External Drive for Photo storage

Discussion in 'Image Processing' started by Brian10956, Jul 16, 2017.

  1. Brian10956

    Brian10956 Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 9, 2017
    I'm Looking for a external HD for storage of my photos(90%) and videos (10%). My laptop is a 15" Dell XPS windows 10 that only has a 250mb solid state drive. I was looking on line and saw a Lacie rugged

    Amazon.com: LaCie Rugged Thunderbolt and USB 3.0 2TB Portable Hard Drive STEV2000400: Computers & Accessories

    I'm not sure if this is the best choice for storing my work during processing. I am planning on also backing them up on the cloud (need to figure out that also) .
    If some of you more computer savvy people can please let me know exactly which model is the right one to get I would appreciate it.
    If going about this the wrong way and there is a better solution for file storage please let me know.
  2. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Legend

    Any USB 3.0 Hard drive will work about the same. If you wanted to pay a lot extra for a rugged drive, then that is a good option. But if you plan to handle the drive as carefully as you do your laptop, you don't need it, and you can save about $100.

    I use this one, and it is good for the money: Amazon.com: WD 2TB Blue My Passport Portable External Hard Drive - USB 3.0 - WDBYFT0020BBL-WESN: Computers & Accessories

    I would recommend one that specifically states it is a portable drive. Those do not require any additional power supply. Desktop external hard drives usually come with larger capacity, but require a power brick, making them less friendly for use with a laptop.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  3. Brian10956

    Brian10956 Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 9, 2017
    Thanks for the info I'll check it out and maybe I'll be $100 richer. I know the USB 3.0 is a lot faster than the 2.0 I know the thunderbolt 3( my dell has 1 port) is even faster than 3.0 USB would it be to my advantage to get a thunderbolt drive or is it like buying a car that can go 200 mph vs 120 mph? What I'm asking is the speed offered by thunderbolt really need by an amateur like myself?
  4. mcasan

    mcasan Mu-43 All-Pro

    Feb 26, 2014
    If USB3 make sure it is USB3 with UASP protocol. That is even faster. If one external library drive, then you may want a second external drive for backup. Needless to say the backup drive needs to be at least the same size as the library drive. Make sure the backup drive is backup all the internal drives plus the external library drive. Any backups to cloud services are just gravy on the potatoes.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  5. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Legend

    Single HDD themselves are slower than usb 3, so it doesn't make a whole lot of sense to worry about 3.1 or thunderbolt. The drive is the bottleneck, not the bus speed.

    If you were going to build a multi disk array using a desktop RAID enclosure, then I would use the fastest bus you can.
  6. Brian10956

    Brian10956 Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 9, 2017
    I just thought of one other question I just got the Olympus em1 mark II . The camera has a USB 3.0 port on it. Can data be transferred directly from camera to the dark Drive or do you need the computer as an interface to do this?
  7. Brian10956

    Brian10956 Mu-43 Regular

    Jul 9, 2017
    On my computer it's a solid state drive not a regular hard drive. Will make the date transfer quicker?
  8. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Legend

    No, they need a computer in between them.

    No, the speed will be dictated by the slowest component, which will be the hard drive
  9. RachelleK

    RachelleK Mu-43 Regular

    Apr 18, 2014
    I think with the Western Digital My Passport Wireless Pro you would not need a computer. I think it would transfer from the camera only with USB 2.0 though.

  10. pondball

    pondball Mu-43 All-Pro

    @Brian10956@Brian10956 when you say a working drive are, what apps are you using? If its just for storage then any drive will do but if you're using LR for some daily photo processing you may want to consider other solutions... and if you're actually working on some video production there are other options there too. Whatever you choose I would not jump into your purchase lightly or quickly. I have been a victim of that, with too many "solutions" sitting idle.

    An online course I have been taking recently with Jared Platt (Lightroom, Creative Live) provides a very detailed demonstration of his workflow, including his use of this drive (CRU Tough-Tech m3) where he stores his LR catalog and presets, as well as other CRU drive solutions for portable use, followed by his RAID and archiving solutions. There is no one drive fits all solution so please take your time, do your research, use tips found here on mu-43... and then do it again. Hopefully you don't need an instant solution as that imo will only cause you $$$ and frustration in the long run.

    I have decided to give my son the research I've done for my workflow/backup/archive problem and am now letting him come up with a suitable, affordable solution. I have also thrown in other quirks like AppleTV, and a house wide music solution and am sure I'll be happy with the solution he comes up with. My head was starting to feel like mush... not so much now that I've passed the buck!
  11. oldracer

    oldracer Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Oct 1, 2010
    I have a Synology DS212+ two-drive box set up so that the drives are mirrored (RAID 1). So i don't have to worry about a single-point drive failure. I have SATA/USB drive dock plugged into the Synology box and about once a month or after a ton of photography on a trip, I back up the Synology box to a SATA drive that normally lives in my fire-resistant gun safe. Re cloud, do some calculations to see how long it takes to back up and restore a few gig at your connection speed before you commit. Also remember that cloud storage is a brutal business and consider the strength of your vendor. You don't want to go to his site one day and find "This domain name is for sale."
    • Agree Agree x 1
  12. PakkyT

    PakkyT Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 20, 2015
    New England
    I'll throw in my 3-cents worth.

    On the Thunderbolt connector on your laptop, be sure to verify it is really a Thunderbolt bus. Some Dells have a USB Type-C connector (that used for Thunderbolt bus) but may only be a USB 3 port. Certain models will all have that port but only the more expensive in the lineup will have a Thunderbolt bus. So look carefully and make sure it has a little lightening bolt symbol next to it and/or check the specs of the computer.

    I agree that a "rugged" drive is probably not necessary for most people. You can often buy two non-rugged drives for the same price as a single "rugged" model.

    You really want to have TWO external drives in my opinion. My guess is your internal drive will begin to fill up and you will want to offload to an external drive to free up space. Once you do that, your data is NOT backed up, just offloaded to an external drive. So then you really want a second drive to backup your first external.

    Assuming your laptop does indeed have an actual Thunderbolt port and you agree that a lot of your videos and photos will end up off your laptop to free up room, for the first drive if you want Thunderbolt look at desktop (non-portables) since they seem to be much more reasonably priced. That one can live on your desk and when you are there you can plug your laptop into it to access your content or offload stuff into the drive. Then your second external drive, just get a basic USB3 portable. You can get 4TB models for about $100 now in some cases, easily for $120.

    You can also simply opt for a pair of portables instead of the one desktop & one portable. I have been moving that way lately and as I upgrade to larger capacity drives and tend to get rid of my desktop models and buy portables. For example, for roughly $200-$240 depending on if you keep an eye out for specials and sales, you could get a pair of 4TB bus powered USB3 portable drives. One would host your files that you don't keep on your laptop and also would backup your laptop. Then the second one simply mirrors the first one backing up all your data. If you wanted to save a little money, you could instead opt for a pair for 2TB drives (instead of 2x4TB) for roughly $140-150-ish which may be plenty for you now.
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