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Seagate Innov8 Bus-Powered 8TB Desktop HDD Review

Seagate Innov8 Bus-Powered 8TB Desktop HDD Review

Seagate's Innov8 8TB USB 3.1 external drive provides desktop 3.5-inch drive storage without a bulky power adapter. Sign us up!

By: Tyler Bernath from Oct 13, 2016 @ 12:22 CDT
TweakTown Rating: 90%Manufacturer: Seagate

While it may seem like Christmas in August with all of the Seagate product I have had as of late, the solution I have in the lab today actually came out earlier in the year, around May.

It has long been true that external solutions in the 3.5" form factor have needed a rather bulky power supply to fire the internal drive but that has come to an end as Seagate has put a generous amount of R&D into its Innov8 desktop solution. This drive comes in an 8TB capacity featuring USB-C connectivity with an all but standard aluminum design. Internally, Seagate has deployed what they call Ignition Boost technology that eliminates the need for a power adapter completely.

The compatibility extends to Windows 7 and above along with OS X 10.9+ with a reformat. The MSRP of the 8TB Seagate Innov8 comes in at $349.99 with a three-year warranty.


The packaging is quite nice for the Innov8. The front carries an image of the enclosure with just a touch of marketing centered below.


The backside goes into more detail on the design of the drive with a touch of information at the top right.


The scope of delivery includes a USB-C cable, reading the material, and the drive.


The layered aluminum design is rather attractive while being functional as well. Branding can be found top and bottom of the drive.


On the edge of the drive, you will find the USB-C port while the opposite end houses an activity LED.


Included software will guide you through creating an account with Seagate to register the drive for warranty and download dashboard software for creating and managing backups.


As we have seen, the Archive 8TB has been a rather popular drive in these types of enclosures and the Innov8 is no different.


As far as performance is concerned, the Innov8 was on par and even slightly better than the last two solutions I tested. I topped 200 MB/s read for only the second time while write performance came in at 175 MB/s.


I haven't had many drivers come through since I switched all of my external reviews over to the method used with flash drives. Price to performance is a solid metric for those on a budget, but it's not flawless. The Innov8 landed itself in the fourth spot due to the cost of the drive, and we can talk more about that in my closing thoughts.

As far as performance is concerned, I was quite happy with this drive. Synthetics don't always tell the story, but I was able to hit 205 MB/s read and 175 MB/s write, which is quite good for a mechanical drive. On the other hand, price to performance for this drive landed it at 75% mostly due to its price, which I only assume comes from the development cost.

The Innov8 is an incredibly well built external HDD and adding to that is its design - "unique" doesn't even come close to describing it. The shell is solid aluminum with a stacked fin design that certainly is as much art for your desk as it is storage. With that said, I opened this drive up, and I can say it uses a good amount of circuitry and a single cell lithium battery to offset the amount current needed to spin-up the internal drive. I wasn't able to find a manufacturer of the cell - let's just hope it's not SDI. Another thought that comes to mind is what happens to this drive when the cell dies or loses its day one punch? Will you have to shuck the drive to get your data back?

In the end, the Innov8 is like no other if you want massive capacity and style on the go, this is your solution, but if you just want desktop USB-C storage, there are plenty of options hitting the market every day.

Tyler's Test System Specifications

TweakTown award
Quality including Design and Build93%
General Features92%
Bundle and Packaging90%
Value for Money83%
Overall TweakTown Rating90%

The Bottom Line: Seagate's Innov8 offers a truly amazing design with solid performance to boot. I'm just worried about that single-cell lithium hiding inside and the many things that can go wrong with your sacred data.

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