tickerguy wrote in post #15531566
...Back the original request -- I wouldn't buy either in a 2.5" form factor. I'd instead buy a 3.5" enclosure with the fastest interface port I had on my machine (either eSATA if PC, Thunderbolt or Firewire if Mac, USB if compatibility is more important than speed) and mount a 2TB disk in there. Buy two so if one fails you're not screwed and copy to both. You can likely buy two of those setups for the price of one WD Passport.
If portability is not a concern, sure, go for 3.5" drives and buy your own enclosures for a DIY with the lower price and better performance.
But, 2.5" drives have key portability advantages, apart from the "somewhat more rugged" design.
- Much smaller. Easily less than half the size and weight in the enclosure.
- Lower power, so no power brick required if using USB; can be used using the laptop's battery so no AC connection required for anything.
eSATA is faster, but has no capability of powering the drive ... not sure about firewire. Thunderbolt can theoretically bus power devices, but due to the design, the amount of power available to the device itself is so low it is a real challenge to manufacturers, certainly beyond anything you'd get in a DIY enclosure. I seem to recall some manufacturer recently announcing a bus-powered thunderbolt SSD external drive. But it was more than $600 for the 256GB size IIRC.
USB has utility beyond "compatibility" and bus-power is a worthwhile feature for portable drives. And, USB3 is quite fast.
SSD is not an option in the 1-2TB size class unless money doesn't matter.