best SSD backup drive for mac
External SSDs are beneficial for your Mac in some ways. Additionally, it can boot up much faster than before due to its increased storage space for files, photos, and videos. File transfers and launching apps are both affected by this. Aside from offering incredibly fast read and write speeds, SSDs for Macs are also portable and compact. The best SSD backup drive for mac offers data protection, high speed data transfer and reliability to keep the data safe. SSD are better than HDD.
It’s even possible to get SSDs that are waterproof and resistant to bumps and drops. As a result, you can feel confident that your SSD will remain fully protected wherever you take it. Password protection is also available, so everything inside can be kept secure.
Here are our recommendations for the best external SSDs for Mac so you can find the best storage option for you.
Understanding File Systems: HFS+, APFS, exFAT, and More
Getting to Thunderbolt requires addressing a fundamental building block of hard drives that always affect compatibility and will probably always do so: the file system.
For an external drive to be readable by Macs and PCs, its file system is the most important factor. Cupertino has started moving towards an entirely new file system with the release of macOS “High Sierra,” replacing the long-serving Mac OS Extended file system, otherwise known as HFS+, with a brand new one. As the first file system that can be used across both Macs and iOS devices, the Apple File System (APFS) is simply referred to as the Apple File System.
The native encryption of APFS provides some benefits over HFS+, including greater security. Nonetheless, backward compatibility is of utmost importance to external-drive shoppers.When you have a Mac running High Sierra or later, you can use any drive formatted with HFS+.
The Apple File System, as well as HFS+, do not work with Windows, however. You should consider formatting your external drive with the exFAT file system if you plan to use it with computers running both operating systems. APFS offers security and efficiency, but you won’t get them here. With Windows and macOS, you can transfer files from and to your drive simply by plugging them in and out.
This is a list of the best SSD backup drives for Mac.
SanDisk Extreme SSD
Since most external drives can be easily wiped and reformatted, you aren’t limited to buying those designed for Macs.After you bring home a consumer-oriented drive with NTFS format (which comes pre-formatted in Windows), you can reformat it using MacOS’ Disk Utility.Despite a drive being formatted correctly, some highly specialized external drives may not work with Macs even if they are highly specialized drives.But consumers who are looking for extra space just to store copies of their favorite videos or backups of their own are unlikely to come across them.
Seagate FireCuda 530 with Heatsink
PS4 games can be played directly from an external SSD when you use a standard external SSD with your PS5. A PS5 game can only be played from the console’s internal hard drive or an M.2 SSD mounted in an expansion bay. Their size and weight make them a space hog.
It’s not a true external SSD, but it’s similar to Seagate’s Storage Expansion Card for Xbox Series X/S. My PS5 listed the top speed as 6,800MBps, but Seagate says it is capable of 7,300MBps.
Our list of compatible M.2 SSDs includes both those with an integrated heatsink as well as those without (see our complete list). A new one must be added otherwise. 512GB Seagate FireCuda 530 hard drives start at $140; 1TB versions start at $210; 2TB versions cost $400; and 4TB drives cost over $1,000. How to Boost PlayStation 5 Storage: Here’s What You Need to Know.
$110 at Amazon
$110 at Best Buy
$139 at Walmart
WD Black P10 2TB
A WD Black P10 2TB external hard drive is an excellent option for Mac owners looking for a high-capacity drive. A 5TB version is slightly more expensive at $140. Your game collection can be stored on it in a portable way. If you are a new subscriber to Game Pass Ultimate, you will receive one month of free access to this external drive. The portable hard drive is also available in a standard version that works with PCs and PS4s (it lacks Xbox branding, but otherwise is the same). There is a speed limit of 130MBps for the portable drive.
$81 at Amazon
$90 at Best Buy
Seagate Game Drive 4TB
Best value for Mac
This is one of the best solid states drives for pc. By using an external drive, you can play games directly from the portable hard drive without lag (you don’t have to manage storage space on your Mac). There is also a 2TB version for about $30 less at $80. It would be better to invest in a portable external hard drive that has 4TB instead of 2TB.
Unlike the PS4, Seagate does not make an SSD Game Drive for the Xbox. Storage drives with 1TB capacity cost around $160.
Check price $80 at Target
$80 at Amazon
$80 at Best Buy
WD Black D30 Game Drive
Best SSD for Mac
You can use any SSD with Mac games and other content and pick up a nice speed bump when loading games. At first glance, then, the WD Black D30 game drive doesn’t seem much different from any other game drive (it supports up to 900MBps of transfer, which is what USB 3.1 connections on consoles support).
This product stands out because of its design. There’s a detachable stand with rubber feet that keeps it from moving around where you place it, making it thicker and more rugged-looking than your typical SSD or flash drive. It provides efficient performance and interoperability with NVMe (Non-Volatile Memory Express).The device looks like a mini hard drive.
