ASUS Travelair N Wireless 1TB Hard Disk Review

Introduction


When it comes to storage you can either go the ordinary and boring route, or you can opt for something that breaks with the norm with more features than you would expect. I’m taking a closer look at ASUS’ Travelair N today which is a portable USB 3.0 hard disk drive that also works wirelessly with a built-in access point, comes with an SD card reader built-in, and has One-Touch NFC capabilities on top of the 1TB storage capacity.

The ASUS Travelair N ‏(WHD-A2) is a 1TB portable USB 3.0 hard disk drive at heart and that in itself isn’t without. You can easily carry 500 movies, thousands of photos, songs, and files with you where ever you go. An ordinary portable drive has some limitations on the road, mainly the connection interface. What if you would like to access the drive from your mobile phone or tablet? What if you are far from a power outlet? Well, that is no problem with the Travelair N that comes with built-in wireless network capabilities and a battery.

Using the 2.4GHz band, the Travelair N can connect to pretty much any wireless devices available. It is compatible with IEEE 802.11b, g, and n-style connections which cover the entire spectrum of the wireless band. The antennas are internal, so you don’t need to worry about connecting them or breaking them off either. The Travelair N uses enterprise-level WPA2 wireless security to connect with your smart phone or tablet, ensuring all of your content is kept private and secure.

Not only does it come with built-in wireless capabilities, the drive also features a built-in 3300 mAh battery that is rated for up to 8-hours usage. This should be plenty of time until you’re near a charging ability again.

And no, ASUS didn’t stop here and added more features to this drive. The Travelair N supports NFC technology for instant one-touch connection to supported devices without any configuration needs. Simply touch your NFC-supported smart phone or tablet to the drive and you can browse your media library and files straight away.

The final feature of the drive itself is the built-in SD card slot that lets you back up your data from memory cards with simple steps. This is the perfect solution to empty the memory cards onto a larger storage medium and keep shooting those photos while you got the opportunity.

ASUS created the AiDrive companion app which is available on almost any platform: iPhone, iPad, Kindle Fire, or Android devices. The app features an intuitive user interface to let you quickly and easily view and share your photos, videos, and files.

The Travelair N can connect with up to five devices simultaneously when transferring files and up to three devices when streaming movies in HD quality. This allows you to easily share a single drive between multiple systems, devices, and people.

A portable drive needs to have a better resistance to environmental hazards and the Travelair N features an IP43-rated water-resistant design. This should guarantee a protection from accidental splashes and spills onto the drive.

With all the talk about USB 3.0 for PC connections and wireless for mobile devices, we shouldn’t forget that we also can connect a drive like this to all our other smart devices with USB or wireless capabilities, may they be gaming consoles, smart TVs, or something else.

Feature Highlights

  • One-Touch NFC for easy connection
  • Integrated SD Card reader expands storage capacity
  • Connect up to five devices simultaneously
  • Splash-proof design with IP43 water resistance
  • Intuitive, easy-to-use companion app

Package and Accessories

ASUS packed the Travelair N in a horizontal shaped box which is unlike most that come more square. That’s very fitting for a drive like this that is anything but ordinary. The front will let you know what you purchase in a simplistic design including features and capacity.

On the rear of the box, you find a lot more details to the different functions such as environmental protection, wifi, and NFC.

Inside the box was a USB 3.0 cable, a warranty card and safety notice as well as the quick start guide. Normally there would also be an AD/DC power adapter for charging purposes, but that was missing in my review sample.

Transcend Introduces MST800 1TB M.2 Solid State Drive

Transcend introduced a new tiny drive with a large capacity as their newest drive available now sports an impressive 1TB capacity in a standard M.2 2280 form factor module. Sadly this isn’t an NVMe drive, but the new MTS800 is still a drive that I’m sure will become very popular due to its size versus capacity.

The MTS800 would be a perfect fit for most ultrabooks and similar thin systems where you still require a large amount of local storage. It is built with MLC NAND which provides a great reliability and performance at the same time. Besides basic features such as SMART and Trim, the drive also supports Global Wear-leveling, Advanced Garbage Collection, and Device Sleep mode.

Being an SATA3 (AHCI) based drive, it does come with some limitations. The speeds are rated for up to 560MB/s reading and 460MB/s writing which still is fast. Customers who want less than 1TB can get the modules all the way to 32GB, so the MTS800 should satisfy almost any users needs.

The small form factor that M.2 is, comes with another benefit when the drives support it like this one does. I’m talking about Intel’s Smart Response Technology (ISRT) which can use an SSD as a cache between a traditional hard disk drive and the system. We know the principle from SSHDs, but they only provide a small amount of NAND buffer where this drive can give you up to 1TB.

Transcend’s MST800 series adds to the MTS400 and MTS600 M.2 SSD models which are available in 32GB to 512GB capacities. The entire MTS series is backed by a three-year limited warranty. Transcend didn’t reveal any official pricing at this time, but with an availability announcement, we’ll know soon enough when they hit the retail market.

Which is your preferred storage form factor? Do you still use the older 3.5-inch and 2.5-inch form factor drives or have you moved onto the NGFF such as mSATA and M.2? Let us know in the comments.

OCZ Introduces Trion 150 SSD Series

OCZ already showcased their Trion 150 series SSD during CES 2016 in Vegas and now it has been officially introduced. The new Trion 150 series replaces the current Trion 100 series and it is built with Toshiba’s 15nm Triple-Level-Cell NAND technology for even better performance on a budget.

Making the move from traditional mechanical hard disk drives to the faster solid state drives is simply something everyone has to experience. The difference is like day and night, but not everyone has the budget to get the flagship SSDs on the market. That is where these drives come into play as they still offer a great performance but don’t come with the heavy price.

