electronics

Compose melodic symphonies with the best external hard drive for music production

Introduction:

Creating music is truly an art and it takes several hours of dedication and hard work to create something that speaks to others. But you don’t want all that investment to go down the drain; just because of the hard drive in which all the music is kept, crashes. To avoid such a mishap there is a need of creating a reliable backup for all the data.
In this article, we will be reviewing some of the best external hard drive for music production out there in the market.

Editor Pick

4.9/5

Samsung SSD 860 EVO

☞Storage capacity: 250GB-4TB
☞Hardware interface:  SATA III

 

What should be considered before buying the best external hard drive for music production?
With tons of options available in the market and everyone claiming theirs to be the best. It is very confusing to decide which external hard drive is reliable enough to store your precious data.

Don’t worry! We are here to help you. Always keep the following things in mind before buying any of these.

Storage capacity
With the ever-increasing size of high-quality media files. External hard drives are not only used as a backup. Rather they are useful for storage too. Instead of deleting old files to create space for the new ones, files can be stored on the external hard drive to preserve old data.

Storage capacity is a very important factor. With an increase in storage capacity, the price of the external hard drive will simultaneously increase. So, you should know exactly the amount of storage you need. Otherwise, if your requirement is met with only a quarter of the drive, it will be a waste of money to buy extra storage space.

Always choose the external hard drive that fits your storage needs. Buying extra storage could be a burden to your pocket.

Types of external hard drives
There are two types of external hard drives i.e. HDD’s and SSD’s. Both drives have different techniques for storing data.

HDDs (hard drive disk)
These types of external hard drives store data using magnetic disks. They contain read/write heads that change the data according to the necessity. While doing that they produce spinning sounds.

As compared to SSD’s, they are usually large in size, slow in storage, and are more prone to damage. HDD’s are inexpensive and suitable for not so important data.

SSDs (solid-state drives)
Contrary to HDDs, SSDs or solid-state drives, as the name suggests, don’t have any moving parts. They rely on electric pulses to flip cells on or off using tiny gate transistors. They don’t produce spinning sounds.

SSD’s are quite expensive but they are much faster and more reliable than HDDs. SSD’s are the best option for storing precious data.

Transfer speed
Size does matter but it is not everything. A good external hard drive is a combination of both size and speed. An external hard drive that could store tons of data but take a full day to transfer data, is of no use. Time is money and music production houses cannot afford to waste their time transferring data back and forth.

So, in order to protect one from frustration on a regular basis. The following factors are crucial for achieving high transfer speed.

Storage technology
Storage technology is an important factor. We have already discussed that SSDs are faster than HDDs. So, if you want fast transferring, opt for the SSDs.

Connector
The connector between the drive and PC/Mobile is another factor that decides the transfer speed of the drive. There are different connector options available. Each connector type transfers the files at a certain speed.

The connectors offer speed starting from 480 Mb/s to 20 Gb/s. USB 3.2 connector is the fastest.

Portability
If you have fixed your external hard drive in your studio and don’t need to move it around then it’s okay to buy large and heavier drives. Otherwise, if you need to move your data around more frequently, opt for the light-weighted ones that are easy to carry.

Durability
An external hard drive contains all your precious data and it should be durable. It should not break easily. SSDs having no moving parts are usually more durable than HDDs and are more prone to drop damage.

Security
What if you work for days on your dream project and someone takes it away in minutes? It is a fact that there are evil people out there in the world.

To prevent your crucial data from being stolen, always buy the drive that comes with software and hardware encryption. Good drives ensure that your crucial data is always protected.

Compatibility
Most of the drives are compatible with a certain type of devices only. External hard drives are formatted differently for different operating systems. So, always look at whether the drive you are about to buy is compatible with your device or not.

List of the best external drive for music production:

ImageProductFeaturesRatingPrice
Samsung SSD 860 EVOStorage capacity: 250GB-4TB
Hardware interface: SATA III
4.9/5View Product
Seagate Backup Plus SlimStorage capacity: 1TB-5TB
Hardware interface: USB 3.0/2.01.
4.8/5View Product
OWC 0GB Mercury Elite Pro Dual RAIDStorage capacity: 2TB-16TB
Hardware interface: ESATA, USB 3.0
4.8/5View Product
Seagate BarraCudaStorage capacity: 1TB-3TB
Hardware interface: SATA 6.0 Gb/s
4.7/5View Product
Silicon Power Rugged ArmorStorage capacity: 1TB-2TB
Hardware interface: USB 3.0
4.7/5View Product
Toshiba Canvio BasicsStorage capacity: 500GB-3TB
Hardware interface: USB 3.0
4.7/5View Product
Glyph StudioStorage capacity: 1TB-4TB
Hardware interface: FireWire 800, FireWire eSATA, USB 3.0
4.6/5View Product
WD My CloudStorage capacity: 2 TB – 8 TB
Hardware interface: USB 3.0
4.6/5View Product

