Seagate have recently been very active in the release of new products, with the new “Plus” range of external hard drives, some extremely slim external drives and, for the first time, a consumer-oriented solid state drive (which we hope to be reviewing very soon). They also partnered this with the release of two further enterprise SSDs, but, today, we have the Backup Plus Desktop, a desktop-size external hard drive, created with the many purpose of data backups.

Specs & Aesthetics
We recently reviewed Seagate’s other two new external storage products, the Backup Plus Portable and Wireless Plus, both of which are portable drives. The desktop version of the Backup Plus is available in much larger capacities, however, it is a lot larger in size. We’ve gone into a lot of detail about the ‘Plus’ series in both previous reviews, so, this review is going to be a bit shorter.

The Backup Plus Desktop is a desktop backup external HDD available in capacities from 1TB to 4TB. The drive connects through USB 3.0, which results in much faster transfer rates. Thunderbolt and Firewire adapters are also available for this drive. One of the nice things is that the drive itself can be detached from the docking station it rests within, meaning that if you purchase more than one of these drives but only use one at a time, you could hot-swap the drives without plugging in another dock and another USB cable. It makes it much easier for those who might be using a library of these for different purposes. The drive within the casing runs at 7200 RPM and, as you will see later, pulls VERY impressive performance!

So, in terms of price (all the following prices were correct as of time of writing), the 1TB version retails for £69.50 (£0.0695 per GB) on Amazon UK and $93.92 ($0.093 per GB) on Amazon US. The 2TB version is available on Amazon UK at £70.00 (so don’t buy the 1TB version! – £0.035 per GB) and on Amazon US at $99.99 ($0.05 per GB). Meanwhile, if you are going for the 3TB version (which we are reviewing) it will set you back £99.98 (£0.033 per GB) or $119.99 ($0.039 per GB) while the largest capacity 4TB version would cost £114.94 (£0.036 per GB) or $169.36 ($0.042 per GB). From the result above, we can see that the 3TB version of the drive wins in terms of price per GB, however, if you want 4TB on one drive, the difference in price per GB isn’t too much of a gap.

Now, as with the Backup Plus portable, the Backup Plus desktop includes the new and improved Seagate Dashboard which will help with automatically backing-up not only the data on your PC, but also the data on you social network accounts. The new dashboard is very functional, very useful and very helpful, so, it is DEFINITELY worth using for data backups! We went into the details of the new dashboard in our Backup Plus portable review (link near the top of the review), so, if you want some further information, you can get some details there 🙂

Performance Testing

We were amazed by the performance this drive was able to provide when tested through CrystalDiskMark. We saw some of THE most impressive speeds from a hard drive, in fact, I was astonished that a hard drive could actually perform at these rates:

Sequential Read – 170.9MB/s
Sequential Write – 163.6MB/s

512K Random Read – 52.8MB/s
512K Random Write – 88.5MB/s

It is OUTSTANDING that Seagate were able to product an external hard drive which communicates over USB3 and is able to pull some of the fastest speeds I have ever seen from any hard drive. A 163.6MB/s sequential write is absolute madness for an external drive, and just as impressive is the 170.9MB/s sequential read. The 512K read drops to a respectable hard drive rate, but the 88.5MB/s 512K write is an extremely impressive result. Now, its time for some real-life transfer tests to see how the drive performs…

5.87GB of small music MP3s from PC -> Backup Plus – 52MB/s
5.87GB of small music MP3s from Backup Plus -> PC – 53MB/s

1.39GB single MP4 movie from PC -> Backup Plus – 57MB/s
1.39GB single MP4 movie from Backup Plus -> PC – 59MB/s

CONCLUSION

At the price the Seagate Backup Plus is available at, there is no doubt in my mind, it is an absolute steal. The price for which it retails for offers outstanding value for not only a USB3 large capacity external desktop hard drive, but for one which performs at speeds rivaling some of the best hard drives on the market. This product is fantastic, and if you are considering an external desktop drive, this is the product to get! Without a doubt, the Seagate Backup Plus desktop receives a gold award.