Examining the Seagate Ultra Touch (2023): Green External Storage

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Examining the Seagate Ultra Touch (2023): Green External Storage

Examining the Seagate Ultra Touch (2023): Green External Storage

Examining the Seagate Ultra Touch (2023): Green External Storage At a look

Professional's Ranking


  • 2TB, 4TB, or 5TB choices
  • 30% recycled (by mass)
  • Dwell backup with Seagate Toolkit


  • Efficiency is HDD degree
  • No help for USB-A, solely USB-C

Our Verdict

The eco angle on this product is proscribed, and would possibly add a premium to the value, however, any effort at real recycling shouldn’t be snubbed. This can be a strong gadget, and we particularly appreciated the included software program Toolkit.

Value When Reviewed

$79.99 (2TB); $124.99 (4TB); $139.99 (5TB)

Greatest Costs As we speak: Seagate Extremely Contact (2023)


Every year some know-how journalist predicts the ultimate demise of the common-or-garden onerous drive, and in every new product season, that obituary proves untimely.

For these firms that make typical onerous drives, like Seagate, these operations have years of expertise in making these merchandise reliably and profitably. Until NAND flash modules ever attain value parity per GB, we’ll see these items for a while.

The Seagate Extremely Contact is an easy but efficient exterior USB onerous drive, which is available in 2TB, 4TB, and 5TB capacities from a 2.5in mechanism inside its minimalistic case. Every one of these choices offers a considerable quantity of area, a quantity that's excellent for those wanting to hold a big knowledge set round or to again up an area machine.

The distinctive pitch of this product collection is that it has eco-friendly aspirations, in {that a} wholesome proportion of this product is manufactured from recycled supplies.

Is shopping for the Extremely Contact a real contribution to saving the planet, or is it merely one other merchandise for the pitch of diminishing assets?

Design & construct

  • 30% recycled by weight
  • Included cable is USB-C solely

Seagate went out of its strategy to make Extremely Contact primary and minimalist as doable. From the surface, it’s a two-tone block of plastic with a USB-C port and an exercise LED on one finish. It is available in Pebble Gray and Cloud White, and these colors have a pure speckling like a delicate granite end.

In keeping with the Seagate promotional materials, “This drive incorporates at the very least 30% post-consumer recycled supplies by weight for eco-minded backup”.

The packaging is 100% recycled, and printed on the field is a notice declaring that 30% of the drive is made up of reclaimed aluminum and plastics. The 30% quantity is predicated fully on weight. Subsequently, weighing 267g, it incorporates about 80g of recycled metals and plastics.

That doesn’t sound like a lot, however, ought to Seagate make 100,000 of those, which may represent 8,000 metric tons of recycled content material, which isn’t insignificant. The difficulty right here is that the opposite 70%, making drives and chips and distributing them throughout the planet, most likely outweighs no matter what recycling Seagate is doing.

The computing trade has a genuinely abysmal environmental file, and any makes an attempt to handle these shortcomings have to be saluted

As with most exterior drives, the enclosure can’t be opened, and due to this fact, the quantity of recycling that Seagate is prepared to embrace patently has limits. Our evaluation pattern was manufactured and assembled in Thailand and dated 2023.

However, no matter that, these behind Extremely Contact made being extra accountable with assets the main target of this product, and if it sells nicely, that is perhaps an impetus for extra recycling. The computing trade has a genuinely abysmal environmental file, and any makes attempt to handle these shortcomings has to be saluted, even when the outcomes are modest.

Included within the field is a 50cm USB-C cable. A good size, however the lack of help for these with USB-A ports is slightly jarring. Did Seagate not realize that these utilizing older gear usually tend to be eco-warriors than those with extra fashionable programs with USB-C?

Together with the cable Seagate has a number of paper-based choices that embody a 6-month Mylio Photographs subscription, a 6-month Dropbox backup plan, fast setup information, and a few notes in regards to the Seagate Toolkit Software program and Rescue Information restoration companies. The Toolkit software program is mentioned as an additional element in our ‘person expertise’ part.

The Mylio and Dropbox provide aren’t globally accessible as a result of restrictions on each of these merchandise in some areas, like China.

Specs & options

  • Normal 5400 RPM drive
  • Encryption supported

Contained in the Extremely Contact shell is a traditional 2.5-inch onerous drive and CrystalDisk Data reveals that it's a Seagate Guardian BarraCuda ST5000LM000, a five-platter design with ten heads that has a rotational velocity of 5400 RPM.

It’s a greater mechanism than we’d usually see in an exterior drive, and the retail value of the onerous drive alone is normally greater than the asking value of the Extremely Contact.

On this design, like so many others, the drive makes use of a SATA to USB interface, and the limiting issue on efficiency is the bodily platters and heads. Connecting by USB 3.2 Gen 1, the efficiency of USB in this context is much larger than the drive is able to, making the drive the bottleneck.

Not a lot greater than the two.5-inch drive inside, the Extremely Contact is very transportable

Mark Pickavance

One good side of this product is that it helps encryption, one thing lacking from lots of the cheaper exterior drive options.

The retail value of the onerous drive alone is normally greater than the asking value of the Extremely Contact

There may be comparatively little else to report. It’s an exterior onerous drive that makes use of USB, like 1,000,000 or extra that we’ve seen earlier.

Person expertise

  • The Seagate Toolkit software program is great
  • Free backup and restore choices

Most likely the perfect side of this product, aside from the recycling angle, is that Seagate engineers thought moderately deeply about this product, those who would possibly use it. and what they may want.

