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LapTop-free storage devise?

Who knows about storage devises that let you leave the lap-top at home? Anyone have practical experience, reviews on different gear? for example, i hear the epson p200 has to be recharged all the time, and its expensive. what about the compactDrive? anyone use one long enough to know the pros and cons?
thanks

by [a former member] at 2006-02-20 13:09:33 UTC (ed. Mar 12 2008 ) Oakland , United States | Bookmark | | Report spam→

I use Nikon Coolwalker. His battery last about three hours, wich mean, three hours playing the damn thing. It cost you US$ 280 in BH. Is small and low profile, not big like the epson p200



by [former member] | 20 Feb 2006 13:02 | Santiago, Chile | | Report spam→
Eros,

I had a lengthy post about this very same subject last December with other members of LS and received lots of good info. After a lot of research, I bought X-Drive’s Model #VP3320—(www.vosonic.com). I used it on a three-week trip to India and really loved it! Very convenient size and easy to use and carry. Just pop the CF card in and push copy. The battery life is very sufficient and reliable as well. Added bonuses include a MP3 player, audio recorder and FM radio features. The recorder is by far the handiest of the extras. Now that I’m back home, I’m using it as an extra portable hard drive. I decided to not buy the model that has an image review screen, but they are available.

I’d be happy to answer any other questions about it. I give it my full recommendation.
-Ryan

by Ryan K Morris | 20 Feb 2006 13:02 | Tampa, United States | | Report spam→
Eros — I’ve owned one of these, a 40GB FlashTrax, which worked fine for traveling and the like. However, regardless of which one you may choose, you need to know that none of them do a couple of things that well… first of all, some of the batteries are better than others, but I don’t think that any of them are good enough that you will not need a 2nd battery. Also, and more importantly, in my experience the process of using these portable HDs greatly depends on the size and kind of cards you want to download. When I bought mine I was using mostly 1GB Lexar cards, and the FlashTrax and a couple other models I tried out worked out great copying the files over… 5-10 minutes, etc. However, later and since, I pretty much only use 4GB SanDisk Extreme cards and the FlashTrax had a REALLY hard time copying the files over, both because it took 4x more time, but also there seemed to be something about the different manufacturers of cards and the performance w/ the portable HD.

Best, -John

by John Loomis | 20 Feb 2006 16:02 | Miami, FL, United States | | Report spam→
Came across this one while searching for laptop alternatives on the web. The Archos Personal Media Assistant: a 30 GB storage device but has built in wifi for browsing, email and even FTP

http://www.archos.com/products/ip_centric/pma_400/index.html?country=global&lang=en

I have not tried it myself, but looks interesting for what we need.

Cheers!

Erik

by Erik Lacson | 20 Feb 2006 16:02 | | Report spam→
Eros, I have tried a few of the options available out there over time, from the horrible Nixvue Vista to the FlashTrak, as well as those CD burners that you can plug a CF card directly in to.  None are perfect, most are clunky.  The options with built in screens seem to try to pack too much functionality in to a little box, and the screen helps drain the battery.  The most effective option (cost effective and speed of use) that I have recently been playing with is the Fotochute from SmartDisk .  It’s a 20Gb hard drive that plugs directly in to your camera (USB 2.0). You press a button and it downloads the images.  For long trips, 20Gb may not be enough but at $149 per unit, you can afford to buy at least a couple of them.  I dropped one of them on to a hard surface (New York sidewalk, doesn’t get much harder!) and it didn’t seem to make any difference – worked as normal.  The lack of screen and simplicity of just running a hard disk with no menu to have to deal with seems to allow battery life to be above average for this type of technology.   For $149 (B&H  SMFC20GQ) it’s worth a look.