PCs and PlayStation 4 and 5 consoles, as well as Xbox One X and S, are supported by the standard version. In the picture, the Xbox version comes with a month of Game Pass Ultimate for $20 more, a $15 value. Unfortunately, new subscribers are only able to use the included code, so existing subscribers will be paying an additional $20 for the logo.
Starting prices for the 1TB and 2TB versions are $125 and $180 respectively.
$124 at Amazon
$125 at Best Buy
SanDisk 1TB Extreme Pro Portable SSD~Blazing-fast SSD
It is important to point out that SanDisk makes a portable SSD that has a transfer rate of up to 1,050MB per second (see image above).For those of you who are photographers or videographers, the Extreme Pro Portable SSD is the way to go for extra storage when you are looking for a faster, more powerful drive for your PC or Mac than the Extreme Pro.
You can achieve read/write speeds of up to 2GBps (2GB/sec) with the latest version if you use the right equipment. The host system must support USB Gen 3.2 Gen 2×2 speeds to achieve the maximum speed.
With an IP55 rating, it’s designed to withstand sustained water sprays on Macs and Windows PCs. Furthermore, it has a heatsink and forged aluminum chassis, which make it shock-resistant. There are two cables included with this device: a USB-C to USB-C cable and a USB-A to USB-C cable. Around $190 is the cost of the 1TB version, while $300 is the cost of the 2TB model
$200 at Amazon
$300 at Best Buy
$269 at Walmart
Seagate Backup Plus Slim 2TB~Slim design for PC
One of the best external hard drives for those trying to save some space is the Seagate Backup Plus Slim 2TB, one of the more compact non-SSD drives. Additionally, it offers good value for less than $60. A Mac with a thunderbolt port can also connect to this Seagate external hard drive. It’s available in a couple of colors, and the higher-capacity versions are thicker than the smaller versions.
$55 at Target
WD~Versatile USB-C drive
Backward- and future-compatible, this drive is one of the best around. This newer WD drive offers a USB-C connection, which means it can connect to Macs and PCs with the best USB cable. The cost is a bit higher than the old WD drive. Do you have a USB-C port on your system? Nothing to worry about. The Western Digital storage device also comes with a USB-A to USB-C adapter, so it can be used with pretty much any computer right out of the box.
$121 at Amazon
$125 at Best Buy
$152 at Walmart
WD My Book 8TB (for Mac or Windows PCs)~Best-value desktop drive
A WD My Book desktop drive can be configured up to 18TB, but at around $200, the 8TB configuration is the best value. There is often a shortage of stock because it is so popular. We reviewed the WD My Book (Fall 2016).
$185 at Amazon
$185 at Best Buy
LaCie Rugged USB-C 5TB Portable HDD~ Designed for rugged environments
A lot of video editors’ desks (including plenty at CNET) feature LaCie external HDDs after Seagate acquired the brand several years ago. The rugged hard disk drive is USB-C compatible, water- and shock-resistant, and works on both Mac and Windows computers. Thunderbolt-equipped Macs can purchase a 4TB USB-C Thunderbolt for around $250.
$180 at Target
$170 at Amazon
$180 at Best Buy
It’s not as fast as higher-end external SSD models, so Crucial’s X6 is considered entry-level. The Crucial X8 is the step-up model, which offers twice or four times as fast read/write speeds. However, even if the X6 isn’t solid-state, it is four times faster than a conventional drive. There is a new 4TB model that offers transfer speeds of up to 800MBps, as well as 1TB and 2TB versions with transfer speeds of up to 540MBps. For around $340, you can get a 4TB SSD from this company.
By comparison, the 4TB SanDisk Extreme SSD is listed at $700 and boasts a transfer speed of 1,050MBps. By taking a bit of a speed hit, you’d save $360 in total. There is at least a performance bump of 800MBps for the 4GB Crucial X6 over 540MBps for the 2GB version.
$450 at Amazon
$360 at Best Buy
How to choose the best SSD backup drive for mac
It is important to choose an external hard drive with enough space for all your data when selecting the best one for you. Ideally, there should be plenty of room. To remove project files from your main computer, you can probably use a 500GB drive. When working with video regularly, you may need more. It is a good idea to double your storage space requirement after you figure out roughly how much space you will need. Read more about the buying guide for the best solid-state drive for your PC.
In addition, ensure that your PC or Mac can connect to the drive. Newer, smaller reversible USB-C ports, now dominant on modern laptops, have largely replaced the earlier rectangular USB-A ports. Verify that your external hard drive or SSD is compatible with the slots on your device.