1. Samsung SSD 860 EVO- best external hard drive for music production

Samsung EVO 250GB SSD 2.5" - AraExpress

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Key features:

  • Storage capacity: 250GB-4TB
  • Hardware interface:  SATA III

If you are looking for something that doesn’t only stores music but also gives a a boost to the performance of your PC. Then Samsung SSD 860 EVO is the right choice. This highly rated, reliable external SSD is one of the best on the market. This SSD is available in different storage choices, starting from 250 Gb to 4TB. The technology used is TurboWrite dedicates a part of its memory as a buffering zone. It uses SATA3 as its hardware interface.  It is not the fastest of the hard drives, but it offers reliability and durability. You can trust this drive with your crucial music files. However, these qualities do come at a fairly high price.

Pros

  • Most reliable SDD
  • Durable
  • Uses TurboWrite technology
  • Comes in different storage capacities

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Not the fastest

2. Seagate Backup Plus Slim- Portable external hard drive for music production

Seagate Backup Plus Slim User Manual

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Key features:

  • Storage capacity: 1TB-5TB
  • Hardware interface:  USB 3.0/2.01.

If you want an affordable, easy to carry external hard drive for not-so-professional music production. Then this external hard drive can be your go-to option. This hard drive come in 4 different storage options i.e. 1TB, 2TB, 4TB and 5TB. Being so small and having a storage capacity of 5TB, comes as an added advantage. It’s useful if you want to carry your music files with you all the time. When we talk about transfer speed, it is one of the fastest on the market. One drawback of this product is that it is not properly secured. Anyone with access to it could take your data away. Another thing about this drive is that it comes with a short guarantee period.

Pros

  • Portable
  • Two additional USB ports
  • Fast transfer speed
  • Different storage option

Cons

  • Not properly secured
  • The external power source is required
  • Offers limited guarantee

3. OWC 0GB Mercury Elite Pro Dual RAID- Noiseless external hard drive for music production

OWC 0GB Mercury Elite Pro Dual RAID USB 3.1: Amazon.in: Electronics

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Key features:

  • Storage capacity: 2TB-16TB
  • Hardware interface: ESATA, USB 3.0

For people looking for a lot of storage capacity, this drive is ideal as it offers up to 16 TB of storage capacity. Other storage capacities available are 2TB, 4TB, 8TB and 12TB. It is a very good option for storing music-related files, all in one place.
At the back of the device, there is a rotating switch that will allow you to change the settings of the RAID. Use that switch carefully, as changing the settings would erase your data from the drive.
This fast speed drive is one of the quietest hard drives out there. It is small and hence offers portability. The product’s package contains USB, Thunderbolt cables, and power. In the case of data corruption, Raid doesn’t help much in data recovery.

Pros

  • Offers huge storage capacity
  • Portable
  • Offers great transfer speed
  • Doesn’t produce any noise

Cons

  • Once the data is corrupted, it is very difficult to recover

4. Seagate BarraCuda – High speed external hard drive

Seagate Barracuda Sata Hard Drive 2TB 3.5" - DigiStor Pk

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Key features:

  • Storage capacity: 1TB-3TB
  • Hardware interface:  SATA 6.0 Gb/s

It is available in the 3TB storage option only. It is one of the most expensive external hard drives out there. It comes with a 32MB cache memory. The spinning speed of 7,200 RPM makes it exceptionally fast. With a write speed of 80 MB/s and a read speed of 83 MB/S, it will enhance your device’s performance.

It is not very durable. So, don’t rely on it with your crucial data.

Pros

  • Comes with inexpensive 1TB storage option
  • The spinning speed is about 7,200 RPM
  • Fast in speed

Cons

  • nondurable

 5. Silicon Power Rugged Armor – Water resistant external hard drive for music production

Silicon Power Armor A15 is a fast and rugged portable drive. - YouTube

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Key features:

  • Storage capacity: 1TB-2TB
  • Hardware interface: USB 3.0

Silicon Power Rugged armor is another name for durability. As portable hard drives are made to be carried around, they should be strong enough to withstand drops and dirt. This hard drive is very strong and does not break easily. It is water-resistant and will save you from a lot of trouble.

With 2Tb storage space, it transfers files at a very high speed. It is a great low-price option for music producers that need to carry files with them all the time.

Sadly, it does not use USB 3.0 as its hardware interface. And it doesn’t come with backup software.

