Seagate FreeAgent GoFlex Ultra-Portable Drive 1.5TB
Seagate's Free Agent GoFlex is the first 1.5TB portable drive to market, but its performance in tests was a mixed bag.
- First 1.5TB portable to market offers gargantuan capacity, includes USB 3.0 connector
- Connector modules can be unwieldy, must remove module to insert into a dock
A stylish-looking USB 3.0 drive that packs a whopping 1.5TB capacity, but in write performance it lags behind the competition.
Price$ 299.00 (AUD)
Seagate has clearly had a busy year with the launch of its GoFlex storage line. The latest entry in that line is the FreeAgent GoFlex 1.5TB portable drive, which packs half a terabyte more than the competition offers in a 2.5-inch design. The $299 drive (price as of 23 September, 2010) comes with a USB 3.0 connector, too, which means that you don't have to foot the $39 bill for a cable (as you do with other models in the FreeAgent GoFlex series).
Seagate achieved the drive's notable total capacity by increasing the capacity of the platters--375GB per platter, instead of 333GB per platter--and by adding a fourth platter inside the drive. The new FreeAgent GoFlex spins at 5400 rpm, which should result in a slower speed than what we saw from the 7200-rpm, 500GB FreeAgent GoFlex Pro we've tested previously over USB 3.0.
I say "should" for a reason: In PCWorld Labs tests, the 1.5TB drive yielded mixed results -- some strong, one not quite so.
The 1.5TB drive virtually tied, or bested, the Pro model in four of our six tests. For example, it required 59 seconds to read 2GB of files and folders, compared with 63 seconds for the Pro. It also took 31 seconds to read a large 2GB file, versus the Pro's 34 seconds; and it took 27 seconds to write a large 2GB file, the same as the Pro.
The big discrepancy occurred on our test for writing 2GB of files and folders. Here, the 1.5TB drive came in dead last among USB 3.0 portable drives, its performance more on a par with that of USB 2.0 drives we've tested. The FreeAgent GoFlex 1.5TB required 142 seconds to complete the task, falling short of the Pro drive, which took 105 seconds. Other USB 3.0 portable hard drives we've evaluated performed even better--the Iomega eGo Portable Hard Drive took 92 seconds and the LaCie Rugged SuperSpeed took just 63 seconds. When we asked Seagate about the slow speed result, a representative indicated that the drive's four-platter design could have slowed it down.
This drive's massive capacity is a head-turner; after all, that's an awful lot of storage for a portable drive. Seagate claims that it can hold up to 60 high-definition movies, 750 video games, thousands of photos, or tens of thousands of hours of digital music. At this point, when it comes to photos and music, the numbers are getting so high with such examples that it's almost like stating the quantity of hamburgers sold at McDonald's, which now simply boasts "billions and billions served".
I'm still not a fan of Seagate's GoFlex connector arrangement -- but as an avid consumer of storage, I relish the idea of a high-capacity portable drive. I have to give Seagate props for being first out of the gate with a portable drive of this size. If you buy this drive, however, keep in mind its sluggish write speed and its connector system.
[Note: the listed RRP refers to Seagate's 1.5TB GoFlex portable drive with USB 2.0 connection. Pricing has yet to be announced in Australia for the USB 3.0 version]
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Gadgets & Things
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Star Wars Death Star Bluetooth levitating rotating speaker review
- 2 Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- 3 Fetch TV Mighty review: Better than Foxtel
- 4 Fetch TV Mini review: Make your TV a smart TV
- 5 Panasonic Viera DX900U UHD 4K smart TV review
Latest News Articles
- Facebook to begin testing its Internet drone this year
- Tablet shipments down, but detachables catch on
- Apple's Q1: Record $US18.4 billion profit, but iPhone sales are slowing
- Vodafone puts idle smartphones to work to fight cancer
- Optus switches on 4G in 40 regional areas
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.
- The top 10 best and worst tech gadgets and products of 2016
- Best phone of the year 2016
- TV of the year award 2016
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- FTBrand Marketing Manager - Premium Entertainment BrandNSW
- CCProcurement AnalystQLD
- FTFunctional ConsultantNSW
- FTSenior AEM Consultant - Public SectorACT
- CCSenior Network ArchitectVIC
- TPSenior Business AnalystQLD
- TPJava DeveloperSA
- FTTechnical Content CoordinatorVIC
- FTConsulting Solution/Integration ArchitectVIC
- FTLevel 2 Service DeskNSW
- TPFinancial Project management - Multiple grant programsNSW
- TP.Net DeveloperVIC
- CCWebMethod DeveloperNSW
- TPDynamics CRM Technical Delivery ManagerVIC
- CCService Desk Consultant-Baseline Clearance RequiredNSW
- TPProject Manager - SAPQLD
- FTJava DeveloperSA
- TPBusiness Analyst - DataQLD
- FTFull Stack PHP DeveloperQLD
- FTInfrastructure Solution ArchitectSA
- CCData Migration Lead - SAPNSW
- FTTechnical Business AnalystVIC
- CCProject/ Operational CoordinatorNSW
- CCJunior Project ManagerQLD