The Trion 150 with its Toshiba controller and 15nm TLC NAND can bring you speeds of up to 550 MB/s reading and 530MB/s writing while the random performance still provides up to 91K IOPS reading and 64K IOPS writing. These specifications will decrease your boot time as well as any data access significantly and an SSD is an upgrade that every system should get. The OCZ Trion 150 will be available in capacities of 120GB, 240GB, 480GB, and 960GB which should cover most people’s needs.

One of the downsides to TLC NAND is that it doesn’t have the same endurance as MLC and SLC NAND, but that isn’t something that should scare you away as a normal user. Despite the lower endurance, these drives will easily outlive their time of operation in most systems and it shouldn’t be something you need to worry about. The Trion 150 has an endurance rating of up to 240TB total bytes written which should be plenty.

The new 15nm Toshiba TLC NAND is quite a bit better than the previous 19nm thanks to the optimized manufacturing processes and it shows in this drive. Ordinary flagship drives can easily handle write loads of 50GB at once, but that’s a problem for TLC drives. They are just as fast with small area writes as the bigger brothers, but when they have to write more than a few GB in one instance, they suffer some performance loss. To combat this, a part of the NAND is being run in SLC mode as a kind of burst area. You can easily copy large amounts of data to the drive at once, but once the SLC cache has been exceeded, the performance will drop a little bit. The good news here is that the new series offers almost twice the write speed that the Trion 100 was able to offer during these scenarios.

Despite being a budget drive, the OCZ Trion 150 is still backed by a 3-year warranty and it isn’t just a normal warranty either. OCZ gave the Trion 150 the ShieldPlus Warranty for the entire time and it’s pretty much the best drive warranty you can get anywhere, especially for free and included. In the unlikely event that a drive needs to be replaced, you got a worry-free customer service experience which eliminates all the hassle and cost surrounding traditional support and warranty claims consumers often have to deal with. OCZ has you covered.

“Our Trion 100 series solid state drives quickly became a top seller for us and are popular among end users seeking a performance boost over hard drives at a very reasonable price,” said Steve Fingerhut, Sr. Vice President and GM of SSD BU, at Toshiba America Electronics Corporation. “We are continually looking for ways to improve both SSD real world performance and value to end users and are pleased to introduce the new Trion 150 series which leverages the latest Toshiba 15nm Triple-Level Cell NAND flash to deliver an even better storage solution for value-oriented mobile and desktop users.”

The Trion 150 is expected to be on par if not below the Trion 100 pricing, so that is great news for consumers. I also really like the new drive design, a little fresher than the previous. We will naturally have full reviews of this series ready for you shortly.

1TB Xbox One Will Be Bundled with Tom Clancy’s The Division

1TB Xbox One

Just in case you don’t already own an Xbox One console and you’re thinking about purchasing one soon, you might want to reach for that wallet as Microsoft is offering a relatively sweet deal right now. As you’re probably well-aware, Tom Clancy’s The Division is scheduled to come out on March 8, but the really good news is that the game will be bundled with 1TB Xbox One consoles. The bundle can be pre-ordered right now from several retailers such as Best Buy, Amazon, GameStop or from the Microsoft Store for $400. Several retailers are planning to release the pack on March 8, but some of them could actually ship the bundle earlier.

Obviously, the US and Canada are not the only countries that will benefit from this offer, but its success will probably depend a lot on the game itself. Not too long ago, Ubisoft has revealed a new gameplay trailer for The Division, and quite a few gamers noticed that the graphics were washed down when compared to the initial trailers, especially as far as global illumination and material shaders are concerned. Recent gameplay videos from the Beta version seem to support these reports as well, but we should probably wait for the game’s final version before we jump to any conclusions.

ADATA HD720 Durable 1TB External Hard Drive Review

Introduction


People with an active lifestyle deserve to carry their storage around with them just as well as clumsy people do, but they should pick their portable storage with care and make sure that it can withstand the treatment it will get. Today I’m taking a closer look at just such a storage drive as I’m having ADATA’s HD720 ultra durable external hard drive with a sporty design on and off the test bench.

The ADATA HD720 is available in three capacity versions, 500GB, 1TB, and 2TB. Today I’m taking a closer look at the 1TB model and will test both its performance on my benchmark system as well as its durability with some clumsy but calculated actions. The HD720 is dustproof, waterproof, and shock resistant for an excellent data protection even when the worst case scenario should happen.

The drive has passed the stringent IP68 test thanks to its durable design. The HD720 even works normally in dusty environments as well as after being submerged in up to 2-meter deep water for up to 2 hours. The HD720 also passed the standard military-grade requirement (MIL-STD-810G 516.6) and even went beyond that and passed the 1.8m drop test.

This is all thanks to the rugged enclosure that the drive is built into. Deep inside the HD720 is a 2.5-inch sized HDD that first of all is cushioned mounted on its own. Next it is covered by a plastic shock structure followed by a special silicon layer that in combination provide the drive with its resilience. The HD720 also features a G-Shock sensor that flashes red when the drive should register a severe shock. When the shock has passed, a solid or flashing blue light displays indicating normal operation has resumed.

A portable drive also needs to be convenient. Thanks to the use of a 2.5-inch HDD you don’t need any extra power supply, the drive can draw enough power directly from the USB connection. The included cable can’t be static attached either or the drive would lose some of its durability. ADATA made a wrap around design on the HD720, allowing you to tug the drive into the groves on the edge of the drive – that at the same time give the drive an even better protection from a side impact.

There are three color choices on the HD720, either blue and black, green and black or completely black. ADATA backs this 211gram light drive with a 3-year warranty.

