Archive for the ‘What’s New STORAGE’ Category

The two-disk 1TB MyDitto is designed to be easy to setup and secure to access remotely. It achieves this through USB keys that each user must connect to their PC. There are two types of key: administrators, which can change settings, and users, which can just access files. It seems like a neat idea, but it’s very restrictive. For starters, there’s no way of creating additional shared fodlers beyond the Public share, which everyone can access, and each user’s own shared folder. There are also precious few options, bar turning UPnP and iTunes media streaming on or off. While these settings are controlled through the file browser software on the USB key, it’s odd that RAID settings and the BitTorrent client have to be accessed through a web browser.



500GB+500GB hard disk,                10/10 /1,000Mbit/s Ethernet,              2x USB2 ports, UPnP media, iTunes servers, one-year RTB warranty, 165x190x77mm POWER CONSUMPTION 13W standby, 18W active





The file browser software has to be used for remote access, but we found it very basic. Fortunately, over a LAN you can use Explorer to access the shared folders. Software gripes aside, the MyDitto was slow. In RAID 1 mode, it read large files at 15.7MB/s and wrote them at 10.2MB/s. Small files were equally sluggish at 6.5MB/s overall. Switching to RAID 0 boosted speeds a little, but this is still a slow NAS. The MyDitto is inexpensive at 16p per gigabyte. The extra USB protection seems like a good idea, but those who want more than basic features will get frustrated with its limitations.


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½in SATA HARD DISK 500GB, 465GB formatted capacity (NTFS), SATA 300 interface, 5,400rpm spindle speed, 8MB cache, 12ms seek time, 24dB(A) noise when idle




Western Digital’s 500GB Scorpio Blue has an unbeatable combination of high capacity and fast performance. It’s one of the quickest 2½in SATA disks we’ve ever seen, yet it costs just 9p per gigabyte. Unlike some earlier 500GB drives, this one’s slim 9.5mm case will fit in almost any laptop. If you need to upgrade the storage capacity of your laptop, then this is the 2½in SATA.

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Seagate Freeagent Desk is a great value desktop USB hard disk. It’s better value than most 1TB USB disks and it’s also a good budget option if you can’t quite afford a bigger 2TB model.Unless you need more storage or a faster interface, this is a great choice and wins a best.






DISK 1.5TB capacity
USB2 interface

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SATA HARD DISK 1TB hard disk, 931GB formatted capacity (NTFS), SATA II interface, 7,200rpm spindle speed, 32MB cache, 8.9ms seek time, 25dB(A) noise when idle




The Spinpoint F3 1TB is one of the fastest non-SSD hard disks available. In testing it loaded a large game level in just 33 seconds, almost as fast as some SSDs. It’s not particularly fast at reading small files, but transfer speeds were otherwise excellent. For less than 5p per gigabyte, the F3 is our choice if you’re after fast storage for your desktop PC.

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Takes one 3½in SATA hard disk, USB3 interface



Lindy’s USB enclosure for 3½in desktop hard disks looks stylish thanks to a sleek brushed metal design. Fitting a SATA hard disk is easy; simply flip open the front hatch and slide the disk into place. It’s very quick at copying files and doesn’t make much noise.

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PORTABLE EXTERNAL HARD DISK 500GB capacity, 5,400rpm spindle speed, USB3 interface, 15x81x133mm





A-Data’s 500GB USB3 portable hard disk is faster than any model with a USB connection, yet it costs just 12p per gigabyte. This is surprisingly good value and not much more than the cost of most USB 500GB disks. No backup software is included and the black plastic case creaks under pressure, but if you want fast performance from a portable hard disk, the Nobility is great value.


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The DataTraveler Ultimate 3.0 is the first memory stick we’ve seen with USB3 support.We knew USB3 would make the Ultimate 3.0 faster than most flash drives, but we were still impressed by its performance. It wrote large files at 46MB/s and read them at a rapid 91MB/s. Small files performance was slower, but 22MB/s write and 52MB/s read speeds are very fast for a flash drive.



USB FLASH DRIVE 64GB capacity (FAT32),
59.6GB formatted capacity, USB3 interface,



Kingston provides a Y-shaped cable to connect the drive to two older USB ports, ensuring it gets enough power. Despite this, we didn’t encounter any issues when plugging the Ultimate 3.0 into an older USB port.When we tested the drive over USB2, transfer speeds were at least halved across every test.

USB3 may seem like overkill for a flash drive, but it’s a great match for a portable device – we often find ourselves waiting impatiently as our PC copies files to a flash drive.You pay a premium for it, but if you have a compatible PC, the Ultimate 3.0 is one of the fastest pocket storage devices.

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