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Seagate Seven Portable Drive review: Portable drives just keep getting thinner

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The Good The Seagate Seven portable drive is razor-thin, has fast performance and includes helpful backup software. The drive is also very rugged and aesthetically pleasing.

The Bad There's only one capacity -- 500GB -- and the drive is comparatively expensive.

The Bottom Line If you need only a moderate amount of external storage space, the Seagate Seven is an excellent investment, thanks both to its design and performance.

Visit manufacturer site for details.

8.2 Overall
  • Setup 9
  • Features 8
  • Performance 8
  • Support 8

Review Sections

The Seagate Seven is by far the thinnest external hard drive on the market, and chances are good you'd want it for the cool design alone.

Supporting USB 3.0, the drive also delivers fast performance, and it includes helpful backup software for both Windows and Mac. It's also rugged and quite eye-catching.

There's a catch, though. The drive has only 500GB of storage space and carries a price tag of $100. (Pricing for the UK and Australia is not yet available, but the US tab converts to around £65 and AU$125.) That's very expensive considering you can now buy a 2TB portable drive for the same price.

But if you're into something stylish and rather unique, this is the portable drive to have. For other more practical options, however, check out our list of top portable drives on the market.

The Seagate Seven portable drive looks much like an internal hard drive. Dong Ngo/CNET


Ultrathin, plug-and-play design

The Seagate Seven looks like no other external drive I've seen. In fact, it looks a lot like an internal hard drive.

The name Seven was chosen to show off the drive's thickness, which is just 7mm, the same as that of a thin standard internal laptop drive. To put this in perspective, most standard (2.5-inch) internal laptop hard drives are actually 9.5mm thick. To achieve this new profile, the Seven hosts an internal drive that measures just 5mm.

The Seven's chassis is made out of hardened aluminum. Apart from making the external drive look similar to an internal one, the chassis also protects the drive inside from shocks and especially crush damage. Seagate says the Seven can survive drops of up to TK, and even being run over by a small car. The drive does feel very rugged and despite being super thin, it's impossible to bend it.

Seagate Seven specs

Drive type Bus-powered portable hard drive
Connector options USB 3.0, USB 2.0
Available capacities 500GB
Dimensions 0.3 x 3.2 x 4.8 inches (0.8 x 8.1 x 12.4 cm)
Weight 3.2 ounces (91 grams)
OSes supported Windows XP or later; Mac OS 10.4 or later
Warranty 3 years

The Seven comes in nice packaging that includes the drive itself and a foot-long USB 3.0 cable. On one side, the drive has the standard Micro-USB 3.0 port for both data and power connections. It has a small status light that glows blue when the drive is connected and pulses lightly when there are data activities taking place.

Out of the box, the Seven is preformatted using the exFAT file system. This means it immediately works with both Windows and Mac computers without requiring any setup or software installation. The drive does come included with the Seagate Dashboard application.

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The Seagate Seven and the internal hard drive it hosts on the inside. Dong Ngo/CNET

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