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09-14-2009, 06:23 PM   #1
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Portable Hard Drive Questions

Ive been searching the web and still have yet to find anything to answer my questions. So..

Im looking for a portable hard drive about 500G or Larger.

I use a PC but my Digital Lab at school uses MAC.. so number one requirement is that I can go between the two back and forth.

2nd thing I would like is one that doesnt require me to carry a power pak everwhere with it. Maybe one with a battery er something.

Also needs to have firewire capabilities as thats what my school requires but I use USB. Honestly I dont even know the difference or rather I havent a clue as to what firewire is..

Thats about it.. anything but pink..

So if anybody has some suggestions I would appreciate it. Maybe under 200 bux ..

Thanks

09-14-2009, 11:26 PM   #2
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I would make sure that your school absolutely requires a firewire external hard disk. I heard that even Apple doesn't make laptops with full Firewire compatibility anymore - though I hadn't checked that yet. There are so few truly portable hard disks with firewire...

I'd be very very surprised if that was a hard requirement. Firewire technology is no longer really relevant for storage. (yeah yeah, I'm sure there'll be somebody who will argue this) It's relevance today is mostly to maintain backwards compatibility for historically early adopters of video and high-end audio devices.

Portable drives these days don't usually even need external power supplies. Sometimes, you have to plug the drive into two USB ports - one for power. But the small portables don't usually even require that.

Almost all the drives on the market come pre-formatted with FAT32/VFAT. This is the previous generation of Windows' default format. As such, it is compatible with both Mac and Wintel PCs. Linux too. Do not get one formatted with NTFS - it won't be truly compatible with a Mac.

f.

PS. Are you going to SFAI or the Academy? I can't imagine any other school in the area requiring Firewire for anything.
09-15-2009, 12:15 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by LeeHolliday Quote
Ive been searching the web and still have yet to find anything to answer my questions. So..

Im looking for a portable hard drive about 500G or Larger.

I use a PC but my Digital Lab at school uses MAC.. so number one requirement is that I can go between the two back and forth.

2nd thing I would like is one that doesnt require me to carry a power pak everwhere with it. Maybe one with a battery er something.

Also needs to have firewire capabilities as thats what my school requires but I use USB. Honestly I dont even know the difference or rather I havent a clue as to what firewire is..

Thats about it.. anything but pink..

So if anybody has some suggestions I would appreciate it. Maybe under 200 bux ..

Thanks
As has been pointed out, there are external hard drives that use a separate transformer. The Seagate versions one use 12 volts to drive the fairly large external drive. Costco sells the 500 gigabyte version for $69. They feature high transfer rates. Seagate also sells a slim small laptop external hard drive called the Seagate FreeAgent "Go" drives. They need no 110 volt transformer since the Go drives work off the 4.5 volts available via the usb port. They are slower in transfering data, i believe.

I highly recommend the smaller Go Drives, even though they are somewhat higher priced. They are easier to pack around, and much more importantly, they seem to be more durable. For example, i accidentally knocked the 12 volt external 500 gigabyte hard drive off a coffee table onto a well carpeted floor. Even though it didn't make a sound when it hit, the hard drive died instantly. I subsequently bought one of the slim Go drives, intended for laptop use, and have accidentally pulled it off the coffee table a coupla times. No problems, the Go drive keeps on ticking. It seems to be far more durable than the large 12 volt units.

Best wishes,
09-15-2009, 08:42 AM   #4
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OWC has lots of choices (though a bit more that $200). Nice thing about Firewire is that it is bus powered, meaning you don't have to lug a transformer and plug around, and find an open outlet (probably under a desk) at school.

I take a portable drive with my image library back and forth between home and work. It's great to just have one plug.

09-15-2009, 08:58 PM   #5
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Hey thanks for the input folks.. I asked about the firewire thing today and they said it wasnt as big a deal as my instructor previously mentioned. He just wanted to make sure that I could use the thing just about anywhere.

Goin to the academy.. to answer the question.

Found this one online today after seeing an instructors plugged into a computer in another class.. looks purdy sturdy might pick it up on friday.. lemme know what ya think.


Amazon.com: LaCie Rugged All-Terrain 500 GB FireWire 800/FireWire 400/USB 2.0 Portable External Hard Drive 301371: Electronics
09-15-2009, 09:17 PM   #6
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Not required -- deleted.

Last edited by Kguru; 09-15-2009 at 09:28 PM.
09-15-2009, 09:44 PM   #7
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Look, I don't want to rain on your parade, but there is a lot of anecdotal evidence about LaCies failing prematurely. Even your amazon link contains a number of bad reviews.

Personally, I'd get something else, and Firewire is a convenience worth having.
09-15-2009, 10:42 PM   #8
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Lee

Wiebetech makes some solid enclosures. They are priced higher. If you don't mind a little do it yourself you can get an empty enclosure and put a drive in it to save some money. Getting the drive separate you will get a better warranty on the drive if it does fail. Which does happen with these smaller drives in external enclosures.

Always remember to back up.

09-16-2009, 05:26 AM   #9
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I have a tiny external HD, the One touch Mini from Maxtor (Seagate). It requires no external power (USB powered) and has 160 gigs, which is plenty (about 32,000 photos)...is about the size of my Iphone...

Jas
09-16-2009, 03:36 PM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by a a i b Quote
Look, I don't want to rain on your parade, but there is a lot of anecdotal evidence about LaCies failing prematurely. Even your amazon link contains a number of bad reviews.

Personally, I'd get something else, and Firewire is a convenience worth having.
please point me to the festival.. I appreciate the thoughts just wish I knew where this parade was.
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