SEAGATE EXPANSION PORTABLE 4TB TEST

We’ve the evaluation this guide, und continue to stand behind the picks us made during testing at the beginning of 2020.

Du schaust: Seagate expansion portable 4tb test

March 1, 2021


Every computer needs a backup hard drive, und if you use a laptop, a portable tough drive that’s easy kommen sie slip right into a messenger bag ist the many convenient option. ~ 12 hours von research und testing, we discovered that the new version von the 2 TB Seagate backup Plus Slim is the best portable difficult drive zum most people. That reliable, the one des the lightest and thinnest tough drives us tested, and it was faster than die competition an our file-transfer tests.

Portable difficult drives allow you back up or save a huge amount of dünn for a (relatively) klein amount of money. If you want to keep your hard drive weist your desk, external desktop drives may offer extr perks—some models oase extra encryption or backup options, if others might be slightly faster—but otherwise oase begun zu offer a comparable amount von storage at prices similar to those of portable drives. For faster warehouse that freundin access all die time, consider a much more expensive portable solid-state drive instead.



Seagate backup Plus Slim (2 TB)

The ideal portable hard drive

The Seagate backup Plus Slim ist reliable, thin, and light, and it offers schon fast speeds at a reasonable cost.


The neu version of the Seagate back-up Plus Slim is an update to ns same journey we’ve recommended for the past five years, and it’s the only portable hard drive we’ve tested that doesn’t sacrifice size, speed, or reliability. Other 2 TB portable tough drives are significantly larger, perform slower in our tests, or oase a failure rate that’s too high or are not reliable enough to recommend. Ns drive ist available bei a 1 TB version for a couple of dollars less, however we recommend die 2 TB modell because it’s a great value and we witnessed fewer complaints around that version’s reliability. Seagate deshalb includes a simple backup utility und subscriptions zu photo software.


Wirecutter has researched und recommended difficult drives since early 2012 and has invested over 200 hours researching and testing portable hard drives an just die past five years. I’ve spent the past twenty years reviewing tough drives und SSDs, doing dafür for a variety des publications before joining Wirecutter an 2018.


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If you’re not already backing up ns important documents und photos on her computer, sie should start. Fortunately, backing nach oben your data is easy, and getting began takes just a few minutes: review our advice und set nach oben a system that will zurück up your files instantly both to bei external difficult drive und the cloud. Having both onsite and cloud backups ensures the your dünn stays for sure from localized threats such as fire, theft, or herbal disaster, and also from internet outages or disruptions to the wolke backup provider.


But even a back-up drive isn’t a guarantee that your dünn is safe forever. You should think about replacing your backup drives prior to they fail; bolzen three und six years zu sein a great time to consider a replacement, depending upon your danger tolerance. If your drive dies and you have a cloud backup, you won’t shed data, yet restoring native the wolke could take a very lang time. According kommen sie statistics from cloud backup dienstleistungen Backblaze, about 5 percent des hard cd driver fail an the erste 18 months des use, und the failure price lowers zu about 1.5 percent zum another 18 months. Die failure rate jumps to almost 12 percent ~ that. At the four-year mark, ns failure rate is 20 percent.


Between three and six years ist a an excellent time to consider a replacement, depending upon your danger tolerance.


If sie frequently move between different locations and need a drive zu keep an your bag—to rückseitig up photos, expand your music library, or save your work charme separated indigenous your personal data, weil das example—you should gain a portable außen drive like the one we recommend in this guide. However if you spend most of your time working punkt one desk, a desktop external drive zu sein less expensive per terabyte und a bit much faster than portable drives yet bigger and heavier; a desktop computer model so requires in additional stärke adapter. Portable hard drives space designed kommen sie withstand a little more abuse than desktop computer hard drives. If you tun können afford to pay two kommen sie three times more zum a smaller, lighter, much more durable, and much quicker portable drive, us recommend a portable solid-state drive.


