I just got the CanaKit Raspberry Pi 3 starter kit, and I was wondering if it can handle all of the following via its USB ports:

  1. BlackArmor WS 110 2TB

  2. Seagate FreeAgent Desk 1 TB

  3. (Wireless) Keyboard and mouse (both via USB dongles)

The power supply that comes with the kit is 2.5A.

I plan to use it as a media server (e.g. via plex).

Would the above be fine?

  • I wouldn't try it, just get a powered USB hub to be safe. Mar 15, 2016 at 7:24
  • @PatrickCook Does it make a difference that both HDDs have external power supplies and that the RPi3 power supply is 2.5A? If not, can you recommend a good hub?
    – tj56
    Mar 15, 2016 at 7:39
  • If the HDDs have their own power supply, then they are drawing little to no power from the Pi, and you should be fine. Mar 15, 2016 at 7:40

2 Answers 2


Those HDDs have external power supplies, so they would work just fine.

I wouldn't recommend you use a HDD that uses only power from the Raspberry Pi for two reasons:

  1. You would need a very powerful power adapter, and considering that RPI 3 needs over 1.34 A (here) any normal power adapter will fail.

  2. You are relying on the power from the RPi - for a device which really needs a reliable PSU, which is not the case with RPi.

Wireless keyboard+mouse are using very little power compared to a non-powered HDD.

  • So I take it the above setup should run fine without any (power) issues, right? Thanks!
    – tj56
    Mar 15, 2016 at 9:11
  • True. Just hope they provide a good power supply :)
    – Roi Katz
    Mar 15, 2016 at 9:24

There exists expansion boards for the Raspberry Pi that gives you a SATA interface. This will be a lot faster than communicating with a HDD through USB. It will still need a separate power supply though.

Take a look here for an example. Available at eBay if I recall correctly:


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