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Black Friday SSD and hard drive deals 2021: early sales and what to expect

Cyber Monday SSD deal
(Image credit: Future)

Black Friday is the best time of year to upgrade the SSD or hard drive storage in your PC, with plenty of huge savings to be made across a wide range of different storage solutions.

In fact, these are some of the few PC components that you should expect to see this year, with silicon shortages impacting stock availability for products like the best graphics cards, processors and more. Not ideal for anyone hoping to update an aging computer, but for anyone looking to buy some of the best SSDs or best HDDs on the market at a tasty discount, chances are high that you'll save some pennies.

We’re rapidly approaching  Black Friday 2021, which doesn’t kick off until November 26th. So, in advance of the big day, we’re going to tell you exactly what to expect when Black Friday comes around, from the kinds of products that will get the best discounts to the stores that offer the best money-saving deals. 

It pays to make sure you’re ready, too - every year Black Friday becomes a bigger deal. Don’t believe us? Just look at this data from Adobe. The top-tier creative firm did some research and found that consumers spent more than $9billion online sales on Black Friday in 2020, and that was a huge 21.6% jump on spending in 2019. 

Black Friday is huge, and it’s not just about that one day - the entire November and December period generates vast amounts of cash and is packed full of incredible offers. In 2019, for instance, customers spent $142.4 billion during the entire period, and in 2020 that figure rose to a monster $188.2 billion. Black Friday and the surrounding weeks get bigger every year, then, and it’s not likely to slow down soon. 

There’s no sign that SSD and hard drive sales will decelerate, either, so these categories will be ripe for Black Friday deals. Researchers at IDC estimate that SSD shipments will grow by 7.8% between 2020 and 2025 and that the volume of hard disk storage sold will increase by 31% over the same period.

To ensure you’re ready for the best SSD and hard drive deals, we’ll regularly update this page in the run-up to the all-important savings season. Make sure you’ve got this page bookmarked so you can check back regularly.

Today’s best SSD and hard drive deals

If you need some internal or external storage and you can’t wait until Black Friday, then there are plenty of top-notch products available with discounts right now. We’ve searched through our best SSD and hard drive guides to find the best options if you need some new hardware right away.

Our predictions

The good thing about Black Friday discounts starting in October and lasting until Christmas is that almost every product will have its price reduced at some point, and sometimes more than once. That means you’ve got plenty of chances to find reduced prices on top storage choices.

You’ll be able to find discounts on every kind of storage, from internal SSDs and hard drives to external products. Deals will be available on newer and older products, with only brand-new hardware excluded from big price drops. You’ll get offers from every big brand in the storage space, from consumer firms like Crucial, Western Digital, and Samsung to top business names like Seagate, LaCie, and SanDisk.

One thing to bear in mind is that hard drives are almost always cheaper than SSDs, so internal and external hard drive products will likely only have relatively small price drops. The higher price of internal and external SSDs means there’s more chance of bigger price reductions, especially on slightly older products that still offer impressive speeds. 

Tips for buying a SSD or HDD

ssd

(Image credit: bdavid32/Shutterstock.com)

It’s easy to assume that SSDs and hard drives are simple products when compared to laptops, TVs, or PCs, but there’s still plenty to consider if you want to buy new storage.

SSDs are more popular for a couple of crucial reasons: even affordable SSDs are far faster than the average hard disk, and they’re smaller, too. Their lack of moving parts also means they’re less susceptible to breakages.

While an SSD will always be quicker than a hard drive, different kinds of SSDs do exhibit different speed levels. The best cheap SSDs use the slower SATA connection standard, while the best M.2 drives are quicker but pricier. At the top of the tree are PCI-E 4 drives, which provide the best speed alongside the highest prices.

If you’re buying the best internal hard drive you can find, you’ll have to accept a slower pace when compared to SSDs. Nevertheless, remember that 3.5in drives are almost always faster than 2.5in products and that 7,200rpm drives are quicker than 5,400rpm disks.

Make sure you’re buying an SSD or hard drive that’s got enough capacity, and then think about the particular attributes of internal and external hardware. If you buy an internal SSD or hard drive, ensure you’ve got the requisite motherboard connections and space free inside your machine. 

