If you want massive storage — and, let’s face it, most of us could use it these days — Seagate’s US$249.99 FreeAgent GoFlex Desk (http://www.seagate.com) is a great deal at US$249.99. You can store up to 120 HD movies, 1,500 video games, thousands of photos or hours of digital music on this monster.
It’s also flexible. The 3TB GoFlex Desk external drive comes with USB 2.0 connectivity. However, you can adapt the drive’s USB 2.0 interface to a USB 3.0 or FireWire 800 connection. There’s an upside and downside to this. No current Macs support USB 3.0, though I have to think this is coming any day now.
That leaves Firewire, which is fine. Except that the Firewire adapter will set you back almost 50 bucks, jacking the price of the GoFlex Desk to $300. Still, I’d recommend springing for the adapter as it will make an incredible difference in speed. Up to 10 times by my estimates. I’d also recommend getting a carrying case (Seagate offers one for 30 bucks). I back up pretty much everything to the drive and carry it with me when I’m away from the home office just in case something bad happens, so a case is handy.
With the GoFlex Desk, you can create, store and access content from either a Mac OS X or Windows computer, thanks to an included NTFS driver for Mac. The NTFS driver for Mac allows the drive to store and access files from both platforms without reformatting. You install the drive once on your Mac, and this allows it to read and write files on a Windows formatted drive.
The FreeAgent GoFlex Desk sports a black, 3.5-inch design. Conveniently, it can sit either vertically or horizontally. Other features include an illuminated capacity gauge and Quick Start Guide. The Seagate drive also comes pre-loaded backup software with encryption.
All things considered, this is a great buy. 2TB drives from other manufacturers usually start at around $190, so an extra $50 for another terabyte of space is certainly worth the moolah.
Rating: 8 out of 10 (if it came with built-in Firewire support, I’d go with 10 out of 10)
— Dennis Sellers