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Review: WD My Passport Ultra (2TB, 7th Gen)

by Parm Mann on 18 September 2015, 09:15

Tags: WD (NYSE:WDC)

Quick Link: HEXUS.net/qacun3

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Conclusion

...a go-to solution for consumers seeking ample storage capacity and capable performance in a portable form factor.

WD's latest My Passport Ultra sticks to a tried-and-trusted formula and continues to serve as a go-to solution for consumers seeking ample storage capacity and capable performance in a portable form factor.

Available in capacities of up to 3TB, the drive ticks the expected boxes and offers a little something extra in the form of cute colour combinations and easy-to-use software utilities for data backup and disk management.

Compact, capacious and competent, My Passport Ultra remains a solid choice in a congested marketplace of portable hard drives.

The Good
 
The Bad
Up to 3TB capacity
Power and data via USB 3.0
Available in a choice of colours
Three-year warranty
 
Not much faster than older models



WD My Passport Ultra

HEXUS.where2buy

The WD My Passport Ultra portable hard drive is available to purchase from Amazon and the WD Store.

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At HEXUS, we invite the companies whose products we test to comment on our articles. If any company representatives for the products reviewed choose to respond, we'll publish their commentary here verbatim.



HEXUS Forums :: 7 Comments

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Having used 1TB & 2TB drives over the last 5 years I do wish they would get a grip with the vibrations these drives produce i.e. Where is the most likely place you are going to put them - on top of a metal PC case were it resonates loudly. Yes, they have small rubber feet but they come off while being carried in a bag.

Love'm but just fix these niggles.
I don't see how anyone can innovate in the portable HDD space, so I don't imaging a review in a years time will offer any difference in performance metrics either. Is this worth £15 more than a competitors product? Probably not for a lot of people, I think the ‘portable USB HDD’ range has peaked but I'd love to be proven wrong.
If the grips offered an integrated cable, then they in my view would be a more appealing prospect.
That way you get the convenience of the integration, avoiding the need for a loose cable while maintaining the ability to change it for another should the cable get damaged.
That is a concern with my ageing Freecom model, where it is integrated but non-removable and showing its age with physical damage to the outside.
I suppose without faster drives at a premium, then we wont see any improvements to their speed.
Flash would I think be the way forward, but until the price premium is much reduced, these will still have a market.
I'm using a 500 GB earlier model My Passport along with several 1 TB drives of a more recent model of its slightly cheaper sibling, the Elements Portable to extend the storage on my Panasonic BD/HDD recorder which supports USB 2.0.

I'm specifically not buying drives with more space because they draw more power (more platters). This can be an issue because even though the WD drives are backward compatible with USB 2.0 they still rely on USB 3.0 power delivery (0.5A for USB 2.0 vs. 0.9A for USB 3.0) and they rely on that power to be provided by the host device.

In short, make sure your host device can deliver sufficient power before splurging out on high capacity bus powered drives. Just something to keep in mind if you have a similar usage scenario. :)
I would like to add another “bad” item to the list…

WD tends to use HDD's with semi-native USB interface, I mean if the USB controller failed ( and it happened a lot with WD ), then you're out of luck, you can't connect the SATA drive to another USB controller or directly to a PC because there's no SATA port inside, the only port is the micro USB port you see… the USB controller is built into HDD board it self and you will need a lot of electric engineering knowledge to figure out where is the SATA point so you can weld them and bla bla bla.. yeah that's complicated…