Seagate FreeAgent Pro 750GB External Hard Drive Review

Posted: Jul 4 2007, 12:00am CDT | by , Updated: Aug 10 2010, 9:11am CDT, in Reviews | Peripheral

 
Seagate FreeAgent Pro 750GB External Hard Drive Review
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Benchmarks

Features & Specifications
One of the first things that you see once you open the box containing the Seagate FreeAgent Pro 750GB external hard drive is the instructions with the words “this won’t take long” printed on the front. Seagate knows how to live up to that promise too, all you need to do is plug the Seagate FreeAgent Pro 750GB external hard drive into the AC outlet then plug it into your PC via one of the trio of connection options including USB 2.0, e-SATA and FireWire 400.

Out of the box, the USB/e-SATA connection module is installed for you. If you want to use FireWire 400, you simply take a penny and unscrew the retention screw that keep the connection module in place and pop the FireWire 400 module in and tighten the screw back down. Seagate includes the USB cable and the FireWire 400 cable, but opted not to include the s-SATA cable, which is a bit disappointing. Many motherboards now come with e-SATA ports on the rear and e-SATA offers by far the best performance when using the Seagate FreeAgent Pro 750GB external hard drive. Unless you happen to have an e-SATA cable, you will need to buy one to take advantage of this interface.

There are no CDs inside the Seagate FreeAgent Pro 750GB external hard drive box for software or applications. All of that stuff is pre-installed on the Seagate FreeAgent Pro 750GB external hard drive. This is cool, and ensures that if you take the FreeAgent Pro to a different computer, you will have the software you need to get backups going. However, that means there is no hard copy to store in case you need to reformat or have an unexpected crash on the FreeAgent Pro. I would have liked to see the software CD included as well.

The software itself just needs to be installed from the Seagate FreeAgent Pro 750GB external hard drive to your computer to be functional. The application is easy to use and allows you to back up all the data on your computer at your choice of intervals. You can choose folder by folder, or simply back up everything. A one-click restore icon is also created with the backup in case you need to run a restore. The software keeps several versions of archived documents so if you make a mistake and then save the document with the mistake, you can get the original back. You can also duplicate and sync content like email, contacts and photos to your iPod, Shutterfly or other online storage space.

Inside the sleek, black aluminum exterior complemented by orange lights sits one of the tried and true Seagate 750GB internal hard drives. This drive is fast, and large enough to store just about anything you can throw at it. The drive stands upright and is smaller than most of Seagate’s external storage drives, but is still larger than something designed for portability. The Seagate FreeAgent Pro 750GB external hard drive measures in at 7.5” tall x 1.4” thin x 6.3” deep and weighs two pounds. The spindle speed on the drive is 7200 rpm.

The drive itself is compatible with Windows Vista, 2000, and XP as well as Mac 10.3.9 on a Power PC G3, G4, or G5 processor and Mac OXS X 10.4.6 or higher in an Intel Core Duo or Core Solo processor. However, the software will not work on Mac and the drive will need to be reformatted for Mac use.

Benchmarks
Now we will talk a bit about the performance aspects of the Seagate FreeAgent Pro 750GB external hard drive. I used HD Tach, Sanda XI, and ran a backup of the “My Documents” folder to see how long it would take to write data to the drive.

HD Tach
First was HD Tach, which showed a random access time of 21.7ms with 9% CPU utilization and an average read time of 32.3 MB/second. Compare those numbers to the Toshiba 200GB external drive with a random access time of 15.4 seconds and an average read speed of 28.6MB/s and you can see that the much larger storage capacity means longer waits when reading and writing data.

Sandra XI
I ran two benchmarks form Sandra XI, the Removable Storage benchmark and the File Systems benchmark. The removable storage benchmark showed a combined index of 39198 with an endurance factor of 4.0. The Toshiba 200Gb external could only muster a combined index of 10112 in comparison making the Seagate FreeAgent Pro 750GB external hard drive clearly faster in this benchmark.

The file system benchmark gave a drive index of 28 MB/s and a random access time of 8ms. To compare the Toshiba 200GB external drive has a drive index of 28 MB/s and a random access time of 9ms making for a virtual dead heat here performance wise.

Data Backup
I also executed a back up of the “My Documents” folder on my computer via the included software. The folder size was 1.4GB and it took 2 minutes and 35 seconds to complete. I think that the Seagate FreeAgent Pro 750GB external hard drive is a great drive for those looking for an external hard drive with lots of capacity and good looks to sit on their desk.

Verdict

Conclusion

Pros

  • Easy installation
  • Gobs of storage space
  • Pre-formatted for Windows

Cons

  • No hard copy of the software
  • Glowing orange light looks cool, but can distract
  • No e-SATA cable

Verdict
All in all the Seagate FreeAgent Pro 750GB external hard drive is a fantastic product. You really can’t ask for much more, the drive is large, easy to use and set up, and looks good. Seagate has a winner with the Seagate FreeAgent Pro 750GB external hard drive.

8.0
10
 

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The Author

<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/3" rel="author">Shane McGlaun</a>
Tech and Car expert Shane McGlaun (Google) reports about what's new in these two sectors. His extensive experience in testing cars, computer hardware and consumer electronics enable him to effectively qualify new products and trends. If you want us review your product, please contact Shane.
Shane can be contacted directly at shane@i4u.com.

 

 

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