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best external hard drives


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G-raid is the box, I don't think they make Hard Drives but rather put someone else's inside. In the 18 years I have been working in IT, Western Digital has had the least failure rate. i;e; I have changed far less WD's then other brands. The worst drives are the IBM deskstars (in the business we refer to them as death-stars) Hitachi bought them about two years ago, slowly the quality is improving.
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Beware the LaCie D2's with Silver Enclosure...I've noticed the drive whines even when turned off, something to do with the power supply..if you detach it, the sound goes away. I just recently got a Seagate 320 and it's quiet as a mouse. I've also heard good things about WD. I've had Maxtors fail, so I can't recommend them.
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I want to pass along something that I think may be of importance and of interest to people in this thread. Most of the companies here listed do not make their own Hard Drives. The main manufactures for the US, Canada and EU market place are: Western Digital, Maxtor, Hitachi, Samsung and Seagate for Normal Full Size Hard Drives. Notebooks have a few more such as Toshiba and Fujitsu.

 

Keep in Mind that when you buy an external drive from a manufacture that does not mean they also manufactured the Hard Drive. To my knowledge LaCie, OWC, Buffalo Technology, Fantom, G-technology, EZ-quest, Beyond Micro, Iomega or Edge all use someone else's HDD (Hard Disk Drive) in there external Drives. They make the Firewire / Raid cards and the enclosures loaded with someone. The last two LaCie's that I took apart for clients had Maxtor Fireball drives inside the enclosures.

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Correct, and the worst part is that a lot of those enclosures are not necessarily very good quality (LaCie is an example).

 

FWIW, I try to buy Seagate, if I can't find it I'll get Hitachi or Western Digital, and buy a small fanless enclosure, put the drive in, and that's it. Saves me a lot of money and works better than all the pre-made drives out there (except maybe the really good ones, but those are usually overpriced and use lower capacity drives from yesterday's news!).

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Correct, and the worst part is that a lot of those enclosures are not necessarily very good quality (LaCie is an example).

 

FWIW, I try to buy Seagate, if I can't find it I'll get Hitachi or Western Digital, and buy a small fanless enclosure, put the drive in, and that's it. Saves me a lot of money and works better than all the pre-made drives out there (except maybe the really good ones, but those are usually overpriced and use lower capacity drives from yesterday's news!).

 

On that note I should add one thing, always buy aluminum enclosures. Even the plastic units with fans will over heat the HDD and bam you loose Data. The aluminum enclosures vent the heat really well even without a fan.

 

I have 2 terabytes in my studio, I have one Seagate 10,000 RPM / 32 MB buffer and 3 500 GB Western Digital in cheap beyond Micro enclosures (although the 10,000 RPM is in an SIIG enclosure because it runs a little hot). The Beyond Micro's Run USB, FW 400 and 800, I believe I paid $29 for each of them. Saved me a ton of money.

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On that note I should add one thing, always buy aluminum enclosures. Even the plastic units with fans will over heat the HDD and bam you loose Data. The aluminum enclosures vent the heat really well even without a fan.

That's precisely my experience. The inexpensive fanless aluminum enclosures last much longer than the more expensive fancy box with the noisy fan. $29 seems to be the price.

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