Seagate Expansion Review Title Image

Verdict on the Seagate Expansion for Mac Review

With 1TB, 2TB 3TB, 4TB and 5TB.

You’ll find the Seagate Expansion Portable has plenty of storage options.

Yes it’s a basic drive but don’t let that put you off.

Its price per TB is attractive. And you’ll find that most users love its reliable performance and speed.

Plus you can easily have it working on your Mac.

Pros of the Seagate Expansion Portable

  • A basic drive. Smart looking, no frills. But what you get is price competitive
  • Plenty of storage options with 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5TB capacity drives
  • A drive to use when you want a Time Machine backup. Or somewhere to store your documents. Photos of your family holidays. Or those movies for the kids
  • You’ll find the Seagate Expansion has many happy users

Cons of the Seagate Expansion Portable

  • No direct USB C plugin for your newer Mac. You’ll need an adaptor
  • Some users have reported early failures on the Seagate Expansion Portable. Keep your 1 year warranty to hand

The Seagate Expansion Portable is very much an external hard drive you should check out.

*Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. And at no extra cost to you this site earns a commission through image links, Amazon button and text links should you buy.

Take A Look At The Seagate Expansion Portable

Seagate Expansion 1TB Box

You Can Click To See The Current Price On Amazon

Seagate Expansion Portable Drive Unboxing Video

You may find it interesting to take a look at what comes in your Seagate Expansion Portable’s box.

This 1 minute 53 seconds video shows you exactly what you’re going to get when you buy this drive.

Seagate Expansion Portable 4TB – Unboxing

Video Credit: xgadgetde

10 Reasons to Buy a Seagate Expansion Portable Drive for Your Mac

1. Buy yourself a Seagate Expansion Portable When You Just need a Drive

What do I mean by this?

You’ll find the Seagate Expansion hard drive has no frills and is a basic drive.

What do I mean by a basic drive?

Realize that you’ll get a drive with no fancy colors. You’ll find it in black with a diamond surface pattern that is smart to look at.

But there’s no special backup software. Or hardware based password protection. Or hardware encryption offered on the Seagate Expansion external hard drive itself.

And the reality is, when you buy an external drive with of many of these frills. They are typically designed to run on a Windows PC anyway. Not on your Mac.

But not to worry. The beauty of your Mac’s operating system is that Mac OS can password protect your precious documents.

And encrypt your Expansion Portable external hard drive anyway.

Seagate Expansion 4TB
Seagate Expansion 4TB

2. Your Seagate Expansion External Hard Drive Comes NTFS


You may’ve noticed that the marketing for the Seagate Expansion Portable says nothing about Mac.

This is because Seagate delivers it ready to plug into a Windows PC.

NTFS is a file system a Windows PC uses.

Your Mac can read an NTFS drive. But when you want to put your files on there it’ll appear blocked.

But with five minutes and a little know how you can have your new Seagate Expansion working on your Mac.

It will just need reformatting first.

How is this a reason to buy? And is it worth it?

Do you pass over the Expansion Portable drive? And buy yourself a drive that comes ready formatted for your Mac.

Well you could.

But as most of the drives out there are NTFS formatted. And there is a price premium charged for Mac formatted drives.

Why not take the five minutes and format your Expansion Portable for your Mac. And take advantage of a better price?

You can find out how to reformat your Seagate Expansion Portable in this article here on the site.

3. Your Seagate Expansion is a USB Powered Portable Drive

What does that mean?

Your Mac powers your Seagate Expansion external hard drive.

This means that you’ll only need your USB cable.

And when you’re carrying around your Seagate Expansion with you. There’s no separate power cable or international plug adaptor to remember.

Your USB cable is used for both power and sending files.

Seagate Expansion Easy Connection to Mac
Seagate Expansion Easy Connection to Mac

Imagine yourself abroad. You’ll only need to find yourself a power adaptor for your Mac.

And as long as your Mac has enough power then you can use your Seagate Expansion external drive.

4. Seagate Expansion Portable Connecting Up to your Mac

You’ll want me to review one key to know.

Your Seagate Expansion is a USB 3.0 drive that comes with a USB cable.

Now this cable has a type A connection at the end you plug into your Mac.

Seagate Expansion USB 3.0 Cable
Seagate Expansion USB 3.0 Cable

Does your Mac date before the late 2016 Mac models? Then your Seagate Expansion Portable will plug straight in.

If your MacBook Pro, MacBook Air or iMac model is after that, it’s likely to have a USB C port.

The great thing about the USB standard is that it’s backwards compatible.

Your older Mac will send your files to the faster Seagate Expansion at the speed it can.

And for your newer Mac you just order yourself an adaptor cable and plug right in.

Your newer Mac with USB C/Thunderbolt ports will send your files to your Seagate Expansion Portable at USB 3.0 speed.

