Western Digital WD Black P10 2TB portable HDD review

THERE is simply never enough storage space when you’re gamer, and the ever-increasing size of games isn’t helping.

Once a upon a time – not all that long ago – a 500Gb hard drive was more than sufficient for one’s gaming needs, with space left over. Now, as games surpass the 50 and even 60 Gb size, it doesn’t take long to fill that space up, and with things like Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass adding to the options, having somewhere to store your digital games has become a more pressing issue.

The easiest solution is a portable hard drive (HDD) or solid state drive (SSD), which have steadily been increasing in storage size while decreasing in price and physical size over recent years.

Western Digital recently unveiled their line premium storage devices – the WD Black range – which is aimed at gamers, available in three sizes – 2TB, 4 TB and 5TB.

The WD Black P10 external HDD looks cool and can also store a lot of game files too.

I tested the 2TB model (the P10), and it did nearly everything I would want from a portable gaming HDD.

The unit works with PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4 – although to use it with the PS4 requires a special format and it’s a pain in the neck to reconfigure for PC or Xbox use afterwards, so if you’re going down the PS4 road make sure the Black P10 is intended to be a dedicated storage unit for that console.

The Black P10 connects via a USB 3 cable and returned a Crystal Benchmark read result of 136.7MB/s and 132.9MB/s write – about a third faster than my cable internet connection – and matches with Western Digital’s claims of speeds up to 140MB/s.

In practical use it was similarly fast, copying large game files between my desktop and a review gaming laptop quickly and effectively, with no noise or other hassles.

Aesthetically the unit has a quasi-military design to it, looking like an equipment case of the sort Nomad or Captain Price would like rummage through on the battlefield. The top of the unit is aluminium, with a plastic bottom.

The WD Black P10 is small, light, and visually distinctive – all important things in a gaming external HDD.

It’s also slimmer and lighter than many other portable HDD units, with the review unit measuring 118mm long x 88mm wide and 12.8mm high.

It might seem silly, but given how one external hard drive is very much like another, the Black P10’s slim size and interesting design appealed to me, and making it easy to tell the hard drive apart at a glance is going to be a real benefit for a lot of gamers as well.

The WD Black P10 hard drive did everything I needed without hassles or issues, it was easy to use, and ticked all the boxes – plus it looks cool, so if you’re in the market for an external HDD to keep your stuff on, I’m happy to suggest it as something to consider.