Extra storage is always a good idea. No matter what type of setup you have or what you use it for, you want a way to efficiently store your data. However, with so many different options available when it comes to external hard drives, it can be difficult to sift through the different models to find the best option that matches your needs.
When you run out of storage on your Wii U system, it can be quite frustrating. That’s where a good external hard drive comes into play. The options listed below will give you the additional capacity to store more games and keep your playing experience running at full capacity.
- For a portable drive that boasts a large capacity and comes highly recommended, check out the WD Elements Portable External Hard Drive. This is an affordable model that you can buy in different storage capacities if you desire.
- The Seagate Desktop External Hard Drive HDD is a great desktop option for your Wii U. It’s a reliable and durable external drive that comes in large sizes of up to 14TB.
- The Samsung T5 Portable SSD External Drive is an extremely fast, compact option. It’s also durable and secure, making it a great choice for travel.
Who Should Get This?
I would recommend that anyone with a Wii U get an external hard drive. The handy devices will allow you to store more games so you never have to worry about running out of room or deleting something you’ve already played. They also allow you to backup other devices as well, which means you can use them on a computer or phone.
You can certainly get away with not having an external hard drive for your Wii U. Many people get away with this and have no problems at all. Even so, if you plan on having a vast library of games, an external hard drive is the only way to make this possible without experiencing some sort of issue in the long run.
Best External Hard Drive for Wii U: What to Consider
An important initial consideration when shopping for an external hard drive is storage capacity. Depending on your needs, you might want a small capacity or an extremely large one. I suggest getting at least a 1TB external drive. This provides plenty of storage to make a full backup of your system while still leaving room to save other files you might have on other devices like photos and music.
A smaller capacity of 500GB can be good for travel because smaller sizes, especially with HDD storage, translates into a smaller physical size as well. If you have a need for vast amounts of storage, you can get several TBs of storage as well. This choice comes down to how much data you wish to store.
SSD vs HDD
There are two main types of storage when it comes to external hard drives: SSD or HDD. SSD, or solid state drives, are more modern and can be more expensive. They use flash memory to store information and have less moving parts. That makes them durable and energy-efficient. HDD, or hard disk drives, has been around for a long time. They tend to be reliable and less expensive.
SDD drives are typically smaller, which means you can get more storage capacity in a smaller physical size. They are faster and more efficient than HDD options, but almost always more expensive.
You should also consider your external hard drive’s durability when looking for the option that’s best suited for your needs. You want all of your data to be safe and protected within the physical unit. For a desktop drive, that may not be as important, but for a drive that you intend to travel with, making sure it’s strong and durable is paramount. All of the options here are sturdy and well designed.
Best External Hard Drive for Wii U: Our Picks
The WD Elements Portable External Hard Drive is a top pick due to its high-end features. This is an affordable and durable option that can be found in a range of capacities from 1TB all the way up to 14TB. It provides fast data transfers with USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 compatibility and comes with a cord included to make speedy backups. It also features a slim and compact design making it versatile for a wide range of setups.
- Numerous storage capacity options
- Compatibility with USB 3.0 and USB 2.0
- Fast data transfer speeds
- Lightweight, slim profile
- 2-year warranty
- Only available with HDD technology
For a desktop drive compatible with the Wii U, you can’t do better than the Seagate Desktop External Hard Drive HDD. This high capacity option is available in sizes up to 14TB, which is more than enough storage to back up even a jam-packed system. It’s plug-in and used design requires no additional software and it’s also ruggedly built for reliable performance and durability.
- Great desktop option
- Compatible with Windows 10
- Numerous storage capacities available
- USB 3.0 for fast data transfers
- 1-year limited warranty
- More expensive than other options
The Samsung T5 Portable SSD External Drive is a powerful and compact drive that delivers superior speed and reliability in a tiny package. Those qualities make it the perfect travel companion when you’re away from home. It features a 1TB or 2TB storage capacity in a minimal, lightweight design that will easily fit in the palm of your hand. It also provides 256-bit encryption and is shock resistant.
- Fast SSD design
- Great for travel
- Large capacity with a small physical size
- 256-bit hardware encryption
Useful Tips & Resources
There are some major technical differences between SSD and HDD hard drives, but the debate still goes on about which is the better choice. At the end of the day, it comes down to your personal situation and needs. However, it’s well worth looking into if you’re curious and don’t know the difference between the two. This video does a good job of explaining both technologies in an easy to understand way.
You don’t absolutely need an external hard drive to pair with your Wii U, but I would recommend it if you are a casual to consistent gamer. It simply gives you more flexibility and control over your experience and allows you to have full data on many games at once. The hard drives you’ll find here all come highly recommended for that reason.
Do you know of any great external hard drives for Wii U that didn’t make the list? Let us know in the comments below!
Chris is a lifelong tech enthusiast with a broad range of interests including coding, data analysis, traveling, and more. He used to work as a software programmer immersing himself in the world of codes, now he finds it more interesting talking to real people.