We review 10 pocket storage drives, priced from $138 to $379.
Through our rigorous testing, we reveal which pocket storage drives:
- Perform the best
- Are the easiest to use
On this page:
For more information about storage for your computer, see Computers and accessories.
Portable hard drives used to be the poor cousins to their desktop counterparts - both in speed and capacity - making them somewhat of a compromise for those who need to take their work on the road.
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We put hard drives through a durability test.
That’s no longer the case, with portable hard drives now able to hold a terabyte (1TB) of data and with performance, in some cases, that matches or betters their larger desktop cousins.
We bought and tested seven 1TB portable hard drives and three solid state drives (either 64GB or 128GB) to see how much the gap has narrowed. The results are surprising and the next time you go looking for extra storage you might want to consider one that will fit in your top pocket.
2.5 inch Portable Hard Drives (1TB)
- Buffalo MiniStation Portable
- LaCie 1TB Rikiki Anthracite
- LaCie 1TB Rugged Mini Mobile
- Seagate GoFlex Ultra-Portable
- Transcend StoreJet 25H3P
- Verbatim Store 'n' Go SuperSpeed Portable
- Western Digital My Passport Essential SE
External solid-state drives
- Iomega SSD Flash External drive (128GB)
- Kingston HyperX Max 3.0 (64GB)
- Transcend Portable Solid State Drive (128GB)
How we test
The overall score is made up of:
- Performance (70%) is assessed with drives formatted as NTFS. The performance score is relative for the drives on test and not directly comparable to our previous hard drive tests. However, the average read/write throughput figures are directly comparable as they are raw data. Performance scores and real-time throughput for the Buffalo Ministation Portable were measured with and without the bundled TurboCopy software installed. The TurboCopy score is used in calculation of the Overall score.
- Ease of use (30%)
- Annual energy cost Based on the device being in standby mode 24h per day, calculated at 22c/kWh.
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