Overclock.net › Forums › Components › Hard Drives & Storage › External Hard Drive for Media?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

External Hard Drive for Media?

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
To keep this very simple... I am attempting to create a PC based media center capable of playing all kinds of different movies, videos, etc...mainly able to play torrents I plan to download. I think the best way to keep torrents for purposes of storage and mobility is an external hard drive for obvious reasons. Question is...should I buy an EHD and download torrents directly onto it, or should I download the torrents onto my PC and then transfer them from PC to EHD? Are external hard drives as simple as USB plug and play? I won't have trouble playing movies etc (torrents) from my EHD will I?
post #2 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by cctaylor88 View Post

To keep this very simple... I am attempting to create a PC based media center capable of playing all kinds of different movies, videos, etc...mainly able to play torrents I plan to download. I think the best way to keep torrents for purposes of storage and mobility is an external hard drive for obvious reasons. Question is...should I buy an EHD and download torrents directly onto it, or should I download the torrents onto my PC and then transfer them from PC to EHD? Are external hard drives as simple as USB plug and play? I won't have trouble playing movies etc (torrents) from my EHD will I?

An external hdd is pretty much a big usb drive. If you get a usb 3.0 external hdd, and have usb3.0 ports on your computer, then its a lot faster.
 
Philip J. Fry
(6 items)
 
Turanga Leela
(1 item)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 4690K 4.2ghz 1.15v Asus Z97I-Plus EVGA GTX1070 ACX 3.0 HyperX 16gb 1866mhz 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 850 Evo 250GB Western Digital Caviar Black1TB NZXT Kraken X41 Windows 7 Ultimate 
MonitorMonitorMonitorPower
ASUS VN247H-P ASUS VN247H-P ASUS VN247H-P SPI Magna Gold 750w 
CaseMouseMouse PadAudio
Corsair Obsidian 250D Zowie EC1-A Steelseries QCK XXL Fostex TH-X00 Mahogany 
AudioAudioAudio
Fiio E10 Olympus Modmic 4.0 Beyerdynamic DT770 80ohm Removable Cable Mod 
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i5 M 480 Nvidia GeForce 310M 4gb Samsung ram 640gb Samsung HM641JI 
OSOther
Windows 7 Home Premium Samsung QX410 Laptop 
Keyboard
Which one? :P 
  hide details  
Reply
 
Philip J. Fry
(6 items)
 
Turanga Leela
(1 item)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 4690K 4.2ghz 1.15v Asus Z97I-Plus EVGA GTX1070 ACX 3.0 HyperX 16gb 1866mhz 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 850 Evo 250GB Western Digital Caviar Black1TB NZXT Kraken X41 Windows 7 Ultimate 
MonitorMonitorMonitorPower
ASUS VN247H-P ASUS VN247H-P ASUS VN247H-P SPI Magna Gold 750w 
CaseMouseMouse PadAudio
Corsair Obsidian 250D Zowie EC1-A Steelseries QCK XXL Fostex TH-X00 Mahogany 
AudioAudioAudio
Fiio E10 Olympus Modmic 4.0 Beyerdynamic DT770 80ohm Removable Cable Mod 
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i5 M 480 Nvidia GeForce 310M 4gb Samsung ram 640gb Samsung HM641JI 
OSOther
Windows 7 Home Premium Samsung QX410 Laptop 
Keyboard
Which one? :P 
  hide details  
Reply
post #3 of 20
Some EHD are as simple as USB in and play, others require eSATA. I would download it to your PC then to EHD, that way you have 2 copies of the torrent. And no, you shouldn't have any problems playing movies from your EHD. thumb.gif
post #4 of 20
How is the external hard drive connecting to your media center? If your using USB 2.0 / 3.0 your communication link might bottleneck the external enough where you can't play 1080p HD movies. If you go with E-SATA, you will be fine.

