Toshiba Canvio Basics 1TB Review ttitle 2

MacTakeAwayData Rank – 7.5 stars out of 10

7 half Out of 10 Stars

Your Toshiba Canvio Basics 1TB Portable external drive is not just for a Windows PC.

And you as a MacBook Pro. MacBook Air.

Or iMac user can use it perfectly well on your Mac.

Canvio Basics on Mac Pros

  • You’ll find your Canvio Basics 1TB easy to set up and use on your Mac
  • And as for its price. You’ll love that it’s well priced external storage to put on your Mac
  • You can choose from a 1TB, 2TB and 4TB drive
  • And best of all. Your Toshiba Canvio Basics has inbuilt protection from casual knocks and bumps. A boon for a mechanical laptop type drive
  • Toshiba sells the Canvio Basics with 1 year’s limited warranty

Canvio Basics on Mac Cons

  • If you’ve an older Mac with USB 2.0 only ports, you may find your Mac has problems powering the Basics drive
  • Your Canvio Basics is NTFS formatted. This means you’ll have to reformat to write to the drive on your Mac. This will only take you 5 minutes to do
  • No direct Thunderbolt connectivity for Mac. You’ll need an adaptor to use your Canvio Basics on your Mac with USB C ports

Canvio Basics on Mac Verdict

The Toshiba Canvio Basics 1TB portable hard drive is one of the best selling drives on the marketplace.

And for good reason.

You buy a Canvio Basics when you don’t need those frills that drive the price of a hard drive up.

And you buy when you’re not bothered about having jazzy colors for your hard drive. You just want reliable storage at a good price.

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

Toshiba Canvio Basics

Toshiba Canvio Basics Front

You can CLICK to check out the PRICE

Toshiba Canvio Basics YouTube Video

It’s always interesting to take a sneak peek at what’s in the box before you buy. And this is exactly what this 2 minutes 35 seconds YouTube unboxing video shows you.

Click the play button on the video to enjoy it.

Toshiba Canvio Basics 1TB Portable External Hard Drive

Video Credit: SuperFjordmannen

Your Toshiba Canvio Basics 1TB Mac Review Features Run Down

You probably think that the Canvio Basics drive is only for a Windows PC.

But you’d be wrong.

You’ll find out here that your Toshiba Basics drive has plenty to offer you as a Mac owner.

Particularly when you’re out there searching for external storage at an affordable price.

Here are your 9 advantage points when you choose this drive for your Mac.

Plug In USB Icon

1. Toshiba Basics 1TB plugging Into Your Mac.

Your Toshiba Canvio Basics is a USB 3.0 drive.

What does this mean?

USB is an word wide standard for connecting external gadgets. And it’s a standard that your Mac uses.

Your Mac will see your Basics drive plugged in. And then can use your Basics drive.

Your Toshiba Basics takes its power from your Mac’s USB port when you plug in your USB cable.

The cable shipped with your Toshiba Basics has a Type A USB connection at the end that plug into your Mac. And type Micro B USB at the end that plugs into the Canvio Basics drive.

Canvio Basics USB 3.0 Port
Canvio Basics USB 3.0 Micro B Port

There is no extra power cable for you to worry about and remember.

This makes things oh so simple when you’re taking this drive with you.

As long as your Mac has enough battery power. Or you plug your Mac into a power outlet you’ll be set.

2. Your Older Mac with USB 2.0 ports

The USB 3.0 standard allows for backwards compatibility with USB 2.0.

But Apple Macs conform strictly to the USB 2.0 port standards on power draw.

And there are a few reports of the Canvio Basics hard drive failing to start up on older Macs with USB 2.0 only ports.

Do you have an older Mac?

You can get around this by connecting up your Basics drive using a separately powered USB hub. A hub with its own power supply with USB 3.0 ports on it would be fine.

USB C Icon

3. What About Plugging in a Canvio Basics 1TB into my Mac with a Thunderbolt Port?

Because of backwards compatibility. Even though the USB C and the USB A ports are physically different.

As long as you have already. Or you buy yourself a Thunderbolt or USB C to USB Micro B adaptor.

You can plug your Toshiba Canvio Basics right into your Mac.  

And have yourself a really cost effective solution. Certainly compared to the cost of Thunderbolt native drives.

My favorite adaptor cable is the AmazonBasics USB Type-C to Micro B 3 foot cable. (Commissions Earned)

And it’s longer than the standard USB cable that comes with the 1TB Basics drive. Giving you more flexibility on where you can put the drive when you’re using it.

Or take a look at a USB C hub for your MacBook. Handy when you’ve only 1 or 2 USB C ports. And lots of USB gadgets to attach.

The Satechi USB C hub is one to consider. You can take a look at this review on the site by clicking on the link.

4. What about the Canvio Basics NTFS Formatting on Mac?

Yes, your Toshiba Canvio Basics is formatted as NTFS.

Your MacBook Pro, MacBook Air or iMac can read any files on the drive. But can’t put new files onto the Toshiba Canvio Basics.

Or update any files on there.

This means that for you to  fully take advantage of your Canvio Basics on your Mac you need to change its format.

Or you pay for a software driver that leaves the drive in the same format. But allows your Mac to read and write to your Basics external hard drive.

