Over the past few months we have taken a look at a full selection of Seagate’s business and home external hard drives. Seagate took a note from the late 90’s with the latest drive we are looking at. The Free Agent Xtreme is a personal desktop drive with a 2Tb capacity. So what does Xtreme stand for? Maybe the drive is made for extreme conditions? Or maybe it skydives? I’m going to dive in and find out what it’s all about, how it performs, and how extreme it really is.
Product Name: Seagate Free Agent XTreme 2Tb
Review Sample Provided by: Seagate
Review by: Wes
Pictures by: Wes
FireWire400, USB 2.0, eSATA
175 mm (6,89 inches)
33.7 mm (1.33 inches)
172 mm (6.77 inches)
1390 grams (3.06 pounds)
1.72 kilograms (3.792 pounds)
Considering the fancy packaging we saw with the Free Agent Go and Go Dock and the XTreme included in this drives name I was expecting a little different packaging. That’s not saying anything bad about the current packaging, the gray background just doesn’t seem “XTreme”. Around the packaging you will find multiple pictures of the drive from every angle including all of its connection options. Inside you will find a power cord, both USB 2.0 and Firewire cables, and a stand for sitting the drive vertical. So far nothing Xtreme found.
With just about every connection option available you shouldn’t have too many issues with hooking everything up. One issue that stood out to me right away was the lack of an eSATA cable even though there is a plug. This isn’t a cable that most people have laying around, and its also not something normally found at Walmart. Considering eSATA is the fastest connection possible I think it would be Xtreme of them to include this cable with any external that has an eSATA option, and with this being the Xtreme addition it’s even more disappointing.
The Free Agent included the same software found with the other Free Agent products. If you have read any of our past reviews or used it before you would know how great this software is. Seagate’s Free Agent software includes the ability to backup, clean, and sync all of your documents. With the large capacity of this drive the backup ability can come in handy to protect yourself from data loss. So the software is amazing, but nothing Xtreme or any changes to make this model stand out from other Free Agent drives.
I decided to skip on the USB testing this time around, obviously the Xtreme is going to max out the USB 2.0 connection just like all of the other external hard drives. I put my focus on the eSATA interface that would let the 7200RPM hard drive stretch its legs. With a peak 106.1 MB/sec transfer and an 11 ms Access time the Xtreme performs close around the same as the 1.5tb Seagate I've tested against before. Infact the 11ms Access time bests it by over 4ms! Not bad for an external!
So Seagate introduced the Free Agent Xtreme, adding the Xtreme to make it stand out from the rest of the Free Agent line. What makes it stand out? Well I was really hoping to see a heavy duty external that can take a beating, instead the only thing that makes it stand out is the capacity and USB2.0/eSATA/Firewire400 compatibility. Of course those are both great things, but with the Xtreme moniker I was expecting a little more. Aside from that the performance of the Xtreme was amazing! The included software is amazing as always. My only other complaint is the lack of an eSATA cable.
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