If you’ve got external storage in your sights, check that your other hardware supports its type of connector, and consider its dimensions and weight. It’s also worth buying a ruggedized product to ensure that it survives life on the road. Click here for our pick of the top rugged hard drives if you need some guidance. Make sure your new drive has a top-notch warranty, too.

If you want to buy a hard drive for a specialist business PC or the best gaming SSD for your entertainment, there are some additional considerations.

Business buyers should buy an SSD or a hard drive that has a higher endurance rating. That’s because productivity PCs and laptops tend to read and write files to storage at a greater frequency than the storage used in consumer systems. That’s true for internal and external hardware in equal measure. 

It’s also worth investing in storage with built-in backup options like cloud storage to ensure that you don’t lose vital files, and if you’re going to store sensitive data then many SSDs and hard drives also have encryption. 

Gamers need to address a different set of concerns. Speed and capacity are vital here: if the former is good, your loading times and boot speeds will be better, and if the latter is large enough, you’ll never run out of room. If you want an SSD to upgrade your PS5, then make sure the console supports it before you click the buy button.

Hard Drive Close Up

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

When will the best Black Friday SSD and hard drive deals start in 2021?

This year’s Black Friday falls on November 26th, but the event is no longer about one day of deals. Instead, you can find incredible discounts and deals throughout November and December if you know where to look.

While it’s still true that Black Friday itself usually has the best deals, retailers are increasingly launching offers earlier to try and undercut and outcompete their rivals. These days, buyers can generally find the best discounts from the start of Thanksgiving Week, which begins on November 22nd. 

If you don’t want to wait that long, prices start to drop earlier than ever - last year, we observed price reductions from mid-to-late October, albeit not at the same level as the discounts provided later in November.

We anticipate that storage deals will be easy to find throughout the entire season - the market is a battlefield, with many products available at slim margins and low prices, and fierce competition means loads of discounts. That’s doubly true now: with people adding storage to consoles and needing more storage for their content-creation work, people are eager to buy, and companies are keen to sell.

The pandemic contributed to these trends, with more people working from home and buying more technology, and we fully expect that to continue in 2021. After all, Adobe Analytics confirmed a 50% increase in online shopping in 2020 compared to 2019, and things haven’t slowed down since.

Where can I find the best Black Friday SSD and hard drive deals?

If you’ve got this page bookmarked, then you’ll be able to find all of the best SSD and hard drive deals in one place thanks to our regular updates. 

If you’d like to hunt for your discounts, then it’s worth checking out some of the more prominent retailers. There are lots of stores to choose from, and they have strengths and weaknesses. We’ve highlighted the best retailers in the US and UK so you know exactly where to look.

Top US retailers:

Amazon: every big and small brand with frequent discounts
Best Buy: an easy-to-navigate site with the biggest names
Walmart: good prices from a trusted retailer
Newegg: a specialist tech retailer with a huge range
Western Digital: the biggest company in storage has its own extensive store

Top UK retailers:
Amazon: low prices with every major brand represented
Currys: big names, good prices, and with collections from physical stores too
Argos: rock-solid prices for external hard drives and SSDs
Ebuyer: a trusted specialist that sells every big brand
Scan: a top-notch retailer with big names and obscure options
Overclockers: ideal for high-performance tech and gaming gear

3 best SSD and hard drives to watch out for

If you need some inspiration on what products to keep an eye on as we approach Black Friday and Cyber Monday, the following are our top choices for anyone looking to upgrade their storage. 

There's no guarantee that these will be discounted of course, but it's worth doing some research on what SSDs and HDDs are worth buying as there are sure to be a lot of deals across popular sites, and not every device is worth buying, even at a discount.

Samsung 980 Pro

(Image credit: Samsung )

Best SSD: Samsung 980 Pro

Samsung throws its hat into the PCIe 4.0 ring

Capacity: 250GB – 1TB | Interface: PCIe Gen 4.0 x 4, NVMe 1.3c | Warranty: Limited warranty up to 5 years or up to the TBW for each capacity

Extreme performance
Competitive price
Good endurance rating
PCIe 3.0 users better off with cheaper drive

If you can afford to spare no expense in getting a storage drive, then the Samsung 980 Pro may just be the best SSD for you. This is the fastest SSD we've ever tested, making it ideal for future-proofing your rig – especially when you get the 1TB capacity. And, while it's not the cheapest SSD on the market, it delivers that speed without substantially raising the price over its rivals. Just remember that in order to take full advantage of its speed, a Gen4 SSD is vital.

