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I'm in need of a 3.5" 3TB HDD to be used as an all-encompassing backup drive for the rest of my data, as I don't currently have a system in place and that needs to change as soon as possible.

Because the drive will be a backup drive it will be kept hooked up to my desktop but read from and written to less frequently than the average internal HDD, and so it doesn't need to be exceptional quality; however, my personal circumstances mean that I'm on a very tight budget, so it does generally need to be available for under £50 while remaining a reliable drive for the above purposes, and the cheaper it can be found for the better.

Can anyone recommend anything?

  • I would think that for a backup drive exceptional quality would be important. I suppose you could just have a replacement plan of replacing the backup drive every couple of years regardless just to be on the safe side. – Richard Chambers Nov 18 '17 at 3:03
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    TBH, with the general price level of hardware in the UK, I do not think you will be able to get 3TB of storage for £50. You probably either need to settle for a lower capacity, like 1 TB or possibly 2 TB if you get a used HDD, though I do not recommend the latter at all, or save up a bit more. I estimate at least £60, probably more like £70, and even then you're scraping the bottom of the barrel. – timuzhti Nov 21 '17 at 9:36
  • As a side note, a backup drive should always be redudant, so I would heavily recommend getting a single 3TB drive as if it fails, you could be in for a world of trouble. – Rubydesic Nov 24 '17 at 1:45
  • Still looking? It might be possible to get an external drive and shuck it for cost savings. – JMY1000 Jan 19 '18 at 23:52
  • You won't find new 3TB HDD for less than 60-63 GBP. Toshiba DT01ACA300 is good bet. – Vlastimil Ovčáčík Jan 20 '18 at 15:34
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It sounds like the best drive for your circumstances is a 3TB Western Digital Green.

Normally, I'd never recommend a WD Green because of severe performance issues (the firmware prioritizes power savings over speed of access). However, since you're using the drive for backups rather than as your main drive, the delays probably won't be an issue. Reliability-wise, the WD Green uses the same hardware as the rest of Western Digital's drives. It's only the firmware that differs.

The drive is $88 from Newegg, which should translate into a UK price within your £50 budget.

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    Even if you were using straight exchange rates, given the current weakness of the pound, 88 USD translates to more like 65 GBP. A quick look at the actual prices show that the situation is even worse than that. An Amazon search shows the WD Green to be closer to £88 than it is to £65. OP's request looks to be unrealistic, unfortunately. – timuzhti Nov 21 '17 at 9:24
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    I've checked some other retailers: Overclockers.co.uk doesn't stock the Green, but the cheapest 3 TB is £71.99. alza actually sells it for £96. Ridiculous, I know. Many other components are also priced so that you may as well just assume the UK price is the same number as the US price: I've checked the Intel 7700K, Ryzen 5 1600, and a few others, and they were about 10 less than 1:1. – timuzhti Nov 21 '17 at 9:31
  • Not all WD drives use the same hardware. There's a reason Reds and Purples are marketed and warrantied for always-on performance. – JMY1000 Dec 21 '17 at 2:00

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