Feature Highlights:

  • Up to 2TB capacity
  • Dust, Water, and Shock-proof
  • USB 3.0 connection.
  • Cable wrap-around
  • Passed IP68 and MIL-STD-810G 516.6
  • G-Shock Sensor

Packaging

ADATA packed their durable HD720 in a white cardboard box that has a window to view the actual drive inside. The front highlights the capacity as well as safety features that it comes with.

The rear of the box has a little more information about the specifications in multiple languages as well as details on the waterproof, dustproof, and shockproof capabilities.

Inside the box is the drive wrapped with a USB 3 connection cable and a quick start guide should you need that.

Google Maps Reviewers to be Rewarded With 1TB Free Cloud Storage

Google has outlined a new rewards system for users of its Local Guides program. Regular reviewers will earn points for contributing to Google Maps, with redeemable rewards ranging from early access to Google products to 1TB of free cloud storage via Google drive. Users who reach the level 5 points threshold will even be invited to attend the 2016 Google Local Guides summit at the Google Campus.

Google is offering the following rewards:

  • Level 1 (0 – 4 points): Enter exclusive contests (think new Google devices!) in select countries. 
  • Level 2 (5 – 49 points): Get early access to new Google products and features. 
  • Level 3 (50 – 199 points): Show up in the Google Maps app with your official Local Guides badge. 
  • Level 4 (200 – 499 points): Receive a free 1 TB upgrade of your Drive storage, allowing you to keep all the stories, photos, and videos from your travels in one safe place. 
  • Level 5 (500+ points): The very top Local Guides will become eligible to apply to attend our inaugural summit in 2016, where you’ll be able to meet other top Guides from around the world, explore the Google campus, and get the latest info about Google Maps. Look out for details early next year.

Progress can be tracked via the ‘Contributions’ tab on the Google Maps for Android and iOS.

1TB Microsoft Surface Book Costs a Whopping $3,199

Following the release of the 512GB SSD iteration of its new Surface Book tablet/laptop hybrid, Microsoft boasted that it was a 1TB version would soon be en route. Indeed, the higher-storage model is now available for pre-order from the Microsoft Store, but it’ll cost you an outrageous $3,199.

While the 1TB Surface Book also includes 16GB RAM and a Core i7 processor, the $500 difference between that and the 512GB model seems steep.

According to the Microsoft Store, this is what you’ll get for your money:

Tech Specs

Software Windows 10 Pro • Office 30-day trial
Exterior Casing: Magnesium • Color: Silver • Physical buttons: Volume, Power
Dimensions Laptop: 9.14 x 12.30 x 0.51- 0.90 in ( 232.1 x 312.3 x 13 -22.8 mm)
Clipboard: 8.67 x 12.30 x 0.30 in (220.2 x 312.3 x 7.7 mm)
Weight 3.48 pounds (1576 grams)
Storage3 Solid state drive (SSD) 1TB
Display Screen: 13.5” PixelSense display • Resolution: 3000 x 2000 (267 PPI) • Aspect ratio: 3:2 • Touch: 10 point multi-touch
Battery Life Up to 12 hours of video playback1
Processor 6th Gen Intel Core i7
Graphics i7: NVIDIA GeForce graphics (GPU)
Security TPM chip for enterprise security
Memory 16GB RAM
Wireless 802.11ac Wi-Fi wireless networking; IEEE 802.11a/b/g/n compatible
Bluetooth 4.0 wireless technology
Ports Two full-size USB 3.0
Full-size SD card reader
Surface Connect
Headset jack
Mini DisplayPort
Cameras, video and audio 5.0 megapixel front-facing camera
8.0 megapixel rear-facing camera with autofocus, with 1080p HD video recording
Dual Microphones, front and rear facing
Front-facing stereo speakers with Dolby audio
Sensors Ambient light sensor • Accelerometer • Gyroscope • Magnetometer
What’s in the box Surface Book
Surface Pen
Power Supply
Quick Start Guide
Safety and warranty documents
Warranty 1-Year limited

Would you buy one?

1TB PlayStation 4 Using Outdated Hardware

Sony has upgraded the PlayStation 4, offering a new hardware update (CUH-1200) and an increase in internal storage (1TB), but it seems that prospective customers will have to choose between the two, as the 1TB version of the console is reportedly based on the older CUH-1100 series.

Why is that a bad thing? The CUH-1200 PlayStation 4 upgrade offers up 36% power saving while idle, and 25% when in use. As such, the console also runs cooler, and hence quieter, than the previous iteration. Minor tweaks include a more streamlined model, using a smaller motherboard, higher density memory, and a revised Blu-Ray drive. The improved console design effectively renders the CUH-1100 obsolete.

Presumably, Sony thinks it can sell off its remaining CUH-1100 models by repurposing them with a larger hard drive, hoping less-savvy customers won’t notice that they’re buying an inferior version of the console. Since it’s pretty easy to install a new hard drive in a PS4, gamers considering picking up the console would be advised to pick up the CUH-1200 version and swap out the drive themselves if they want more storage space. Sony is expected to sell out of CUH-1100 models by Autumn, so later 1TB versions of the console are expected to include the CUH-1200 architecture. If in doubt, always check the box before purchase.

Thank you TechRadar for providing us with this information.

SP Introduced the Next Generation Portable Armor A85 HDDs

You might remember the pretty amazing Silicon Power Armor A65 that we reviewed not long ago and just that drive has just been upgraded in the form of the new SP Armor A85 and A85M portable and rugged hard drives. The drives utilize a special internal structure design and rigid aluminium exterior to strengthen its protections against all sorts of things, including shock, pressure, water, and dust.

The A85 drive has passed the U.S military’s drop test of MIL-STD 810G Method 516.6 Procedure IV (transit drop test) and the IP68 standard that it can resist water and dust. Added is the pressure resistance where it can withstand a pressure of up to 500kg of force. The droptest includes freefall tests with a height of up to 122cm on 26 different contact points, so your data should be well protected.

