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What Are The Best EXTERNAL Hard Drives for VIDEO EDITING?

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Have you been wondering what are the best external hard drives for video editing? Well, we’re gonna break it down for you by looking at FOUR types of editors and the hard drives that are a solid choice for your workflow.

Now, this isn’t going to be too scientific, but we’re going to look at SIZE, SPEED & EFFICIENCY primarily.

We’re also going to be looking at several different makes and models – not necessarily reviewing or critiquing each drive, but looking more at how it might be a good fit for your workflow.

Let us know in the comments what hard drives YOU’RE using, whether or not you’re in pain trying to figure out which ones are best for you, and what hard drives you’ve used in the past that have worked out really well.


0:00 | Opening
0:42 | Intro
1:32 | Types of Video Editors
2:23 | Mobile & Disorganized Editors
5:30 | Mobile & Organized Editors
6:41 | Immobile & Disorganized Editors
8:35 | Immobile & Organized Editors
10:06 | Recap of Best Drives for Different Types of Editors
12:18 | Hit Me Up In The Comments
12:32 | Don’t Forget to Backup Your Data
12:53 | Closing
13:15 | End Cards

Links to all the hard drives mentioned:

Samsung T5 SSD 2TB |
Samsung T5 SSD 1TB |
SanDisk Extreme SSD 2TB |
LaCie Rugged HDD 5TB |
Samsung 870 QVO SSD |
LaCie Rugged HDD 4TB Thunderbolt |
Apple Thunderbolt 2 to Thunderbolt 3 Adapter |
Samsung T7 SSD 2TB |
SanDisk Extreme Pro SSD 2TB |
Samsung X5 SSD 2TB |
Samsung X5 SSD 1TB |
LaCie Rugged SSD Pro 2TB |
LaCie Rugged SSD Pro 1TB |
LaCie 1big Dock |
G-Technology G-RAID 12TB Thunderbolt |
Promise Pegasus32 R4, R6 & R8 |
G-Technology G-SPEED Shuttle |
LaCie 6big & 12big RAID |

Links to Videos Mentioned:

Back Up Your Data with Chronosync |
More Data Management! |
Data Management & Archiving! |

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Clubhouse: @MidlandPictures



Canon EOS R |
Atomos Ninja V |
Canon RF to EF Adapter |
Canon 17-40mm f/4 L-Series Lens |
Canon 24-70mm f/4 L-Series Lens |
Canon 24-105mm f/4 L-Series Lens |
Canon 70-200 f/4 L-Series Lens |
Manfrotto Tripod & Fluid Head |
Deity V-Mic D3 Pro |
Rode NTG-2 Shotgun Mic |
Tascam DR-10L Lav Mic |
Tascam DR-60D MkII |
Aputure Lightstorm 120D |
Aputure Lightdome II |


Mac Pro (2013) | Quad-Core, 32GB RAM, D300 GPU, 256 GB SSD
15″ Retina MacBook Pro (Late 2013) | Quad-core, 16GB RAM, 256GB SSD
Apple Magic Keyboard |
Apple Magic Trackpad |
Dell Ultrasharp U2718Q 27″ 4K IPS Monitor |
Dell Ultrasharp P2719H 27″ IPS 1080p Monitor |
Mackie CR3 Studio Monitors |
Sony MDR7506 Studio Monitor Headphones |
Samsung T5 1TB |
LaCie Rugged 1TB Thunderbolt / USB-C SSD |
Seagate 4TB (Archiving) |
Seagate 8TB (Archive Backup) |
Thermaltake Hard Drive Dock |
USBGear USB 3.0 4 Port Power Hub | USB 3.0 Multi-Card Reader |

Complete Gear List:
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This Post Has 42 Comments

  1. Midland Pictures

    A couple of things – did this video with my teleprompter and am very curious what ya'll think! Also, got a bit of a different look with this vid – I filmed it with my C300 MkII and used a custom-made LUT from our ol' friend Cody Jones! Lemme know what you think! Lastly – what hard drive are YOU using to edit your videos??? Thanks for watching!

  2. Jbokeh Films

    this video was amazing exactly what i needed thank you so much

  3. Cameron Watt

    Such a great video! Thanks! Just set up my 32TB thunderbolt – for a 5 year documentary in 3 1/2 years into – going to spec it up to SSD once I’ve data managed the Initial 3 years of content that was very much mobile/ disorganized lol

  4. Thank you very much for your analysis. Do you have any suggestion for cloud based back-ups?

  5. thirdeyesamuel

    Once again, awesome video. I am really intrigued by swapping out the Lacie internal drive from their rugged series with a 2.5" sata ssd. I'm assuming any 2.5" sata ssd will do? Albeit Samsung 4tb is the likely choice here. Thanks!

  6. This Intro is so good !!!!! ahahah need to look for a SSD now… worked all the time with HDD and already wanted to buy a new Mac, but im not in this chart i would say.. i gonna start filming my worldtrip and want to produce a film out of it. so 1 year of filming every day.. is there a remote solution, where i can upload every day my footage?!

