Buying affordable and cheap external hard drives is an excellent option to save countless precious photos, vulnerable videos, desktop data and other irreplaceable information. Due to an increase in demand in today's multimedia era, supplies of cheap yet good quality external hard drives have always been available in the market. External hard drives are great in storing files as well as providing another form of data backup for users. Solid state drives are too expensive for average users and provide little space for storage, much like how USB drives are now.  In this article useful information will be provided on external hard drive purchases, as well as buying options available and characteristics to look for.

Places Offering Cheap External hard Drive

There are many options available for buyers in regards to external hard drives. Several places to buy exists, depending on your preferences, budget and location. The following hard drive repositories offer the best deals.

Amazon: As always, the titanic online retail website has plenty of great deals available for users to choose from. Many authorized agents, second-hand sellers and brick-and-mortar shops are selling from Amazon. Checking other customer's reviews on each brands like LaCie, Iomega and CMS, as well as the different sales agents goes a long way to decide which vendor offers the best external hard drive deals. Cheap hard drives from vendors with low buyer ratings and consumer reviews are a great risk to buy from.

Electronic and PC Fairs: PC Fairs are a great way of acquiring cheap external hard drives. A PC Fair is only held once, or twice every year, meaning electronics provisioner will often slash down prices greatly because this is the venue where customers are expecting great deals and will therefore look out for the best options. Exhibitioners will peddle around many quality brands like cheap SeaGate storage, affordable Toshiba disks and discounted Western Digital hard drives. Many places around the globe held these electronics exposition, including Los Angeles Consumer Electronics Show in California, Computex Taipei in Taiwan and Kuala Lumpur PC Fair in Malaysia.

Specialised Computer Mall: These electronics emporium are a great option to consider when buying external hard drives.One of the best reason to buy at these malls is that you can inspect the hard drive personally, ask related question and maybe test the drive itself. However, prices are perhaps higher due to the cost of transporting the hard drives to the store as well as the need to cover the shop's overhead and maintenance cost.

Many other way of buying exists as well. Depending on your location, there are bound to be great deals just around the corner.

External Hard Drive Characteristics to Look For

Hard drives have many specifications, abilities and potentials to look for. Here are several important points to consider before buying an external hard drive:

Upgradeability: Hard disks will often last for months and years. All the while the rapid pace of technology  will however left old hard drives in the dust, especially if they're slow and clunky. SeaGate's GoFlex brand are a great example, where they have detachable tops so that the user may remove one with a FireWire port and attach another top with a USB 3.0 connector. Therefore, many modern external storage devices feature the great option to users - the ability to upgrade their connection ability, discussed in detail below.

Connection: As stated above, upgradeable hard drives will be able to keep pace with the rapid advance of technology. Manufacturers employ many methods to upgrade their hard drive. Methods include additional cables, extra-length wires and detachable covers. Said covers allow access to different connection methods like FireWire and eSATA. This means users will still be able to use the drive no matter what type of computer ports they have at hand, especially if said device lacks modern ports like the high-speed USB 3.0.

Capacity: This is likely the most important factor to consider. Sizes of external hard drives are always increasing, and this in turn drives the prices of smaller hard disks down. Bigger is almost always better, since large size means more data can be stored without needing to divide said data into two smaller hard disks. Bigger SeaGate hard drives are also slightly cheaper than two smaller SeaGate drives because the casing and assembling cost is used for only one drive. However, attention needs to be paid to ensure that users didn't misplace said SeaGate drive.

Speed: Is is true that hard disk rotation speed are a factor in speedy data transfer. Normally, external hard drives rotate at speeds around 5400 RPM (Revolution Per Minute), and this is just enough for average users. Higher revolutions, like 7200 RPM or even 10000 RPM are faster, but consider that faster drives also consume more electricity and can drain battery power, which is an important factor to ponder about if the user plugs it to a laptop while on the travel or lengthy business meetings.

Bundled Software: Many manufacturers, like Buffalo or Toshiba or SeaGate now include useful software inside their external hard drives. These software are provided to give many useful benefits to buyers, including backup software, encryption solution and maintenance mechanic. Free backup software are a necessary especially since it help prevent the loss of data. Encryption software is a security measure that prevents unauthorised access into the hard drive. When using the provided encryption software, please remember to store the password safely, or try not to forget it.

Useful Hard Drive Accessories

Like the many varieties of affordable hard drives available, there are also plenty of accessories to accompany your spinning storage device.

Carrying Case: There are countless choices available when it comes to hard drive containers, with original brands available from Case Logic, AmazonBasics and BoxWave Corp. From colourful clothed pouches, to portable plastic cases, accessible options are endless for savvy consumers. Unbranded cheap cases, often coming from Chinese manufacturers does not hurt the wallet to replace if it has worn out or has torn stitches. Certain Chinese manufacturers have been audited and produce good cases, though certain consumers are wary due to the manufacturers not receiving proper reviews or media exposure. If there are offers for cheap Chinese hard drive cases, though, check them out. Great deals can be obtained, sometimes at the same quality as Western-branded cases.

The costs of constantly replacing cheap hard drive cases may rise quickly though, especially if you're carrying said pouches to many types environments and areas. So perhaps it is better to buy a more expensive, yet durable and rugged cases provided by slightly expensive branded makers.

Additional Wire: More cables and connectors are a good option to vary the type of speeds and connection capability of an external hard drive, especially if you own many different devices that requires a diverse set of ports. For example, cheap USB 3.0 wires compatible with most newly-made hard drives are becoming more common nowadays, and since they're going to support many devices like their predecessor, buying USB 3.0 wires could be a good option, even when they're slightly expensive compared to other external hard drive cables like FireWire.

Backup Software: This assists the user in retaining data in at a safe location, ensuring additional copies are always available somewhere. Backup capability are included by default in many hard disks, but if you've bought one that doesn't have this data saving measures, get some backup ability fast before the unpredictable happens. The market offers many backup sotware for users to utilise, including free and paid options.

Backup Hardware : Well, this is less of an "accessory" and more of an entirely new hardware stuff to acquire! Eitherway, though, several options exist for hardware-based backups. You could acquire several hard disks and assemble and connect them together to form a RAID. Many definitions are used but the most agreeable meaning of RAID is Redundant Array of Inexpensive Disks. What are RAIDs made of? Basically, RAIDs are made by connecting several hard disks together, and collected data for storage is spread equally between these hard disks. Therefore, if one disk fails, the other still-functioning disk can still keep and store data safely. The next option to consider is getting what is called NAS - Network Attached Storage. What does NAS mean? Well, NAS are basically a large-sized hard disk connected to several computers using a network connection, be it using wireless technology like WiFi, or using cable connection like ethernet wires.


Great deals are common nowadays in every place. When it comes to affordable and cheap external hard drives, consumers are certainly spoilt by the choices available.