Photography used to be expensive. It cost a bomb to buy and develop films, and then get the images printed. Now, it is still expensive but in different ways. While digital cameras do not need films, there is a need to store those images properly. Contrary to popular beliefs, digital images do not last forever. The integrity of the images are as durable as the media that they are stored in. That includes hard disk drives, thumbdrives, CDs and DVDs. All these have a lifespan.
Between Wuan and I, we have over 100GB of photographs taken over a span of six years. That does not include the scanned images from negatives which may come up to another 50GB. Two years ago, I got a 160GB external drive to store my digital images. Wuan has her own 40GB external drive for the photographs that she took. With that amount of photographs scattered across different drives, it was a chore to look for images that we needed to use.
Last week, while shopping at the All IT Hypermarket at Ikano Power Centre, we came across an offer that was hard to refuse. The Seagate Expansion 1TB external drive was going for RM299 only. I never thought I would need to buy such a large drive. William convinced me that it was best bang for the buck. Moreover, I really wanted to consolidate all the images into one place where it would be easier to look for them.
In the process of backing up the files from my notebook and 160GB external drive to the 1TB drive, I discovered that I had accumulated a lot of junk data, some from ten years ago that I had progressively transferred from one hard disk drive to another. Some were files that I thought I had lost. There was also a lot of data that are duplicates in different folders.
I have been spending the last few days reorganising the folders and files. There is still a lot to be done. I have moved everything out from the 160GB external drive and made it the primary storage for all the images from the Canon Powershot A610 and Nikon D60 which will be periodically backed up to the 1TB drive via Synctoy. Likewise, Wuan’s images in her 40GB drives have been backed up.
The Seagate Expansion 1TB external drive is plugged directly into one of the two USB 2.0 ports of the notebook. The 160GB external drive is plugged into a powered USB 2.0 hub that is plugged into one of the four USB ports of the notebook cooler which is plugged into the other USB port of my notebook. It is all in such a tangled web that I sometimes forget what is plugged into which.
The external drive itself is just a black slab that has quite a large footprint – approximately 5″ by 8″. It has USB 2.0 connectivity and comes with a two-year warranty. The external power adaptor doubles up as the power socket. It comes with a slot for different pin configurations. I used the 3-pin plug. Once the drive is connected to the computer’s USB port it is ready to use. No formatting is required. There is no audible sound when reading or writing. Data transfer ranges from 6.50 MB/sec to 9.50 MB/sec depending on where the various drives are plugged into and how many devices are sharing the same USB ports.
Like William said, it gives the best bang for the buck, and I have to agree. Now Wuan and I do not have to worry about disk space for our photographs. It will be several more years before we need to get another drive to top up the existing one. By then, the drive storage capacity would have grown many times, transfer speed would have quadrupled at least and price per byte would have dropped significantly. Just imagine, I paid RM260 for the 160GB 2.5″ drive plus casing about 18 months ago.
4 thoughts on “Seagate Expansion 1TB External Drive”
I think withdrawing power from a USB extension (notebook cooler) is not a good idea for external harddisk. You’ll never know when will the notebook cooler die, what if in the middle of transferring files, right? Besides, insufficient power might corrupt your files as well.
I always plug my external harddisk directly to the main USB port, no hub or extension.
This reminds me that I should reconnect all my USB devices. The powered USB hub will be connected directly to the notebook. The notebook cooler will be connected to one of the ports in the powered USB hub. The 160GB external drive will be connected to the powered USB hub. The 1TB drive will use the other notebook USB port. Sui bo? Thanks for pointing that out.
I’m not sure how reliable is the powered USB hub lah, but if for me I’ll always plug the external harddisk directly to the PC or laptop, nothing in between. 🙂
I have 2 external disk drives and 2 USB ports. Bo huat, one has to use the powered USB hub. The hub has not given me problems yet. Hopefully it won’t. 🙂
Disk space price has come down a lot. I went for a job interview in 1999 with Home Shopping Network which is considered a large company by US standards. I asked if their databases were on 1TB hard disk. He said they were a few hundred GBs only. Fast forward 10 years, you can have your own 1TB hard drive. It is incredible!
My first computer, the Sinclair Spectrum ZX only had 48k RAM and data was stored in cassettes. Yes, we definitely have come a long way.
I bought a 500GB external HDD (Seagate) and a 1TB internal HDD (Western Digital) in October and November respectively, so I am hardly in need of space. But seeing your post makes me want to go out and get another 1TB external HDD
I now have about 1TB free space from all the running HDD combined! Too much space too little data.
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