WD My Passport Essential SE 1TB review: WD My Passport Essential SE 1TB

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Typical Price: $379.00

WD My Passport Essential SE 1TB

(Part #: CNETWD My Passport Essential SE 1TB)
4 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

The Good Simple backup software included. Who couldn't use 1TB of extra storage space?.

The Bad Design is bland. Pricey compared to a couple of 500GB drives.

The Bottom Line Western Digital's 1TB Passport drive isn't pretty or cheap, but its bland look belies the storage and backup goodies within.

8.4 Overall


Pocket hard drives are by their nature not the most design heavy of creatures. They need to be small — to fit the pocket designation — and they need to contain hard drives. We've seen a few interesting designs built around tiny lights in drives, or interesting case colours.

And then there's the Passport Essential SE. It's black, or at least our review sample was. Black and almost entirely visual feature free in a rather 2001 monolith style. A single micro-USB connector on one end and a very subtle WD logo are the only adornments on its glossy black plastic case. Being glossy black plastic, fingerprints quickly show up on it, as do any scratches or knocks. To a certain extent, with a design this basic you really won't care, as they'll give the drive character if nothing else.


The fancy visuals aren't the point with a portable hard drive, though. The point is having lots of tasty storage to hand whenever you want or need it. Western Digital sells the My Passport Essential SE in 750GB and 1TB sizes. Our review sample was the very tasty 1TB variant. You do pay quite a bit for a 1TB portable drive in this size though, as the sweet spot for cheap deals at the time of writing continues to be in the 320/500GB sizes.

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