Need an adaptor cable for your Mac?

I quite like this USB replacement cable. And it’s at a budget price on Amazon. (Commissions Earned)

Link to the AmazonBasics USB Type-C to Micro B 3 foot cable on Amazon.

You’ll find a longer explanation of the difference USB ports. And which Mac generations have which ports. Plus images in a document on the site at this link.

5. What can you Use Your Seagate Expansion For on Your Mac?

Let’s review what you can use your Expansion Portable for.

You’ve two main options in formatting your Seagate Expansion drive for Mac.

Format your Expansion Drive to Mac OS file system and you can:

  • Drag and Drop any files to your Expansion Portable
  • Copy and Paste your photos, music, documents. All your files
  • Use your Seagate Expansion Portable to backup up to with Time Machine

Format your Seagate Expansion Portable to ExFAT. Then you can:

  • Share your drive between your Mac and a Windows PC
  • Drag and Drop your files to the Expansion Portable
  • Or copy and paste

Learn here how you can use your Seagate Expansion Portable in this article on the site.

Speed Icon

6. Speed of your Seagate Expansion Portable

In USB 3.0 testing your Seagate Expansion is capable of 120 MBps writing speed. And nearly 130 MBps reading speed.

Which puts it up there as one of the fastest portable hard drives in its class.

And unless you’re doing heavy Photo Shop work. Or video editing then you’ll find the speed of your Seagate Expansion Portable just fine.

And the drive will be a lot cheaper to buy than a Thunderbolt drive.

And when you’re looking to put your music collection, movies or videos. Or use your Seagate Expansion for backup of your Mac you’ll be pleased with its performance.

7. What do users of the Seagate Expansion Portable Think?

You can review what users of the Seagate Expansion Portable have to say about your drive on Amazon.

Click on the button to go through to the sales page. (Commissions Earned)

Scroll down to the bottom and change the view from ‘Top Rated’ reviews to the ‘Recent Reviews’.

You’ll find it more useful to see what the buyers over the last couple of months have to say. Rather than a view on a shipped drive years ago.

BackPack Icon

8. Your Seagate Expansion Drive Capacity, Size and Weight

Your Seagate Expansion comes in 1TB, 2TB 3TB, 4TB and 5TB storage sizes. And is an easy size and weight to carry around with you.

Here are its vital statistics.

Seagate Expansion Portable

1TB, 2TB4.7” x 3.2” x 0.6”6 oz.
3TB, 4TB, 5TB4.7″ x 3.2″ x 0.8″8.4 oz.

Your Seagate Expansion Portable gives you plenty of storage options. No matter whether you’re a student. Or a professional using your Mac.

Model numbers for your reference.

STEA1000400 – 1TB
STEA2000400 – 2TB
STEA2000400 – 3TB
STEA4000400 – 4TB
STEA5000402 – 5TB

Even though your Seagate Expansion is sold as a portable external hard drive.

And is convenient for you to carry around. It is a mechanical drive.

This means that your Expansion Portable has moving parts. 

A drop or a fall could damage your drive.

You’d best carry your Seagate Expansion Portable around in a protective case.

Here are some of my preferred protective cases, with links to them on Amazon: (Commissions Earned)

Lacdo Waterproof and Shockproof Carrying Case

Ginsco Portable Carrying case

Amazon Basics External Hard Drive Case

9. What’s in the Seagate Expansion Portable Box When you Buy?

When shipped to you you’ll find:

  • Your Seagate Expansion Portable hard drive
  • An 18-inch USB 3.0 cable, which is also compatible with USB 2.0
  • The Quick Start Guide

You’ll find the Quick Start Guide is brief. Pretty much a picture of plugging in your Seagate Expansion.

Seagate Expansion Portable Quick Start Guide

You can take a look at the Seagate Expansion Portable Quick Start Guide here.

10. The Warranty on your Seagate Expansion Portable

Your Seagate Expansion 1TB, 2TB, 3TB, 4TB and 5TB’s have 1 years warranty.

It’s a little short in my view but then you’re buying a basic drive.

Although your Seagate Expansion Portable drive is generally reliable. You’ll find there are reports of early drive failures.

So keep your warranty close to hand.

You should bear in mind when Seagate’s Limited Warranty is valid. It only applies when you buy your Seagate Expansion through an authorized reseller.

You can take a look at the high level warranty conditions at this link.

Last Words

And there you have it. All the reasons to buy yourself a Seagate Expansion Portable drive for your Mac.

I hope this review will have shown you that you can definitely use it on your Mac.

Want to see where the Seagate Expansion appears on my list of the Best External Drives for Mac?

Seagate Expansion VS Backup Plus Who’s on Top For Mac

What is the Best External Hard Drive for Mac – Don’t Risk It