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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 21 October 2008
From reading the comments posted here by other reviewers, I can only assume that WD have two versions of this drive. Most of the negative comments are about noise and unreliability (usually the people with a negative experience seem to have suffered from both).

Fortunately, I'm on the lucky side of the fence. As I am sat here in a silent room with the WD MyBook Studio placed on the desk in front of me, I can tell you that it is neigh on silent. Noise is a subjective thing but I a) hate loud noises and b) have superb hearing (measured that better than average last time it was checked).
In fact, my 24" iMac makes more noise and to be fair, the computer is almost silent - anyone who owns one will know just how quiet they are.

Now, that's when the drive is idle. OS X does a fair job of keeping external drives spun down when not being accessed, so anyone would expect it to be very quiet. A lack of internal fan ensures that the only audible noise comes from the WD Eco Drive which is designed to be quiet anyway.
When I do access data stored on the unit, there is a 2-3 second pause (assuming I've left it alone long enough to spin down in the first place) before the drive gracefully, and again quietly, spins up. At full tilt with 80Gb of data being copied to it via firewire, I can still say that the noise is by no means intrusive - perhaps a quiet whir of the platters and the low frequency thudding of the head moving when data is being written to the device.

Some of you may be thinking by now that I'm a silence freak. As it happens, I am, and proudly so. I have my computer and the drive in the same room as my high end home cinema equipment and would simply not tolerate background noise that might interfere with my listening experience.

With regards to reliability, yes, I've heard stories of these drives dying and can only say that I've been fortunate enough to avoid that isue. I think its a small number, percentage wise, of drives that fail, Western Digital have a long standing pedigree for making reliable hard discs. The issue certainly isn't from heat as I'd once suspected, covering the cooling vents on the top of the unit feels about as warm as putting your hand close to your leg but not quite touching it.

Summary:
Clearly my experience has been a good one, there is some warmth but this is far from the heat and noise given off by say, a Playstation 3. The drive i have is a welcome addition to my computer setup and I can only wholeheartedly recommend it to anyone looking for a Firewire 800 capable device of this capacity.

Good luck with whatever purchase you eventually make.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 1 December 2008
Well, frustratingly enough after under a year of use, mine has given up the ghost, I wish I had paid more attention to similar stories when I was making the purchasing decision, I just took the old, 'it won't happen to me', mentality, it didn't pay off.

We'll start with some positive points, yes, it is very attractive, the design is sleek, and it matches all the aluminium Mac products, (read: all but the white MacBook currently).

Also, it is very quiet, and the speed over FW800, (which I was using with a MacBook Pro), is bleedingly fast.

However, all this is good and well, but not when the product stops working. My problem is as follows, I noticed one night that it was starting up repeatedly, on it's own, attached to the MBP, but that was 'sleeping'.

I thought this was strange so held down the power button to force it off. Then, ~5mins later, I heard it powering up again, and again and again, the one loud noise it makes is when it starts the hard drive going, the accelerating of the motor, (I would guess), and it was doing this constantly. It was late, so I just unplugged it until the next day.

The next day, I plugged it back into my Mac, and it was doing this constantly, still. The problem with this being is that if you are using it and it cuts out every minute, then the transfer is effectively cancelled, so you are really quite screwed, (excuse the term), with using it at all. This applied particularly in my case for time machine backups on my Mac.

The reason this is particularly frustrating is that all my files are still there, you can access them for short periods of time, and in fact, whilst I was preparing to send it off for replacement, I managed to get a few files off that I really wanted to keep, but now I am without backup until the replacement arrives, which I may sell on and get a new drive, because I cannot be bothered to deal with the same problem again.

Anyway, just my story, I am thoroughly disappointed with what is a fairly expensive product, (more so when I bought it a year back), to have such a quick 'death'.

I would not recommend this product, but would recommend thoroughly reading reviews here at amazon, and elsewhere too, to avoid this disappointment I had.

Charlie Styr
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 16 March 2008
I have been using this drive as my Time Machine back up device for a month now. It worked straight out of the box with no problems whatsoever (most unusual for devices linked to Apple computers - everything is usually set to work with Windows). I have had trouble with WD built-in drives in the past so am keeping my fingers crossed regarding long term reliability. If you want to run Time Machine without hassle this is the one to go for.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 20 April 2008
Having recently upgraded my Mac to Leopard I realised that to use Time Machine at all you need an external drive. A little surprised at this I went and bought this drive having been recommended by the Apple store of it's quality and reliability. Installation was an absolute "doddle"! Just plug in and forget. Other reports suggest it is noisy. Well I have no criticism's with that in that I find it very quiet. I often don't know it's there except for the operation light appearing now and then. I can control my backup schedule in the Prefs/Time Machine window so I have total control. I agree with a previous post that it is in fact not a 500GB hard drive, its 465.64 GB, which is a little irritating, nevertheless a good buy if you want QUALITY! The only reason I only gave it 4 stars was that unfortunately it cannot act as a start up disc.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 25 September 2008
I got one same time last year, It broke down 3 times, and the last one is so bad, I have to order a replacement drive. So I agree with most review it's noisy and break down easily.

