A good number of USB 3.0 variants of the existing portable drives, as well as a few new models are out on shelves. That gives you a good number of brands and capacity variants to choose from. What we have with us today is a new offering by Seagate called Backup Plus. It’s not extraordinary, but what sets it apart from the rest is its USP - a backup utility that’s capable of backing up photos and videos from social networks.
4 color options to choose from
As per Seagate’s website, the Backup Plus is available in 500GB, 750GB and 1TB capacities. Further, you have four colour options – black, red, blue and silver. However, colour options are only available in 500GB and 1TB capacities. The 750GB drive comes only in black colour.
If you take a quick glance at the drive, it may seem that the top of the shell is made of brushed aluminium. But it’s not so; it’s actually plastic with brushed metal finish. The sides are glossy and the bottom has matte finish. If you notice closely, there’s a thin line that runs across the body towards the end where the USB 3.0 connector and activity LED are located. This is a separate block that comes off on pulling it out. Seagate sells Thunderbolt and FireWire 800 add-on adapters for this drive as accessories. So you have flexibility when it comes to interface, but that comes at a price.
It's not metal, but plastic with brushed metal finish
Even though the design is simplistic, the brushed metal finish lends a classy look. Measuring 81 x 123 mm the drive is slightly larger than a 2.5-inch hard drive alone. It’s sleek and compact to just about fit in your pocket.
Back it up!
To use the backup feature, you first have to install Seagate Dashboard that comes preloaded on the drive. The home screen has three modules – Protect, Share and Save.
Backup data and save media from social networks
The Protect module, like any other backup software, allows you to backup local files and folders to a specified location. Optionally, you can select file types that you wish to backup. These include Documents, Music, Picture and Videos. The frequency of frequency can be hourly, daily, weekly, monthly or continuous. You can have multiple backup plans with different parameters and schedules.
Create multiple backup profiles
The Share module allows uploading photos and videos to Facebook, Flickr and YouTube. You simply have to login to your account, choose the files you wish to upload, select the photoset and that’s about it. With the Save module, you can download photos and videos from Facebook and Flickr. The Autosave option when checked automatically, saves newly uploaded media. The user interface is pleasant and quite intuitive even for a first timer to get used to in a matter of a few minutes.
We hooked up the 1TB Backup Plus to our Ivy Bridge rig powered by a Core i7-2600k processor, MSI B75MA-P45 motherboard and 8GB RAM. We put it through a bunch of synthetic and real world tests. CrystalDiskMark and ATTO Disk Benchmark reported sequential read and write speeds of 115MB/s and 114MB/s respectively, which is quite commendable. SiSoft Sandra 2012 reported slightly less figures; random read and write speeds were 54MB/s and 46MB/s respectively. Real world file transfer speeds were close to synthetic speeds. We transferred an assortment of files amounting to 100MB. The drive logged 53MB/s read and 46MB/s write speed.
Verdict and Price in India
Seagate has two capacities for the Indian market – 500GB priced at Rs 5,600 and 1TB priced at Rs 7,700. It’s expensive by a few hundred rupees than portable USB 3.0 hard drive by other brands, but the premium is quite justified by the useful backup software and the option to swap to FireWire 800 and Thunderbolt interfaces.
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