You can download the torrents directly to external just fine. As mentioned earlier, the only troubles you might would be bandwidth. Also, keep in mind torrents heavily fragment a hard drive. Keep your external defragmented.

thumb.gif
Edited by crimsontears809739 - 10/29/12 at 9:38am
Deus Ex Machina
(19 items)
 
   
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 580M Dell 0R1203 NVIDIA Quadro FX 2800M Samsung 4Gb 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveOS
TOSHIBA MK3256GSYF  TOSHIBA MK3256GSYF  DVD-Rom HL-DT-ST DVD+-RW GU40N Windows 7 Professional 
Audio
Dell Computer 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset Fami... 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
Athlon 64 X2 6400+  Asus M2N-E Nforce 500 SLi 8800GT  9800 GT 
RAMHard DriveOptical DriveOS
OCZ ReaperX WD LG lightscribe Multilayer DVD burner Windows 7 
PowerCase
Antec 500W Smartpower 2.0 Aspire X-Navigator 
  hide details  
Reply
Deus Ex Machina
(19 items)
 
   
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 580M Dell 0R1203 NVIDIA Quadro FX 2800M Samsung 4Gb 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveOS
TOSHIBA MK3256GSYF  TOSHIBA MK3256GSYF  DVD-Rom HL-DT-ST DVD+-RW GU40N Windows 7 Professional 
Audio
Dell Computer 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset Fami... 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
Athlon 64 X2 6400+  Asus M2N-E Nforce 500 SLi 8800GT  9800 GT 
RAMHard DriveOptical DriveOS
OCZ ReaperX WD LG lightscribe Multilayer DVD burner Windows 7 
PowerCase
Antec 500W Smartpower 2.0 Aspire X-Navigator 
  hide details  
Reply
post #5 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by crimsontears809739 View Post

How is the external hard drive connecting to your media center? If your using USB 2.0 / 3.0 your communication link might bottleneck the external enough where you can't play 1080p HD movies. If you go with E-SATA, you will be fine.

Even full Blu-ray 1080p maxes out at 38Mbps or 4.75MB/s. USB 2.0 will be fine. If all you're storing in the external are big files, then use 64K allocation units instead of the 4K default. Should help reduce fragmentation.
Garnet
(11 items)
 
Lucifiel
(13 items)
 
Metatron
(13 items)
 
CPUMotherboardRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i5-3450S Intel DQ77KB Corsair 16GB DDR3 1600 SO-DIMM Samsung 830 256GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Crucial m4 256 mSATA Samsung 840 500GB Intel BXHTS1155LP Windows 7 Ultimate x64 
KeyboardCaseMouse
Logitech K800 Lian Li PC-Q05B Logitech M570 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7-860 Gigabyte GA-H55N-USB3 EVGA GTX 460 1GB GDDR5 Kingston 2x4GB DDR3 1333 
Hard DriveOSPowerCase
G.SKILL Phoenix Pro 120GB Windows 7 Ultimate x64 Silverstone ST45SF 450W Silverstone Sugo SG05B 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7-860 Biostar TH55B HD MSI GT 240 1GB GDDR5 Kingston 2x2GB DDR3 1333 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
Intel X25-M 120GB Windows 7 Ultimate x86 Samsung 22" Antec EA-380D 
Case
Rosewill R101-P-BK 
  hide details  
Reply
Garnet
(11 items)
 
Lucifiel
(13 items)
 
Metatron
(13 items)
 
CPUMotherboardRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i5-3450S Intel DQ77KB Corsair 16GB DDR3 1600 SO-DIMM Samsung 830 256GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Crucial m4 256 mSATA Samsung 840 500GB Intel BXHTS1155LP Windows 7 Ultimate x64 
KeyboardCaseMouse
Logitech K800 Lian Li PC-Q05B Logitech M570 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7-860 Gigabyte GA-H55N-USB3 EVGA GTX 460 1GB GDDR5 Kingston 2x4GB DDR3 1333 
Hard DriveOSPowerCase
G.SKILL Phoenix Pro 120GB Windows 7 Ultimate x64 Silverstone ST45SF 450W Silverstone Sugo SG05B 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7-860 Biostar TH55B HD MSI GT 240 1GB GDDR5 Kingston 2x2GB DDR3 1333 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
Intel X25-M 120GB Windows 7 Ultimate x86 Samsung 22" Antec EA-380D 
Case
Rosewill R101-P-BK 
  hide details  
Reply
post #6 of 20
Yeah, I am going to grab a Fantom Drives Gforce/3 2TB USB 3.0 Black USB 3.0 drive to store my files and backup my computer with. It should compliment my sugo pretty well. Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)