On the drive are some functions designed for Home Windows, Mac, and Android customers that include the banner title of Seagate Toolkit. We’ve seen instruments like these with many exterior drive merchandise, and so they’re normally a hook to get the shopper to spend money on one thing higher. However, that’s not the case right here, because the performance offered is exactly what most house owners would require to get essentially the most out of this {hardware}.

Seagate Ultra Touch 5TB Toolkit Software

The Seagate Toolkit offers lots of the essential operations customers must make the greatest use of the drive.

Mark Pickavance

It provides 4 features: Safe, Backup, Restore, and Mirror. As you’ve most likely already guessed, the Safe performance permits drives with built-in encryption to be secured and unlocked. Nonetheless, utilizing this assumes that you may run an unlock utility on the drive for all of the gadgets you're prone to join.

Technically, this function is password encryption, however, the Extremely Contact does help full AES-256 Encryption in {hardware}, permitting the OS to encrypt the drive and supply a method to unlock it elsewhere without further software program.

The password unlock safety is related to a MySeagate account that you should create, however, that does help you reset the password utilizing your e-mail do you have to neglect what you used to configure it? However when you use {hardware} encryption of all the drives, then forgetting that password consigns no matter what was saved on the Extremely Contact to oblivion as a result of there is no such thing as a backdoor means to recuperate that token.

These are the perfect instruments we’ve seen on a small exterior drive

Backup and Mirror are basically identical amenities: a stay backup that syncs between the system and the drive. Backup is a fast and simple technique that places all of the essential knowledge areas of the system to be copied to the drive, and Mirror permits particular folders that are perhaps exterior of that hierarchy to be duplicated to the drive. Offering a straightforward means to duplicate records data from one gadget to a different one by configuring the identical mirror guidelines throughout them.

Lastly, Restore is merely an automatic device for pulling again broken or deleted records data from a backup.

General, these are the perfect instruments we’ve seen on a small exterior drive, and so they elevate the Extremely Contact above what is often offered (if something) with exterior storage.


  • Lavatory-standard efficiency
  • Greatest suited to incremental backups

When the eco-friendly curtains of Extremely Contact are pulled again, they reveal typical onerous drive know-how. Whereas dependable know-how nowadays, it isn’t the quickest or most power-efficient storage for those who want to maneuver knowledge to and from a PC quickly.

Seagate Ultra Touch 5TB CrystalDiskMark Benchmark

The efficiency of the Seagate Extremely Contact is in keeping with what an exterior HDD related by USB can obtain

Mark Pickavance

With disks of this dimension, a rotational velocity of 5400 RPM, and 5 heads, the outcomes are predictably common. People who estimate around 150MB/s for each studying and writing shall be in the best ballpark, though that worth represents the sting of the disk, and because the drive fills up, the velocity will decline.

These numbers suggest that if you should catch an airplane, prepare, or car, and are ready on this drive to safe knowledge to tackle that journey, you would possibly miss your journey.

If that’s a problem, this isn’t the product for you, and Seagate has some glorious USB-connected One Contact SSDs that may switch eight instances this velocity.

It’s additionally value noting that at this switch velocity, it is going to take 33,333 seconds to maneuver all the contents to or from the Extremely Contact, or at the very least 9.2 hours. Subsequently, it’s debatable if all the contents may very well be transferred in a single day in both courses.

What the Extremely Contact is greatest made for is incremental backups that happen over an extended interval somewhat than dumping 5TB of information. And, as we’ve already talked about, the software program Seagate offers is nicely suited to that course.


The Extremely Contact begins from $79.99/£99.99 for a 2TB model, going as much as $124.99/£139.99 for 4TB, and $139.99/£164.99 for 5TB, making this one of many pricier exterior onerous drives around – although in follow it’s already on sale for lower than these figures.

You’ll be capable to discover both Seagate’s One Touch or Expansion Portable drives for much less, so you're paying a premium for the eco-friendly design and easy software program.

Learn our rating of the perfect transportable onerous drives for a number of extra choices.


Eco-products with an extra value over much less environmentally pleasant options will be problematic to advertise. The onerous economics of many shopping for selections usually trumps being environmentally pleasant, even when they’re finally not sustainable decisions. That’s to not say it ought to, however, individuals and firms have budgets and extra prices from recycling would possibly exceed these limits.

Seagate Ultra Touch 5TB wideshot

The brand new 2023 Extremely Contact is made primarily for laptop computer customers

Mark Pickavance

That mentioned the brand new Extremely Contact HDD isn’t far more costly than the One Contact collection on similar capacities, and by shopping for this product, you would possibly encourage Seagate to go more durable on recycling than it may need beforehand thought of.

Inexperienced credentials apart, the Extremely Contact is a well-considered product mixed with the brand new Seagate Toolkit software program specified to carry out the backup or mirror jobs most customers want on a laptop computer.

That Seagate has included a correct backup device with this drive might have an effect nicely past this firm, as others would possibly now scramble to supply one thing as helpful with their exterior drives.

It’s not quick, and the offered cable solely helps USB-C computer systems, however, adapters are low-cost, and it's fast sufficient to carry out stay backups throughout a working day.

General, the launch value is perhaps barely excessive, however as soon as market forces come into play, this may very well be the exterior HDD to personal, if just for the Seagate Toolkit and its capability to save knowledge progressively from the pc.


  • Mannequin No.: STMA5000400
  • Capacities: 5TB/4TB/2TB
  • Capability examined: 5TB
  • Examined sequential efficiency (Learn/Write): 148.42/146.95 MB/s
  • Connection: USB 3.2 Gen 1 (USB3.0) utilizing Kind-C
  • Encryption: Password + AES-256 Encryption
  • Dimensions: 115.3 x 80 x 23.1 mm (WxHxD)
  • Weight: 267g
  • Guarantee: 3 years

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