I worked with every single macrodrive that is out there 170, 340, .5 and 1 gig. We use them in out rental department and in comparison to those monster type III cards IBM microdrives were the best as far as the durability goes. Currently I have a 1 gig car in my camera and another one in my notebook. I'm just carefull with them. No more jumping, running and throwing. I saw maybe 5 or 6 dead microdrives. All of them destroyed becasue they were droped on a concrete floor during photo shoots. But I guess your camera will be dead too if that happened. I heard stories about people droping microdrives on the carpet and loosing them. Never happened to me but I also never dropped mine. I'm not taking any chances. Treat your macro drive like your treat your camera and you will be fine.
- If this is in essence a hard drive, does it have many bad sectors?
Didn't run into bad sectors but there are fragments that not always can be seen, especially by Mac users. Those fragments have a tendency to pile up and slow down your drive.
- How bad is the battery drain as compared to when you use CF cards?
Maybe. I still haven't run into this problem. I bought extra battery but I still haven't use it. I shoot about 50-60 pictures a day.
- Do the vibrations of the spinning platters cause blur in your photos?
- I heard that you can't use the drive above 10,000 ft. elevation. Ok, how about if I'm on a plane at 35,000 ft. with the camera off. If there's turbulance, will the drive be damaged?
I had microdrives in my bag when traveling to Vegas and LA for photo shows no problem.
- Is it safe to pass the Microdrive through airport scanners?
No problem here either.
- What's the warranty on these things?
One year but if you mess it up (drop, physcial abuse and damage) you are on you own.