The Silicon Power Armor A85 also offers the SP HDD Lock Utility, a free software download for full disk encryption and 256-bit AES encryption with SP Widget for Windows or Mac OS. IT also features the practical cable carry design where the USB 3.0 cable can be easily attached to the rear of the drive. Have everything in one place.

The A85 and A85M drives are backed by a 3-year warranty and are offered in three capacity options of 500GB, 1TB, and 2TB.

WD Turns Their Blue Series Into SSHD Drives

Western Digital has a colourful range of hard drives which is kinda fitting right now with everyone turning their Facebook profile into a rainbow. We know the RED NAS drives very well from our review section and WD also has their Purple series for NVR, Black series for performance, Green series for the environment, and the Blue series that is kinda of the normal desktop series.

It has been a while since we’ve seen any new drives in the Blue series, but that has just changed as WD released the newest evolution of this drive series. The WD Blue series has turned into a SSHD series and gotten a NAND boost.

The new WD Blue series initially comes in two version, a 3.5-inch 4TB version (WD40E31X) and a 2.5-inch 1TB version (WD10J31X). Both of them have 64MB cache and 8GB MLC NAND.

The 4TB drive has a speed rating of 150MB/s while the 2.5-inch 1TB drive only performs up to 100MB/s. The NAND should however boost up the hot file access a lot and improve boot times as well as overall load times of frequently accessed data.

The two new WD Blue drives are expected to launch on July 2nd and come backed by a three-year limited warranty. As for the prices, the new WD Blue 4TB is currently listed starting from €189.90 and the 1TB is listed from €94.90.

Microsoft cuts Xbox One Price, launches 1TB model

Microsoft is making some major cuts to the Xbox One one and half years into its life. Microsoft will be permanently cutting the price of the original Xbox One to $350 USD. In addition, the rumoured 1TB model has also been launched along with a new Wireless Controller. The new 1TB model will take on the old price of $399 while the controller will cost $65 if bought separately. Halo: Master Chief Collection will also be bundled in select regions fo a period of time. Previous 1TB Xbox Ones had been limited bundles, but wide availability should help boost sales.

The new wireless Xbox controller brings some minor tweaks as well. It’s got improved bumpers and can now accept wireless over the air firmware updates. Most importantly, the addition of a 3.5mm stereo jack allows you to use your own headset without an adapter. A PC adapter for the controller will come for about $24.99. While none of these additions will likely sway a PS4 fan, fence sitters, and hesitant Xbox fans will be sure to love the changes.

Microsoft originally cut prices on the Xbox One in the face of stiff competition against Sony’s PS4. The PS4 has been consistently outselling the Xbox One since launch and it was partially due to Microsoft’s price cut that has helped stem the tide. A permanent price drop means Microsoft realizes that the Xbox One still needs some help competing with the PS4.  While the 1TB model will offer some advantage compared to the PS4 at the same $399, Sony may yet introduce their own rumored 1TB model to do combat. With games ever growing in size, more storage space will always be welcome, especially for those unwilling to void their warranty by doing their own upgrades.

Mushkin Expands the REACTOR SSD Series

Mushkin has announced the expansion of their REACTOR SSD line-up in recognition that not every user needs the same amount of storage. The REACTOR SSD was launched as a 1TB version which might be too much for some people, both storage-wise and certainly on the price point. Now Mushkin has added a 256GB and a 512GB version to the series for just those people.

The Mushkin REACTOR SSD is built around a Silicon Motion SM2246EN SSD controller and it is rated with transfer speeds of up to 560MB/s reading and 460MB/s writing in sequential tests. The random 4K figures look equally great with a performance of 74K IOPS read and 76K IOPS write.

Mushkin is an American company that both develops and manufactures their products in-country, so it’s no surprise that this is where the drives will be available first. American customers and fans can also get a little bonus at the moment as Mushkin launched a new campaign together with NewEgg for a bonus on your purchase as well as a sweepstake for a complete gaming system.

 

To celebrate this launch of these two new REACTOR capacities, Mushkin launched a campaign with NewEgg where you’ll get a $30 Ghost Recon Phantoms voucher with the purchase of participating Mushkin products and as long as supply lasts. Starting May 1, 2015, gaming fans can also enter the Ghost Recon Phantoms Sweepstakes for a chance to win up a custom-built Mushkin Extreme Gaming PC and much more.

WD RED 2.5-Inch 1TB in Four-Disk RAID Review

Introduction


Western Digital launched their WD RED line quite a while ago, and it’s been a successful one. We’ve previously had a look at how the 2.5-inch version with 1TB capacity performs as a single disk, but we’ve yet to look at how four of these will do in a RAID environment. The WD RED drives are primarily built for NAS usage, but they’re also well suited for SOHO users who want more performance and reliability in a small size.

Network attached storage is getting more traction every day and more and more people take the plunge into the world of NAS, but not everyone wants a large system. A tiny NAS with 2.5-inch drives is the solution, and the WD RED drives are perfect for this. They come as both 750GB and 1TB versions, but it’s the 1TB version that’s on the bench today.

The 2.5-inch WD drives run with an Intellipower spindle speed of 5400RPM and come with 16MB of cache, and an SATA 6Gbps interface. They’re rated to handle a workload of 120-150TB of data per year, which should be more data throughput than most small businesses will put their drives through.