Interesting to note, the recent replacement drive is much more quieter, maybe the hardware has finally improved.

I just have to warn all user who is ordering a replacement drive, if you are using the advance replacement service with a credit card guarantee, it's best to send your broke down-drive early. It took me 3 weeks clear the hold on my credit card even though I've send my broke-down drive straight away using special delivery.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
I've had this disc for 12 months now and (touch wood) it's been very reliable. It's quiet and compact, was easy to install and does what it was bought for, i.e. provide the first line of backups.

I've occasionally had problems of it not appearing on the desktop when I start up my Power Mac but pressing the reset button and then rebooting or using Disk Utilities to manually mount it seems to do the trick. Manually ejecting the disc seems to be the main cause of this problem, it seems best to leave it to do it's own thing.

I wasn't able to get the supplied backup software to run, I don't know if this is Intel Mac specific, but since others have not been impressed with its features I didn't bother to persevere with it. I have used Apple's Backup (available as part of the .mac/MobileMe subscription), I'm still running Tiger so I don't have Time Machine.

A couple of gripes: the price has dropped by around 30% since I bought my disc, and 12 months ago 500Gb sounded huge, now it doesn't and I'm considering getting the 1Tb version.

Update December 2009
Still going strong. Seems to work ok with Time Machine although I've only just started doing this, previously I used the Backup program available to .mac members which was fine.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 19 December 2008
Very happy with this piece of kit. It set up simply- connecting the (included) F/wire 800 cable to my G4 Powerbook meant it appeared on my desktop immediately. It is near silent in operation, with only a gentle whirr when being asked to work hard. Completely silent in 'sleep' mode. Transfers data quickly: 46GB of data (all the stuff on my hard drive) backed up using Data Backup 3 in about 45 mins., if I recall.

Being a Mac fanboy I like the fact it's aluminium and has the white multimode 'on' light. Other than that it gets out of the way and does its job. Painless decision; no more backup worries for me...
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 3 June 2008
My Studio Edition arrived in the post yesterday and within a couple of hours everything was backed up. The software virtually installed itself. I was initially impressed with the build quality; this is a very well-engineered product and a fitting accessory for our beautiful iMac. When I switched it on I couldn't believe the machine was actually working because it was so silent, but the blinking light showed it was obviously busy. All-in-all, I'm very pleased with it.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 27 April 2009
Average performance and runs a little hot as the rubber legs it stands on are way too thin and prevent air from getting under the drive to aid circulation. The FireWire port went up in smoke after just a few days of use. I am now using the SATA port of the drive but often when transferring large files (over a few Gigs) it freezes or gives the "Delayed Wrting" error message even though I've followed the steps recommended by WD for avoding this.
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27 of 30 people found the following review helpful
on 19 December 2007
I've had the older WD My Book Studio 500GB and now this Studio 2 edition, again 500GB. They have both been running very well, I never hear them which I like a lot and they come with all the important connections no matter what system I get in the future I should be able to use the fastest interface possible. I should stress that it is important getting FW800 over USB2 or FW400 if your computer has it as I find it runs a lot faster using the newer firewire. I have quite a few external hard disks plugged in that I've bought over the years (Buffalo 250GB USB2, Seagate 320GB USB2, Seagate 320GB FW400, WD 500GB FW800 X2) and although the FW400 certainly runs faster than USB2, FW800 is slightly more than twice as fast on my iMac which can be very handy as I have some HD video content on them and can run it from the external FW800 drive without any stutters or glitches at the same time as TimeMachine is doing a backup to the other FW800 drive - they have to be daisy-chained as I only have one FW800 port but the drives come with two ports which is handy and it doesn't make any difference as far as performance.

I can't complain, I've had a problem with some external drives in the past dying before their time (Maxtor and Lacie) but of all the drives I have currently, I much prefer these Western Digital My Studio drives, they do what they say on the tin and do it quietly and without me having to think about them - which is good as they are out of sight!
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