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Best USB 3.0 external HDDs for Windows 10 [2020 Guide]

  • 4 TB data storage
  • Dual front-facing USB 3.0 ports
  • Works cross-platforms
  • Customizable backups schedule
  • Thicker than the competition

The Seagate Backup Plus Hub enables you to set a specific schedule for updates/data transfers to take place, and you can forget about performing this process manually.

This in turn gives you more time to focus on other important tasks while knowing that your data is safe at all times.

Offers a 4TB storage space, thus enabling you to store high-quality videos, pictures, and music, without worrying too much about space availability.

  • Supports both USB 2.0 and 3.0
  • 5 TB capacity
  • Formatted NTFS for Windows (can be formatted differently for other OSs)
  • 2-year warranty

The WD Elements offers you a 5TB storage capacity that can be used for any sort of files – games, Windows backups, HD and Ultra HD quality videos and images, etc.

This external HDD also offers you access to the data through either a USB 2.0 or a USB 3.0. It is recommended that you use the 3.0 connector if you want to transfer big files faster.

Can be compatible with a variety of operating systems as long as the formatting of the HDD is compliant with the requirements of the specific OS.

  • AES-XTS 256-bit encryption
  • 500 Gb storage with USB 3.1
  • Common Criteria EAL4+ ready
  • PIN authentication (7-15-digit PIN)
  • FIPS PUB 197 Validated Encryption Algorithm
  • Security level might be too much

If you’ve wondered if there are any truly-secure external HDDs on the market, the answer is the powerful iStorage DiskAshur2, which offers unparalleled security in this domain.

This device has multiple levels of security, enabling you to set a 7 or 15-digit PIN just to activate it, while also encrypting any stored data with military-grade 256-bit encryption with a FIPS PUB 197 VEA (Validated Encryption Algorithm).

Using this device to store your data will ensure that no third-party will ever get access to it, but for some users, this might be a bit too much security for quick access situations.

  • Compatible with Mac, PC, Xbox One, and Playstation 4
  • 4 TB capacity
  • USB 3.0 connection
  • Compact design
  • Thicker than other options

This LaCie USB 3.0 external hard-drive is extremely useful if you’re planning on using it cross-platform, offering you full compatibility with Mac, PC, Xbox One, and PS4 operating systems.

The transfer speeds are very good, using the 3.0 connectivity, and the design fits any sort of setting, no matter if it’s a formal office situation or a desk at home.

Even though it is a bit bulkier than other options presented in this guide, the finish might seem appealing to more users.

  • 2 TB storage capacity
  • USB 3.0 connection
  • Compact and slick design
  • Plug and play
  • 1-year warranty
  • Needs different formatting for non-Windows OS

This external hard-drive offers you access to 2 TB of storage capacity and all you need to do si just plug the device into your PC.

It can be connected to your PC by using either the USB 2.0 port or the 3.0 USB port, depending on the speed you need to use.

When it comes to the 2.0 port, you can expect up to 480 Mbit/s, and for the 3.0 port, around 5 Gbit/s.

The simple yet beautiful design ensures that it will never be disturbing the Feng-Shui of your work or home environment.

  • 2 TB storage space
  • Great variety of colors
  • Can schedule automatic backups
  • Compatible with Mac and Windows systems
  • One year Mylio Create membership included
  • Two-month membership to Adobe Creative Cloud Photography Plan
  • Some transfer slowdowns in the case of big files

The Seagate Backup Plus Slim, as the name suggests, was designed with thinness in mind, thus ensuring that the device can be carried easily.

Beyond this, the finish of the product gives you the chance to show off your new HDD that matches any situation, no matter if you work in an office or not.

This device also comes bundled with an exclusive 1-year subscription to Mylio Create, and, as if that wasn’t enough, a 2-month membership to the Adobe Creative Cloud Photography plan.

This ensures that you will be able to not only carry your data anywhere you’d like, but also that you’ll be able to edit, manage, and share photos easily.

  • 2TB storage
  • USB 3.0, USB Type C, USB 2.0
  • Works perfectly with Mac, and Windows
  • 1 free month of Adobe Creative Cloud All Apps Plan
  • Speed could be greater while transferring large files

This external hard drive comes with a sleek and lightweight aluminum case. The drive comes with a USB Type-C port and it supports 256-bit AES encryption.

There’s also a Seagate Backup Plus software that will automatically back up your desired files. In addition, there’s also an Eco mode that works as a power-saving mode.

The device comes with a USB-C cable, but there’s also a USB-C to USB 3.0 cable available as well. Regarding the speed, the device offers up to 5Gb/s transfer speed.

LaCie Porsche Design Mobile Drive is a beautiful external hard drive with amazing transfer speed. Regarding the price, you can get a 1TB model for a price that goes around $100. If you need more storage, there are models up to 8TB available.

  • Drop and shock-resistant
  • Dust and rain resistant
  • 1-month free Adobe CC
  • Compatible with Mac and Windows
  • The cable connection to the device can be loose

LaCie Rugged RAID is a rugged device that will protect your files from drops, dirt, and water. The device has a built-in Thunderbolt cable, but there’s also a detachable USB 3.0 cable included.

