Portable storage is a must for all us photographers and filmmakers if we want to store all those huge RAW photos and 4K (or even 6K) videos. I guess we all want a large portable drive, with fast read and write speed, but at a decent price. Enter HyperDisk – it’s a tiny SSD, with up to 1,000 MB/s read and write speed, with the price starting at $85.
SSDs have been creeping up in capacity and creeping down in price over the last few years. It, perhaps, isn’t happening at the same pace we saw with mechanical hard drives, but it is happening.
SSDs are the storage medium of choice when you need fast access to files – like when booting up your operating system or loading software. But they’re prohibitively expensive for most. Samsung plans to change that with new 4TB SSDs designed not cloud storage or enterprise level application, but for consumer end users.
With more and more of us shooting 4K footage, fast, large storage is becoming a must-have for those of us editing this footage. For the last few years, I’ve been using the Promise Technology R2+. It’s a two-bay thunderbolt 2 RAID array with a cool feature that it has a third bay that you can swap out. I normally have a card reader in there as it allows me to copy footage from cards at the fastest speed.
I think I’m going to stop listening to anybody who says that hard drives are dead and SSD is the only future of storage. Don’t get me wrong, I love SSDs. They’re fantastic for when you need really rapid access to data. They’re great as a system drive for your operating system and software.
When it comes to pure storage, though, they still can’t really hold a candle to hard drives for capacity. Well, not unless you want to spend an absolute fortune. Western Digital have just announced a new “breakthrough” technology in hard drive storage. Microwave Assisted Magnetic Recording. They say that it will allow them to create hard drives 40TB and larger.
It’s insane to think that hard drive space has gone from around $500,000 to as low as $0.03 per gigabyte in the last 36 years. It has, though. But that drop in price is slowing down. It has to. Even as recently as 8 years ago, drives were hitting under $0.10 per GB.
Backblaze recently had a look into just how hard drive prices have changed over the years, and they turned up something quite fascinating. One would expect that the larger the drive, the lower the per gigabyte cost. But it turns out that’s not quite happening in the real world.
There’s a sale going on at BestBuy at the moment on WD easystore 8TB External USB 3.0 hard drives. A massive discount which drops the price from $299.99 to $159.99. “What’s the big deal, though?” I hear you ask. “They’re just external USB drives”. Well, yes, but those USB boxes contain Western Digital RED (NAS) SATA drives which normally also cost $299.
It’s easy to open up the cases and pull out the bare drives to use internally. And if getting 8TB storage drives at half price wasn’t enough, the drives contained within these enclosures have double the regular cache. 256MB vs 128MB. With four of these, in a USB3 RAID enclosure, you’ve got 24TB RAID 5 for under $800.
No matter if you are a professional photographer or a hobbyist, I’m sure your photos are important to you. Therefore, it’s essential to have a good backup system so you can avoid any situation that may result in losing them all. David Bergman suggests an effective 3-2-1 backup system. It will protect your images from any situation that may hinder them, and save you from losing years of work.
Most of the time I deliver finished photos and videos to my clients via digital download. It’s quick, easy and saves me time and money by avoiding the hassle of uploading files to a physical storage device and sending it in the mail.
However, it is occasionally necessary to copy photography and videos to a USB flash drive for delivery to a client (some clients don’t have reliable high speed internet, some want a physical product, some don’t have a reliable PC and some are just not tech savvy enough to figure out how to download a large number of files from a link).
One issue that I have started to run into – especially with longer or 4K video – is transferring files larger than 4 GB to a USB flash drive.
Fortunately, the solution is relatively easy – here is how to copy files larger than 4 GB to a USB flash drive, memory card or other FAT32 storage device.