Western Digital My Passport 2TB hard drive review

Reviews Mike Jennings Mar 26, 2013

Superb value and a huge amount of space mean this drive is our favourite

Western Digital's My Passport has the biggest capacity here, at 2TB, but it's not exactly flashy. Its plastic enclosure makes barely any concession to style and, at 230g in weight and 21mm thick, it can't compete with some of the slimmer and lighter models in offer in this test.

It's a sturdy bit of kit, though; while it's made from plastic, there's not much give in its chassis. We'd be confident of slinging this drive in a backpack and it coming out the other side with nothing worse than a couple of scratches.

The Western Digital isn't able to compete with some of the other drives here for flashy design or future-proofed features, then, but it soon gathered a head of steam in our benchmarks.

It made a decent start in AS SSD's sequential read and write tests, with results of 108MB/s and 99MB/s only a couple of megabytes behind the fastest hard-disk-based drives in this test, and the Western Digital came into its own when tasked with CrystalDiskMark's small file benchmarks.

In CrystalDiskMark's 512KB read and write tests the Western Digital scored 40MB/s and 56MB/s - speeds that were only beaten by the SSD-based LaCie drive. It performed well with even smaller files too: its 4KB read and write scores of 0.5MB/s and 1MB/s were, again, towards the top of this test's results tables.

It wasn't all plain sailing, however. The Western Digital's minimum read and write speeds of 6MB/s in ATTO were partnered by mediocre maximum read and write results of 108MB/s and 107MB/s, and that made for average read and write speeds of 84MB/s in both tests.

Elsewhere, there are few surprises. A USB 3.0 drive is included - along with every other drive here - and we like Western Digital's SmartWare application, which includes plenty of options for hard disk management. It's possible to add password protection to the disk, back up and restore files, check the drive's safety and securely format the hard disk.

Western Digital's MyPassport isn't a flashy or exciting bit of kit, and it lacks headline-grabbing features like wireless access, free apps or SSD-based memory. It does, however, have a reasonable turn of speed, a colossal amount of space on offer and extremely good value: its £110 asking price works out at just 6p per gigabyte, which is the lowest figure on offer here by a significant distance.

It's for these reasons that the My Passport has crept under the radar to take the crown in this test. Other drives might appeal with flashier design or features, but this is the best way to get a huge amount of external storage without breaking the bank - and that's why it's taking home an award.

Details:

• Price: £110 inc VAT from www.amazon.co.uk
• Manufacturer: www.wdc.com

Scores:

Quality: 8/10
Value: 10/10
Overall: 9/10