Seagate Expansion 1TB External Desktop USB 2.0 Hard Drive – Exclusive review

As the digital contents such as music, video, photos and games have become more integrated to our everyday lives, the idea of static data storage is becoming totally obsolete. And with today’s on-demand work, you would want to access, share and secure most of your digital content using the dynamic storage solutions that gives us freedom to do our day to day businesses, create and interact anytime and anywhere. In short, storage today is not just about keeping your valuable data secure, it is also about making your information and media accessible wherever you are and the best solution for this statement are the external desktop hard drives.

The following review is on one such valuable product, the Seagate Expansion 1TB External Desktop USB 2.0 Hard Drive.

Stylish sleek design:

The Seagate Expansion ST310005EXA101-RK External Desktop drive does not look as compact as that of its portable sibling, but still has the same looks at different dimensions of (H x W x D) 1.57″ x 4.96″ x 8.15″ and weighing a bit bulky 2.25 pounds. It has a very curvy rectangular shape that is curved in its facia and by adopting a matte black finish to the bottom part, Seagate has cleverly avoided unnecessary scratches and finger print smudges on its drives body. Whereas, the top intersection of the drive has the shiny black finish, and this gives the drive the style factor to attract the younger community that look for some style too along with storage solution. In the rear of the drive you will find the high speed USB drive and port for the power. And in the front you will find just the attractive logo of Seagate and a small LED that glows green to indicate that the drive is powered.

The drive feels very sturdy and durable and we are pretty sure that the drive will stand a few accidental drops.

Capacities available:

The following review is on Seagate Expansion External Desktop drive of 1TB capacity, but the same model of drive is also available in various other capacities such as 2TB, 1.5TB and 500GB. Hence, there is one to suite the storage needs of everybody.

Easy set-up:

The setup and installation of the Seagate Expansion 1TB Desktop Hard drive is very easy and you will be ready to use the drive in just minutes. Connect one end of the power cord to the power supply socket on the back of the external drive and the other end to an electrical outlet. Then, attach one end of the USB cable to the port on the back of the drive and the other end to an available USB port on the back of your desktop or notebook computer. Please note that you must not connect the USB cable to any of the USB ports on the front of your desktop computer or monitor as it might cause the external hard drive to malfunction. Then just press the power button on the back of your external drive and that is it. You will find the green LED on top of the drive glowing which indicates the activity of the drive.

Easy Installation too:

Once this is done, the drive will be automatically recognized by the Windows OS. There is no hassle of installing any kind of software to install and just nothing to configure. The utility is included in the drive itself and it allows you to do some simple backup and restore operations. You will also be able to control when the drive goes to sleep mode. Out of the box, the drive has been preformatted NTFS, which is surprising, given that Seagate also markets its drive to the Macintosh users. NTFS is more preferable as this file system allows you to have robust security and this system makes use of the drive space much more efficiently by formatting the drive with 4KB clusters. After the formatting, you get about 968GB of space for your own use.

Compatibility:

Seagate Expansions is compatible with Apple MacOS X 10.4.8 or later and Microsoft Windows Vista / XP. You will not be able to use the drive with Windows 95 or 98 as the 95 OS does not support USB and the Windows 98/SE does not have native support for USB2.0. Though you may argue that there was an upgrade to Windows 95 that supports USB version 1.0, you must keep in mind that the 1TB eHD is backwards compatible to USB version 1.0 or 1.1.

Not only is the installation quite easy, so is the management. It instantly adds more space for files and consolidates all of your single files into a single location. The drive can also be used to free up the space on your system’s internal drives for the sake of improved performance. All that you ever need to do to save the files is just drag and drop them. Though you cannot enjoy lightning fast data transfer speeds of the external hard drives with FireWire or eSATA interfaces, the Seagate Expansion 1TB drive’s USB2.0 interface offers you with an acceptable data transfer speed. Seagate has stated that the drive has an interface transfer rate of 480Mbps but while testing, we found that the average transfer rate of transferring 400GB of data was 5.6Mbps, which translates to 336Mbps. This is not very bad and it transferred the mixed digital content without any issues. The drive has a spindle speed of 7200rpm and 16MB cache.

Unreliable:

But one of the major issues that we heard that the drive is encountering is that, the drive starts to click non-stop and thus crashes completely. This is very bad as once the hard drive starts to click continuously, the drive is in a bad condition and would fail ultimately. This is a very disappointing fact.

Noiseless and energy efficient:

A notable feature of the drive is that, it is energy efficient too. Seagate has employed a built-in power management feature for giving you an energy efficient operation. Additionally, the drive is a very silent operator, even while transferring large number of files, we were not able to hear anything. It was simply amazing.

Package:

Seagate Expansion 1TB drive comes in its trademark yellow and black package. On opening it, you will find the black coloured drive, a three foot long USB cable, Power supply cable, Quick start guide and warranty information.

Cost effective:

Seagate Expansion 1TB External Desktop USB 2.0 Hard Drive is very cost effective. The price tag is stunning as for the capacity of 1TB, you will only find the drives at double the cost that is quoted for this drive.

Warranty:

Seagate offers its 1TB Expansion External Desktop Hard Drive 2 years limited warranty. We are disappointed with this warranty as the other rivals offer a minimum of three or five years warranty for their products.

Verdict:

Seagate Expansion 1TB External Desktop USB 2.0 Hard Drive is a very economical solution for those who are looking for a budget drive with large capacity. Though the good looks, nominal speed and energy efficiency features of the drive tempts us to recommend the drive, the unreliability that is has caused by failing to operate by continuous clicking, stops us from recommending the drive.

Check other 1TB External Hard Drive reviews in our website.

Seagate Expansion 1TB Desktop Drive – Technical Specification Details

Manufacturer Seagate
Model Name Expansion 1TB External Desktop Hard Drive
Model number ST310005EXA101-RK
Colour Black
Dimensions (H x W x D) 1.57” x 4.96” x 8.15”
Weight 2.25 Pounds
Form factor 3.5”
Hard disk drive capacity 1TB
Other capacities available 2TB, 1.5TB and 500GB
Buffer size 16MB
Data transfer rate (max) 480 Mbit/s
USB 1.1 Full Speed 12 Mb/s (max)
Average seek time 8.5ms
Compatible operating systems Microsoft Windows Vista / XP
Apple MacOS X 10.4.8 or later
Software Back-up utility
Additional features Built-in power management
Package contents Seagate Expansion 1TB External Desktop Hard Drive
USB cable
Power Adapter
Quick Start guide
Warranty Information
Power consumption AC 110/230 V (50/60Hz)
Warranty Two years