Best external hard drives of 2016


An external hard drive has three main purposes: to expand your computer's storage capacity, to back up your data, and to share data between computers. It's also easy to use. Most of the time, you just need to plug it into the computer and use it as an internal hard drive. Desktop external hard drives are based on the 3.5-inch internal hard drives, and laptop (or portable) external hard drives are based on the 2.5-inch internal hard drives. Here's a current list of the top external drives.

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Seagate Backup Plus Desktop

Fast and massive, the Seagate Backup Plus Desktop is an excellent backup drive for any USB 3.0-enabled computer or server.

4 stars Excellent

LaCie 5big Thunderbolt (10TB)

Though it lacks RAID 5, the speedy 5big Thunderbolt is still worth the hefty investment, and is a better buy than competing devices.

4 stars Excellent

SoloPro G3

The ioSafe Solo G3 makes an excellent backup solution for those who need to make sure their important data survives even the worst disasters.

4 stars Excellent

WD My Book Duo

The WD My Book Duo is a fast, versatile, and secure way to add lots of storage space to your desktop computer without digging a hole in your pocket.

Price: $553.98 Check prices

4 stars Excellent

A beautiful piece of storage jewelry

LaCie Christofle Sphere

Would you pay $490 for a 1TB external hard drive? You might happily do so for the LaCie Christofle Sphere, which is basically a piece of jewelry with external storage capability inside. Here's CNET's full review.

4 stars Excellent