Regards – Mike

by ABC | 20 Feb 2006 16:02 | San Francisco, United States | | Report spam→
Eros – I have the Wolverine 40gb FlashPac 7000. It’s a very simple machine designed to do one thing, copy files from Compact Flash cards. I’ve used it with 2gb cards and it works fine. I can’t say I’ve timed how long it takes. It doesn’t have a screen so you have to trust that it works but I’ve had mine a year and used it a few times and it’s worked perfectly, i’ve never had a corrupt file (more than I can say about the CF cards). One thing that sold me on this was it’s contruction. It’s not plastic and has screws that hold it together, better than cheapy plastic clips which I’ve seen on other brands. I can’t speak to how long the battery lasts so that may be something you’d want to ask the company or those who’ve maxed it out. Their tech support is great. I had a question and got an answer immediately.—- Scott

by [former member] | 20 Feb 2006 16:02 | New Jersey, United States | | Report spam→
I used to use a Minds at Work 40 gig drive. It had built in firewire and downloaded a 1 gig card in about 10 minutes. It worked great but the company went out of business in 2002 (or early 2003) and repairs are a problem now. Battery life is also a problem.
Last month I got a Hyperdrive HD80 to replace the Minds at Work drive, and I have been very happy with it. I got an 80 gig drive in mine. It downloads a one gig card in under two minutes and I can download about 50 gigs of data on one battery charge. It is really fast. My only complaint is that it is USB2 only and USB2 is just not as fast as firewire. That said, on my new iBook, which has USB2 built in, it is fast enough. On my older pBook and tower DP G4 (both of which are USB1) it is painfully, almost unuseably slow. I bought a USB2 PCI card for the DP G4 tower and it has not helped. It is still really slow.
The Hyperdrives are minimalist tools – it does one thing, copy from CF card (it also handles all the other card formats) to the drive very quickly. It does not have a preview screen and you can not even delete files or folders without a computer. But if all you are doing is storing files temporarily, until you can get back to a computer it is great. Their web site is hyperdrive.com

jack

by Jack Kurtz | 20 Feb 2006 17:02 | Phoenix, AZ, United States | | Report spam→
Eros,

I have an Epson PV2000 (40gb) storage device and simply love it. Battery doesn’t seem to be a problem if you don’t use the screen too much. (Perhaps buy an extra battery.)  But what a great screen it is. 4.8 inches of glory!  I also use SanDisk Extreme II 2gb cards and they take about 5 minutes to download. Not bad. I haven’t used the mp3 function yet, but the slideshow and auto back-up album functions are great. You can even watch movies on the thing. Slick little unit. Send me a PM or an e-mail if you have any more specific questions.

-Douglas
www.nowpicturethis.com

by Douglas Barnes | 20 Feb 2006 17:02 (ed. Feb 20 2006) | Salt Lake City, United States | | Report spam→

Hey Eros… 
If you already own a photo iPod you may get away with just getting the iPod Camera Connector rather than more kit. 

Apparently all you do is attach the USB cable from your camera and it backs up all the files from the CF card (you may need to change the transfer mode to PTP in the menu). Saves carrying a laptop if you’re in the field and running out of cards – especially if you’re shooting RAW.

See http://www.apple.com/ipod/compatibility/cameraconnector.html for supported cameras, although this seems to be an old list.  Some of the reviews on the Apple site also seem to suggest you can just plug in a CF card reader instead of the camera.

Cheers, Andy.

 



by Andy Higgins | 21 Feb 2006 02:02 | Manchester, United Kingdom | | Report spam→
Thanks everyone, Lighstalkers ROCKS
I descided to buy the HyperDrive. simple and fast. I’ll post a review after I win my Pulitzer. or maybe before

by [former member] | 21 Feb 2006 15:02 | Oakland, United States | | Report spam→

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Participants

Ryan K Morris, Photographer Ryan K Morris
Photographer
Tampa , United States
John Loomis, Photographer John Loomis
Photographer
New York, Ny , United States ( LGA )
Erik Lacson, Photographer Erik Lacson
Photographer
Manila , Philippines
ABC, ABC
Washington Dc , United States
Jack Kurtz, Photojournalist Jack Kurtz
Photojournalist
Bangkok , Thailand
Douglas Barnes, Photographer Douglas Barnes
Photographer
(commercial photographer)
Salt Lake City , United States
Andy Higgins, Photographer | Designer Andy Higgins
Photographer | Designer
Lusaka , Zambia


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