Western Digital Passport 250GB

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Western Digital Passport 250GB

Pink is our new obsession, and we have Western Digital to blame. Its pink, portable Passport hard drive (try saying that fast) is small enough to fit in Steven Tyler’s mouth, yet it comes with two of our most favorite features in the world: sweet speeds and snazzy backup software. And to top it off, you have to carry only a single USB cable alongside the little sweetheart, as there’s no accompanying power brick or annoying connector.

You get a crisp 250GB of storage with the pink Passport drive; accompanying programs soak up 60MB of that space. We have no objection to this, save for Western Digital’s continued insistence on bundling Google spam alongside every external hard drive it sells. At least the autorun/installer application is less intrusive about slapping a toolbar, desktop search, and Picasa on your machine than previous Western Digital products—you can now choose whether to install those items.

The Passport is one of the speediest portable hard drives in the size-of-your-hand category, pulling in a wonderful 34.7MB/s average read speed during our synthetic HD Tach benchmark test. OWC’s 160GB, 7,200RPM Mercury On-the-Go (reviewed August 2007) just overtakes the Passport’s average read speed by 1MB/s; the OWC device loses the overall matchup, however, by being 90GB smaller and costing $50 more.

Included with the Passport is the ever-awesome WD Sync software. It’s a staple of Western Digital’s portable drive line, and it’s easy to see why—the synchronized backup is simple and clutter-free, and the fully functioning mobile Outlook client turns our cheeks pink with delight.

Train Kept A-Rollin'

It’s fast, it’s light, it requires only one cord!

Drops of Jupiter

Google advertising/software is unnecessary; the black 320GB variant is only $20 more.

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BENCHMARKS

WD Passport
Maxtor OneTouch 4
Seagate FreeAgent Pro (usb)
Burst (MB/s) 36.2 37.5 26.3
Random Access (ms) 17.5 14.1 21.5
Average Read (MB/s)
34.7 37.2 25.5
Best scores are bolded in each connection category. All benchmarks taken using HD Tach 3.0.1.0
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