You can find out about software options in the post link here.

Or you spend 5 minutes using the standard software on your Mac called Disk Utility.


  • Format your Toshiba Canvio Basics 1TB drive as Mac OS Extended (Journaled) file system.
    This is the default file system your Mac uses. And this format means you can use your Basics drive to drag and drop to. Or copy and paste to. Or as a place to put your Time Machine backups.
  • Create separate areas on your Canvio Basics external drive. You call these areas partitions. This means you can have different areas for what you want to do and store.
    For example, you can have an area for your documents. Or a separate area for your Time Machine backups.
    You can take full advantage of having extra capacity. Particularly if you buy a larger 2TB or 4TB version of your Canvio Basics hard drive.
  • And should you want to share the drive between a Windows PC and a Mac. You can format or create an ExFAT partition.
    The best thing about ExFAT is that both your Mac and a Windows PC can read. And write to an ExFAT formatted drive or partition. And without using any special software.

You’ll find an article on the site that tells you how to format your Toshiba drive. Take a look.

Or if you’re interested in learning how to make your Canvio Basics an ExFAT drive. And share between a Mac and Windows PC. Take a look at my article about setting up a hard drive to share with a Mac and PC.

But know that formatting wipes anything that is on the drive. If you have files already on there from a Windows PC then copy those files off first.

5. Canvio Basic Design and Capacity

You’ll find its name gives the game away. The Toshiba Canvio Basics is just what it says.

It’s a basic hard drive with nothing extra added.

The Canvio Basic comes in matt black. With the raised words Toshiba imprinted on the drive in a darker shade of black.

Toshiba Canvio Basics
Toshiba Canvio Basics

There are no fancy colors here.

If you’re looking for fancy colors then you’ll need to step up to the Canvio Advance.

There’s an LED that tells you when your Canvio Basics has power and is working.

Your model numbers and the associated drive capacities are:

  • 1TB – HDTB410XK3AA
  • 2TB – HDTB420XK3AA
  • 4TB – HDTB330XK3CA

Toshiba replaced its 3TB Canvio Basics hard drive with a 4TB upgrade late 2018.

You can view the 2018 press release with this link here.

You’ll find with your Canvio Basics there are enough storage options for your growing collection of photos, videos and movies.

Scales Icon

6. Toshiba Canvio Basics Size and Weight

You’ll find the Canvio Basic is portable and fits easily in your hand.

You’ve a handy sized external drive that measures;

  • 4.3 x 3.1 x 0.55 inches, for the 1TB and 2TB Canvio Basics and
  • 4.7 x 3.1 x 0.77 in for the 4TB Canvio Basics drive

The 2019 refresh saw a small reduction in the depth of the largest Basics drive. Even though the capacity went from 3TB to 4TB.

And you won’t find the basics drive heavy.

  • At 5.3 ounces for the 1TB and 2TB drive and
  • 7.7 ounces for the 4TB external hard drive.

They won’t add much weight to your purse or backpack.

The 2019 refresh resulted in the 4TB drive becoming lighter compared to the previous 3TB. Yet you’ve more storage capacity. Fantastic.

7. Check out the User Opinions on the Canvio Basics

It’s so easy for you to take a look at the thoughts of the Canvio Basics buyers on Amazon.

The majority are happy with their Toshiba Basics external drive.

There are some disappointed Mac users. But their views seem to stem from not knowing that;

  • This drive is NTFS formatted. So you can plug in and your Mac can see the Canvio Basics. But you can’t write without formatting first. A five minute job.
  • A lack of knowledge on how to reformat the drive.

Both situations are easily fixed with the documents I’ve referred you to on the site.

To format your Toshiba Basics you look here.  

To make your Toshiba shareable between a Mac and PC. Look at my article: ‘External Hard Drive for Mac and PC with Data Interchangeable‘.

You can Click through and look at the Amazon Reviews on the Toshiba Canvio Basics 1TB yourself.

By using the button below. (Commissions Earned)

Scroll down to the bottom of the Amazon sales page to view the latest Amazon reviews.

8. Toshiba Canvio Basics Ramp Loading Technology and Shock Protection on Your Mac

So why the excitement?

Should your Canvio Basics feel a vibration while it’s working. It will do its best to dampen all vibrations down.

Should your Toshiba Canvio Basics get a knock it will do the same.

You won’t have this benefit on many basic drives. Shock protection usually stars on premium drives.

Even with this boast you should aim to use your Canvio Basics on a firm level surface.

As we’re not talking about full drop protection here.

And it’s not the same thing that’s offered by premium ruggedized drives. So it is always best to invest in a case to protect your drive in storage or transit. I like the Lacdo Waterproof Shockproof External Hard Drive Case. (Commissions Earned)

9. Your Canvio Basics Warranty

You get one years warranty on the Basics external hard drive.

Which is ok but a bit low in the marketplace.

I would have liked to see 2 year’s warranty offered.

Toshiba Canvio Basics 1TB Mac Review Last Words

Did you enjoy my article Toshiba Canvio Basics 1TB Review?

Toshiba has a good reputation for reliable products. And should you invest in this drive it should do a good job for you for a few years to come.

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