The NAS optimized firmware, called NASware 2.0, is an exclusive technology to WD that gives their drives far more enhanced reliability with a 35% improvement in MTBF (Mean Time Before Failure) over their standard desktop drives, better compatibility with NAS systems, and a more energy-efficient operation which in turn leads to lower operating temperatures, a longer warranty for piece of mind and a system known as 3D Active Balance Plus. This dual-plane balance control, has helped to drastically increase the reliability of the drives – with a better balance, there are far fewer vibrations and this means the platters will degrade at a much lower rate thus increasing the longevity of the drive and its performance.

The 2.5-inhc drives themselves are 9.5mm thick, which really isn’t a lot considering the capacity. The drives are powered by the Marvell 88i9446-NDB2 high-performance storage controller and it is paired with the Samsung K4H2816380-LCC 16MB cache chip. The motor controller is WD’s own Nautilus that handles the Intellispeed capabilities.

Buffalo Announced new MiniStation Extreme NFC Portable Hard Drive

Data security is more important than ever, especially for companies who work with a lot of personal details about their customers. Buffalo announced a new external hard drive that doesn’t just come with great physical resistance, it also packs the latest in digital protection. Buffalo’s new portable hard drive is called the MiniStation Extreme NFC and it will be available as both a 1TB and a 2TB version.

The drive has been tested and passed the US military drop test where it can withstand bumps and drops from a height of up to 1.2 meters. The ruggedized chassis and specialized internal bumpers absorb and transfer the shock away from the drive itself. It has also passed the IPX3 test to prove that it can withstand water and splashes and the IPX5 test for dust protection.

The digital side doesn’t just bring a 256-bit AES Full Data Encryption to protect sensitive data, it also comes with an included NFC smart card to protect and unlock the files. You don’t need to remember any passwords and you can ship the card and drive separately for additional protection.

“When examining the rugged portable drive market, many of our competitors focus on being the best at a single metric of device protection while sacrificing other data security capabilities,” said Matt Dargis, COO, Buffalo Americas, Inc. “We designed the MiniStation Extreme NFC to be the most complete rugged portable drive on the market, including features that not only protect against the elements, but also support the latest hardware encryption technology and NFC secure access functionality. We packaged all of this functionality into a sleek, compact design that sets it apart from the competition.”

The MiniStation Extreme NFC comes with an integrated flex connect cable and connects through USB 3.0 for maximum transfer speeds.

The new Buffalo MiniStation Extreme NFC is available now for an MSRP of $129.99 for the 1TB model (HD-PZN1.0U3B) and $199.99 for the 2TB model (HD-PZN2.0U3B). Both are backed by a three-year warranty and comes bundled with TurboPC EX2, Backup Utility, Formatter2, and Lock and Go for NFC.

Sony Unveiled Portable and Durable Pro-Series HDDs With Dual Interface

Sony has unveiled their newest portable HDD for professionals, offering up to 2TB capacity and dual USB 3.0 and Thunderbolt interface. The durable drive is perfect for working in the field and creating extra backups of recorded content while keeping it all safe.

The new 1TB sized PSZ-HB1T and 2TB sized PSZ-HB2T can perform with up to 122MB/s at both reads and writes as well as being extra durable. Both the internal and external components have been optimized for rugged usage and the drive passes the military drop tests and they’re also both IP5X dust and IPX4 splash resistant.

The rubber encasing doesn’t just help the Sony Pro storage series to keep your drives safe, they’re also designed to make the drives stackable. The open design in the middle allows the drives to maintain a good heat dissipation through the gap, even when stacked.

The drives also come with a practical carrying case that has room both the cables and the drive itself. It also has a handy slip where you can write what content you got on there.

The new Sony PSZ-HB2T and PSZ-HB1T HDDs are planned to be available in May 2015 with suggested pricing to be determined.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9iz3knsLufo

Crucial BX100 1TB Solid State Drive Review

Introduction


After having tested the Crucial BX100 500GB SSD a little while ago, it has now become time to take the 1TB model a test drive on my test setup.

“We designed the MX200 and BX100 to meet the varied needs of the market, making it easier for anyone to move to an SSD, whether they are a seasoned computer enthusiast or an absolute beginner, all while keeping value top of mind,” said Jonathan Weech, senior worldwide product manager, Crucial. “These drives leverage Micron’s years of heritage in storage technology to deliver advanced features and performance, resulting in an unparalleled SSD experience for our consumers.”

The BX100 is a budget series of SSD drives, but that doesn’t mean that you have to sacrifice a whole lot of performance. The drive still promises sequential operations up to 535MB/s reading and 450MB/s when writing – on all file types. The random performance is rated for up to 90k IOPS.

The BX100 series is the first of Crucial’s drives to use the Silicon Motion SM2245EN controller, a controller we’ve seen perform great in other drives. Inside the drive, we also find 16 Micron NAND and two Micron RAM cache chips.

The BX100 also has a pretty good feature list with thermal monitoring, data path protection, active garbage collection, TRIM and SMART support as well as Error Correction Code (ECC). The only thing that could be considered missing is the hardware encryption.

It has comes rated with a life expectancy of 1.5 million hours MTBF and an endurance rating of up to 72TB total bytes written (TBW). That would equal 40GB of data being written every day for a five year period – two years longer than the three-year warranty, so the stability and safety on this drive should be guaranteed.

The Crucial BX100 SSD isn’t the fastest drive on the market, but it’s not designed to be. By treating all data the same, the Crucial BX100 allows you to do everything quickly whether you’re saving an image, accessing a ZIP file, or loading a video – on a budget.

With a 1TB capacity like we’re getting from this drive, we decrease the consideration to replace the old mechanical drives significantly. An SSD such as the BX100 will perform over fifteen times faster than a typical hard drive, be two times more reliable, be over twice as energy-efficient, and generally be more durable due to better shock resistance and lower heat creation. If the price matches the performance, it could be a winner.

