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 PC World newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Sony Xperia Z5 Premium review: Is the world ready for a 4K phone?
- 2 D-Link Taipan AC3200 Ultra tri-band modem-router review
- 3 BlackBerry Priv review: When old habits die hard
- 4 Dell XPS 13 (2016) review: Making the very best Ultrabook
- 5 Microsoft Surface Book review: The verdict on Microsoft's first notebook
Best Deals on PC World
Latest News Articles
- ASUS launches world’s first liquid-cooled gaming laptop
- Tablets replace books for kids back at school
- Dell agrees to acquire EMC for US$67 billion
- Acer launches four Chrome devices under $400
- Vodafone: International roaming rates slashed to $1 per minute for 200 countries
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.
- FTBusiness Intelligence AnalystVIC
- FTPrograme ManagerNSW
- CCEnterprise Architect - Network & InfrastructureNSW
- FTSenior Unified Communications Consultant - National IT ServicesNSW
- CCProject ManagerACT
- FT.NET DeveloperVIC
- CCTest AnalystACT
- CCProgrammer/Analyst Programmer (JAVA/Moblie) 160115/AP/P/vhaAsia
- CCBusiness and Financial AnalystACT
- CCContracts ManagerNSW
- FTProject Manager | SharePoint, Office 365 SkillsVIC
- FTBusiness Analyst - Superannuation FundVIC
- FTMobile Designer / Developer - IOSNSW
- CCContract System Engineer (Lotus Domin) 160129/SE/vccAsia
- FTC# .Net DeveloperSA
- CCInformatica ExpertNSW
- CCService Desk ManagerVIC
- CCCitrix Systems EngineerNSW
- FTProject Manager / Scrum MasterNSW
- CCIT Solution Designer (SOA / Web-services)NSW
- CCSolution Architect - .NET environmentACT
- CCSSIS/ SSRS ExpertVIC
- CCSenior Project Manager - ComplianceVIC
- CCInfrastructure ConsultantNSW
- FTFraud AnalystVIC