At this year's Consumer Electronics Show, Seagate-owned hardware company LaCie debuted its newest design-focused hard drive, the $280 USB 3.0 LaCie Mirror Portable Hard Drive, which has recently become available for purchase. MacRumors met up with LaCie at CES, and we managed to get our hands on one of the company's new hard drives to share with our readers.


LaCie has a history of producing "Extreme Design" products that are aimed at people looking for an attention-catching desk accessory that also performs a useful function, which last year resulted in the LaCie Sphere, a silver-plated sphere that housed a 1TB hard drive. This year's LaCie Mirror follows in the footsteps of the Sphere, offering a 1TB hard drive in a mirrored enclosure, albeit with a slightly more traditional shape.

What's in the Box?

As a premium product, the LaCie Mirror ships in a premium box, which folds out in two tiers to unveil the hard drive in a padded compartment, a cord to connect it to a computer, and a wooden stand.

There's also a carrying pouch for keeping the Mirror free from scratches during transport, a cleaning cloth for removing fingerprints from the surface and a Quick Install Guide for getting the hard drive set up right out of the box. The hard drive itself ships covered with adhesive plastic screen protectors, so make sure to remove those before use.

whatsinthebox

Design

The LaCie Mirror was designed by French designer Pauline Deltour, who has created a range of modern furniture and home accessories, including several pieces that are sold by Alessi and MUJI. The Mirror is similar to much of Deltour's previous work, with a simple, clean look that's able to fit in with any office design, from opulent to minimalistic.

It can easily pass as a decorative art object rather than being immediately recognizable as a hard drive, and this is definitely an accessory you want out on your desk, not hidden away in a drawer or cabinet.

laciemirror
About as wide as an iPhone 6 Plus (but not quite as tall), the Mirror feels well-built and sturdy. It weighs in at half a pound and it is half an inch thick. The entire hard drive is mirrored, from the front and back to the sides. The mirrored surface is covered with Corning's Gorilla Glass 3, which ensures that it's going to stay free from scratches both when on the desk and when in travel.

Unfortunately, the Gorilla Glass doesn't repel fingerprints, which cover the LaCie Mirror in seconds when its picked up. The hard drive's tendency to attract fingerprints and dust explains why it ships with a cleaning cloth. Keep that nearby if you purchase the Mirror -- it will need a quick polish each time it's picked up.

The Mirror ships with a quality ebony wood stand, which has a slot for the hard drive itself and an extra slot where a pen can be stored. The dark wood contrasts nicely with the mirrored design of the hard drive and allows it to be positioned in either a portrait or landscape orientation.

Depending on how the hard drive is positioned on a desk or table, it will show your reflection, which can be mildly distracting. It also has a tendency to reflect sunlight or bright light that shines on it, another small distraction. Both of these situations can be avoided by simple repositioning and there are some benefits to the mirrored surface -- in offices where seeing people approach your desk is helpful, the LaCie Mirror offers a subtle way to keep an eye on your surroundings.

laciemirrorreflection
The Mirror has a LaCie logo on the side with the USB port, which is used as a status light. When the hard drive is on, the logo lights up, and when it flickers, data is being accessed. When it flickers on for one second and then turns off for 30 seconds, the hard drive is in sleep or "Eco Mode" and when it is not lit, the hard drive is not powered on.

laciemirrorindicatorlight

Software and Performance

The LaCie Mirror offers 1TB of storage space and connects to a hard drive via USB 3.0 with the included flexible, fabric-covered USB cable. It requires a USB 3.0 port for optimal performance, but it also supports USB 2.0 and can be used with older machines. The Mirror is bus-powered and draws its power from a computer so it does not require an external power source.

laciemirrordockcord
In our testing, the LaCie Mirror saw average read/write speeds of about 100MB/s and top speeds of 117MB/s (with read speeds that were ever-so-slightly higher than write speeds), which is in the range of other similar USB 3.0 hard drives. It's not super fast, but it's not underperforming compared to other USB 3.0 hard drives.