Ideally, a portable hard drive is something you don’t notice much. It must sit on her desk, quietly storing and backing hoch your data. And if you want zu throw it in your bag (carefully), that shouldn’t be a problem. This are ns features sie should look at for an a portable tough drive, bei rough order des importance:


Reliability: return reliability zu sein the most necessary factor zum any storage device, solid information on reliability zu sein hard to kommen sie by. Only three companies—Seagate, western Digital, and Toshiba—still manufacture difficult drives, und all of them make reliable options. But all difficult drives die, and it’s still possible zu buy a lemon the will ns too soon.Physical size und weight: the smaller and lighter, ns better. Your portable tough drive should deshalb draw every the stärke it needs from ns USB port, no power adapter necessary.Speed: Portable tough drives are usually slower than their desktop brethren, but speed is blieb important. You’re much more likely kommen sie use a portable drive to transfer large files betwee different computers, deshalb a quicker drive möchte save you time. We tested drives v USB 3.0 und USB-C connections. USB-C difficult drives aren’t necessarily quicker than USB 3.0 models, though, because they’re limited von the decaying speed, not the USB interface.Price: by looking at amazon reviews zum our oberteil picks, we discovered that most human being buy 2 TB und 4 TB drives. Although a higher-capacity drive ist more cost-effective von terabyte, 4 TB portable tough drives are practically twice as expensive as 2 TB drives and supply an ext storage 보다 most world need. Because many portable drives nowadays provide similar performance, lower-cost choices are better.Capacity: We introduce getting die largest capacity you can afford. Larger drives generally offer a far better price-per-terabyte value, and you’ll most likely use a bigger drive as you amass more data over time. We concentrated on 2 TB drives because of their balance of value and total cost. We so considered a 4 TB pick zum people who need much more portable storage und don’t mind die larger size.Warranty und customer service: A an excellent warranty ist important in case freundin get a lemon. While ns majority of portable tough drives we tested oase two-year warranties, some schutz three-year warranties. Responsive customer service ist important, too, need to you oase trouble backing nach oben your data.

For our 2020 update, us narrowed under our list des contenders über price und capacity und tested five 2 TB models und two 4 TB models. For each portable hard drive, we verlief HD track Pro, a benchmarking program that tests sequential auslieferung speeds and random accessibility time across the entire disk. You kann sein read a more in-depth explanation von the routine at the HD song website. Zu get real-world examples of how lang it takes to auslieferung files back and forth bolzen a computer and each drive, we deshalb timed die file lieferung of a 32 GB music folder (with 6,154 MP3 files) and a folder with two big files (an 8.1 GB MKV videos file and a 7.07 GB Linux ISO file) making use of Windows’ integrated Robocopy utility. We ran each lieferung three times and calculated the average zu rule out performance hiccups.


To spot any kind of widespread integrity issues, we check out through amazon reviews zum each des the drives us tested and counted the number of reported journey failures. This an approach has shortcomings: for one, people are an ext likely to post a review wie man they oase a problem. Also, because of the limited information available bei some reviews, it kann be hard kommen sie differentiate betwee hardware failures and software issues or user errors the could reason problems with a drive. Yet this step at least allowed us zu get a feel zum trends affecting details drives and to lakers rough, loved one comparisons.


We also looked hinweisen Backblaze’s difficult drive reliability rangfolge from 2019, which are based on almost 125,000 drives the company uses in its cloud backup servers. Backup servers constitute a an extremely different setting than a box on your desk—bare drives an servers are accessed much more often and are subject to more vibrations and more heat, whereas drives in enclosures oase more potential points of failure betwee the USB connector und the USB-to-SATA reasonable board. The hard drives Backblaze supplies are desktop computer hard drives, notfall portable hard drives, through some cd driver pulled from external enclosures. Also so, ns Backblaze study ist the largest, many recent sample of hard journey failures we have access to, and it’s constantly a fascinating read.


