Hitachi SimpleTOUGH (500GB) external hard drive
A ruggedised Hitachi external hard drive for road warriors
- Reasonable cost per formatted gigabyte, embedded USB cable, rugged enclosure
- No optimised USB drivers, isn't bundled with a DC power adapter
The Hitachi SimpleTOUGH external hard drive's rugged enclosure and embedded USB 2.0 cable make it a good option for carting around data, though style-conscious road warriors may want to look elsewhere.
Price$ 179.00 (AUD)
The Hitachi SimpleTOUGH external hard drive's rugged enclosure and embedded USB cable make it a great companion for road warriors. If you plan to knock your hard drive about during travel, this would be a good choice.
There are no shortage of ruggedised hard drives — LaCie’s Starck Mobile Hard Drive can be run over by a car without worries, and its Rugged All-Terrain Hard Disk will certainly survive knocks and bumps. Transcend’s StoreJet 25M-R even claims to withstand US military drop-test standards.
There isn’t much to differentiate Hitachi’s offering from other rugged drives, though at least it doesn’t look quite as brick-like as the alternatives. Available in red, blue and “carbon fibre” colour schemes, the enclosure is made of a hardened plastic and flanked on both sides by rubber strips. This makes for a slightly curved shape, ensuring the hard drives always lands or rolls onto its front or back for best protection.
The USB 2.0 cable has been embedded directly into the hard drive so it never gets lost. It’s not quite sealed when inserted back into the drive, however, so we doubt it’s fully protected against contact with liquid. Like the Hitachi SimpleDRIVE Mini, the SimpleTOUGH has a DC port for computers that don’t provide enough power to the drive over USB. Because Hitachi doesn’t bundle the adapter with the drive, this inclusion is largely useless.
The Hitachi SimpleTOUGH external hard drive is preformatted with the FAT32 file system, so it’s compatible with both Macs and PCs. If you need to transfer files greater than 4GB in size, Hitachi provides instructions on formatting the hard drive to suit either operating system. Any software on the drive that isn’t backed up will be lost during the format.
Arcsoft's bundled TotalMedia Backup software is easy to use and has plenty of options.
The Mac/PC compatible Hitachi Local Backup software bundled on the SimpleTOUGH is actually Acronis TotalMedia Backup, which is easy to use and provides comprehensive backup and synchronisation options. Backups can be scheduled or initiated based on folders or file types, with presets for regularly used file formats. Unlike the WD SmartWare software that accompanies Western Digital's My Passport SE, advanced users will be able to add their own file formats to be backed up.
|Small File (3GB) Transfer Test Results|
|Hitachi SimpleDRIVE Mini||$109||320GB||26.1||17.5||11|
|LaCie Rikiki (USB Boost enabled)||$159||500GB||30.9||17.2||11.1|
|LaCie Starck Mobile Hard Drive||$139||320GB||24.5||17.1||11.1|
|Astone ISO GEAR 290||$149||500GB||20.5||13.5||9.7|
|HP SimpleSave Portable||$139||320GB||20.4||12.6||8.2|
|Transcend StoreJet 25M-R||$159.95||320GB||23.8||15.3||7.2|
|Western Digital My Passport SE||$379||1TB||26.7||11.7||7.6|
|Large File (20GB) Transfer Test Results|
|Hitachi SimpleDRIVE Mini||$109||320GB||28.9||23.8||12.7|
|LaCie Rikiki (USB Boost enabled)||$159||500GB||37.7||26.7||13.3|
|LaCie Starck Mobile Hard Drive||$139||320GB||27.4||25.9||12.7|
|Astone ISO GEAR 290||$149||500GB||28.7||25.2||11.5|
|HP SimpleSave Portable||$139||320GB||27.9||25.1||11.6|
|Transcend StoreJet 25M-R||$159.95||320GB||28.5||24.3||11.9|
|Western Digital My Passport SE||$379||1TB||31.4||24.8||11.2|
The file transfer results were unsurprisingly identical to the Hitachi SimpleDRIVE Mini's — good but not fantastic. Of course, you can only expect a certain level of performance from a 2.5in hard drive running over a USB 2.0 connection, especially without optimised drivers.
The SimpleTOUGH has a relatively low cost per formatted gigabyte of 38.5c. By contrast the 320GB SimpleDRIVE Mini costs 34.1c while the LaCie Rikiki external hard drive has the lowest cost we have found of just 31.8c per GB.
Stay up to date with the latest news, reviews and features. Sign up to PC World’s newsletters
Follow PC World Australia on Twitter: @PCWorldAu
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Evapolar USB air conditioner review
- 2 Hisense Series 7 ULED 4K UHD TV review
- 3 LED Lenser P7R Professional Torch review
- 4 Aftershokz Wireless Trekz Titanium Bone Conduction Bluetooth Headphones review
- 5 Review: Periscope users rejoice with Feiyu’s G4 Plus 3-Axis Gimbal for Smartphone video
Latest News Articles
- Samsung releases the world’s fastest gumstick SSD
- Samsung's 960 Pro and 960 Evo SSDs marry crazy-fast speeds with roomy capacity
- Boom: SanDisk just dropped the world's largest SD card
- IBM targets x86 server territory with new Power servers
- Toshiba's new SSD line features rock-bottom pricing
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- FTNetwork and Security Design EngineerNSW
- CCSolutions ArchitectACT
- FTTest SpecialistSA
- FTSenior Project Manager | TelecommunicationVIC
- FTMDM EngineerNSW
- CCICT Security AuditorACT
- CCContract Web Developer (160915/WD/vmp)Asia
- CCSenior Change ManagerVIC
- CCSoftware TesterACT
- FTOutbound TelesalesVIC
- FTTechnical Business Analyst | Marketing ServicesNSW
- FTInfrastructure Solutions ArchitectACT
- CCLAN ConsultantWA
- CCFull Stack Application Developer - IoT projectsVIC
- CCBusiness Analyst with change management experienceACT
- CCTest Manager (HP Quality Centre / Kronos)NSW
- FTPositive Vetted ICT positions - Defence intelligence and information securityACT
- CCSecurity Cleared IT Professionals - Expression of InterestSA
- CCJava / J2ee ProgrammersACT
- CCSenior Infrastrcture Project ManagerACT
- FTCertification and Accreditation Security ConsultantACT
- FTBackup ConsultantWA
- CCData Analyst | Data Management Framework | Experience in RNSW
- FTSenior PHP DeveloperNSW
- FTIT Pre-Sales EngineerSA