There isn't much to this My Book Essential Edition drive. It's small, button-less and, apart from a distinct blue LED, inconspicuous.
Furthermore, it's ready to use as soon as users pull it out of the box. Simply plug it into a free USB 2.0 port on the PC and store stuff on its capacious 750GB hard drive straight away.
The drive has a formatted capacity of 698GB, and when considered with the drive's low asking price of $249, it works out to be $0.35 cents per formatted gigabyte. That's tremendous value for an external drive and users needn't spend more money unless they need other connectivity options such as Ethernet, eSATA or FireWire.
On the inside, the My Book Essential Edition has a 7200rpm hard drive with 16MB buffer, which was fast in our tests.
It averaged 21.73MBps in our write test and 25MBps in our read test (our source drive was 500GB Samsung Spin-Point), while in the read/write test it managed to transfer data at a rate of 17.24MBps.
The My Book's exterior is made out of plastic and the internal drive is kept cool purely by the air vents that surround it. There aren't any fans present, which means the drive is very quiet except for the odd noise that can be heard during read/write operations. Included in the package is the drive's power adapter and a USB cable. Some software comes with the drive, which is actually stored on the drive and not supplied on a CD, but it's not the full version software. Users get Memeo AutoSynch and AutoBackup. Users can tell Memeo AutoBackup which folders they want to backup, so each time the My Book drive is plugged in, those folders will be automatically backed up. The software can also specify how many additional versions of files within backup folders users want to keep and they can elect to encrypt files.
For anyone who wants a basic external hard drive for their PC or notebook, but one with plenty of storage space, this one is ideal. It's a no fuss solution at a good price.