FAST STORAGE GE AR .
director is enthusiastic. But it’s trickier on a week’s safari for a nature documentary with three cameras, and yes: people do that for Imax shows. It’s possible to buy hundreds of terabytes of flash, but your wallet won’t thank you. THE DISK KEEPS TURNING G-Technology has its roots in Western Digital, a company associated with storage since the late 1970s. It has a full range of flash storage, which is represented here by the 1TB G-Drive Mobile Pro SSD, a Thunderbolt device that competes ably with Samsung’s X5. The Western Digital connection particularly shows in G-Drives using spinning disks. USB-C models come in capacities from 4TB to 14TB, with the biggest priced at a somewhat modest £690, including VAT. The range is based around 3.5in hard disks, the type traditionally used in desktop computers, which has a few implications. First, the power consumption is high enough
that they need an accompanying wall wart. The upside is performance: a conventional hard disk will never match the multi- gigabyte-per-second performance of typical flash, but the G-Drive range is specified up to almost 200MB/s. In the early days of HD on feature films, it took a pack of six disks to do that. PINT-SIZED BIT BUCKETS Western Digital also own the Sandisk brand often seen on flash cards. But if we’re going to talk storage, we should discuss LaCie, a name frequently found cabled to a MacBook at Starbucks. LaCie was purchased by Seagate in 2012, creating a relationship not unlike that between Western Digital and G-Technology. LaCie’s current party piece is the sleek-looking product simply called Mobile Drive
– a compact and handy device that comes in what looks like a solid chunk of machined aluminium about 3.5x5in (thickness varies with capacity). The design uses smaller 2.5in disks, a form factor originally developed for laptops. Aside from compactness, there’s lower power consumption and thus a single cable from laptop to disk, while retaining much of the capacity advantage of 3.5in disks. The compromise is reduced performance – the disks typically spin at 5400 rather than 7200rpm – though the Mobile Drive family does amazingly well, achieving perhaps 140MB/s in tests. It’s the sort of choice that makes sense for the news camera operator working out of a hotel room, but there are certainly a lot of people doing that, and the slab-like construction
Did you know? In 1956, IBM created the world’s first hard drive (aka the RAMAC). It was the size of a fridge, but could only hold 5MB of data.
G-TECHNOLOGY G-DRIVE MOBILE PRO SSD
LACIE MOBILE DRIVE £64.99-£144.99/ $89.99-$200.99
55. SEPTEMBER 2021
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