Hitachi G-Drive Slim 500GB external hard drive
Hitachi's G-Drive Slim wants to mimic the MacBook Air, but doesn't get all the way there
- Reasonably fast
- Slim design
- Similar styling to MacBook family
- Case scratches easily
- Audible during operation
- USB only
Hitachi's G-Drive Slim is a slim portable hard drive designed to mimic Apple's aluminium unibody MacBook Airs and Pros. It's middling when it comes to performance figures but is definitely fast enough for the average user. We're more concerned with its easy-to-scratch case.
Price$ 109.95 (AUD)
Hitachi's G-Drive Slim is apparently the slimmest 2.5in external hard drive available to buy today. This naturally makes it a good choice to accompany the latest fleet of thin notebooks like the new Apple MacBook Air and the Samsung Series 9, and its styling matches the MacBook — at least in theory.
Hitachi G-Drive Slim: Design and setup
The G-Drive Slim is less than a centimetre thick at 9.9mm, and measures 82mm wide and 129mm long. It's not much bigger than a smartphone and we found we were easily able to fit it in the pocket of our jeans — we don't expect you'll be doing this often but it goes to show that the G-Drive Slim isn't bulky and won't significantly increase the girth of your MacBook Air carry case or laptop sleeve.
Techworld Australia secure storage reviews
- Group test: Encrypted external hard drive reviews
- Data Locker Enterprise review
- Data Locker DL3 encrypted hard drive review
- Eclypt Freedom 320GB review
- iStorage diskGenie review
- CMS ABSplus with Data Guard hard drive review
- CMS ABSplus FDE hard drive review
The finish of the G-Drive Slim is aluminium, like the body of Apple's recent laptop and desktop computers. It doesn't have the same smooth feel as Apple's products, though, and we found it was easier to scratch. Where Apple's laptops are virtually scratchproof we were able to leave a slight mark on the G-Drive Slim with a fingernail (though it did go away after some buffing). The matte black plastic strip running around the outside edge of the Hitachi G-Drive Slim sets off the aluminium nicely but we would have preferred Apple-esque scalloped edges.
The Hitachi G-Drive Slim only uses USB 2.0 — you can buy other hard drives in the Hitachi G-Technology range that have FireWire and USB 3.0, but they're bulkier and more expensive. Given the average performance specs of the G-Drive Slim's internal TravelStar Z5K500 2.5in HDD, we're not too fussed by the lack of FireWire but USB 3.0 would have been nice.
Hitachi G-Drive Slim: Performance
The G-Drive Slim performed roughly on par with other USB 2.0 external hard drives we've tested. Hitachi's slim drive took 6min 55sec to write 13GB of files from the Medion Akoya E7220 we used to test it, and took 6min 19sec to copy those same files back onto the notebook again. These times translate into 31.34MB/sec write speeds and 34.31MB/sec read speeds. CrystalDiskMark verified these figures with a 37.36MB/sec read and 36.34MB/sec write report. If you're regularly copying large files or folders back and forth from your USB external hard drive we'd recommend a FireWire or USB 3.0 product, but for general everyday use the Hitachi G-Drive Slim is acceptable.
We did notice that we could hear the disk head of the Hitachi G-Drive Slim clicking during its operation. A slightly audible constant click during writing or reading isn't a big deal, but in an ideal world a bit of extra internal sound deadening would have muffled the click (albeit at a slight weight cost).
Hitachi G-Drive Slim: Conclusion
If you've got a MacBook Air and the combination of looks and slim profile are important to you, we'd recommend you consider the Hitachi G-Drive Slim. If you can get your hands on one before you buy it, see whether the imperfect finish is anything you'd worry about. Otherwise it's a small drive for a reasonable price.
Join the PC World newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Samsung Galaxy S8 phone: full, in-depth review
- 2 Mass Effect Andromeda review: One for the fans
- 3 LG G6 phone: full, in-depth review
- 4 Samsung Galaxy A5 2017 phone: Full, in-depth review
- 5 Oppo R9s Plus phone: Full, in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Prices of SSDs and DRAM will crash in 2019, Gartner predicts
- Pure adds more NVMe with an eye to the next storage speed bump
- What one company learned from testing Intel's superfast Optane SSDs
- New, colourful LaCie Rugged Thunderbolt USB-C was designed by Neil Poulton
- Western Digital begins production of the world's tallest 3D NAND 'skyscraper'
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- Samsung Galaxy S8 phone: full, in-depth review
- Ryzen 5 vs Intel Core i5 CPU Australian review
- Mass Effect Andromeda review: One for the fans
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- CCSAP CRM Functional AnalystNSW
- TPProject ServicesACT
- CCTechnical Consultant - ITSM/HP Service ManagerACT
- FTSenior Project Manager - Digital / MediaNSW
- CCProject AdministratorNSW
- FTTesting and Quality Assurance AnalystNSW
- CCTest Analyst - Infrastructure - NV1 ClearanceACT
- FTSolution Architect x 2 (ETL/SSIS)NSW
- FTDigital Business Analyst | Online BookingQLD
- FTDrupal Web DeveloperACT
- CCNetwork Security Engineer - Finance - Contract - SydneyNSW
- FTWindows Server Engineer MCSE, SCCM, SCOM, PowershellNSW
- CCSAP CRM Functional AnalystWA
- TPSystems EngineerQLD
- FTService Delivery ManagerNSW
- FTIT Test ManagerNSW
- FTUI/UX DesignerSA
- FTSenior Systems Engineer x 2NSW
- FTProduct LeadVIC
- FTHealth Electronic Claiming Systems BA - Permanent - North Ryde areaNSW
- TPTesting SpecialistQLD
- FTInside Sales Consultants - SMSF SoftwareNSW
- FTProduct Manager - IoTNSW
- FTTester AnalystACT