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Portable storage?

Discussion in 'Photography Forums' started by RobDickinson, Apr 26, 2004.

  1. RobDickinson

    RobDickinson
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    Since a quick visit to jessops has us ditching the KM Z2 and being now far more intrested in the A2 8mp prosumer types our memory needs will rocket.

    For daily stuff a 256-512 will do us, but were off to NZ soon and our last holiday we took 1200-1400 film pics.

    I dont want to spend zillions on CF cards only never to use them again.

    Options are :

    (a)2~ish gig of CF cards £200+ Expensive and long term not nessicary

    (b)512mb CF + 2.2gb microdrive. Just how reliable and usable are the type II microdrives? I dont want to loose the whole lot by droping the camera lightly. I assume there less reliable than standard HDD's but how much less?

    (c) some sort of mass storage device. I see stand alone CD burners and HDD based systems. Cheapest I see is about £160 for a cd version and £200 ish for a HDD based version. The CD versions double as a cd burner (no need for that) and a card reader (£15 or so). Some of the HDD based versions double as MP3 players, but I have no need off a portable mp3 jukebox realy.

    Anyone used any type of mass storage device (other than a laptop - dont want to card that round in NZ).

    Any other tips for 3+ weeks away with digi cameras? Car charging etc?

    Will get the camera soonish and see how the memory goes, guess we dont have to take everything at 8mp and fine/super. thats 4mb per pic...
     
  2. Peakoverload

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    There are lots of portable hard drive based storage solutions. Some come with screens and others do not and the prices in the UK do tend to be around the £200 mark and above.

    However you could do what I did.

    The Xs-Drive is a very basic unit having only two buttons and no screen but it does the job and does it pretty well too. In the UK you can buy a 20GB model for around £220 but you can also build your own for about half that!

    I ordered just the bare unit (no hard drive) from www.mydigitaldiscount.com in the USA which was delivered three days later for a cost of around £60. I then shopped around on Ebay and picked up a 30GB drive for £35 IIRC.

    Assembly takes just a few minutes and hey presto a fully working Xs-Drive for less than half what you would pay for one in the UK!!

    Couple of things to be aware of:

    When you order from the states you will get a USA power supply. You have two options. Get a USA to UK power adaptor but you have to make sure you get one that will actually fit the plug on the power adaptor or just buy a new UK power adaptor for £6

    Your warrenty will be for the USA not the UK

    The hard drive you buy must be a 2.5" drive (for a laptop) and be 9mm high not 12mm

    You also need the ability to format and partiton a 2.5" drive. For this you will either need access to a laptop or an adaptor that you can fit into a desktop PC.

    Even if you have to buy new power supplies and adaptors you will still be saving around 50% on the UK price.

    HTH
     
  3. pinatubo

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  4. shoehorn

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    I don't know New Zealand, but I'd assume that there would be plenty of places that will let you archive your cards onto CD roms - e.g. photo shops and the like.
    But I guess it depends on where you'll be... out in the wilds, unlikely, but around the larger towns / cities, a jessops or boots style of shop should be able to help....
     
  5. RobDickinson

    RobDickinson
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    Were going to be touring around the whole place, but wont be more than a few days away from resonable sized towns I guess.

    This may be an workable option, will have to do some investigating.

    As to the rest there seems to be a few hdd based storage solutions on ebay which I'll keep an eye on.
     
  6. tomson

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    I did this a couple of years ago on a visit to australia and bangkok. Some of the smaller towns quite often had somewhere with facilities to burn cds, especially if they are popular with tourists.

    Going to the states and canada in a few months too and will probably use the same tactic.
     
  7. RobDickinson

    RobDickinson
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    OK - had a reply from a NZ photo processing shop.

    Looks like a possible solution but burning to CD is on a slifinh cost scale with 256mb+ at $25 (NZ dollars).

    This is about £10, and will probably need to do 8ish times with 512mb card at a guess, so £80 ish roughly.

    I can get an empty HDD storage device from US for $100 in shipping and a 2.5hdd for £30-40 so total cost for that is £100 or so, probably do that with a couple of CF cards.

    Watching ebay also...
     
  8. scarfie

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    I just upped this to mention that it's a cracking device. Mydigitaldiscount shipped it and it arrived next day - I planted a 40GB hitachi drive in - loaded up some MP3s and it downloads my NEFs from my CF card in secs. It'll be great for day trips and travels!
    Thanks to Peakoverload!
     
  9. Peakoverload

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    Glad it all worked out for you :clap: :clap: :thumbsup: :D

    I'm personally not bothered about there not being a screen on it as all the screens I've ever seen on such devices really havent been up to much and as you now know the X's-Drive is such a simple device to use.

    All the best

     
  10. krismcewan

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    I ordered the Pro version and cost me about £85 inc delivery.

    Luckily i had a 20gb disk lying about. I have another 20gb disk going for £40 inc P&P if any one is interested.
    All preformatted ready to install.

    If you cant get the item from the states give me a shout I may be able to get it for you.

    Chris
     
  11. Party Animal

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    Peakoverload
    thanks for the site.. I looked into the various storage devices and basically came toi the same conclusion as you (import one)

    the xs-drive here is £200 plus everywhere, even the notebook hard drives are way overpriced here... so I bought the 40gb xs-drive mk2 from your link
    3 days delivery. no import duty and it works like a charm

    sure beats paying a small fortune in small CF cards

    as for ease of use.. a 2 year old could use this thing

    and how much was it all in about £122 delivered including 40gb drive

    top tip there thanks :D
     
  12. m@rk

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    Just one question on this.

    What about power?

    Do they need a mains supply or are their any battery options available. The reason for asking is that on a photo shoot yesterday, I managed to fill a 1-GB CF card in an afternoon and was forced to cut the shoot short. In the field, there was no mains supply.
     
  13. krismcewan

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    The XS drive pro has rechargeable batteries plus you can get a AA battery pack for a tenner plus p&P from http://www.card-media.co.uk/xsdrive+pro.htm .
    Handy note Cardmedia also do the UK adapter, spare recharge battery and the PowerBank Battery pack.

    Chris
     
  14. Londonman

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    Since memory cards are now 1Gb and above but CDs limited to just over 700Mb does anyone know how devices like the Disk Steno CP100 handle this? Do they exit cleanly or just refuse to copy and fall over in a heap when they get to the image that overflows the CD?

    Or is it down to me to manage this externally by using say a 512Mb card and a 256Mb..oh hang on, that will take me over the limit..so do I just use a 512Mb and end up with CDs only 2/3 full?
     
  15. Londonman

    Londonman
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    Well, I am impressed with Apacer. About the same time I posted this question I also emailed their tech support with the same question. I really didn't expect any sort of speedy response but to my pleasant surprise I got a reply back in less than an hour. I'll post it here for the benefit of others.

    Unfortunately, the CP100 is the only unit in it's product line that does not support
    disc spanning, the CP80(which was released later), CP200, CP300, and AD330 all
    will ask you to insert a next disk.

    This is a hardware feature which could not be applied to the CP100 afterwards,
    I recommend in this case not to let your flash cards go over 700 mb of it's
    capacity when you back up your data,

    A very fair and detailed response.
     

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