Storage devices in a nutshell

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If you’re beginning to count down the remaining free megabytes on your hard drive, or if you’re finally getting serious about backing up your data, you need more storage. You may choose to install a new drive inside your Mac. But for most Mac users, increasing storage means buying a new external hard drive that includes fast and convenient FireWire connections.

Here’s our picks for storage devices that offer quick transfers, compatibility and smart pricing. If you want more details, we’ve got a four-page Buyer’s Guide for FireWire hard drives; you can also download the complete specifications for the desktop, portable and Mac mini FireWire drive reviews in PDF format.

Lightning fast transfers

Mercury Elite-AL Pro 7,200 rpm FireWire 800/400+ USB2, 250GB ( Other World Computing, $230,   )

The Mercury Elist-Al Pro is very fast, winning one of our three timed trials. It also has a slim aluminum case that complements a Power Mac G5.

d2 Hard Drive Extreme with Triple Interface, 300GB ( LaCie, $259,   )

With almost every imaginable connection option, a low price per gigabyte, and top performance, this desktop drive is a winner.

•  WiebeTech ToughTech 800
•  G-Tech G-Drive mini FireWire (portable)


Iomega Black Series ( Iomega, $240,   )

The Iomega Black Series Triple Interface drive (pictured) is the best desktop drive thanks to its various connection options, very quick speed (especially in copying data to the drive) and low cost per gigabyte.

OneTouch II FireWire 800 & USB Drive, 300GB ( Maxtor, $280,   )

This double-interface desktop hard drive is designed to be a backup device. It’s not fast, but it ships with Retrospect Express and has a programmable button that can initiate backups.

•  Kano SureFire 800 (portable)
•  WiebeTech ComboGB (portable)

On a tight budget

Not everyone can afford the most elaborate offering on the market, but that doesn’t mean you have to settle for second-class. These drives can still suit your needs without putting a hurt on your wallet.

•  OWC Neptune
•  Micronet Platinum
•  OWC Mercury Express

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