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Freecom USB3 External Drives and Brando USB3 Hub 

External USB drives – like internal ones – are getting larger in capacity while in a lot of cases are getting smaller in dimensions. Until recently external drives over 500GB required an additional power source, not so here.

click image to enlarge

Freecom Mobile Drive Classic III 750GB

They now do drives up to 1TB that do not require an additional power source. The one I was sent was 750GB but I was assured it was identical – apart from capacity – to the 1TB unit. It is 11.5x7.5x2cm total size.

This USB3 drive (will work at a slower speed on USB2) needs another 4cm behind it when the USB3 cable is inserted. The unit as supplied to me was shiny black with just the Freecom name on the top, the USB3 lead was 60cm.

The actual formatted capacity of the drive is 698GB which is the difference between a MB being 1000 and 1024 bites.

I tested it on various units and the transfer speeds varied with quite naturally the higher speeds being on those with a USB3 hover the speed differential was not the huge increase meant to be available. However if you are buying an external drive you might as well future proof yourself by having the USB3 version unless it’s a lot more expensive.

The cable is identical on the end that fits into the PC but the end fitting into the drive is different to USB1 and USB2 drives.

Freecom Mobile Drive Classic III 750GB is available from the link below for 109 Euros (129 Euros 1TB)

http://shop.freecom.com/store/freecom/en_IE/pd/productID.222580100/categoryId.52244300

Freecom Mobile Drive Mg 750GB U&F

I was intrigued by this unit at a presentation as it had both USB3 and Firewire (small) connections. When it arrived I found it was meant for Mac’s but after some initial problems I persuaded it happily to work with any PC.

It was silver grey in colour and the USB3 lead was only a couple of CM shorter than that of the drive above this time not black but cream and somewhat thinner. It is 12.5x8x1.5cm, add 2cm to the length when the USB3 cable is inserted.

The only marking is Freecom into the front of the unit. The back has entry point for USB3 cable, Firewire (4 pin) cable and a round extra power lead this was not required on any of the PC’s Notebooks or Netbooks I used.

It has four tiny rubber feet to allow it to sit happily on any surface. The Freecom Mobile Drive Mg 750GB U&F is available from the link below for 129 Euros, or 109 Euros without the Firewire Port.

http://shop.freecom.com/store/freecom/en_IE/pd/productID.224762800/categoryId.52244300

USB3 4 Port Hub from Brando

As all the PC’s and Notebooks I have seen only come with a single USB3 port (the rest are USB2) anyone wanting to transfer a lot of data is going to need a USB3 Hub. I used this one on both USB3 and USB2 machines.

It is 9x6x1.5cm you will need to add 5cm to the length when the USB3 cable is inserted. This is supplied with an external power adapter but as with my findings above I did not need it even when I used it with a Netbook.

It has four small rubber feet on the base and two USB3 ports on either side spaced 2cm apart to avoid any conflicts. The power adapter lead is 1.2metres and supplied with a 13amp plug. The USB3 lead is 1 metre.

The 4 port USB3 hub is available from link below for $35 (US) plus $3 (US) whatever the size of the order.

http://usb.brando.com/usb-3-0-4-port-hub_p02170c039d15.html

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