LaCie Announced Porsche Design Mobile Drive with USB-C Connector

Apple just announced their new MacBook and there is a lot of talk about the USB-C technology. Android smartphones will also feature the connector soon and Asus has already presented their full lineup of device. But a connector isn’t enough, we also need to attach something to it. For that, LaCie announced the addition of USB-C technology to its Porsche Design Mobile Drive that is available up to 2TB capacity.

For those who don’t know it, LaCie is the premium brand of Seagate and they make some truly beautiful drives for those who want something special. The Porsche Design Mobile Drive has been specially designed with its aluminium finish to match the MacBooks, but it will of course work with any system. It supports Time Machine backups and transfer speeds up to 100 MB/s.

The user-friendly USB-C connector makes it easier than ever to connect these new drives, we all know the three-turn USB connection move. For compatibility, the LaCie drive also comes with an included adapter for USB 3.0 or USB 2.0 ports.

The LaCie Mobile Drive enclosure is made from 3 mm thick solid aluminum and the drive comes backed by a two-year warranty. Availability is set for next quarter with a 500GB slim size model as well as 1TB and 2TB models. No word on pricing yet.

Thanks to LaCie for providing us with this information

Silicon Power Introduces Armor A65 Durable Portable Hard Drive

Silicon Power has launched their latest Armor series portable hard drives, the Armor A65, that comes with almost any protection you could want. It is shockproof, waterproof and dustproof, comes with encryption software and is rigorously tested. The Armor A65 is the first portable hard drive that passes the IP67 standard in the industry that certifies complete protection against dust penetration, has passed the U.S military’s drop test and can stay submerged in up to 1 meter of water for up to 30-minutes.

The Armor A65 consists of two layers of rubber and a middle frame to create a unibody design which makes the casing very resistant and durable. The internal suspension system provides a vibration damping function to reinforce overall stability while the outer rubber cover not only creates a shockproof shell but makes the surface anti-slip and anti-scratch. Featuring advanced 3-layer protection, the rugged Armor A65 is an expert in shock resistance.

A portable hard drive doesn’t just need to be robust, it should also be portable. The Armor A65 has a built-in and attached USB 3.0 cable that reduces the size and makes it easier to carry. To meet different storage needs, the Armor A65 is available in 500GB, 1TB, and 2TB capacity options.

“The Armor series has been well received in the market, but we still keep improving to bring innovations to users,” said a SP Industrial Designer. “We tried to make the Armor A65 more out of the ordinary, in either its function or appearance. It is the first portable hard drive in the industry that applies the unibody cup-like design and passes the IP67 dustproof/waterproof standards. Thus, we’re confident that the Armor A65 can withstand any demanding conditions.” SP always takes every detail into consideration; for water and dust are the most common threats to portable hard drives, we especially designed the Armor A65 to remove all of the threats and set a new standard for data safety.”

 

Armor A65 Product Features:

  • Compliant with the U.S. military drop-test standards MIL-STD 810G Method 516.6 Procedure IV (transit drop test), a freefall test (122cm) on 26 contact points.
  • Industry’s-first to meet IP67 dustproof/waterproof standards
  • Advanced internal hard drive suspension system
  • Delicate cable storage design
  • SP HDD Lock Utility free software download for full disk encryption
    (Note: Please remember your password and keep it safe. If you forget it you will not be able to access your data.)
  • SuperSpeed USB 3.0 interface
  • Intelligent LED indicator
  • Easy to plug and use; no external adapter required
  • SP Widget free download software, providing 7 major back-up and security functions

Armor A65 Product Specifications:

  • Dimensions: 143.4 x 86.7 x 20.7 mm
  • Weight: 242~277g (by capacity)
  • Capacity: 500GB、1TB、2TB
  • Material: Rubber/ Plastic
  • Color: Black
  • Interface: USB 3.0 / USB 2.0 compatible
  • Data transfer rates: Max. 5 Gbps (USB 3.0 Mode); Max. 480 Mbps (USB 2.0 Mode)
  • Power supply: DC5V (Power supplied through USB)
  • Supported operating systems: Windows 8.1/8/7/Vista/XP, Linux 2.6.31 or later, Mac OS 10.5 or later
  • Operating temperature: 5℃~ 55℃
  • Storage temperature: -40℃~ 70℃
  • Warranty: 3 years

Thanks to Silicon Power for providing us with this information

Samsung Rolling Out New All-in-One Curved PC

We know Samsung has its thing with curved displays, one of the examples being the Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge. However, now the company appears to take its curved display technology to the PC market as well, having planned to launch a new all-in-one PC, the Ativ One 7, featuring the technology on the 8th of March.

The company first showcased its design at CES, featuring a 27″ curved display with a curvature of 4000R. In terms of specs, the Ativ One 7 comes equipped with an Intel i5 CPU, 8GB Ram and 1TB of storage, classifying it as a ‘good family PC’.

The price will be a bit steep though. Even if the specs do not look so amazing, the curved display technology will still add extra to the price. Samsung is said to be selling the PC for $1299 in the US, with pricing for the UK and Europe still unconfirmed.

Thank you KitGuru for providing us with this information

Crucial MX200 1TB Solid State Drive Review

Introduction


Crucial recently launched the MX200 series solid state drives and we’ve already had a look at the 250GB model here a little while ago. Today I’m taking a closer look at the big brother, the Crucial MX200 1TB solid state drive.

“We designed the MX200 and BX100 to meet the varied needs of the market, making it easier for anyone to move to an SSD, whether they are a seasoned computer enthusiast or an absolute beginner, all while keeping value top of mind,” said Jonathan Weech, senior worldwide product manager, Crucial. “These drives leverage Micron’s years of heritage in storage technology to deliver advanced features and performance, resulting in an unparalleled SSD experience for our consumers.”

