Freecom Mobile Drive Classic 3.0 review

4 Jun 2011
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Freecom Mobile Drive Classic 3.0
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It doesn’t look very exciting, but the Mobile Drive Classic has the right price and excellent performance.


1TB hard disk, USB3, 76x115x12mm

Freecom’s Mobile Drive Classic 3.0 looks like a fairly basic 2½in external hard disk; it’s built from glossy plastic that shows up fingerprints as soon as it’s picked up and isn’t particularly thin or light. There’s a reason for its extra bulk however; the hard disk inside has a huge 1TB capacity. With one of these disks, you won’t have to be selective over which files you take with you on the move.

Even though it supports the faster USB3 standard, we weren’t expecting to see stellar performance from the drive because the hard disk has only a 5,400RPM spindle speed. Happily we were wrong, as it turned out to be incredibly quick; 87.2MB/s writes and 133.3MB/s read speeds in our large file transfer test were very impressive. Small files reads were equally fast at 63.8MB/s, but write speeds were disappointingly slower at just 24MB/s. Overall however, it was still very fast for a 5,400RPM disk.

Freecom Mobile Drive Classic 3.0

It’s not often that the software included with an external hard disk is worth having, so we were impressed that Freecom bundles a copy of Nero BackitUp & Burn with the Mobile Drive Classic. The program has a fairly basic interface but there are plenty of advanced options, including the ability to backup and restore individual partitions as well as complete disks.

High-capacity portable hard disks usually cost significantly more than smaller ones, but the Mobile Drive Classic costs around £25 more than most 500GB models. If you need 1TB in your pocket, there are few faster or cheaper alternatives.

Basic Specifications

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Hard disk Samsung HM100UI
Capacity 1TB
Formatted capacity 931
Price per gigabyte £0.09
Disk size 2.5in
Interface USB3
Power connector USB from host
Spindle speed 5,400rpm
Cache 8MB
Seek time 12.0ms
Weight 140g
Size 76x115x12mm
Power consumption idle 1W
Power consumption active 3W

Buying Information

Backup software included Nero BackItUp4 Essentials
Price £98
Warranty two years RTB

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