drives from the best providers like Seagate and WD Elements. Take advantage of our low prices and order today when you browse our collection of super-fast SSDs.