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Western Digital My Book Studio Edition (1TB) review: Western Digital My Book Studio Edition (1TB)

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MSRP: $129.99

The Good No fans. Little heat. Huge capacity. Attractive design. Five year warranty. Fully featured Mac software.

The Bad Capacity indicator isn't accurate. Not the fastest eSATA drive.

The Bottom Line The My Book Studio Edition is a welcome addition to the My Book family, and should find a home on many Mac and PC users' desks.

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8.5 Overall

Western Digital's My Book Studio Edition is quite possibly the sexiest external hard drive we've seen, if we're allowed to call external hard drives that. The powdered silver casing is one of luxury, a single stretched ovoid line lit by white LEDs calmly and serenely tracks back and forth when it's in use, elucidating visions of a holy version of KITT from Knight Rider.

OK, so it's just a box with rounded edges and some air holes. But it is one of the nicest boxes with rounded edges and air holes we've seen, and has the benefit of including the most interfaces as well -- one USB2.0 port, one eSATA and two Firewire 800 ports dot the back of the device, with firewire 400 capability available through an included firewire 800 > 400 cable. All data cables are included, although the eSATA cable is far too short for comfortable use. A single power button is featured above the rear ports, and you'll need the included power brick to switch the thing on.

Western Digital is jumping on the power saving bandwagon as well, the drive smartly turning itself off when you power your PC down, and coming back up when you switch it back on.

It's advertised as "for Mac", as it arrives preformatted with HFS -- but it's more than easy to format over the top for PC users. Backup software is included on the hard drive, although you can download it from Western Digital's site once you've registered the drive online.

The backup software uses Memeo technology. Unfortunately it's dropped FTP backup since the last revision, and doesn't support incremental backups -- the best offer being overwriting changed files between backups. Admittedly at the consumer level, usually this is more than enough.

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