Our pick: Seagate backup Plus Slim (2 TB)


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Photo: michael Murtaugh
Our pick

Seagate backup Plus Slim (2 TB)

The ideal portable tough drive

The Seagate backup Plus Slim is reliable, thin, und light, und it offers fast speeds hinweisen a reasonable cost.


The 2 TB Seagate back-up Plus Slim is the finest portable hard drive zum most people since it’s reliable, and because it’s lighter und smaller than most von the other tough drives we tested. The one von the least expensive drives über terabyte we tested, and it’s consistently much faster than most von the competition. In addition, the Slim comes with a link to download backup software, a one-year subscription kommen sie Mylio Create, and a two-month trial for the Adobe Creative cloud Photography plan (Lightroom und Photoshop).


The Slim, an one form or another, has actually been one des our picks since april 2014 due to the fact that it continues to schutz some von the lowest failure rates des any widely reviewed journey on amazonas while still providing in der nähe des performance. In April 2020, we tape-recorded 21 fail reports out of 457 client reviews weil das the 2019 2 TB model, a failure rate des about 4.6 percent. We’ll continue zu watch the reviews, yet this result tracks through what we saw weil das the vault iteration von this drive. Throughout our years von testing, we’ve discovered that reported failure rates below 10 percent aren’t cause zum concern.


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die Slim (left) zu sein quite a bit thinner than its sibling, the Portable (right). Photo: michael Murtaugh

The Seagate back-up Plus Slim zu sein one of the thinnest und lightest portable tough drives we’ve tested. It measures less than half in inch thick—0.46 inch, zu be exact—and it weighs just 4.5 ounces, dafür it’s easy to carry during your commute. Hinweisen 4.5 inch long und 3.1 inches wide, it fits well into die gadget pockets in most laptop bags or backpacks. The Toshiba Canvio Slim and Western Digital my Passport both have a bit much less volume than this Seagate drive; ns Toshiba ist heavier, however all three of these cd driver are rather compact.


ns Seagate back-up Plus extremistin Touch had die fastest file transfer time, which converts into about 130 MB/s. Die Slim was faster than average, weist around 125 MB/s. Shorter bars indicate far better performance.

The Slim moves huge files quickly in both directions, together as wie you’re copying big media files from one PC kommen sie another or backing up a movie library. Our read test transfers records from ns drive to ns PC, while our write test goes an the the opposite direction. We discovered that ns Seagate back-up Plus Slim zu sein about as in der nähe des as the Toshiba Canvio Slim, despite both room slower than the Seagate backup Plus extremistin Touch von a few seconds. In our tests, ns Slim transferred säule at about 125 MB/s, measurably much faster than ns Seagate and Western Digital 4 TB drives we tested. The extremist Touch ist the only drive in this testing roundup that has a USB-C adapter, but ns difference bolzen the Slim and Ultra Touch was under 10 seconds.


the Slim landed bei the middle von the pack in our HD tune write tests, averaging just under 100 MB/s. Longer bars indicate much better performance.

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The Seagate backup Plus Slim performed bei the middle von the verpackt during the HD song tests, at nur under 100 MB/s zum both that is read and write speeds. These results zurück up what us saw an the large-file auslieferung tests explained above, und they show that ns Slim is fast enough weil das file lieferung use and daily backups. If sie need quicker performance or if you’re functioning under time constraints, we suggest that you seen our portable SSD guide.


The Seagate back-up Plus Slim’s sturdy plastic case has a metal face plate that comes bei multiple colors: black, blue, gold, red, or silver. Ns only interface zu sein a single angeführt on the top that reflects when ns drive is plugged bei and active. Although ours pick möchte hold trost well to normalerweise bag friction, it no rated zu survive any far-ranging shocks.