The Crucial MX200 1TB SATA 6Gb/s 2.5-inch client SSD is the next generation and follow-up to the highly successful and recommended MX100 series.

The Crucial MX200 series can perform sequential reads on both compressible and incompressible data with up to 555 MB/s which in itself is very impressive. Crucial adds to that with an endurance rating of 320TB total bytes written (TBW), which equals to 175GB per day for 5 years.

While the little brother relied on the Dynamic Write Acceleration to keep up the speeds, both the 500GB and 1TB models don’t require this. The can still perform great with up to 100K random read IOPS and up to 87K write IOPS.

Crucial’s RAIN technology protects your data at the component level, similar to how RAID works. This technology increases the security and protection of your data to a level that’s rarely seen in consumer-class SSDs.

Hardware encryption is also supported via AES 256-bit encryption, so all those private files can stay safe from hackers and other bad people. The Adaptive Thermal Protection technology enables the Crucial MX200 to dynamically adjust storage component activity based on how you’re using the drive, thereby allowing your storage to stay cooler.

The Crucial MX200 also features four layers of Exclusive Data Defense to prevent data corruption as well as being backed by a 3-year warranty.

Where the 250GB model only required the use of one side of the PCB, this 1TB model needs both sides and we find eight Micron NAND chips on each side. The cache has also been doubled while the controller stays the Marvel 88SS9189.

Features

  • Hardware Encryption
    • AES 256-bit encryption
    • TCG Opal 2.0-compliant
    • IEEE-1667-compliant
    • Compatible with Microsoft eDrive
  • Data Transfer Software – Includes Acronis True Image HD software for free data transfer
  • Redundant Array of Independent
  • NAND (RAIN)
  • Exclusive Data Defense
  • Adaptive Thermal Protection
  • Power Loss Protection
  • Data Path Protection
  • Active Garbage Collection
  • TRIM Support
  • Self Monitoring and Reporting Technology (SMART)
  • Error Correction Code (ECC)

G-Technology Launches Rugged Mobile HDDs

G-Technology probably isn’t a company you’ve heard a lot from, but they have enough knowledge in their backs being a part of HGST (WD). They’ve announced the new G-DRIVE ev ATC and the G-DRIVE ev RaW solutions rugged HDDs with Thunderbolt and USB 3.0. G-Technology also announced new Thunderbolt and USB 3.0 all-terrain cases for turning the original G-DRIVE ev, RaW, or ev SSD into a rugged all-terrain storage solution.

“My work as an adventure photographer takes me around the world to remote and sometimes dangerous locations, and keeping my once-in-a-lifetime shots safe is top priority,” said Lucas Gilman, adventure sports photographer and filmmaker. “Working closely with G-Technology, I was able to secure a G-DRIVE ev ATC and took it with me to Peru and Hawaii for recent surfing photo shoots. G-Technology’s newest G-DRIVE ev ATC helped ensure that my irreplaceable images were safe, all while withstanding sandy beaches, bumpy off-road terrain and ocean mist.”

The G-DRIVE ev RaW is a rugged and lightweight portable hard drive that is strong enough to withstand a 1.5-meter drop. It is USB 3.0 bus-powered and designed to go anywhere, providing on-the-go access to photos, videos, music and more. The G-DRIVE ev RaW can be used as a standalone device or used with the Evolutions Series’ G-DOCK ev with Thunderbolt or the new ev all-terrain case. The drive comes formatted for Mac to increase out of the box compatibility as Windows users more easy can reformat the drive to their needs. Availability will be this month for an MSRP of $129.95 for 1TB and $99.95 for 500GB.

The G-DRIVE ev ATC kicks it up another notch with a waterproof and floating enclosure (for a limited time) and a resistance for drops from up to two meter height. The case is removable and also compatible with earlier G-DRIVEs as well as purchasable on its Inside it has a 7,200 RPM-based hard drive to maximize transfer speed using Thunderbolt or USB 3.0.

The G-DRIVE ev ATC will also be available later this month with a capacity of 1TB and an MSRP of $229.95 for the Thunderbolt version and $179.95 for the USB 3 version.

Thanks to G-Technology for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of G-Technology

LaCie Unveiled Mirror Portable Hard Drive

LaCie, a premium brand of Seagate’s, has introduced their new Mirror portable hard drive created by the French designer Pauline Deltour. The drive is enclosed in scratch resistant Gorilla Glass 3, making this 1TB drive both stylish and useful.

“You have to look twice to discover the LaCie Mirror’s true ambition,” said Deltour. “Covered by mirrored glass, it’s first an elegant and functional object, and only on second glance is it revealed to be a slim high–performance hard drive.”

 

The drive connects through USB 3.0 and offers LaCie Backup Assistant and Private-Public that is an AES 256-bit software encryption. The drive itself measures 80 x 128 x 13mm and the wooden stand measures 80 x 155 x 14mm. The drive weighs 230g without the stand, so it’s highly portable.

The new 1TB LaCie Mirror portable hard drive will be available in late January for an MSRP of $279.99 at LaCie.com. Wider availability will come later this year. The drive also comes with a carrying pouch and cleaning cloth to keep it pretty and great looking.

Thanks to LaCie for providing us with this information

Images and video courtesy of LaCie

Eurocom Adds Fastest 5400RPM 7mm HDD Option to Their Amazing Systems

Eurocom builds some serious mobile computing machines that really don’t lack anything in comparison with their stationary companions, you might remember the recently launched Neptune 4K Workstation that offers up to 6.5TB storage, 32GB memory, i7 Extreme CPU as well as Nvidia Quadro GPUs. Now they’ve added the fastest and most robust 5400RPM 2.5-inch 7mm hard disk drive as another option to all their fully upgradeable laptops and Mobile Workstations.

