Buffalo MiniStation Air HDW-PU3 review

Price when reviewed

Wireless access is a relatively new feature on external hard disks, but Buffalo’s 500GB MiniStation Air covers every base you could ask for. It wirelessly connects to Apple devices running iOS4 or later, and Android hardware with at least version 2.3 – but it connects to PCs and Macs only via USB 3.

Buffalo MiniStation Air HDW-PU3 review

Buffalo’s free app isn’t as slick as the software on Seagate’s devices, but it’s just as easy to use. One tab displays what’s on the MiniStation, another shows files on your smartphone or tablet, and a third is used to move files between the two. It’s delightfully straightforward and easy to use.

Buffalo MiniStation Air HDW-PU3 500GB

In our suite of disk tests, the Buffalo’s USB 3 performance was mixed. The MiniStation Air’s CrystalDiskMark sequential read speed of 118MB/sec is as fast as hard disk-based drives can get, and its 116MB/sec sequential write pace is just as impressive. However, we did note that the Buffalo fell behind in small-file tests compared to some of the other drives we’ve tested.

The unit’s trump card, though, is versatility. At 20p per gigabyte, you pay a premium for the wireless features, but they work well, and overall performance is quick. If you want to access data from every device in the house, the Buffalo MiniStation Air HDW-PU3 is a solid, reliable choice.


Cost per gigabyte20.0p
Hard disk usable capacity465GB
Hard disk typeMechanical

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