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My old non-brand name external drive bit the dust after several years use and unfortunately still has some infomation on it which I haven't been able to retrieve. I decided I wasn't going to go cheap and cheerful again with my next drive so I was delighted to see this model on special offer at PC World last year, not a huge reduction but enough to get my attention.
The real clincher for me was the feel of it. It gives the impression you could run over it with a tank and it would still boot up quite happily the next time you need it. Unlike some other makes this is has a metal case that inspires confidence in the build quality although I'd advise against trying to test exactly how robust it is if you value your data.
Plugged in using a standard usb A to B cable it is very quiet in use and only the little light on the side gives away the fact it is powered up. It's a sensible size so doesn't take up a great deal of space on my desk and can either be laid flat or with the handy plastic support it can be held vertical and tucked away neatly.
These days 1.5Tb can get used up very quickly with high resolution photos and movies so when I need a bit more stoage I'll be looking for something bigger but will definately check out what Iomega have to offer.
I recently decided to purchase an external hard drive as my music collection and vast array of family photos is slowing my PC to a snails pace. Not being particularly IT minded, I needed a product that was simple to use. My review has therefore been written in a way that will hopefully make sense to other non technology minded people interested in purchasing a similar devise.
I was looking for a hard drive that would not take up too much room on my over-cluttered desk and this product was perfect. Measuring just 198mm (L) x 120mm (W) x 31mm (H) the drive sits comfortably on top of my PC system unit so does not encroach onto any desk area at all.
The product has a sleek design and weighs just 0.9 Kg. The drive comes in a choice of colour (aluminium or black) and has a cradle which holds the drive in an upright position to reduce the amount of desk space required.
I purchased the 1.5 Terra Byte Prestige Desktop Hard Drive model, which at the time did not mean much to me to be honest. The Sales Advisor helped to put this in perspective by saying this capacity would store the equivalent of (a) 425,000 digital photos, (b) 375,000 MP3 tracks or (c) 114 hours of digital video. Based on this information I thought that this would be more than enough to store my memory intensive music collection!!
The product statistics can be summarised as follows:
Capacity 1.5 TB
Interface USB 2.0
Performance 7200 rpm
Transfer rate Up to 480 Mbps
Buffer memory 8 MB
Requirements PC: Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional / XP Home / XP Professional / XP Professional x64 / Windows Vista and Mac: OS X version 10.3 - 10.5
I found the drive really easy to install. It is simply a case of connecting the drive to it's power pack and then the USB cable supplied to the PC. Once all the leads are connected it was just a case of switching on the drive and powering up the PC.
The drive was recognised straight away by my PC and there was no further formatting required. The drive works like a USB stick but with a much larger capacity. From using the drive on a daily basis my only bug bear is that the drive requires a mains power supply which means that you have to remember to plug it in if you want to use the storage devise.
The drive came with a whole host of software to help protect your PC. The software was free and easily downloaded from the Iomega website. Iomega v.Clone for Windows enables you to access the contents of your PC anywhere in the world using virtual technology. I have found this really useful especially when working away on business. There is also a 12 month free subscription to Trend Micro Internet Security which was handy as my Norton subscription is just about to expire. There is also 2GB of free online back up storage for those important files that you don't want to loose!! I paid £64.99 for my drive and feel that this was well worth the cost given the amount of 'free' software included in the package.
This is an ideal storage solution for people like me who are not that technically minded. Since installing this drive, the performance of my PC has increased significantly and I would recommend it to anyone looking to increase their PC storage capacity.
Thank you for taking the time to read my review.
Hard drives offer increasingly more space at decreasing physical sizes. I remember a little less than ten years ago my brother showed me around in the building where he is an IT Manager and he took me to a locked up room with racks full of connected hardware. And I asked "what's this?", pointing to a chassis about the size of a big desktop PC tower, and he told me "that's half a terrabyte storage", whereupon I gasped, "wow, half a terrabyte!" Fast forward a few years and half a terrabyte is nothing! Everybody's got half a terrabyte. Most PCs come with more more than half a terrabyte storage from the shop. In fact, spoilt with storage as we are these days, I felt 1 terrabyte wasn't quite enough for me when I wanted to take a backup of all my files, and I decided I needed at least 1.5tb.
