Orquid "Phoenix"

Orquid "Phoenix"

by ceinmart

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I recall seeing years ago a device which you would attach two USB drives to, and it would copy files from one USB device to the other. Usually two flash drives, but it would also work with sd to USB adaptive, and USB hard drives.

I can't find it again, and I want to be able to backup my photos by essentially duplicating my flash drives when they are full, and backing up to a larger USB drive.

Further, for a variety of reasons, I want to do this without using a computer. (speed, power consumption, target of theft, etc)

Any recommendations or tips?

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Also related: photo.stackexchange.com/questions/924 –  Blrfl Jun 8 '13 at 21:50
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5 Answers

up vote 1 down vote accepted

Maybe you recall this one: http://reviews.cnet.com/home-entertainment/belkin-usb-anywhere/4505-6449_7-31490968.html, although I can not find it on belkin's site anymore.

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That's the closest one I've seen. The one I recall had an LCD screen, and you could (painfully) decide what to transfer. –  Adam Davis Mar 30 '11 at 18:56
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I'm not sure about a duplication of flash drives, but one commonly used option is something like this hard drive that copies a SD card to it. It doesn't take usb drives, but for photos it does take SD cards and CF cards.

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That one is popular, but doesn't allow me to choose my backup media. –  Adam Davis Feb 23 '11 at 4:11
    
Indeed, true enough. –  rfusca Feb 23 '11 at 4:14
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I don't know of any current devices that do 1-to-1 (and by that, I mean 1-to-1 only), but I know of a bunch that will dupe anything with a USB interface 1-to-3, 1-to-7, 1-to-11, 1-to-20 or more. They're God-awful expensive, though -- they're meant for things like quickly producing USB keys of conference audio files and slides as soon as the speaker's finished. For 1-to-1 use, it's cheaper to use a computer even if that means buying a netbook (or something similar) to dedicate to the task because you don't want to occupy another computer.

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Get yourself a Wolverine backup. You do not need a computer to transfer your images, you get backup in various capacities, its battery powered and is very light compared to a notebook.

Nikon also has one called Nikon CoolWalker but I believe it is discontinued now. You can still get used ones but the reviews are not great.

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There used to be a lot of different brands of these things, but I don't see that many any more... I wonder why they're not as popular. –  Dan Wolfgang Jun 7 '13 at 20:53
    
@Dan At a guess: $55 for a 320GB external disk, $180 for a 320GB Wolverine, $250 for a 320GB netbook. They have a hard time competing on value since just a bit more money will give you a netbook so you can view your pictures too. What's left is a quite expensive special-purpose device with a tiny market. –  j-g-faustus Jun 7 '13 at 22:46
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Ideally, we have a solution that isn't tied to a specific product release in a moment of time. What you require is a device to bridge your camera to another storage media. There are a few options that I can think of:

  1. Portable WiFi device that can be battery powered or powered by a rechargeable pack and that has USB or SD ports. A WiFi smartphone with an app like FileBrowser can then be used to initiate a transfer between devices. I have a device called iUSBport that I've used for this purpose (I link reluctantly, but this is their cornerstone device).

  2. A USB to USB bridge device. They exist, are a little painful to find, but they're around. Basically, they just do device to device copy, though some allow file selection.

  3. A smartphone or tablet. Not sure what you have, but many Android and (jailbroken) IOS devices can operate as a bridge. Basically, you copy your images onto the device and then off the device again. I did this with a jailbroken iPad and the Apple camera connection kit. Jailbroken, the USB dongle from the kit can be used to attach a USB drive, so it was copy images off the SD card to the iPad, then attache the USB drive and copy the images to the drive. Slow, but it worked. Similar, for Android would be the USB host cable if your device supports. Smaller tablets might be a good form factor for backpacking while letting you see your images quite nicely.

  4. Dedicated camera backup device. These have been around for a while, but they're constantly changing so rather than link to one, I'll link the B&H collection at B&H Photo. Many of these can be ordered from a variety of online retailers. As a note, B&H will ship to Israel and they'll even let you shop in Shekels. While I'm not in Israel, I've had them deliver to Canada and I have no complaints.

That's about as generic as I can get.

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