Here are some of the considerations to keep in mind when choosing an external hard drive for Mac
What type of hard drive do you need?
There are two main types of external drives – desktop and notebook drives. Desktop drives are large devices that have to sit on your desk and have to be plugged in to a wall outlet to power them but offer you tons of storage of as much as 8TB. Some of these devices even have two drives inside a single cabinet to double the amount of storage you can use. Notebook drives, on the other hand, offer less storage but can be carried around in a pocket or bag, and plug into your computer through a USB port or other connection. These portable drives offer up to 1TB of storage at an affordable price.
How does the hard drive connect to your computer?
These days, you have two main choices for connectivity – USB 3.0 and Thunderbolt. USB 3.0 connections are sufficient for most uses. However, if you are performing tasks that are disk-intensive, such as editing videos, you will need a drive that uses Thunderbolt connections. Thunderbolt can transfer data at a rate of up to 10 gbps, or fast enough to transfer a full-length HD film in less than half a minute. Some hard drives may also offer Firewire connections, which can offer transfer rates of 400 mbps or close to 800 mbps depending on the type of interface used. Drives which have Thunderbolt or Firewire connections, however, will cost more than those which use USB 3.0.
How reliable is the hard drive?
This can be difficult to determine since the numbers that the manufacturers offer, such as Mean Time Before Failure (MBTF) and Annualized Failure Rate (ATF) are not that useful. One factor you can take into consideration is the length of the warranty the manufacturer offers. At present, the longest warranty offered is ten years – Samsung 850 Pro series (Samsung Warranty Table). In addition, you can read reviews of the best 1TB external hard drive. Doing this will give you an idea of which drives will give you the best value for money based on the reputation of the manufacturer as well as how they perform when tested.
How much does the portable hard drive cost?
So, which is the best deal for Mac users?
We recommend WD My Passport For Mac (2015 model) and Apple Time Machine for Mac users. Apple Time Machine is way more expensive than WD My Passport Mac, the price difference is more than 150$ in favour of WD My Passport Mac. Also Western Digital model is newer and you can use it with free backup software.