A fast and responsive external storage device is also essential. Moving things around on your computer should be as quick as moving them on a normal computer. In this list, we have compiled a bunch of external hard drives that are all pretty fast. Although solid-state drives (SSDs) are more expensive than hard drives, if you have an interest in something that offers even more speed, you should consider a solid-state drive (SSD).
Hard drive vs SSD: which is best?
Choosing between an HDD or SSD when buying an external drive is a matter of personal preference. There has been a spinning platter inside hard drives for quite some time. The development of solid-state drives is relatively recent. Flash memory is used to store data, so there are no moving parts in them. SSDs are also lighter, faster, and consume less power, but they are inevitably more expensive because of this.
HDDs are the best way to store large amounts of information at a low cost. They have a large capacity at an affordable price. Having moving parts also makes them more prone to damage if they get knocked or dropped, which can make them unreliable if they’re dropped or knocked. If you carry your HDD around with you, you should not use it only as a backup.
Because SSDs do not have delicate moving parts, they are more reliable.While they’re more expensive, if you want to move large files or run programs off the drive, you may want to invest in them if speed is the most important factor.
If you need to move or access files often, you might prefer to use a smaller SSD, and then store less frequently used data on a larger HDD.
Can I make my external hard drive or SSD?
Certainly, if you are willing to get your hands dirty, you can get involved. Putting together an internal hard drive or solid-state drive yourself can save money; it only takes a couple of minutes. NVMe SSDs and enclosures provide the best performance, but you’ll need to connect them to a USB 3.1 Gen 2 port to enjoy top speeds. It’s easy to find hard disks and enclosures at the best prices if you search for SATA SSDs; for more storage, look for SATA SSDs and a compatible enclosure.
It’s important to note that with an external drive, you’re not likely to get any useful automated backup software.As a result, if you want to ensure that you have them available when you need them, you’ll have to source them yourself or settle for one of these options.
In addition, if your external drive fails, it may not be the drive that is the problem, but rather the enclosure. We’ve had success swapping the dead external drive into an enclosure and seeing if it comes back to life.
2.5in or ultra-portable?
There are three basic forms of SSDs, which have read speeds ranging from 300-500MB/s up to 3000MB/s. It is possible to consider two of them portable as well.
PCIe or SATA interfaces are required for ‘naked’ SSD boards. Laptops and desktops often use these to replace SSDs. It is not possible to carry them around. When we discussed the best SSD storage for PS5, only M.2 types were eligible. the PS5 gives a very small room for additional storage.
These 2.5-inch SSDs are the cheapest portable drives and have the advantage of being portable and internal at the same time. Instead of USB connectors, they have plastic casings that prevent components from getting damaged.
A USB or Thunderbolt enclosure will offer more protection, or you can simply use a SATA-to-USB cable. As part of our routine office procedures, we use one of these cables to transport 2.5in SSD test files around the office.
It is best to use a ‘pocket’ SSD, instead of a 2.5in drive, for the ultimate portable experience. Macs and MacBooks are not compatible with these, as they are designed for use with USB or Thunderbolt connectors.
These are the most common types you’ll find above. The size and convenience of these devices are amazing. However, this type of drive is more expensive than 2.5″ drives, so if you’re looking to lower your costs, you might want to consider the larger type.
Shock-proof, and rugged?
An SSD has a longer lifespan than a hard drive. Moving or knocking them won’t damage them because they have no moving parts. Despite having some type of shock protection, modern hard drives still pose a serious threat.
SSDs can take a lot of abuse before they complain. Water-resistance is even offered by some portable SSDs. For 2.5inch drives, ruggedization is also available in specialized enclosures.
Portability is greatly enhanced by this feature. Do SSDs outperform HDDs if they’re sat still all day? Mechanical failure is the most common cause of hard drive failure. Platters might burn out if the motor spinning them burns out. SSD memory cells can fail due to aging. Neither type can be recovered without specialist assistance. Ensure that important data is backed up as always.
SSD, on the other hand, is the clear choice for those of us with rucksacks who often have to plug drives into airplane seats.
Final thoughts on the best SSD backup drive for mac
There are three or four capacities available with recent external SSDs: 250GB, 500GB, 1TB, and sometimes even 2TB.
If you need 500GB or 1TB of space, you’ll have to consider the cost difference carefully. In comparison with 1-4TB drives, there isn’t as much of a price jump.
If you do a quick mental calculation, you can get the answer to this one. Four gigabytes of 4K footage is consumed every five minutes by Panasonic Lumix GH4 cameras, for instance. The storage requirements for video editors working in 4K are high.
When you’re just trying to backup or carry some movies and photos around, however, you might be better off with a smaller capacity model. As a guide, look at the capacity of your Mac.