This hard drive is powered by a Thunderbolt connector, but if you decide to use USB 3.0, you’ll have to use the included AC adapter. Of course, all your ports will remain protected thanks to the rubber cap.

We have to mention that the device has a bulky design, and it might not be the most compact hard drive on our list, but it’s certainly one of the most durable. The drive comes with LaCie’s Backup Assistant software so you can automatically create backups right out of the box.

The device has a 4TB capacity and it comes with two 2TB drives connected in a hardware RAID 0 mode. If you want, you can also use RAID 1 mode to copy files to both drives simultaneously. Regarding the speed, this device offers up to 240MB/s speed.

LaCie Rugged RAID is a durable device that offers great capacity and speed. The 4TB model costs $358. We have to mention that non-RAID models with less capacity are also available.

  • USB 3.0
  • 2 TB storage space
  • Drag-and-drop to upload files
  • 18-inch USB cable

Seagate Expansion is a decent USB 3.0 external hard drive that offers a simple and stylish design. This is a USB 3.0 device, but it’s fully compatible with USB 2.0, although you’ll get slower transfer speed while using USB 2.0.

This is a 5400RPM drive and it weighs 5.9 ounces so you can easily carry it wherever you go.

Although this is a decent hard drive, it doesn’t offer any backup or encryption software, which can be a flaw for some users.

  • Rugged build
  • 2 TB
  • USB 3.1 Gen 1
  • Three-stage shock protection system
  • Bundled with Transcend Elite data management software
  • Some minor issues with the software

Transcend StoreJet 25M3 is another USB 3.0 external hard drive that focuses on durability. This hard drive has a triple-layer rubber chassis that should protect your device from drops up to 5 feet. Due to its rubber case, this device weighs about 8.1 ounces.

This device comes with a USB 3.0 cable, and it uses a single cable for data transfer and power. +There’s a built-in LED indicator on the drive that signalizes that transfer is taking place. The drive also has a One Touch Auto-Backup button and 256-bit AES encryption.

Transcend StoreJet 25M3 is a durable USB 3.0 external hard drive and it offers 90MB/s transfer speed. Regarding the price, the 1TB model is available for $56.99 while the 2TB model costs $99. The device is available in black or blue color.

  • USB 3.0 port
  • 1 TB
  • Two colors available
  • 1-year Toshiba warranty
  • Slow speeds on some ocasions

Toshiba Canvio Basics is a USB 3.0 external hard drive and it comes with a simple, smudge-resistant design. This drive has a 5400RPM and a transfer rate up to 5Gb/s. Regarding the cache, this hard drive has an 8MB cache buffer.

The device uses a single USB 3.0 cable for power and file transfer and it requires no additional drivers in order to work. The drive has Internal Shock Sensor and Ramp-Loading Technology that will protect it from accidental drops.

This is a decent external hard drive, and it offers up to 3TB of storage space. As for the price, the 1TB model costs $54.99. This external hard drive is available in black, silver, and white color.

Maxtor M3 is another USB 3.0 external hard drive with a simple design. This drive is manufactured by Seagate and it offers a transfer speed of about 100MB/s.

The entire drive has a simple design and it comes with a scratch and fingerprint-resistant finish.

The drive uses a single USB 3.0 cable for data transfer and power. The device doesn’t have a power button, but it comes with Seagate AutoBackup Software that lets you create backups with ease.

  • Slick design
  • 2 color-ways available
  • 1 TB storage
  • Power-saving settings
  • 7 years warranty from Verbatim

This external USB 3.0 hard drive comes with a compact and sleek design. The drive uses USB 3.0 cable for file transfer and power, so no additional cables are required.

Regarding the software, this device comes with Nero Backup software so you can automatically back up important files. There’s also a Green Button energy-saving software that will help you preserve your laptop battery.

Although this device uses USB 3.0 for file transfer, it’s compatible with USB 2.0, but using USB 2.0 might reduce your performance. We also have to mention that this device comes with an impressive 7-year warranty.

The device is available in shiny black, diamond silver, and diamond black colors. 

  • 1 TB
  • Pairs with G-Dock
  • Bus-powered hub
  • USB 3.0 connectivity
  • Some problems with RAID configurations

G-Drive EV is a somewhat durable external hard drive with an aluminum casing. This is a USB 3.0 device, so it offers a transfer speed up to 140MB/s.

This device doesn’t require any additional cables, and it uses only one cable for file transfer and power.

G-Drive EV is formatted for Mac computers, but you can easily reformat it and use it on Windows 10 PC.

The device looks visually appealing with its aluminum case, but unfortunately, this drive doesn’t offer any backup or encryption software.

There are many excellent USB 3.0 external hard drives available on the market, and we hope that you found the suitable hard drive for you on our list.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in January 2017 and has been since updated for freshness, and accuracy.

This post was written by Milan Stanojevic and was first posted to WindowsReport

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