External HDD / several questions / Cubase performance

I have several questions, since I have always used internal disks, I would like to know a couple of things:

I wouldn’t normally trust an external HDD, since I don’t know how reliable it can be on various issues:

1.- When working in Cubase, how efficient is it to have Kontakt libraries hosted there?
or just libraries outside of kontakt that are used in projects?

2.- Working with an external HDD, is it slower than with an internal one or is it faster?

3.- Do the projects load faster? or slower?

4.- The images in terms of samples, take longer to generate? or is it faster?

5.- Is it risky to have an external HDD?

All these questions I have, because I am thinking of replacing my 4 internal HDD disks of 1TB each, for a single disk of 4TB.

It depends on which type of drives and also on the communication link you use.
On Windows, usb3 should be fine, and same on macs with also a thunderbolt option.

So with Komplete (includes Kontakt) I noted that exfat formatted disks are very slow on OSX but not on Windows.

My other general recommendations are:

  • Prefer large ssd drives (better performances, especially when when these disks are not close to full)
  • Make regular backups of your music anyway.

With ssds on USB 3 .0 or better you should not experiment any more slughiness than with internal disks, some peers reported that buying a better usb3 daughter board sometimes improved usb3 devices performances too because some boards have a full dedicated USB3 chip per port.

I would not use it for a system drive (except for purely testing purposes) but for your data use cases, I don’t think it would cause issues. I used Komplete with an external disk for a while without issues too BTW.

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Also note that if you plan to use C12 now: licensing is sensitive to internal drives configuration changes so probably better to de-register before doing so (as I did recently with my new 2TB M.2 ssd addition) and re-register it (no need for uninstall)

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Thank you for the advice! I’ve heard that when using external HDD, for Kontakt libraries, it helps the CPU and Cubase runs smoother, have you experienced this? do you think it’s true?

Did not see any difference I could feel/notice between internal/external.
But certainly splitting samples and songs data from the system disk does have a positive impact though as software access to exe/dll files is becoming independent from data access in real-time.