Edited by HPE1000 - 10/29/12 at 10:25am
 
Philip J. Fry
(6 items)
 
Turanga Leela
(1 item)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 4690K 4.2ghz 1.15v Asus Z97I-Plus EVGA GTX1070 ACX 3.0 HyperX 16gb 1866mhz 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 850 Evo 250GB Western Digital Caviar Black1TB NZXT Kraken X41 Windows 7 Ultimate 
MonitorMonitorMonitorPower
ASUS VN247H-P ASUS VN247H-P ASUS VN247H-P SPI Magna Gold 750w 
CaseMouseMouse PadAudio
Corsair Obsidian 250D Zowie EC1-A Steelseries QCK XXL Fostex TH-X00 Mahogany 
AudioAudioAudio
Fiio E10 Olympus Modmic 4.0 Beyerdynamic DT770 80ohm Removable Cable Mod 
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i5 M 480 Nvidia GeForce 310M 4gb Samsung ram 640gb Samsung HM641JI 
OSOther
Windows 7 Home Premium Samsung QX410 Laptop 
Keyboard
Which one? :P 
  hide details  
Reply
 
Philip J. Fry
(6 items)
 
Turanga Leela
(1 item)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 4690K 4.2ghz 1.15v Asus Z97I-Plus EVGA GTX1070 ACX 3.0 HyperX 16gb 1866mhz 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Samsung 850 Evo 250GB Western Digital Caviar Black1TB NZXT Kraken X41 Windows 7 Ultimate 
MonitorMonitorMonitorPower
ASUS VN247H-P ASUS VN247H-P ASUS VN247H-P SPI Magna Gold 750w 
CaseMouseMouse PadAudio
Corsair Obsidian 250D Zowie EC1-A Steelseries QCK XXL Fostex TH-X00 Mahogany 
AudioAudioAudio
Fiio E10 Olympus Modmic 4.0 Beyerdynamic DT770 80ohm Removable Cable Mod 
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i5 M 480 Nvidia GeForce 310M 4gb Samsung ram 640gb Samsung HM641JI 
OSOther
Windows 7 Home Premium Samsung QX410 Laptop 
Keyboard
Which one? :P 
  hide details  
Reply
post #7 of 20
Thread Starter 
EDIT: double post sorry
Edited by cctaylor88 - 10/30/12 at 10:00am
post #8 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by rui-no-onna View Post

Even full Blu-ray 1080p maxes out at 38Mbps or 4.75MB/s. USB 2.0 will be fine. If all you're storing in the external are big files, then use 64K allocation units instead of the 4K default. Should help reduce fragmentation.

Alright man...this is totally over my head so I have zero idea of what you are talking about. I think Im going to just buy 3.0USB to be safe, can a simple plug and play USB EHD play movies from PC to TV? Also...what "form" should I buy? Ive seen many form sizes like 2.5, 3.0, 3.5 I just want something small, easy to store, 1tb, able to play HD movies no problem. Thanks
Quote:
Originally Posted by crimsontears809739 View Post

How is the external hard drive connecting to your media center? If your using USB 2.0 / 3.0 your communication link might bottleneck the external enough where you can't play 1080p HD movies. If you go with E-SATA, you will be fine.
You can download the torrents directly to external just fine. As mentioned earlier, the only troubles you might would be bandwidth. Also, keep in mind torrents heavily fragment a hard drive. Keep your external defragmented.
thumb.gif

Okay, thanks a lot for the help so far guys honestly. Well the media center I want to use (XBMC) Im just going to download and install directly onto my PC. My goal is to use this media center to play movies etc. and then have my TV mirror the images...so I can lay in bed and watch the movies on the TV instead of on my small monitor. I will just have the TV plugged into the PC via HD cable and have it mirror the images (movie) of the monitor...does this make sense? This is possible right?