Pros

  • Highly durable
  • Water-resistant
  • Fast transfer speed

Cons

  • Does not use USB 3.0 as its hardware interface
  • Doesn’t have a backup software

6. Toshiba Canvio Basics- Budget efficient external hard drive for music production

Amazon.com: Toshiba Canvio Basics 1TB Portable Hard Drive - Black (HDTB310XK3AA): Computers & Accessories

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Key features:

  • Storage capacity: 500GB-3TB
  • Hardware interface: USB 3.0

With every increase in the size of media files. Hard drives usually come with a minimum 2 TB storage capacity which has made 1TB quite cheap. So, if you want an affordable drive to store only a limited amount of data up to 1 TB, this drive will be the best option for you.

This is a portable hard drive that you can carry with you wherever you want. Uses USB 3.0 as a hardware interface. Which speeds up the file transfer process.

Do not use it for longer periods, as it is not the most durable.

Pros

  • Inexpensive
  • Fast file transfer as it uses USB 3.0

Cons

  • Un-durable

7. Glyph Studio – best durable external hard drive for music production

Glyph Studio 5TB External Hard Drive Price in Pakistan | Buy Glyph Studio 5TB External Hard Drive | iShopping.pk

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Key features:

  • Storage capacity: 1TB-4TB
  • Hardware interface: FireWire 800, FireWire eSATA, USB 3.0

This drive is specifically made for creative professionals. Although it offers only 1TB of storage, it is quite expensive. It is highly reliable and durable which makes it the go-to option for professional production houses.
The company provides a generous warranty on this product. It offers a USB 3.0 connector, which paces up the file transfer process. If you mostly work with RAW or master files, this hard drive is ideal for you.
If you own a MAC book, it might not be the best option for you, as it has some compatibility issues with MAC. Some users also reported that the drive kept ejecting itself.

Pros

  • Professional Hard drive
  • Reliable
  • Durable
  • Transfer files at high speed

Cons

  • Compatibility issues with MAC
  • Drive keeps ejecting by itself

 8. WD My Cloud- best 3.0 external hard drive for storage

WD My Cloud 8TB Personal Cloud Storage Price in Pakistan | Buy WD Cloud Storage (WDBCTL0080HWT) | iShopping.pk

 

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Key features:

  • Storage capacity: 2 TB – 8 TB
  • Hardware interface: USB 3.0

This hard drive is available in 2TB, 3TB, 4TB, and 8TB storage capacity. The unique thing about this drive is that it offers free cloud storage to its users. It allows you to access your data anywhere, anytime without needing the hard drive itself thanks to its DLNA support.
It uses USB 3.0 as a hardware interface which ensures blazing transfer speed. It is compatible with both Windows as well as MAC.
Although it is compatible with MAC, users have reported a lot of issues with it. The product doesn’t have a strong community. If you ever faced an issue, there are no community guidelines available.
As the drive gets old, its performance gets slow.

Pros

  • Available in different storage options
  • Offers cloud storage
  • Uses USB 3.0 as a hardware interface

Cons

  • No community guidelines
  • Not ideal for MAC operating system
  • Drive’s performance decreases with time

Conclusion:

The type of external hard drive you need depends upon your nature of work. If you need it for professional use, you should go for drives that ensure reliability and durability.

If you need it for not-so-professional use and require it to carry around more often, opt for the portable ones. We have listed the best for you. Now you need to decide which one suits you the best.

FAQs:

  1. Which one is faster? HDD or SSD?
    SSD’s are quite expensive but they are faster and more reliable than the HDDs.
  2. What are the factors that are crucial for achieving high transfer speed?
    Factors such as storage technology and connectors are crucial for achieving high transfer speed.
    Storage technology
    Storage technology is an important factor. We have already discussed that SSD’s are faster than the HDDs. So, if you want fast transferring, opt for the SSD’S
    Connector
    The connector between the drive and PC/Mobile is another factor that decides the transfer speed of the drive. There are different connector options available. Each connector type transfers the files at a certain speed.
    The connectors offer speed starting from 480 Mb/s to 20 Gb/s. USB 3.2 connector is the fastest.
  3. Are external hard drives compatible with all types of operating systems?
    No, most of the drives are compatible with certain types of devices only. External hard drives are formatted differently for different operating systems. So, always consider whether the drive you are about to buy is compatible with your device or not.
  4. Is SSD or HDD better for music production?
    SSD’s are better because they do not have any moving parts and don’t create any noise. They are way faster than HDD’s, which makes them ideal for music production.
  5. What does an external hard drive do?
    An external hard drive gives you instant storage by just plugging it in with your device. They are also used as a backup for storing precious files.
  6. How long do external hard drives last for?
    The average life of an external hard drive is 3 to 5 years.

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