The company states that the new G-DRIVE USB-C is designed for storage-intensive multimedia files, including HD video, photos and music. It’s also likely to interest those who may have recently plumped for a megapixel monster such as the Canon EOS 5DS, or who may be eyeing up the Fujifilm GFX 50S. Those who may be shooting 4K video may well be intrigued, too.
The drive works on the USB 3.1 Gen 1 interface, and, as its name makes clear, is equipped with a USB-C port. This is the same type chosen by Apple for its most recent range of Macbook and Macbook Pro computers, and slowly being adopted elsewhere on graphics tablets and other devices.
Clearly, this may discourage some who would only intend to use it in conjunction with devices sporting USB-A connections, but they needn’t worry as WD has thrown a USB-C to USB-A adapter into the box too. In any case, as more devices adopt the standard this should be less of a concern, and WD also assures compatibility with computers using Thunderbolt 3, USB 3.0 or USB 2.0 interfaces.
The drive itself is a 3.5in 5400RPM unit, and is also set to be available in 8TB and 4TB flavours. Transfer speeds are said to reach 195MB/s in the most capacious model, and just a slightly slower 180MB/s and 150MB/s for the 8TB and 4TB models respectively.
This is slightly slower than the existing G-Drive USB models, whose 7200RPM drives reach maximum transfer rates of 245MB/s, although this difference in performance is reflected in their pricing.
Externally, the drive appears pretty much identical to the existing G-Drive USB models, fashioned with a familiar aluminium enclosure and smart, minimal design. The drive is formatted for Mac as standard and Time Machine ready straight out of the box, which makes WD’s target audience for the device clear. However, as WD points out, you can easily reformat it for Windows should you want to.
Perhaps the main point of interest regards its USB Power Delivery option, something made possible through the USB-C connection. With this, the drive can supply up to 45 watts to charge Macbook or Macbook Pro devices, theoretically allowing you to keep your laptop juiced up where you may not have spare socket to hand.
As is generally the case for a 10TB drive of any kind, this won’t come too cheap. WD has set an SRP of $449.95 when it hits the shelves over the coming few months, although the 8TB will arrives at a more tempting $349.95 and the 4TB option at $199.95. To soften the blow, owners will also get a three-year limited warranty as standard.