WD Elements External Hard Drive

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I own a few WD Elements external hard drive models – they’re great!  They’re economic, portable, USB-powered (no dedicated wall-wart needed), and they just work.  But what is the WD Elements HDD really?

WD Elements external hard drive is a simple, straightforward and elegant portable device. It has a high-capacity in a shiny and lightweight design. Therefore, this makes the drive an ideal companion for several user types. In addition to all this, it is cheap and hence affordable to many customers. Despite the many merits, one striking negative characteristic is its performance. As compared to its rivals, its speed is relatively slow when compared to top-of-the-line external hard drives, or solid-state drives.

But if you want an “everyday driver” of a hard drive, then see why the WD Elements external HDD is probably right for you.


WD Elements external hard drive is a Bus-powered portable hard drive which acts as storage expansion or as a backup drive for computers and games consoles. WD Element has a matte plastic casing which is scratch resistant and compared to other external drives its-its less prone to smudges. The base contains tiny rubber pads which keep the drive firmly hold in place.

Just like other WD drives their similarity with rounded ends, and smooth finished surfaces. It has USB 3.0 connectivity that also supports USB 2.0. Also, it comes in the following capacities:

  • 500GB
  • 1TB
  • 2TB
  • 4TB

The dimensions are 11.2 by 8.1 by 2.0cm. Its weight is just about 234.5grams and includes the WD SmartWare Pro software.


The hard drive speed is a low power standard laptop type that spins at 5,400 rpm. The packaging involves a quick install guide and the USB cable as well as the device. Though being a low-power internal drive, the performance is not entirely wrong. The results via USB 3.0 is that it can sustain up to 98MB/s for writing and 100MB/s or more for reading.

wd elements usb 3.0

With these performance speeds, the WD Elements external hard drive is ideal for storing videos, music and photo files while transferring data at maximum speeds.  It does this all using the USB 3.0 connectivity to keep your files safe and sound wherever you are going.

wd elements usb 2.0


WD Element has received praises as well as critics from several reviews online. Some reviewers describe it as having a bare-bone design drive that can operate in any place since it does not need anything apart from a host computer and a USB port. For instance, it is not password protected hence no need to run the host software to grant permission to type the password to enable the connection. Therefore, it lacks features is termed by some customers like a great deal.

But a surprising factor is that WD Elements is compatible with different types of non-computer hosts apart from the Mac and Windows computers. For example, when plugged on Xbox One, it was accepted right away as it is plug and play. Also, it easy to store apps, games and other content for playback once the drive was formatted by use of the game console.

WD Elements in hands

The downside of WD Elements is that it not safe to store sensitive and private data on this type of drive. Simple reason being doesn’t sustain encryption for security. One customer in Amazon, for instance, was recommending if you want to keep your information away from curious, or snoopy people in case the data happens to fall into the hands of the wrong people, other drives with better encryption would be suitable.

Another complaint is the one-year limited warranty. Users express that the warranty period is insufficient to withstand minor abuses incurred on a daily basis transport and also on their heavy use.

Check out video review about WD Elements external hard drive

Final Thoughts

WD Element is more affordable, and its presentation is much appreciable as compared to its rivals which might be a bit pricier. The device is easy to use and portable hence adding more storage to computers, game consoles and several types of USB enabled hosts.


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