Memory Card Reader Direct to HDD

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by ACTech, Nov 17, 2010.

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If available, would you buy something like this?

  1. Yes

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  2. No, I prefer buying memory cards.

    3 vote(s)
    100.0%
  3. No, I bring my computer everywhere.

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  1. ACTech

    ACTech New Member

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    Sorry in advance for the long read :)
    I'm a photography hobbiest who recently went traveling. I didn't bring nor did I want to carry my computer with me so I was limited to the 16GB of compact flash that I currently own. On a DSLR shooting in RAW, this can fill up pretty fast. I guess the most logical solution today is to invest in higher capacity memory cards but they can be expensive and they never seem to be enough, especially as picture and video formats take more and more memory as camera technology progresses.


    I came across the HyperDrive iPad Hard Drive. It's pretty much a HDD enclosure that allows you to plug in memory cards and copy the contents to the internal harddrive. Problem is the enclosure itself with no harddrive is $250. Tack on an additional $50-100 for a 320-500gb 2.5" harddrive and that's a nice chunk of change that can go towards new camera gear, lenses, what have you. This brings me to the equipment part.

    I'm thinking of a card reader. In the back is a usb port where you can plug in any external usb harddrive that you already have lying around. You plug in your memory card, push a button, all the content is copied or moved to the connected HD and now the memory card is free to format and re-use. It would fit inside your camera bag or backpack. Something like this should cost somewhere around $20-30. Even if you have to buy an external portable HD, 500gb can be had for around, if not less than $100. That essentially gives you hundreds of gigabytes of memory for $30 if you already own a portable HDD, or hundreds of gigabytes or memory for ~$100 if you don't already have a HDD.

    Is a device like this something photographers/videographers would be interested in?...Or are you guys more prone to spending over $100 for a 64gb memory card?

    I originally wanted to design and make one for my own use (trips, backpacking, etc) but started wondering if I wasn't the only person who wanted something like this.

    Any input/feedback you guys have for me would be awesome. Thanks.
     
  2. VujayPrabhakaran

    VujayPrabhakaran New Member

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    No, I prefer buying memory cards.
     
  3. rainking

    rainking New Member

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    I prefer to have several 16gb cards.
     
  4. Dao

    Dao Well-Known Member

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    Photo backup drive type devices have been around for awhile.

    After quick search, I found this one. It is $120 with 160gb storage.

    If I going to buy this, it will be mainly for backup storage while I am shooting something important. That's means I will still carry multiple flash cards. So that I have 2 copies of the work, one on flash card, the other one on the backup drive.
     
  5. David Dvir

    David Dvir New Member

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    Yeah these have existed for a while. Some even come with screens so you can view the files right away, even RAW :p
     
  6. ACTech

    ACTech New Member

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    Dao...Thanks for the informative insight.

    David...I know these devices exist, I just think they're expensive and the screen isn't necessary. My thinking was I wanted a HIGH capacity memory card without the price tag. I could definitely understand someone wanting a screen though.
     
  7. xsouthpawed

    xsouthpawed New Member

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    I actually have used one of these before. (though this was before I actually owned a DSLR back in 2006ish) Pretty useful, though the one I used didn't have a screen.
     
  8. BrianLy

    BrianLy New Member

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    Just stock up on memory cards as everyone had said.
     
  9. gryphonslair99

    gryphonslair99 Well-Known Member

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    And when that memory card fails you are done shooting. Memory cards are cheap and plentiful. Plus you don't risk missing that once in a lifetime shot while you are downloading that one memory card.
     
  10. Vinny

    Vinny New Member

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    $250 should buy you a lot of compact flash memory. I don't know what camera you're shooting with but a 8Gb SD card gives me over 500 photos while shooting in RAW +JPEG fine. I have the equivilent of 16 Gb - so that's over 1000 photos. I guess if I needed to I could stop shooting the JPEG fine and squeeze out a few more photos as well.

    I did a search and Amazon has them realtively cheap. Unless you're shooting a lot of movement I probably wouldn't go for the fastest cards. Here you go: Amazon.com: cf card memory: Electronics
     
  11. ACTech

    ACTech New Member

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    I agree $250 can buy a lot of cards. That was my point. The device I propose to build, would cost $20-30 and connect to a portable HDD that most people already own...letting you download content from a memory card to the HD without a computer. This effectively gives you 100s of GB of memory while you travel. If you only carry one camera, you could have 2 memory cards at most. 1 always available in you camera while copying the 2nd card's pictures onto the HDD. When the card in your camera is nearing full, switch it out for the other card (now empty), and dump the full memory card onto the HDD. Maybe I wasn't clear with my original post. Also, I went on a 10 day trip, no computer. I filled up 8gb in 5 days, only shooting in RAW. That's what sparked my interest in making something like this.
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2010
  12. gryphonslair99

    gryphonslair99 Well-Known Member

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    That wheel has already been invented. http://photocamel.com/forum/images/smilies/afro.gif

    If I have to carry that much junk I might as well carry a laptop. Also where is my confirmation that the transfer worked properly. What about the need for true portability, like battery powered.
     
  13. Dao

    Dao Well-Known Member

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    For regular camera users:
    Memory cards are so cheap now, it is easier to just carry few more cards.

    For professional:
    They often carry multiple cards anyway since they do not want to put all the eggs in one basket. For those who has the dual card slots camera, they often put multiple cards in the camera and save photos to the cards redundantly.

    If they want to store extra copies to an external device, saving few dollars on device like that is not what they are looking for.
     

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