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Which USB 3.0 Hard Drive is Fastest?

USB 3.0 promises twice the speed of the current USB 2.0 standard. And now that these new ports are starting to show up on notebooks, storage makers have begun producing external drives that take advantage of these blazing transfer rates. But before shelling out any money to upgrade your storage solution, we’ve put four of the newest models through the wringer to find out which one offers the fastest speeds, best utilities, and stylish looks. In order to measure their performance, we connected each drive to a Lenovo W710 workstation, then ran read and write speed tests with a 4.97GB folder of multimedia and a 1.66GB MPEG-4 file. Check our slideshow to find out which one is speediest.

Buffalo MiniStation Cobalt USB 3.0

Buffalo MiniStation Cobalt USB 3.0

Buffalo’s latest portable drive is small and light, but it’s not as fast as the competition. Read The Review

Pros Sleek and stylish designMac and PC compatible Three-year warrantyCons Not the fastest drive Scratches easily Mediocre utilities

LaCie Rugged USB 3.0

LaCie Rugged USB 3.0

Not only is this portable hard drive super-fast, it can take its share of abuse, too. Read The Review

Pros Fast transfer speeds Online storage included Durable designCons Bulky

Iomega USB 3.0 eGo Portable Hard Drive

Iomega USB 3.0 eGo Portable Hard Drive

This stylish, fast, and sturdy USB 3.0 hard drive has it all. Read The Review

Pros Fast transfer speedsAttractive design Rugged AffordableCons Cloning software only Windows compatible

Seagate FreeAgent GoFlex Pro

Seagate FreeAgent GoFlex Pro

This USB 3.0 hard drive has an innovative and versatile connecting system that makes it future-proof. Read The Review

Pros Innovative connecting system Stylish design Desktop stand included with capacity meter Three-year warrantyCons Connectors add to cost Not the fastest drive