Well now you are talking over my head I have no idea what E-SATA is... I just want simple plug and play. So cant I just buy a USB 3.0 1TB external hard drive...download my movies onto it, and when I want to watch these movies I can plug the EHD in, load up my media player via PC, have the TV mirror the PC monitor (showing the movies), and watch these movies in HD? Are you saying that my TV wont be able to view HD movies if they are loaded on my external HD? You said "communication link migh bottle neck" what does this mean? What is my communication link? Do you mean the link from USB EHD to PC USB? What do you mean I might have troubles with bandwidth? I dont understand? And to keep my external "defragmented" as you say...can I just defrag it like I would my desktop?

Thanks so much for the help guys. And thanks for the patience, this is all very new to me.
post #9 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by cctaylor88 View Post

Alright man...this is totally over my head so I have zero idea of what you are talking about. I think Im going to just buy 3.0USB to be safe, can a simple plug and play USB EHD play movies from PC to TV? Also...what "form" should I buy? Ive seen many form sizes like 2.5, 3.0, 3.5 I just want something small, easy to store, 1tb, able to play HD movies no problem. Thanks

When you format the hard drive, in the format dialog, choose 64 kilobytes for the allocation unit size (default it 4096 bytes). This has nothing to do with USB2/USB3/eSATA. I do the same for my internal HDDs, particularly ones that will be used for recording storage.

eSATA is external SATA. I don't suggest it since not all motherboards have an eSATA port while practically every computer since around 2000 has a USB port. eSATA might also need some fiddling in the BIOS to enable hotswap, etc, too. For simplicity, just go with USB.

As for form factor, some things to consider:
  • 3.5" usually requires an external power adapter but it's a lot less expensive per GB. You can get 2TB for around $100 or thereabouts.
  • Most 2.5" drives are USB bus-powered so no need for a separate power adapter/brick (has to be connected directly to PC or powered USB hub, though). Caveat, it's also more expensive. Expect to pay around $80-100 for 1TB storage.


Whichever form factor you choose, I suggest considering going the do-it-yourself route (buy an external enclosure + internal HDD). A lot of the pre-built externals have poor ventilation/cooling (had a My Book that regularly reaches 70+C - needless to say, it's dead now). Being able to choose a case with decent cooling would help with drive longevity. This usually gives you longer warranty on the drives, too, since a lot of the external drives I see only have 1-year warranty while their internal counterparts are warrantied for 3 years. Even if you're not technically inclined, it's very easy to build your own external HDD.
Garnet
(11 items)
 
Lucifiel
(13 items)
 
Metatron
(13 items)
 
CPUMotherboardRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i5-3450S Intel DQ77KB Corsair 16GB DDR3 1600 SO-DIMM Samsung 830 256GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Crucial m4 256 mSATA Samsung 840 500GB Intel BXHTS1155LP Windows 7 Ultimate x64 
KeyboardCaseMouse
Logitech K800 Lian Li PC-Q05B Logitech M570 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7-860 Gigabyte GA-H55N-USB3 EVGA GTX 460 1GB GDDR5 Kingston 2x4GB DDR3 1333 
Hard DriveOSPowerCase
G.SKILL Phoenix Pro 120GB Windows 7 Ultimate x64 Silverstone ST45SF 450W Silverstone Sugo SG05B 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7-860 Biostar TH55B HD MSI GT 240 1GB GDDR5 Kingston 2x2GB DDR3 1333 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
Intel X25-M 120GB Windows 7 Ultimate x86 Samsung 22" Antec EA-380D 
Case
Rosewill R101-P-BK 
  hide details  
Reply
Garnet
(11 items)
 
Lucifiel
(13 items)
 
Metatron
(13 items)
 
CPUMotherboardRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i5-3450S Intel DQ77KB Corsair 16GB DDR3 1600 SO-DIMM Samsung 830 256GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
Crucial m4 256 mSATA Samsung 840 500GB Intel BXHTS1155LP Windows 7 Ultimate x64 
KeyboardCaseMouse
Logitech K800 Lian Li PC-Q05B Logitech M570 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7-860 Gigabyte GA-H55N-USB3 EVGA GTX 460 1GB GDDR5 Kingston 2x4GB DDR3 1333 
Hard DriveOSPowerCase
G.SKILL Phoenix Pro 120GB Windows 7 Ultimate x64 Silverstone ST45SF 450W Silverstone Sugo SG05B 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7-860 Biostar TH55B HD MSI GT 240 1GB GDDR5 Kingston 2x2GB DDR3 1333 
Hard DriveOSMonitorPower
Intel X25-M 120GB Windows 7 Ultimate x86 Samsung 22" Antec EA-380D 
Case
Rosewill R101-P-BK 
  hide details  
Reply
post #10 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by rui-no-onna View Post

Even full Blu-ray 1080p maxes out at 38Mbps or 4.75MB/s. USB 2.0 will be fine. If all you're storing in the external are big files, then use 64K allocation units instead of the 4K default. Should help reduce fragmentation.

I have personally had problems playing 1080p from a USB 2.0 external, but in my situation I didn't bother to investigate if the bottleneck was in the USB 2.0 connection, the hard drive, or the computer. Hmmm....I always assumed it was the USB port bottle-necking. I learned something new.

thumb.gif
Quote:
Originally Posted by cctaylor88 View Post


Well now you are talking over my head I have no idea what E-SATA is...

By "bandwidth" i was referring to the speed of the connection between your external and your PC.

There are 3 ways to connect a external hard drive.
1.) USB 2.0 (slowest connection)
2.) USB 3.0 (faster connection)
3.) E-Sata (fastest connection)

Here is a picture of E-sata connector on a laptop --> http://www.connectreviews.com/wp/wp-content/uploads/2008/03/gateway_p171xl_2.jpg E-Sata is like USB,...except it's only for external hard drives and nothing else. E-Sata will provide you with the fastest connection, but older computers don't support E-Sata. Many externals come with both E-SATA and USB. E-Sata is a little more hassle to set up than USB.

As for a 2.5" or 3.5", it doesn't matter. 3.5" HDD are a little bit cheaper, so i'd go with that.

You can defragment a external just like a internal hard drive.

You can set up a HDMI TV/Monitor to mirror whatever you monitor shows. It's easy to do.

EDIT: As rui-no-onna said above me, go with the "do-it-yourself" route with the external. In addition to the points rui-no-onna made, many prebuilt external come with cheap hard drives with poor performance and high failure rates. If you do it yourself you know what's inside the external, and that it's of high quality.
Edited by crimsontears809739 - 10/30/12 at 9:25am
Deus Ex Machina
(19 items)
 
   
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 580M Dell 0R1203 NVIDIA Quadro FX 2800M Samsung 4Gb 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveOS
TOSHIBA MK3256GSYF  TOSHIBA MK3256GSYF  DVD-Rom HL-DT-ST DVD+-RW GU40N Windows 7 Professional 
Audio
Dell Computer 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset Fami... 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
Athlon 64 X2 6400+  Asus M2N-E Nforce 500 SLi 8800GT  9800 GT 
RAMHard DriveOptical DriveOS
OCZ ReaperX WD LG lightscribe Multilayer DVD burner Windows 7 
PowerCase
Antec 500W Smartpower 2.0 Aspire X-Navigator 
  hide details  
Reply
Deus Ex Machina
(19 items)
 
   
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i5 580M Dell 0R1203 NVIDIA Quadro FX 2800M Samsung 4Gb 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveOS
TOSHIBA MK3256GSYF  TOSHIBA MK3256GSYF  DVD-Rom HL-DT-ST DVD+-RW GU40N Windows 7 Professional 
Audio
Dell Computer 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset Fami... 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsGraphics
Athlon 64 X2 6400+  Asus M2N-E Nforce 500 SLi 8800GT  9800 GT 
RAMHard DriveOptical DriveOS
OCZ ReaperX WD LG lightscribe Multilayer DVD burner Windows 7 
PowerCase
Antec 500W Smartpower 2.0 Aspire X-Navigator 
  hide details  
Reply
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Hard Drives & Storage
Overclock.net › Forums › Components › Hard Drives & Storage › External Hard Drive for Media?