For some time now, the most cost-effective hard drives have been those with 8 Terabytes of storage capacity. 8 TB hard drives are presently about $149 on Amazon.com. It is hard to imagine using all that capacity unless you are a gamer, collect videos or a professional photographer. Hmm. I forgot to mention dedicated hoarder genealogist who loves to digitize everything and saves ever image found online. But what about 12 TB? Does this huge capacity make sense?
Huge capacity hard drives do make sense for people who are running large businesses or managing server farms for online storage. 12 TB hard drives are mostly only available at the time of this post as internal hard drives; designed to be put in servers or in storage arrays. Right now, the price of an internal (without a case) hard drive is about $400 or so.
I have recently posted about the need for backing up the files on your computer and other devices, so I won't go through all that again, but the main issue here is the cost of storage and that has become negligible compared to the cost of replacing or reconstructing lost data.
What do I use to back up my massive data files (currently about 8+ Terabytes)? I have 3 TB of internal storage on my main hard drive in my computer. That is backed up to a dedicated 8 TB external hard drive by Apple's Time Machine program. The extra files, not on my internal hard drive, are backed up to three separate 8 TB external hard drives, each of which has a copy of all my old files and photos and scans. The entire system, including all of the external hard drives, is also backed up multiple times a day to BackBlaze.com.
Will I move to 12 TB drives when I need to replace an existing drive? That will depend on the cost of 12 TB external hard drives and how much data I have accumulated when I have the need.