Portable Hard Drive review

As you’d expect, all the drives on test draw their power supply from your computer’s USB or FireWire port. Some laptop computers may not supply enough power through a single USB port, so most of the drives include a second USB cable in case you need to draw extra power from another USB port. Only Verbatim’s Portable Hard Drive FireWire/USB actually needed to use the second cable when attached to the USB ports on our MacBook.

Fortunately, it also has a FireWire 400 port that worked perfectly well, so that’s obviously the best option for Mac users (unless, of course, you have a MacBook Air with its solitary USB port, or one of the new MacBooks).


The Portable Hard Drive provides a healthy 500GB of storage at a reasonable price (120GB-320GB also available), and it comes pre-formatted ready to use with Macs rather than PCs. However, it’s slightly slower than its rivals – 85 seconds to copy our test files with the FireWire interface, and 102 seconds with USB, so there’s still room for improvement there.

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