Read the full review: Samsung 980 Pro

Best hard drive: Seagate BarraCuda

Seagate BarraCuda drives offer a great gigabyte-per-dollar ratio and speed benefits to top it off. (Image Credit: Seagate)

Best hard drive: Seagate BarraCuda

High RPM and storage at a low price

Interface: SATA 6Gbps | Capacity: 2 – 3TB | Cache: 64MB | RPM: 7,200

Low cost
Fast spinning disks
 Limited cache

It’s almost impossible to talk about hard drives without mentioning Seagate’s BarraCuda lineup – it’s a force to be reckoned with. And, it’s not hard to see why, Seagate BarraCuda drives offer a great gigabyte-per-dollar ratio and speed benefits to top it off. The 2TB model hits a sweet spot by balancing high performance and affordability. Since this drive combines 7,200rpm platters and high density data, computers outfitted with this drive will be able to read data extraordinarily fast.

Samsung 970 Evo Plus

Samsung 970 Evo Plus is one of the fastest drives on the market. (Image Credit: Samsung)

Best NVMe SSD: Samsung 970 Evo Plus

Pushing Samsung further

Capacity: 250GB/500GB/1TB/2TB | Interface: PCIe Gen 3 x4 M.2 | Warranty: 5-years

Cheap
Top-end performance
Sequential write speeds slow under load

Samsung is no stranger to creating some of the best SSDs, so when it launched the Samsung 970 Evo Plus with higher speeds and new silicon, even we were surprised. The Samsung 970 Evo Plus is simply one of the fastest drives on the market, but the fact that Samsung is selling it at such a bargain price is just the icing on the cake. Because of how affordable this drive is, it’s not hard to recommend it as the best SSD for anyone. 

Read the full review: Samsung 970 Evo Plus

Last year’s best Black Friday SSD and hard drive deals

The SSD and hard drive categories are some of the busiest in the entire technology market, so it’s no surprise that 2020 was packed with top-notch deals. And while it’s easy to forget about last year’s price drops, it makes sense to go back and see what happened back then, because that’ll give you a clue about what to expect from Black Friday in 2021.

We’ve hand-picked some of the best deals from last year so you can see what kind of savings were available. They’re great deals, and that bodes well for 2021: with Black Friday being bigger than ever, retailers will be trying even harder to capture your cash.

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Samsung T7 USB-C SSD 1TB - $199.99 $156.18 at Amazon

Save $43.81 - Samsung is one of the biggest players in the storage world, and the T7 external SSD delivers speed and space in a tiny, robust design. This drive is fast enough to use with your PS5 or Xbox One X console, and it was available with an impressive discount in 2020.

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Samsung 860 EVO 1TB - $199.99 $99 at Amazon

Save $100 - Samsung delivered an incredible internal SSD deal in 2020, too. The 860 EVO isn’t the fastest SSD, but it’s quicker than any hard disk, offers 1TB of space, and was literally halved in price. It was one of the best ways to add lashings of storage to your desktop PC.

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LaCie Rugged Mini 4TB External Hard Drive - $144.99 $104.99 at Amazon

Save 30% - this monster drive isn’t just huge: it has a robust, rock-solid exterior that withstands drops, falls, shocks, water submersion, and more. It was discounted last year, too, which made it a tempting option for people who need storage in extreme situations.

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Toshiba Canvio Advance 2TB Portable External Hard Drive - $69.99 $55.99 at Amazon

Save $14 - this compact, unfussy option from Toshiba delivers loads of space at a bargain-basement price, and in 2020 its value improved even more with a solid discount. It’s the best time of year to get backup storage without spending loads of cash.

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Seagate Expansion Desktop 6TB External Hard Drive - $124.99 $94.99 at Amazon

Save $30 - creatives who work with photography or video know the value of storage, and this Seagate deal served up loads of space at an impressive price. If you churn out big files and need them stored securely, this is an affordable and efficient choice.

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Samsung 970 Evo Plus 2TB NVMe M.2 SSD - $499.99 $249.99 at Amazon

Save $250 - the 970 Evo is one of Samsung’s fastest-ever SSDs, and so it’s perfect for workstations, gaming PCs, and other systems where speed is vital. And on Black Friday 2020 it was halved in price - so it was a stunning deal.