Buying one of the best Xbox One external hard drives means you get more space to store your games and downloads. While the Xbox One's 500GB or 1TB drive can store plenty of the best Xbox One games, you'll soon run out of space if you're downloading from Xbox Live Gold every month. You can fit roughly 15-20 full-sized games on a 1TB hard drive, although that number shrinks rapidly once you start getting 4K-ready games onto your Xbox One X console. That's why it's a good idea to have one of the best Xbox One external hard drives on hand, to expand the capabilities of your console.
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When you're looking to buy an Xbox One external hard drive, make sure you get something reliable. While most HDDs offer comparable transfer and write speeds (meaning you'll copy files, install games, and load games at roughly the same speed), some external HDDs are built better than others. From our tests, the Seagate, WD (Western Digital), Samsung, and Lacie drives come out as the most reliable, so you should look at these first. They're all competitively priced too - you'll be able to find 4TB drives for around $100 if you're looking at the Seagate and WD options. And they're all pretty stylish too (although the Lacie HDDs aren't to everyone's tastes), with Seagate actually producing a few officially branded Xbox One models to fit in nicely with your home set-up.
In terms of size - we recommend 2TB for average Xbox players, with 4TB models for hardcore gamers, and 1TB for those who dip in and out. Here are the best Xbox One external hard drives, at the lowest prices today.
Best Xbox One external hard drives
1. WD 4TB My Passport Portable
The best Xbox One external hard drive
Capacity: 4TB | Storage Type: HDD
Our top pick for best Xbox One external hard drive belongs to the Western Digital 4TB My Passport series. We used to recommend a 2TB drive (which is still more than large enough for most people), but with Xbox One X ownership rising and the increased size of 4K games, this is the best way to future proof yourself. In terms of features, this USB 3.0 (and USB 2.0) compatible hard drive offers 256-AES encryption and cloud storage, along with WD's own backup software. In reality, all you really need to know is that this hits the sweet spot of size, speed and affordability. This 4TB external hard drive will store up to 40 Xbox One X games (or more), and up to 100 or so regular Xbox One games. Basically, it's a monster, and with a three-year limited warranty, there's every reason to buy with utmost confidence. It's available in a 2TB option, too, but 4TB feels like maximum value.
2. Toshiba 1TB Canvio Basics
Best budget Xbox One external hard drive
Capacity: 1TB | Storage Type: HDD
If you're primarily looking to store in-game video capture or maybe the odd Xbox One or Xbox One X game then the Canvio Basics is a great external hard drive on Xbox One. We've listed the 1TB option but a 500GB option is also available. It's cheap and features a speedy USB 3.0 connection. As long as you're not expecting to store a huge amount, it will boost your storage at a great price. It's worth remembering that you still have your internal hard drive, so adding a 1TB external hard drive to a 500GB Xbox One S gives you an overall capacity of 1.5GB. Again, we'd usually recommend you pick up 2TB or more, especially for Xbox One X storage, but if budget is an issue and you don't mind deleting and reinstalling games, the Toshiba is a great option.
3. Seagate 2TB/4TB Xbox One Game Drive
The official Xbox One external hard drive (and it's a good one too!)
Capacity: 2TB/4TB | Storage Type: HDD
This officially branded external hard drive on Xbox One comes in 2 or 4GB options giving you a choice depending on if you want to go for media storage, or games. It's basically a regular Seagate drive in a flashier case, and you're paying about $15-20 extra for having the (admittedly quite nice) embossed Xbox logo and official green case colour. If your budget allows, and aesthetics are important to you, it's functionally still a great choice, and you can often find it on sale. The Seagate 2TB Game Drive in official Xbox green often drops in price around big retail events, so while now is a great time to buy, we'll surely see reductions in the new year sales.
If you're not worried about official branding, this Seagate 4TB drive at Walmart is currently $40 off at $89.
4. Seagate Expansion 8TB
The biggest Xbox One external hard drive
Capacity: 8TB | Storage Type: HDD
The Seagate Expansion 8TB is USB 3.0 compatible and offers more storage than you'll likely ever need. It's the ideal choice for the prolific Xbox One user who wants to buy one hard drive and never have to think about storage again. The huge storage capacity raises the price, obviously, and the 8TB drive requires an external power adapter (supplied in the box), but is surprisingly elegant for such a large device. At 2.09 lbs with dimensions of 4.75 x 6.93 x 1.44 in, the Seagate Expansion 8TB is also considerably lighter than rival large capacity external hard drives, such as the WD 8TB My Book drive at 3.0 lbs with dimensions of 1.9 x 5.5 x 6.7 in.
5. Samsung 850 EVO 500GB SSD
The fastest hard drives if you're willing to do a little DIY
Capacity: 500GB | Storage Type: SSD
You will need to buy a separate USB 3.0 caddy to use this, since the connector is Serial ATA-600 not USB 3.0, but they're circa $10 and easy to install. At 500GB you're not getting the best price-to-storage ratio, but what you are getting is the speed of an SSD external hard drive on Xbox One. That means it's solid state memory, rather than an actual spinning disk. You won't immediately feel the difference when accessing media files and in-game video, but the speedier loading times can make a noticeable improvement in games like, say, Far Cry 5 where warping across the map causes the game to reload. If you want a great 500GB SSD drive, but don't want to buy an external USB 3.0 caddy, we recommend the Samsung T3 Portable 500GB USB 3.1 SSD. It's about $60 more expensive than buying a Serial ATA-600 (SATA) SSD drive and a USB 3.0 caddy - but that's the premium for having USB 3.1 (which is USB 3.0 compatible) built in.
6. Lacie Rugged Mini 1TB
The toughest Xbox One external hard drive
Capacity: 1TB | Storage Type: HDD
If you're worried about your HDD breaking, because you're always throwing it into a backpack or taking it into the great outdoors, the Lacie Rugged is for you. This tough little monster is dust and rain resistant, and comes with a rubber shield around the body of the HDD which helps protect it from impact damage or shock. That means if you drop this drive, it's far more likely to work perfectly afterwards.
Transfer speeds are similar to other drives, as is the size of the unit itself. The orange color and chunky shape won't be to everyone's liking, and the higher price will put some people off, but if you're worried about damaging your external drive then this is the toughest of the lot. We recommend the 1TB drive, as it's on sale now, but you should be able to get the 2TB version for around $100.
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