I'll be on a month-long shoot in Africa and am looking for feed-back from users of Epson P-7000, Digital Foci, JoboGiga-Vu, Nexto Extreme Pro users as to best most reliable portable device for back-up under extreme conditions. Speed of transfer and reliability most important.Thanks so much.
Chris--The first thing you need to decide is if you need an LCD. You'll pay almost twice as much for the same size/speed if you want one of the models with an LCD. But if you don't have a laptop then an LCD may well be worth it for checking exposure, deleting rejects before you get home, etc.
I lead photo safaris to Africa and all of those brands have worked for people. Epson is a solid if not exotic choice where you pay for quality and the brand name. Jobo is a little more cutting edge. Digital Foci & Nexto units often come without LCD so they can be much cheaper but of course you can't view your images. So each has its place.
Unfortunately, laptop and external drives are best
At least, that is my opinion. The problem with any of the self-contained image storage units is that the transfer rate is generally slower and a single unit provides no redundancy. So now you have to buy two devices and that starts getting expensive.
The trade off, of course, is weight and size. I generally carry my laptop (Lenovo T61) and two 2.5" external, USB drives (Western Digital Passports). I put the images on one external drive and backup to the other. The big advantage, besides redundancy and speed, is the ability to run Lightroom and get some editing done. I can also email images while on the road, if I have Internet connectivity.
I use a small notebook and 2 external 500 GB notebook size hard drives. I just recently purchased a Acer One mini laptop and I am very happy with it. It runs XP, along with breeze browser, downloader pro, and photoshop elements. I download to the notebook then copy the files to each of the eaternal drives. After copying I now have 2 copies of each file and delete the original from the notebood for the nextr days work.
The Hyperdrive Colorspace is twice as fast as the Epson and has a small LCD for confirmation. It is faster to download to the Hyperddrive then using a netbook or larger laptop to copy those files to external harddrives for backup. Using a card reader with a laptop is painfully slow which is the other option for getting your images to external harddrives. If you don't want to take a laptop/netbook along, then you would need two hyperdrives which come in a large 250GB size. Two hyperdrives would cost more than a netbook and 2 external harddrives, but they would be more compact for air travel.
Thanks so much to all for the excellent responses. After an hour at B&H today, decided to go with the Hyperdrive Colorspace...really liked the Nexto Extreme Pro - only because of the SATA drive, but very big price tag so very grateful for your informative responses.