The new HDD available  is the HGST Travelstar Z5K1000 drive that is 26 percent slimmer compared to traditional 9.5mm drives and weights only 95 grams. It offers the industry’s highest operating shock at 400G/2ms and non-operating shock at 1000G/1ms to protect against bumps and rough handling in mobile environments.

The HDD is the seventh generation of self-encrypting drives (SED) to feature HGST’s Bulk Data Encryption for that extra protection of your sensitive data. It’s built with a two-disk design that is said to deliver nearly silent operation at 2.1 idle/2.2 seek bels.

Drive Specifications

  • 1TB of capacity
  • Advanced Format, 512-byte emulation
  • 6Gb/s SATA interface
  • Dual-stage Actuator (DSA)
  • Self-encrypting for data security
  • 5400 rpm Rotational Speed
  • 95 Gram Weight
  • 1000G/1 ms Non-Operating Shock and 400G/2ms Operating Shock
  • 600 000 Load/Unload Cycles
  • 32 MB Data Buffer

Thanks to Eurocom for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of Eurocom

Angelbird SSDwrk Now Available as 1TB Version

Angelbird has announced that their great looking SSD wrk and SSD wrk for Mac drives now are available as 1TB versions (SSDWRKM1TB). A couple of months ago when we tested the SSD wrk, we saw that there was plenty of physical room inside the robust aluminium chassis. Taking that and coupling it with the advanced in NAND flash technology and we get this 1TB beauty.

“We are happy to announce the extension of the successful SSD wrk-series with the two new 1 terabyte versions. This series now covers the entire consumer SSD spectrum, offering perfectly adapted models for every requirement,” said Roman Rabitsch, CEO of Angelbird.

The Angelbird SSD wrk is built with the SATA 3.1 interface and has the SMI2246EN controller and custom packed MLC NAND inside. It can reach maximum read and write speeds of  564 and 456 MB/s and the new 1TB version can reach 72K IOPS. The drive features over-voltage, overload, EMS and ESD protections. Mac users might love this drive even more, as it is one of the very few third party drives to support TRIM out of the box without need for drivers or tools, including OS X Yosemite.

The SSDwrk comes with a five-year warranty and an MSRP of €483.25 in Europe and $599.00 in the States, excluding VAT. As a bonus, you can take a tour behind the scenes at Angelbird’s facilities in Austria and get a glimpse into SSD manufacturing.

Thanks to Angelbird for providing us with this Information

Images and video courtesy of Angelbird

Seagate Announces Enterprise NAS HDDs up to 6TB

Seagate has just announced their new lineup of hard disk drives for Enterprise NAS environments. Where they’ve had the normal NAS series for a while, it’s now time to get the last gear in and bring out that extra performance needed on a bigger enterprise scale.

The new drives are optimized for up to 16 bays and come in up to 6TB capacity. The platter speed has gone up to 7200 RPM from the 5900 RPM in the consumer models. Seagate also offers these new drives as 2, 3, 4, and 5 TB models. But the 5 and 6TB are a first in this market segment as WD’s equivalent as RED Pro only go up to 4TB at the moment.

In the event of a failure, be it environmental, human error, or accident, the Enterprise NAS HDD is supported by Seagate’s optional Rescue Data Recovery plans, which provide end-to-end protection enabling industry-leading data recovery with more than a 90 percent success rate.

The new Seagate Enterprise NAS drives come with a 5-year warranty and have built-in RAID Rebuild technology for reduced downtime, Error Recovery Control for data accuracy and protection, and RV Sensor for detecting and compensating for vibrational disturbances.

Some shops already have the drives listed, but with 3-weeks or more on estimated arrival and with prices that seem very far fetched. Once an MSRP gets out, I’m sure the price will drop down to a normal level just as well as the mis-labeled current listing will be fixed. There seems to be a lot of mis-match between the Enterprise NAS and normal NAS models.

Thanks to Seagate for providing us with this information

Image courtesy of Seagate

ADATA Launches HV100 External Hard Drive in Three Colours

Adata has announce the arrival of the HV100 External Hard Drive with a sandblasted smudge-free finish available in three colours and three capacities. The HV100 comes with a G-Shock sensor protection and has both the OStoGO and HDDtoGO features that extend the functionality of the drive.

The HV100 will be available in 500GB, 1TB or 2TB sizes and connects through the USB 3.0 interface. The built-in multi-coloured LED will show the connections status, mode, and activity as well as warn you when a severe shock should hit the drive.

The HDDtoGO software enables you to enjoy true mobility and leave no trace behind when working remotely from your office while the OStoGO software allows you install your Windows OS via your external drive. Both handy features to have with a portable drive.

There is no word on pricing or availability yet.

Thanks to AData for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of AData

Mushkin Released 1TB Reactor 2.5-inch Solid State Drive

Mushkin unveils the new Reactor series of solid-state drives that offer 1TB capacity without costing an arm and a leg. The Reactor SSD provides the extreme performance benefits of a solid-state drive while giving you the big data capacity of a mechanical hard drive.

It features the Silicon Motion SM2246EN controller and can reach transfer speeds of up to 560MB/s while reading and 460MB/s writing. The random 4K performance is rated to 74K/76K read/write IOPS. Mushkin didn’t provide any information on what NAND type is used, but some shops have it listed as MLC. If this is true, it’s something that will let this disk stand out from the competition budget models of the same size.

The Reactor 1TB solid state drive features S.M.A.R.T., TRIM, NCQ, DevSleep, DataRefresh, EartlyRetirement, Secure Erase, Shock Resistant and more and comes backed by a 3-year warranty. It is already available at some retailers and can be bought for £299.00 at Alternate for example.

Thanks to Mushkin for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of Mushkin