We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
 
USB drives Reviews
15,103 Reviews

Hitachi SimpleTOUGH (500GB) review

£57.25 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Hitachi

Our Rating: We rate this 3.5 out of 5

The Hitachi SimpleTOUGH external hard drive's rugged enclosure and embedded USB cable make it a great companion for road warriors. If you plan to knock your hard drive about during travel, this would be a good choice.

The Hitachi SimpleTOUGH external hard drive's rugged enclosure and embedded USB cable make it a great companion for road warriors. If you plan to knock your hard drive about during travel, this would be a good choice.

There are no shortage of ruggedised hard drives - LaCie's Starck Mobile Hard Drive can be run over by a car without worries, and its Rugged All-Terrain Hard Disk will certainly survive knocks and bumps. Transcend's StoreJet 25M-R even claims to withstand US military drop-test standards.

There isn't much to differentiate the Hitachi SimpleTOUGH from other rugged drives, though at least it doesn't look quite as brick-like as the alternatives. Available in red, blue and "carbon fibre" colour schemes, the enclosure is made of a hardened plastic and flanked on both sides by rubber strips. This makes for a slightly curved shape, ensuring the hard drives always lands or rolls onto its front or back for best protection.

The USB 2.0 cable has been embedded directly into the hard drive so it never gets lost. It's not quite sealed when inserted back into the drive, however, so we doubt it's fully protected against contact with liquid. Like the Hitachi SimpleDRIVE Mini, the Hitachi SimpleTOUGH has a DC port for computers that don't provide enough power to the drive over USB. Because Hitachi doesn't bundle the adapter with the drive, this inclusion is largely useless.

The Hitachi SimpleTOUGH external hard drive is preformatted with the FAT32 file system, so it's compatible with both Macs and PCs. If you need to transfer files greater than 4GB in size, Hitachi provides instructions on formatting the hard drive to suit either operating system. Any software on the drive that isn't backed up will be lost during the format.

The Mac/PC compatible Hitachi Local Backup software bundled on the SimpleTOUGH is actually Acronis TotalMedia Backup, which is easy to use and provides comprehensive backup and synchronisation options. Backups can be scheduled or initiated based on folders or file types, with presets for regularly used file formats. Unlike the WD SmartWare software that accompanies Western Digital's My Passport SE, advanced users will be able to add their own file formats to be backed up.

The file transfer results were unsurprisingly identical to the Hitachi SimpleDRIVE Mini's - good but not fantastic. Of course, you can only expect a certain level of performance from a 2.5in hard drive running over a USB 2.0 connection, especially without optimised drivers.

The SimpleTOUGH has a relatively low cost per formatted gigabyte.

NEXT: our expert verdict >>

Hitachi SimpleTOUGH (500GB) Expert Verdict »
2.5in ruggedised external hard drive
500GB
USB
267g
  • Overall: We give this item 7 of 10 overall

The Hitachi SimpleTOUGH external hard drive's rugged enclosure and embedded USB 2.0 cable make it a good option for carting around data, though style-conscious road warriors may want to look elsewhere.

There are currently no price comparisons for this product.
  • Hitachi SimpleDRIVE Mini review

    Hitachi SimpleDRIVE Mini

    The Hitachi SimpleDRIVE Mini is a no-frills external hard drive that doesn't provide stellar file transfer performance, but it offers good value.

  • LaCie Rikiki Go review

    LaCie Rikiki Go

    The LaCie Rikiki Go is a 2.5in ultraportable external hard drive that boasts the smallest dimensions in its class (75x109x13mm). The version we tested came with 500GB of storage (a 1TB version is also available) and a USB 2.0 interface. According to LaCie, speeds can be increased by up to 33 per cent via the company's USB Boost driver.

  • Hitachi X Series Mobile Drive 500GB review

    Hitachi X Series Mobile Drive 500GB

    The Hitachi X Series Mobile Drive 500GB is a 2.5-inch external hard disk drive.

  • SimpleTech USB 2.0 1TB external hard drive

    SimpleTech USB 2.0 1TB external hard drive

    Although it has a few quirks and problems, the SimpleTech USB 2.0's low-profile designer looks, superior USB performance, and attractive per-gigabyte price combine to deliver a good value for your storage pound.

  • Western Digital My Passport Studio 500GB review

    Western Digital My Passport Studio 500GB

    The Western Digital My Passport Studio 500GB is an external hard drive with USB and FireWire connectivity.


IDG UK Sites

iPhone 5s review: why the iPhone 5s is still the best phone you can buy in 2014

IDG UK Sites

PCs vs consoles: PCs still pwn when it comes to gaming (and everything else)

IDG UK Sites

Come together to learn: the secrets of the best design talks, conferences and courses