When the Mirror is plugged in for the first time in a Mac or Windows machine, it prompts you to open the included LaCie Setup Assistant to get the hard drive up and running quickly. The first setup option helps users partition the drive, either for use entirely with Mac systems or for use between Mac and Windows systems. Choosing a Mac only setup opts for the HFS+ format, while choosing a dual setup uses the FAT32 format.

HFS+ is not compatible with Windows machines, and while FAT32 is compatible with both systems, it limits the maximum single file size to 4GB. Windows users also have an NTFS formatting option.

laciemirrorsetup
Once formatted, the setup process moves on to a registration process that activates the two-year warranty and then offers to install LaCie software including the Intego Backup Assistant for backing up files, the LaCie Desktop Manager for managing multiple LaCie devices from any computer, and the LaCie Private Public software to protect files with AES 256-bit encryption.

With the LaCie Desktop Manager software installed, the Mirror will enter "Eco Mode" after five minutes of inactivity, conserving energy. The hard drive exits Eco Mode when data is accessed.

The LaCie Mirror is compatible with computers running Mac OS X 10.5 or later or Windows Vista or later. It comes with a two-year limited warranty that includes web-based resources, support, and device repair or replacement.

Who's it For?

At $279.99 for a 1TB hard drive, the LaCie Mirror is not for the average consumer just looking for some additional storage space. Companies like Western Digital, Toshiba, Seagate, and more, offer 1TB hard drives at a fraction of the price, as low as $60. The fact that it's not a solid state drive and does not have a Thunderbolt port also means that it's unsuitable for users who are looking for above average speeds.

laciemirror2
The LaCie Mirror is marketed as a showpiece that's aimed at people who value design above cost. If you're looking for a hard drive that looks more like a fancy piece of desk art than a hard drive or if you love shiny things, then the LaCie Mirror is a solid choice. People who build minimalist, design-oriented workspaces will likely appreciate the aesthetic of the LaCie Mirror and the value in a conversation piece that's built on form as well as function.

Pros:

  • Slim design
  • Portability
  • Unique look
  • Gorilla Glass enclosure

Cons:

  • Expensive for 1TB of storage
  • Prone to fingerprints
  • Reflective surface can be distracting

How to Buy

The LaCie Mirror Portable Hard Drive can currently be purchased from Amazon for $279.99.

Top Rated Comments

madsci954 Avatar
100 months ago
So if it drops and breaks, you lose your data AND get 7 years bad luck?
Score: 13 Votes (Like | Disagree)
farewelwilliams Avatar
100 months ago
mirror because you can stare at yourself for realizing how much you paid for a novelty item
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
blueroom Avatar
100 months ago
Thank you for these considered and in-depth product reviews. Although I'm not sure why you bother when pretty much any non-Apple product here gets dismissed in the comments with a single sentence of snark.
It has nothing to do with being a non-Apple product, it has everything to do with it being an pricy USB 1TB HDD in a shiny metal box.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
dannyyankou Avatar
100 months ago
Lol, $280 for 1tb is outrageous.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
chasemac Avatar
100 months ago
My experience with Lacie External HD's have been absolutely awful. Have owned 3 of them over the years and they never lasted more than a year. This one looks like a shiny turd.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
BeSweeet Avatar
100 months ago
A "designer" hard drive... :rolleyes:
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

AirPods Max 2022 Colors

Ten Things AirPods Pro 2 Tell Us About AirPods Max 2

Saturday September 24, 2022 1:00 am PDT by
Upon the release of the second-generation AirPods Pro, the AirPods Max became the oldest current-generation AirPods product still in Apple's lineup. Introducing several new features like Adaptive Transparency and the H2 chip, the second-generation AirPods Pro may provide some of the best indications yet of what to expect from the second-generation AirPods Max. Almost two years later, rumors...
apple watch series 7 aluminum colors yellowbg