The 2 TB version is less expensive von terabyte than the 1 TB model, and it’s ns highest capacity auswahl the Slim offers. (If sie need an ext space, consider the 4 TB Seagate back-up Plus Portable.) even if you have only a terabyte of säule right now, your needs möchte expand over die drive’s lifespan, and having room to grow zu sein better 보다 needing zu buy multiple drives (which costs more in the lang run). At die time of our research, the Slim was on ns cheaper ende of the portable tough drives we tested, hinweisen about 3¢ von gigabyte. The Toshiba Canvio Slim and WD my Passport 2 TB drives commonly cost about ns same as the Backup plus Slim, in ~ a few dollars von one another.


The Slim comes v Seagate’s Toolkit program, which sie can also download from the company’s assistance site. Toolkit ist a simple-to-use back-up program, yet you kann sein use any type of backup program you choose, including Time machine on a Mac. Seagate deshalb includes a one-year subscription to ns photo organizer Mylio Create, as well as a two-month trial zum the Adobe Creative cloud Photography plan (Lightroom and Photoshop). All von the cd driver we taken into consideration came with basic backup software, but the photo subscriptions are a notable addition to die Seagate models and the pricier LaCie drives (LaCie zu sein owned by Seagate).


Hard drives kann come in one of a handful of different styles (and be reformatted), through each style having pros and cons plus varying compatibility through assorted computers und operating systems. Die Seagate back-up Plus Slim zu sein formatted as exFAT, ensuring compatibility with Chromebooks, Macs, PCs, und most recent Linux PCs, deshalb you tun können copy files bolzen computers regardless des the operation system. However, FAT-formatted drives, consisting of those utilizing FAT32 and exFAT, space slow wie man writing multiple small files, such as wie a PC is backing nach oben your arbeiten files. We saw this behavior during ours Robocopy tests, when the file transfer rate zum FAT cd driver dropped by two-thirds contrasted with ns NTFS-formatted drives. Because von that, in exFAT drive would feel slow during everyday functions such as a täglich backup of multiple klein files. Zum those kinds von tasks, us recommend reformatting ns drive kommen sie your operating system’s format zu improve speeds: HFS+ for Macs or NTFS weil das Windows.


All 3 Seagate drives faltered on our music write prüfung because they came from die factory with the slower but much more compatible exFAT format. The other drives to be formatted as NTFS. Shorter bars indicate far better performance.

The back-up Plus Slim comes v a Micro-USB 3.0–to–USB-A cable, i m sorry will fit most PCs. This means you’ll need either in adapter or a Micro-USB 3.0–to–USB-C cable weil das laptops that support only USB-C, such together the apple MacBook Air and other apfel laptops. Only ns Seagate back-up Plus ultra Touch contains a USB-C adapter, though.


Seagate startseite the back-up Plus Slim with a two-year warranty—Western Digital, Seagate’s biggest competitor, usually gives three-year warranties—and our perusal of amazon reviews turned up more complaints about Seagate’s customer service than about WD’s. However, a two-year warranty have to be sufficient.


Our choose doesn’t have built-in encryption zu protect your charme from prying eyes. Return the option to encrypt would certainly be nice, its absence isn’t a dealbreaker weil das most people. If you really need encryption, use an encryption utility such together VeraCrypt (or Bitlocker) or take into consideration a portable solid-state drive.


Until we schutz more dependability data, we’ll hold our assessment des the other new Seagate drives for future updates. Seagate released a neu version des the backup Plus Portable (STHP4000), too as ns all-new backup Plus extremist Touch (STHH2000), which consists of hardware encryption and a USB-C dongle. These neu drives space as in der nähe des as ours pick, though like the Backup add to Slim these various other Seagate drives slow-moving down wie writing many small files because they’re formatted as exFAT. If speed is the most vital factor for you, pick hoch a portable SSD instead.


Toshiba has actually released a neu Canvio Slim. The neu 2 TB model showed promise in our rate tests, however it has ns same small-review-pool problem as ns latest Seagate models. We’ll take it a look weist it again as soon as it has much more reviews.


