Best storage devices

Updated April 23, 2014 11:17 AM PDT

There are three main types of consumer-grade computer storage: internal, external, and network attached. Internal storage is generally a hard drive or solid-state drive (SSD) that hosts your computer's operating systems and programs. External storage comes mostly in the form of external drives that connect to a computer via a peripheral port, such as USB or Thunderbolt. Finally, network attached storage (NAS) solutions are those that connect to a switch or a router to provide storage space and services to the entire network. These devices on this page represent the best among their respective categories.

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The fastest portable drive

Elgato Thunderbolt Drive+ (256GB)

Don't let the compact design of the Elgato Thunderbolt Drive+ fool you! It's the fastest portable storage device on the market. Here's CNET's full review of the drive.

Price: $515.59 - $562.58 Check prices

4.5 stars Outstanding

Fast SSD doesn't have to be expensive

Samsung 840 Evo

The Samsung 840 Evo offers great performance, top capacity, and a helpful software bundle, and doesn't dig a hole in your wallet. What else can you ask for in a solid-state drive?

4 stars Excellent Finally, an SSD that has almost everything

A robust storage powerhouse

Synology DiskStation DS1513+

Supporting massive dynamically scalable storage, and offering a vast amount of well-thought-out features, the Synology DiskStation DS1513+ will transform the way you enjoy digital entertainment and manage your business, both locally and over the Internet.

Price: $797.73 - $887.16 Check prices

5 stars Spectacular A new level for NAS excellence

Top capacity USB 3.0 portable drive

Seagate Backup Plus Fast (4TB)

Seagate's new Backup Plus Fast portable drive is the quickest and most capacious compact external hard drive to date. Here's CNET's full review of the storage device.

Price: $269.99 - $269.99 Check prices

4.5 stars Outstanding

Best of both SSD and HDD worlds

WD Black 2 Dual Drive

Fast, user-friendly, and affordable, the WD Black 2 Dual Drive is an easy recommendation as a replacement drive for any standard laptop or desktop computer.

Price: $199.99 - $382.95 Check prices

4 stars Excellent

Top capacity Thunderbolt portable drive

WD My Passport Pro

The WD My Passport Pro is an all-around excellent storage solution for any Thunderbolt-enabled Macs, particularly the MacBook Pro or Air.

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
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