Review: WDC’s 2-TB My Book Studio LX

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In some areas of information technology, there’s a very fine line between commodity and value-add.

In deskto, hard-disk drive (HDD) storage, that’s certainly been the case over the past two years as the market has continued to size up solid state drives (SSDs), and cloud computing-based storage has begun to envelop the market.

Western Digital My Book
Western Digital My Book Studio LX

Companies like Western Digital have had to work overtime to either reinvent themselves or up their game to continue to offer competitive products and technology. With its My Book Studio LX, Western Digital makes a case that it's ready to take on all comers.

We believe that in the near future, Western Digital likely will step forward with even more improvements in its My Book lineup. But for now the 2-TB My Book Studio LX offers tremendous benefits, particularly on the Mac OS X platform.

The CRN Test Center evaluated the 2-TB My Book Studio LX, which came to our lab preloaded with Western Digital’s SmartWare software for managing files, backup and restore. We tested it on both Mac OS X and Windows 7 desktops.

In installing the My Book LX on a Mac, the external drive was up and running in about 10 seconds. Installation involved plugging the drive into a power outlet and connecting it to the Mac via USB drive. We liked the features, including an external LED indicator that provides realtime capacity information, support for USB 2.0 and FireWire connectivity, and a power-saving on-off switch. The My Book Studio LX is encased in aluminum, weighed in on our scale at 2 pounds, 10 ounces, and runs 2 x 5.5 x 6.5 inches.

The unit we evaluated ran silently and never warmed to just a hint more than room temperature.

On the Mac, running SmartWare may seem a bit redundant as Apple’s own Time Machine backup software carries out much the same function. However, SmartWare provides a graphical view of a hard drive’s file distribution in a way that Apple does not. Integrating with Time Machine, though, took a matter of seconds -- just like with the installation.

On a Windows 7 PC, installation could only start after the drive was formatted and all Mac-related files were erased. After that, it did take several minutes longer to get the My Book Studio LX up and running on the PC. Once it was up and running, the My Book Studio LX ran well -- as we’ve become accustomed to My Book external drives since the family was initially launched.

Street pricing on the 2-TB My Book Studio LX can run between $180 and just over $200. It provides more than enough value at that price point for us to recommend it.

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