  7. Jason Little

    Great vid, I like the way you broke down different usages and which drives would likely work best in each. My G-Tech 4TB just filled up so I was thinking of getting a network device that'll sync with a cloud service for permanent backup and then based on this vid, get the 2TB LaCie Rugged or X5 for day to day projects and for FCPx's render and cache folders. My MBP only has a 512 Gig drive so I only keep 1 big project on the internal SSD at a time. Way too many times the dreaded "you're out of space" message has come up while rendering or transposing files.

  8. Wilbury Castle

    I wish had a voice like yours . Not crap like my yokel drawl . Regards Fred

  9. Isn't true that some of the older RAID array systems that they have select few compatible drives? If so the SSD drives on an older Pegasus system wouldn't garner the same expected performance.

  10. Roddie Hasan

    One thing I'll add specifically for the stationary organized user using RAID storage – Make sure you are using the USB 3.x or Thunderbolt interfaces for connectivity. If you have to use Ethernet because you have a traditional NAS or need to share your storage with other workstations, then make sure you get one with 10Gb/s Ethernet (and 10Gb/s for your video editing workstation). 1Gb/s Ethernet can be a chokepoint that a lot of people don't realize until it's too late.

  11. Mohler

    Best thing about this video is the very helpful breakdown between organised or not & mobile or not, never heard it explained that way. I was able to figure out exactly what to look for. Thanks

  12. Obviously Ebony

    This makes my head hurt 🙈
    I need helppppppp I’m a beginner 😩
    I have a MacBook Pro 8gb 512SSD I edit on filmora pro for youtube beauty & lifestyle videos.
    When I export my videos it gets up to about 20% then I get an error for lack of space… WHAT DO I NEED or NEED TO DO?

  13. Trinket Stuff

    are you recommending the LaCie Rugged USB-C 4TB External Hard Drive Portable HDD – USB 3.0, Drop Shock Dust Rain Resistant Shuttle Drive? It will stay on my desk.

  14. Trinket Stuff

    My first time watching you and with that intro I almost stopped, but happy I finished watching as your information was helpful.

  15. Harsh Digital

    I am really struggling to figure out what drive would be the best for me. I am working on a documentary that is exceeding 6 TBs. I bought the 10TB G drive then to find out it is only 240 MBS. What would be some cheap options I could purchase since I am only a college student lol.

  16. Steve Clark

    Hey I picked up a 500GB SSD Sandisk. Will that be ok?

  17. Nina

    word i would have used instead of immobile: static 🙂

  18. AA kooheji

    Hi I’m editing in mobile videography 12 pro Max

    And my 2 tb ssd got full

    I’m looking at the g drive thunder bolt 10 tb
    Or should I go with pegasus thunder bolt 2??

    I don’t budget as this job is a hobby and not business

    But I started to take lots of video

    What you recommend intern of speed

    For mobile data

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  20. Fabiano Rivera

    This was a lot of help. It helped me understand why ppl might beef with certain drives on Best Buy’s reviews as well lol

  21. Daniela Buda

    This was indeed very organised ! Truly appreciated! <3

  22. Erin Peyrani

    Love the Samsung T5, but I just had files disappear on me and went straight to this video to find a new hard drive I can dump onto after shoots.

  23. Kim Spicer

    I'm mobile and immobile at the same time. What will be the best type of external hard drive?

  24. Simon T.

    I heard regular LaCie hard drives are unreliable. What do you recommend as a reliable, it can be stationary or non-stationary but I prefer one that doesn't need its own power supply, and reasonably priced drive. So a drive that is durable on the inside, speed doesn't matter as much although it would be nice, well priced hard drive (not ssd). On the topic are SSD worth the drastic price increase? Thanks a ton!

  25. Jhen Lim

    Would you also recommend a 500GB for the organized editor with 1080p?

  26. Efficiency

    I love the style of this video and the way that you presented the information. I am immobile and somewhere between organized and disorganized. You mentioned that it's risky to edit off an internal drive; why is this? I am considering editing off my internal drive, then archiving on a large HDD with backup in a cloud-based service. I don't see a need to edit off an external drive, but correct me if I'm wrong! I have little experience in this area.

  27. Angelo Peiris

    Hey man I'm new to this video editing thing, I'm currently using Adobe Rush on my Samsung tab s7 plus and i record 1080p videos usingSamsung note 20 ultra. So my question is can i use 1TB Samsung ssd for video editing and 5TB HDD for storing the videos after editing the videos on my SSD?. Also is there any specific way to transfer data from portable SSD to HDD ?.

    Please reply,
    Thank you.

  28. Life of Vaneedz

    I still barely understand what you’re saying but I you’re the first person to get me to that point, so thank you!!! Hahaha I appreciate you breaking it down on all levels!

  29. Pollux Chung

    "Immobile & Disorganized" <— That's me! 🤣
    But I go for SSD over HDD.

  30. Sia K

    better word for immobile – Stationary

  31. Ryan Tenney

    THANK YOU!! Question. I want to find a work flow where I can cull my footage before I put it into Premier, and just dump all the clips im not using so I can save space. Any advice? Love the way you communicate and explain things!!!

  32. Faysal Sekkouah

    Brilliant video- I like the way you broke it down into user archetypes. Have you got a recommendation for the organized mobile shooter that needs portable RAID?

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