I headed to PC World because I was too impatient to order something from Amazon and wait for it to arrive. My favourite brand tends to be Western Digital. They've always struck me as a solid brand with good quality products. I've had a few bad experiences with Seagate, despite them having a good reputation. PC World did not have a Western Digital disc the size I wanted in stock, and the sales person suggested this Iomega drive. At first I was a bit of a sceptic. Iomega has not been a huge brand on the hard drive scene. They were the innovaters of the Iomega Zip drive format in the mid 90s, which would give you 100mb portable storage discs, which was a lot at that time. I had one of those. But since then I've only ever had a spindle of Iomega CD-Rs and that's all I've heard of the Iomega brand. However, it was the cheapest 1.5Tb drive they had, at £90. I am sure you could find much cheaper 1.5tb drives online, but as mentioned, I needed my drive at that very day. My perception of the modern day portable hard drive market (July 2010) is that 1Tb drives can be had very cheaply, for maybe £60, 1.5Tb offers the best value for money, at around £80-90, while 2Tb drives tend to be a significant jump in price, usually closer to £120. This was my main motivation for going for 1.5Tb as opposed to 2Tb.
When I unpacked the Iomega Prestige drive, the first thing that hit me was that it is a very sturdy construction. It's heavy and solid, the enclosure being solid black aluminium with a small white light that blinks when transferring files. I've had external drives from Seagate that came in plastic enclosures, and at the time I thought my Western Digital Elements external drive was the most solid of my drives, in its silver aluminium enclosure. However, the Iomega surprised me by striking me as being the most robust looking external drive I've ever seen. A big part of it is feeling, though, it's heavy in your hands, and the metal feels thick and solid. It straight away gave me a feeling of quality. A bonus is that the power adapter comes with an interchangeable end piece, so you can switch between UK power adapters and the standard used in the rest of Europe. I think Western Digital tend to do this as well. While the concept is genius, you may forget where you put the end piece not in use. I wish both end pieces could be attached to the cord, so as not to lose them. The drive also comes with a stand, in case you would like it to stand up beside your computer. I personally don't use stands because I am afraid my drives will fall over. I prefer to put them on top of my desktop, minimizing the risk of them falling down.
I have this external hard drive from Seagate that both is incredibly noise and when plugged in can take up to a minute or so to get recognized, and it seems some PCs won't recognize it at all. The Iomega Prestige drive is recognized immediately and is a fairly quiet drive. It does emit some noise, as does all external drives I've tried, but it is definitely livable noise. If my new PC wasn't so quiet I might not have even heard the hard drive. My old PC is quite noisy, and when connected to that PC, the hard drive's noise is buried under the noise of the PC's fans. It's a fast, snappy and responsive drive. It's a joy to use a product that does what it says on the tin and does it well. I've primarily used the Prestige drive to make backups of files. The toughest test was booting in to Ubuntu, which is a Linux distribution, in order to copy files from an internal Seagate hard drive that was failing. The Seagate drive was making clicking and beeping noises, and I was worried I might not be able to retreive my files. However, the Prestige drive was up to the task, not letting irregular copy speeds with occasional halts stop it from securing a copy of my files.
There is a 3.5" drive inside the enclosure. The two common hard drive types avilable are 2.5", which is the type used as internal drives for laptops, and 3.5", which is the types used for internal drives in desktops. 2.5" drives are much smaller in size, but also a lot more expensive. I'm also not sure if you can even get a 1.5tb drive that size. 3.5" drives, while bigger, are considerably more affordable. The Iomega drive weights about 1kg, uses the USB 2.0 standard for file transfer, which limits it to 480 Mbps transfer speed, while the actual drive is eSATA, which can transfer up to 3.0 Gbps. The drive is compatible with Macs and PCs, although I've only tried the drive on my PCs, where it has been working perfectly in Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7 64-bit and Ubuntu Linux.
With the drive comes serial numbers that can be used to download and acquire licenses free of charge for the following:
-Trend Micro Internet Security for Windows (1 year free subscription)
-Iomega QuikProtect for Windows
-MozyHome Online Backup (2GB Free)
-EMC Retrospect Express HD for Windows
-EMC Retrospect Express for Windows
-EMC Retrospect Express for Mac
I haven't tried any of these, as I feel I don't have a need for them, however, should you care about such things, this seems overly generous compared to the competition, who, if including any software at all, usually limits it to being one backup utility on the disc or so. I am in fact considering to give EMC Retrospect Express a go to see how good it would be at making a backup of my entire operating system and installation, as it claims to be capable to handle such a thing. Mozyhome seems intriguing, as you can have it automatically backup certain files on your hard drive whenever they change without you having to think about it, however 2GB is not so much if you want to backup music or video material.
I've had the drive for a few weeks so far, and my first impressions are very positive. It's the fastest and most sturdy looking external drive I've ever had in my possession. While I normally don't care so much about included software, some of the Iomega included bonuses have enticed me a bit. The drive has worked out of the box in Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7 64-bit and Ubuntu Linux. It's also among the most silent drives I've owned. Only time (years) will tell just how reliable this drive is, but my inital impressions is that this is better than any Seagate drive I've ever had, and of the same quality as Western Digital, which to me is the top of the line as far as consumer hard drives go.