Western Digital has neu versions des the my Passport drive, an 1 TB, 2 TB, 4 TB, und 5 TB capacities. Us looked at ns 2 TB und 4 TB versions of this drive, and both perform well.


Older models of die 2 TB Seagate backup Plus Slim and 4 TB Seagate backup Plus Portable were die former top pick and also-great choice, respectively, in a previous version des this guide. Seagate discontinued them bei 2019, yet they still may it is in available zum purchase.


The Seagate backup Plus ultra Slim was briefly our oberteil pick, from november 2016 kommen sie late january 2017, since it was die lightest, thinnest, faster portable difficult drive we’d tested at ns time. We subsequently dismissed the because the failure rate increased auch much.


The 2 TB western Digital mine Passport and 2 TB WD facets are bigger than the Slim von 0.2 inch in width and nearly 0.4 inch bei thickness, und they’re heftier von about 3 ounces. They to be slower in most of our file lieferung tests, too.


Like ns other WD drives we tested, die 2 TB WD Easystore was bigger than die Seagate back-up Plus Slim. It dropped behind the Slim an our HD song write tests über about 4 MB/s, und it was a wenig slower bei our file-copy tests, back its differences there fell within normal variability. Yet it’s accessible only at Best Buy, and the price fluctuates much more than wednesday like.


The 2 TB Toshiba Canvio Advance zu sein as dünn as our top pick, yet its speeds were wildly inconsistent in our tests.


The Seagate Expansion zu sein a decent an option if freundin want zu expand her gaming console’s storage or don’t need software, but die Seagate backup Plus Slim was faster an our tests und costs ns same von terabyte. Plus, die Expansion is larger and heavier than ns Slim, und it comes with a short, one-year warranty.


We i can not use tested ns Seagate game Drive zum Xbox, however it’s frequently more expensive than die Seagate backup Plus Slim, the a little bigger on every sides, and it weighs about in ounce more, too. It has actually a 10 percent reported fail rate. We don’t love its bright green shade scheme zum most people.


Transcend’s 2 TB StoreJet 25M3 ist larger, heavier, and more expensive von terabyte than our oberteil pick, ns Seagate backup Plus Slim.


WD’s my Passport X zu sein a gaming-focused drive with a short, one-year warranty and no software. Of all the drives we tested bei 2015, it had die slowest HD track reads and writes—82.5 MB/s und 77.4 MB/s, respectively—and that larger und heavier than our picks.


Two des the rugged tough drives us threw into a schwimmbad to prüfung their water-resistance ratings. Photos: Kimber Streams

At the ende of 2016, us tested 3 promising, affordable rugged tough drives: die Silicon power Armor A80, Silicon energie Armor A65, and Silicon power Armor A85. All 3 drives room rated zu survive punkt 1 meter (about 3.3 feet) underwater zum up kommen sie 30 minutes and are rated zu survive 26 autumn on their miscellaneous surfaces from 4 feet, but bei our real-world testing none des them survived these conditions. Us don’t recommend payment extra money weil das a bulkier, heavier drive the doesn’t defend your info like die company claims it will. In our previous update we removed 10 various other rugged drives the lacked both water and drop protection, which left us with the G-Technology G-Drive ev ATC und the LaCie rugged RAID, both of which cost too much zum most people.


LaCie’s rough USB-C and Rugged Mini are both too expensive kommen sie compete v our top pick, and they lack die water protection necessary zum us zu consider them together rugged options.


Other rugged cd driver we’ve evaluated recently und found too pricey include the Adata HD830, the G-Technology ArmorATD, und the Transcend StoreJet 25M3C. All three deshalb have too few evaluate online zum us to derive dependability data.

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We so evaluated and dismissed ns Adata HD770G und the 2 TB LaCie Mobile journey as too expensive und having too few reviews. We also thought ns HD770G’s RGB lighting und gaming design to be a little garish weil das most people.