Hitachi X500 Mobile Drive (external)
An affordable and ultra-portable Hitachi external hard drive for road warriors on a budget
- User-friendly backup software, small and attractive design
- File transfer speeds are below average
The Hitachi X500 Mobile Drive is a highly affordable 500GB hard drive which is slightly let down by its sluggish write speeds. Still, if you require a cheap backup solution to accompany you on the road, it remains a reasonable option.
Price$ 119.00 (AUD)
The Hitachi X500 Mobile Drive is a 500GB, 2.5in external hard drive (5400rpm). It uses a simple plug-n-play USB 2.0 interface and is primarily designed for portable use — hence the name. It’s not particularly fast and doesn’t come with many extras, but this is made up for by its low asking price.
The Hitachi X500 Mobile Drive shares much in common with the Hitachi SimpleDRIVE mini portable hard drive. For a $10 premium, it comes with an additional 180GB, which isn’t too shabby.
Measuring 123x82x16mm, the Hitachi X500 Mobile Drive should fit easily inside your notebook carry bag. It looks like a slightly oversized wallet, but we wouldn’t recommend slipping it inside your back pocket — unlike the Hitachi SimpleTOUGH, the Hitachi X500 isn’t particularly rugged.
The drive is encased in an ergonomic plastic shell adorned with two white indicator lights. A mini-USB output is the only form of connectivity offered. There’s also a DC-in port, but this doesn’t appear to serve any purpose (there’s no accompanying power supply in the sales package).
The Hitachi X500 Mobile Drive is quiet for the most part, although you can hear it chugging away on occasion — especially when you first plug it into your laptop. That said, it should be safe to use on a train without annoying your fellow commuters.
With an RRP of $119, the Hitachi X500 Mobile Drive costs around 25 cents per gigabyte — one of the best results we’ve encountered. (By contrast, the LaCie Starck Mobile Hard Drive came in at 43.4c per GB.) If you’re a stickler for value, the X500’s cost per formatted gigabyte is pretty hard to beat.
Like the SimpleDRIVE before it, the Hitachi X500 Mobile Drive comes with Acronis TotalMedia Backup. This is an easy to use application that provides comprehensive backup and synchronisation options. Backups can be scheduled or initiated based on folders or file types, with presets for regularly used file formats. The software comes preinstalled on the drive, do you don’t have to mess around with discs either.
The USB cable bundled with the Hitachi X500 Mobile Drive has two connections (the second can be employed when one USB port doesn't provide enough power). To test the device’s file transfer speeds, we copied two folders onto the drive and then back onto the Desktop. We also copied the folders from one location on the drive to another to test its speed when simultaneously reading and writing files. Each test folder contained a variety of files adding up to 3GB and 19.2GB, respectively.
Let’s take a look at how it compared to other external hard drives on the market:
|Small File (3GB) Transfer Test Results|
|Hitachi X500 Mobile Drive||$119||500GB||21.6||14.3||9.2|
|Hitachi SimpleDRIVE mini||$109||320GB||26.1||17.5||11|
|LaCie Rikiki (USB Boost enabled)||$159||500GB||30.9||17.2||11.1|
|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||26.1||17.5||11|
|Transcend StoreJet 25M-R||$159.95||320GB||23.8||15.3||7.2|
|Large File (20GB) Transfer Test Results|
|Hitachi X500 Mobile Drive||$119||500GB||28.5||21.8||12.1|
|Hitachi SimpleDRIVE mini||$109||320GB||28.9||23.8||12.7|
|LaCie Rikiki (USB Boost enabled)||$159||500GB||37.7||26.7||13.3|
|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|
Our tests showed that the Hitachi X500 Mobile Drive isn’t the zippiest hard drive on the market, particularly when it comes to write speeds. The Hitachi SimpleDRIVE managed to outpace it in every task, despite having similar specifications. All in all, the file transfer results were slightly below average. Nonetheless, the Hitachi X500 Mobile Drive remains a cost-effective option that gets the job done: if you can stomach a few extra minutes of waiting, its performance shouldn't disappoint.
[Note: A 320GB model is also available for $99.]
Become a fan of PC World Australia on Facebook
Stay up to date with the latest news, reviews and features. Sign up to PC World’s newsletters
Join the newsletter!
Bringing VR out of office and study spaces will serve to help it attract the new audiences it needs to continue growing
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 ASUS FX503 review: An ROG Notebook By Any Other Name
- 2 HP Envy x360 (Ryzen 5) review: Power over portability
- 3 Oppo A73 review: The budget smartphone that sets the bar for 2018
- 4 Oppo R11s review: The iClone you know and love, but not quite the one you deserve
- 5 Blackberry KEYone Black Edition review: What the original KEYone should have been
Latest News Articles
- Polycom Renew Their Most Iconic Teleconferencing Solution
- Google's Espresso networking tech takes SD-WAN to internet scale
- IEEE sets new Ethernet standard that brings 5X the speed without disruptive cable changes
- New Skype Preview lets Windows 10 Insiders manage phone texts on PCs
- 5 ways Cisco could become an iPhone's best friend
PCW Evaluation Team
Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category
The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use
I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.
The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.
- Picture Perfect: OPPO prepare their boldest smartphone yet
- Gigabyte AERO 15: Full, in-depth review
- Samsung Galaxy S9+ review: A predictably-exellent flagship uplifted by a standout camera
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
Product Launch Showcase
- TPSoftware EngineerACT
- FTTest AnalystQLD
- CCHadoop DeveloperVIC
- FTSQL Infrastructure Engineer / DBAOther
- FTUX/UI DesignerQLD
- FTData AnalystOther
- FTSolution ArchitectOther
- TPFinance Integration LeadQLD
- FTOracle PL / SQL / APEX DeveloperOther
- CCProject Manager-SCADAQLD
- FTTechnical WriterOther
- TPWeb Content Publisher (VPS4/5) - Government sectorVIC
- TPSenior Java DeveloperQLD
- FTSenior Software Engineer - JavaOther
- CCDelivery Manager - Cloud Solution ProjectNSW
- FTSoftware ArchitectQLD
- CCProject AnalystVIC
- TPSenior Java Developer / IntegratorQLD
- FTDigital DesignerOther
- CCOracle E-Business Suite DeveloperQLD
- FTLead Java DeveloperOther
- CCCloud Network EngineerVIC
- CCSharePoint 2013 DeveloperVIC
- TPSolution Architect - Web & TelephonyQLD
- TPDigital ProducerVIC