LaCie Safe Mobile Hard Drive review: LaCie Safe Mobile Hard Drive

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CNET Editors' Rating

3.5 stars Very good
Review Date:

The Good Fingerprint scanner keeps data secure; USB bus is powered; reasonably priced; easy to move from PC to PC.

The Bad Not the smallest mobile drive on the market; no backup software included; Mac setup requires extra steps; may drain a notebook's battery.

The Bottom Line The fingerprint recognition scanner makes the LaCie Safe Mobile Hard Drive an excellent, inexpensive vehicle for moving large quantities of sensitive data.

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LaCie Safe Mobile Hard Drive

The only thing we Americans love more than the idea of freedom is the idea of security. Ontologically speaking, it's a pipe dream. Technologically, there may yet be hope. The LaCie Safe Mobile Hard Drive mirrors the zeitgeist perfectly with an embedded fingerprint scanner that keeps unauthorized users away from up to 80GB of your sensitive data. It's also fast, small, and lightweight, and it won't break the bank.

Measuring 3.15 by 5.43 by 0.98 inches (WDH) and weighing 8.11 ounces, the LaCie Safe Mobile Hard Drive is bigger than portable hard drives such as the Transcend StoreJet or the Apricorn EZ Bus Mini, but while it may not fit in your shirt pocket, it will certainly fit in the back pocket of your jeans (we don't recommend sitting on a hard drive, though) or into a small purse or computer bag. Unfortunately, there's no carrying case to protect it from the sundry items rattling around in your bag. The drive connects to a PC or a Mac via the included USB cable and draws its power from the host system. If you're hooking it up to a notebook, you can divert extra power by adding the USB power-share cable (also included), but be aware that this will tax your notebook's battery life somewhat (as well as occupy two USB ports on your system). Both the 40GB and 80GB models house a 5,400rpm hard disk drive with an 8MB cache. The LaCie Safe Mobile Hard Drive is encased in sleek, gunmetal gray plastic with a dark gray simulated fingerprint grain. The fingerprint scanner is a quarter-inch piece of glass set in a finger-guiding groove on the top of the case. LEDs on either end of the groove glow red or green to indicate whether the drive has been unlocked.

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Where to Buy

MSRP: $149.99

See manufacturer website for availability.

Quick Specifications See All

  • Release date Jul 28, 2005
  • Hard Drive Type external hard drive
  • Interface Type Hi-Speed USB
  • Capacity 120 GB
  • Average Seek Time 12 ms
  • Spindle Speed 5400 rpm
  • Buffer Size 8 MB