I consider external hard drives a must-have accessory for any computer user. Beyond their most obvious use–providing extra storage when you run out of space on your primary drive–these drives are ideal for making backups, moving large files between PCs, and archiving space-hogging data like photos and videos. MacMall has a drive deal that’s hard to pass up: The Fantom GreenDrive 1TB External eSATA/USB 2.0 Hard Drive for $59.99 (plus $10 for shipping). That’s your price after redeeming a pair of $25 mail-in rebates, meaning you’ll have to part with $109.99 up front.
If you can live with that (I know many people who dislike rebates), you’ll be hard-pressed to find a better price on a 1TB external drive.
By the way, “1TB” means “one terabyte,” which is equivalent to 1,000 gigabytes (GB). That may sound like overkill, especially if you’re looking to back up a drive that’s only, say, 250GB. But before you go shopping for a drive with a smaller capacity, keep in mind that you might actually end up spending the same amount of money–possibly even more. Right now, 1TB drives represent the price/storage “sweet spot.”
The GreenDrive (so named for its lower-than-average power consumption) works with Mac and Windows systems alike, and it can connect to either a USB or eSATA port. The latter are pretty rare, though they do afford much faster file-transfer speeds–so use it if you’ve got one!
MacMall‘s rebate offers are both good through April 30. However, this is the kind of deal that can sell out in a hurry, so if you’ve been thinking about expanding your available storage and/or finally making regular backups of your PC (smart move), I’d jump on it.
Self-proclaimed cheapskate Rick Broida has been a technology writer for over 20 years. He has authored over a dozen books, including, most recently, “How to Do Everything: Palm Pre.” Currently he writes the Cheapskate blog for CNET, the Hassle-Free PC blog for PC World, and technology stories for Popular Science, Wired, and other magazines.