Western Digital My Passport Essential SE (1TB) external hard drive
Western Digital delivers 1TB of storage and good security in a portable package
- Tiny, 256-bit hardware encryption, simple to configure and use
- Sluggish write speeds, backup software limitations
The My Passport Essential SE is Western Digital's largest capacity portable hard drive yet, and it offers encryption to keep your data secure.
Price$ 379.00 (AUD)
Western Digital’s My Passport Essential SE is currently the only portable external hard drive to boast a whopping 1TB of storage space. Despite this, it is one of the smallest hard drives around and it is quite speedy, too.
For the My Passport Essential SE, Western Digital bypassed the standard SATA II circuitry and built a USB connection directly into the 2.5in internal hard drive, making it shorter than other external hard drives. Unfortunately, the company chose to integrate a micro-USB connection instead of the more common mini-USB port found on external hard drives and digital cameras. While the connection is supposed to be more durable, the cable is also harder to replace if lost.
The My Passport Essential SE has four 250GB platters, making the drive slightly fatter than its 320GB and 500GB counterparts. It's still extremely portable and light, however.
The My Passport Essential SE incorporates 256-bit AES hardware encryption, but lacks any form of password recovery.
WD's SmartWare software.
The bundled WD SmartWare software automatically launches the first time the My Passport Essential SE is connected, and categorises data on both your PC and the drive based on file extensions. From here, you can choose which types of files to back up. However, unlike the HP SimpleSave Portable external hard drive, the My Passport Essential SE does not allow you to set your own custom extensions. This means obscure media formats, for example, will simply be listed as "other". WD SmartWare supports sequential backups for up to 25 versions of the same file.
|Small File (3GB) Transfer Test Results|
|Western Digital My Passport Essential SE||$379||1TB||26.7||11.7||7.6|
|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 Book Studio Edition II||$999||4TB||23.4||15||10.7|
|Large File (20GB) Transfer Test Results|
|Western Digital My Passport Essential SE||$379||1TB||31.4||24.8||11.2|
|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 Book Studio Edition II||$999||4TB||26.7||25.1||12.7|
When compared to other portable external hard drives, the Western Digital My Passport SE seems a little sluggish when writing small files. However, it offers very fast read speeds with both big and small files.
The huge storage capacity, strong security, and ease of use make the Western Digital My Passport Essential SE external hard drive a great choice for those who need to take their work with them.
Follow PC World Australia on Twitter: @PCWorldAu
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Review: TCL C1 series 4K TV
- 2 Sony 75-inch UHD TV (X9400C) review: Sony and Android are a winning duo
- 3 LG 55EG960T OLED UHD TV
- 4 Panasonic Viera UHD TV review: good hardware, fragmented software
- 5 Microsoft Lumia 640 review: Honouring Nokia's legacy
Best Deals on Good Gear Guide
Latest News Articles
- Apple slates March 21 event, with 4-in. iPhone likely on the stage
- Convoy International restructures business focus
- Tablets replace books for kids back at school
- Sony shows latest high-end Walkman
- Australian Government issues security warning to Apple users
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
- CCContract Programmer (MS SQL Server/SQL/Web) 160518/P/626Asia
- CCApplication DevelopersQLD
- CCSenior iOS DeveloperNSW
- CCSolution ArchitectNSW
- FTJunior Web Developer | CBD | Digital AgencyVIC
- CCRelease Manager, SAPNSW
- FTPeoplesoft CRM DeveloperWA
- FTMid-Level Full-Stack Java DeveloperVIC
- CCSolutions Architect - Enterprise ApplicationsNSW
- FTAzure ConsultantQLD
- CCProject Manager - HFCVIC
- CCTechnology Team Lead / Senior Developer - JavaNSW
- CCDevOps EngineerNSW
- FTPeopleSoft Finance Functional ConsultantNSW
- CCPEGA Developer / ConfigurerACT
- FTTester/Business AnalystWA
- CCSystems Analyst (HTML/JAVA/Wireless & Mobile) 160525/SA/443Asia
- CCTechnology Lead / Senior Developer - Java (Urgent)NSW
- CCSoftware DevelopersACT
- FTSOE SpecialistACT
- FTDynamics Project ManagerNSW
- CCOpen Source Specialist / Senior ConsultantQLD
- CCIT Assistant (Office Automation/Windows) 160517/ITA/884Asia
- CCSenior Service Desk ManagerNSW
- CCChange Manager- Success Factors/HCMNSW