Don't Want the Apple Watch Ultra or Series 8? Amazon Has Record Low Prices on Series 7 Models This Week

Friday September 23, 2022 6:56 am PDT by
The Apple Watch Series 8 and Apple Watch Ultra are now available to purchase, but if you aren't interested in these updates you can save a lot of money on Series 7 models right now on Amazon. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Amazon. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running. The best deals are on cellular...
iOS 16

Apple Releases iOS 16.0.2 With Bug Fixes for iPhone 14 Pro Camera Vibration, Copy/Paste Issue and More

Thursday September 22, 2022 1:04 pm PDT by
Apple today released iOS 16.0.2, addressing a number of bugs that iPhone 14 owners have been experiencing since the new devices launched. iOS 16.0.2 comes two weeks after the launch of iOS 16, and it follows iOS 16.0.1, an update made available to iPhone 14 owners on launch day. The update is available for all iPhones that are capable of running iOS 16. The iOS 16.0.2 update can be...
14 vs 16 inch mbp m2 pro and max feature 1

New 14-Inch and 16-Inch MacBook Pros Reportedly Launching Later This Year

Friday September 23, 2022 7:08 am PDT by
Apple plans to release new MacBook Pro models in the fourth quarter of 2022, according to supply chain publication DigiTimes. The report does not mention specific models, but it very likely refers to the next-generation 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros given that the 13-inch model was already updated earlier this year. There has been uncertainty surrounding the timing of new 14-inch and...
Tim Cook Apple Event

Gurman: New iPads and Macs May Be Announced Through Press Releases, No October Event

Sunday September 25, 2022 6:50 am PDT by
Apple may decide to release its remaining products for 2022, which include updated iPad Pro, Mac mini, and 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models, through press releases on its website rather than a digital event, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. In his latest Power On newsletter, Gurman said that Apple is currently "likely to release its remaining 2022 products via press releases,...
Dynamic Island For Android Users Feature

Android App Copying iPhone 14 Pro's Dynamic Island Released on Play Store

Thursday September 22, 2022 7:57 am PDT by
A copycat version of the iPhone 14 Pro's Dynamic Island has arrived on Android's Google Play Store in the form of an app called "dynamicSpot." The app, still in beta, offers customers several different experiences at the top of their smartphones. In its current form, dynamicSpot offers playback control for songs, timers, battery status, and more features coming soon, according to the app's...
AirPods Pro Second Generation 2 Pairing Feature 1

AirPods Pro 2 Engravings Appear in iOS During Pairing and Connecting

Friday September 23, 2022 9:40 am PDT by
Customers who personalize their second-generation AirPods Pro charging case with an engraving will now have that engraving reflected directly on iOS as they pair and connect their AirPods Pro. Apple allows customers to personalize their AirPods Pro charging case with a special engraving that can include select emojis and Memojis. Unlike before, starting with the second-generation AirPods...
Apple Watch 6 New Features Feature 2

Six New Apple Watch Features Coming Later This Year

Friday September 23, 2022 8:12 am PDT by
With new Apple Watch Ultra and Series 8 models now in the hands of customers, Apple has brought a host of smart new features to many people's wrists. But there's more to come. Apple has a handful of additional features in store for Apple Watch Series 8 and Apple Watch Ultra owners before the year's end, and some of them are watchOS 9 functions, which means they will even work on older Apple ...
new airpods pro ear tips

Apple Explains Why Second-Generation AirPods Pro Ear Tips Are Incompatible With Original AirPods Pro

Thursday September 22, 2022 3:12 pm PDT by
Apple today explained why the new silicone ear tips for the second-generation AirPods Pro are not officially compatible with the original AirPods Pro. In an updated support document, Apple said the original AirPods Pro ear tips have "noticeably denser mesh" than the second-generation ear tips. Apple did not provide any additional details, but the mesh density could result in acoustical...