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Most of us are our own worst enemy when it comes to technology. We have an infinite number of photos, videos, and essentially priceless memories digitally stored. More often than not, it isn’t until something goes horribly wrong, that we actually buy an external hard drive.
Aside from photos, videos, and music, an external hard drive can free up massive amounts of memory on your PC or laptop . Freeing up this space will allow your computer to work far better than it did before.
This article is going to discuss the differences between the Western Digital Elements and My Passport. The aim of the article is to help you choose the best one for you, whether you are replacing an old hard drive, or buying a new one, preferably before something goes wrong.
We will look at the hard drive capacity, WD backup software, appearance, and value for money. We will place all the information in a comparison chart so you can quickly view the differences. Finally, we will list some pros and cons of the WD Elements and the WD Passport.
Let’s start by talking about how they are similar.
Both of these WD hard drives are compatible with Windows 7, 8, 9 10. They are also compatible with Windows Vista. Be aware that many people have issues with Windows Vista if the hard drive is larger than 4 TB.
For the sake of this article, we are looking at a smaller capacity and therefore there are no issues.
You can use either of them with Mac, but it will require a simple reformat of the drive.
To transfer your videos, photos, or music, you can use a 2.0 USB or a 3.0 USB. A 3.0 USB will allow for faster transfer of files.
Hard drive uses
The WD Element and the WD Passport are ideal for transferring and storing photos, videos, and music. Both are able to store documents, however, you may prefer the WD Passport if you want to store important documents.
Drag and Drop
One of the best features of any PC/laptop is drag and drop. Once your hard drive is connected, you can simply click on the file you want to transfer, drag it, and drop it onto the hard drive. You can use drag and drop with the Elements and My Passport.
Now that we have covered how the two MD hard drives are similar, let’s take a look at some of the more specific details of the two.
One of the key things that you need to consider when you buy a hard drive is the capacity. We are looking at the 4 TB capacity hard drive. This is equal to 4,096 GB. To put that in perspective, an average 90-minute Netflix video is 2.4 GB.
Aside from the 4 TB, you can also buy a 1 TB, 2 TB, 3 TB, or 5 TB hard drive. A 5 TB hard drive can hold approximately 2000 Netflix videos.
For a larger capacity, the hard drive becomes a fraction bigger and logically more expensive.
WD My Passport
Similarly to the Elements, it comes in 1 TB, 2 TB, 3 TB, and 4 TB. There is no option for a 5 TB. On the other hand, there are different versions.
The Passport Ultra has a different design, the Passport Go is ready for Windows and Mac but doesn’t have hardware encryption, and the Passport SSD is ready for Windows and Mac and has hardware encryption.
The Winner Is – A Tie
WD Elements vs My Passport: Appearance
Hard drives are usually somewhat plain in their appearance. They are small, compact, and are most often found in black.
It’s a modern-looking hard drive in matte black with rounded edges. It only weighs 4.8 oz (136 g). The WD Elements dimensions are 4.3 x 3.2 x 0.6 inches.
It’s a rather bizarre design, with half of the hard drive smooth and the other half with stripped groves. This comes in black, blue, orange, red, white, and yellow. It weighs 5.9 oz (167 g) and it is 4.3 x 3.2 x 0.6 inches.
The Winner Is- The WD My Passport
WD Elements vs My Passport – Backup Software
Some hard drives come with backup software for enhanced user experience. Examples would be a cleanup tool, data recovery, and/or hard disk repair software.
This hard drive doesn’t have any additional software.
The standard My Passport comes with automatic backup. You can set a schedule to do this, so it’s one less thing to worry about. WD security includes password protection and 255-bit AFS hardware encryption.
With WD Discovery software, you can connect to your social media accounts and cloud storage. There are also WD Drive Utilities.
Remember, if you choose Passport Go, it doesn’t come with hardware encryption. On the plus side, it’s great for those who carry their hard drive around with them because it’s drop-resistant up to 2 meters and bump and shake-proof, even when in use.
The Winner Is – WD My Passport
Value For Money
The average cost of a 4 TB hard drive is between $40 and $50. A 3 TB hard drive would be between $80 and $95. For a 5 TB hard drive, you could expect to pay around $120 to $130. Most brands will offer a warranty, even if it’s only 12 months.
It’s a good price, slightly towards the higher end of average. It comes with a two-year warranty. There are options to buy a carrying case and a charger too.
WD My Passport
Surprisingly, considering all the additional software, there is only a couple of dollars difference to the WD Element. Not only that, but it also comes with a three-year warranty. There is the option to buy a carrying case too.
WD Elements and WD My Passport: Pros and Cons
Before we offer our final verdict, you can check out some pros and cons of each of the WD hard drives.
Elements vs My Passport: Video Comparison
WD Elements 1 TB Video Review
WD My Passport 4 TB Video Review
WD Elements and My Passport Alternatives & Equivalents
The WD Elements HD transfer rate is dependent on the location of reads and writes. All disk drives read/write to areas near the outer tracks, which can reach speeds around 170 MB per second, whereas inner track locations only reach about 80 MB per second. This means that most disks will usually beat 100MBPS-on a nearly empty drive you’ll see substantially better results!
Last update on 2023-09-01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
The WD Elements hard drive (3TB) most certainly comes with its own separate power supply.
The WD Elements hard drive is compatible with a Mac. In fact, all USB drives should be Mac compatible! All that you will need to do is reformat the device and that’ll take care of everything for you!
The answer to this question is yes and no. Yes, it can store individual files transferred from the PlayStation 4; however, not as a form of “Extended Storage.” You’ll need to partition it into two smaller volumes in order for that feature work effectively with your new external HDD (6TB).
The Western Digital My Passport RPM is 5400.
The Western Digital My Passport write and read speed are both 625 MB/S.
Yes, it can be reformatted to be used on both Macs or PCs.