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Thread started 23 Sep 2006 (Saturday) 01:17
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Hyperdrive problems

 
ScottE
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Sep 23, 2006 01:17 |  #1

Last spring I purchased a 100 GB Hyperdrive HD80. This unit backs up CF cards very quickly, uses four AA batteries and can back up quite a few cards before the batteries need to be recharged. It does not display images, but seemed to be a good solution for the job of saving images in the field so they could later be downloaded with a fast USB connection to my computer.

Probelms

The first problem occured when I got a Sandisk Extreme III 4 gb CF card. This card will hold about 400 RAW images, but the Hyperdrive stalls after about 200 images and will not download the rest of the files. I thought maybe it had been formatted in FAT16 with a 2 GB directory limit, but that was not the case. It will download a full 4 GB Hitachi microdrive. I emailed Hyperdrive to see if they had any suggestions to correct this problem. I did not receive any reply so I limited myself to just using it with 2 GB CF cards and microdrives.

Problem number two occured while I was on my trip to Africa. My daughter used my spare camera with an old IBM 1 GB microdrive. I put the microdrive in the Hyperdrive to download, but it seemed to be a little thicker than other cards/microdrives and twisted a bit as it went in. This bent a couple of the pins in the Hyperdrive so that I could not download any more cards or microdrives. (Fortunately I had enough large capacity CF cards and microdrives with me the I could switch to shooting JPEG and was able to shoot the rest of my trip.) The slot where the cards fit in is much shallower in the Hyperdrive than on any other CF card reader I have ever used. This appears to be a design flaw because a card can twist and bend the pins if you are not very careful or if the card binds for some reason on the way in.

Problem number three occured when I got home. I connected the Hyperdrive to my computer with a USB cable and turned on the power. The computer would not recognize the hard drive in the Hyperdrive. I tried several things to get it working including trying to plug it in instead of battery power and disassembling to check that the hard drive was plugged in correctly within the unit. You could hear the drive turning, but I could not access it. It appeared that I had lost the first week and half of my trip. I finally took the Hyperdrive to a computer technician who worked for 3/4 of and hour, charged me $80 CDN and managed to download the images and burn them onto a couple of DVD's for me. He says the Hyperdrive unit is toast, but that the Samsung hard drive is still good.

I don't know whether there is any warranty on the Hyperdrive or not, but I don't want it replaced anyway. I would not trust my images to this device again.

Scott




  
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jevidon
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Sep 23, 2006 02:04 |  #2

wow. i have a decent amount of experience with my Hyperdrive so I'll do my best to provide my 2 cents:

Problem #1: I can not help you here because I have only used 2GB UltraII CF cards.
Problem #2: I knew about this shallow slot issue from the get-go and my solution has been to pay special attention whenever I insert a card. I have successfully bent HD pins back into place so I think it should be possible. Use some thin heavy-duty tweezers or pliers.
Problem #3: It would help a lot to know what operating system you are attempting to access the hyperdrive with.


Justin Evidon
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Pekka
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Sep 23, 2006 05:30 |  #3

I have the same experience, problems reading in, many downloaded images corrupted randomly. Apparently the ROM/interface software is faulty - this device does not have my trust. I stick with Nexto CF.


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Crypto
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Sep 23, 2006 06:07 as a reply to  @ Pekka's post |  #4

I posted this back in Feb:

https://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthre​ad.php?t=139392

The new one I have, does work, but I've only used it a few times mostly because I don't find it reliable.


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jevidon
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Sep 23, 2006 09:31 |  #5

Crypto wrote in post #2025376 (external link)
I posted this back in Feb:

https://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthre​ad.php?t=139392

The new one I have, does work, but I've only used it a few times mostly because I don't find it reliable.

i've used my hyperdrive approximately 50-60 times to download the entire contents of my CF card and formatted the card immediately thereafter. Perhaps it also matters what hard drive is put inside the casing - I personally used a Seagate Momentus.


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T.D.
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Sep 23, 2006 17:27 |  #6

I've had great success with my hyperdrive.

I guess I'm lucky...sorry to hear others have trouble with it. Weird!



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rhys
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Sep 23, 2006 19:02 |  #7

I bought mine for $200. I have never used it and I've had it for six months. I found the problem is that it's big and heavy. Plus I'm still not all that convinced that a laptop hard drive can handle all the jolts and movement. Another factor is that 1GB cards are now about $30. By the time I spent $200 in CF cards I would have 7GB of cards and I can't really imagine using more than 2-3GB in a day. If I were to go on holiday and were to leave my laptop at home then the Hyperdrive would become very useful. Even so, I feel that in a year or so, 4GB cards will be about $20 so I could get the whole 40GB in just 10 CF cards!


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FlashZebra
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Sep 23, 2006 20:36 |  #8

Also keep in mind that you can get a good quality 4GB Compact Flash card now for about $75.00 and an 8GB card for about $130.00.

This means that these hard drive based intermediate storage devices are making less and less sense to even own. When flash memory prices were a lot higher, they were definitely a necessary. This is far less true now.

Many (most) photographers could now get by with 12 or 16GB of storage directly on Compact Flash cards, even for extended trips, and the cost would not be much more than one of these hard drive based intermediate storage units.

How often do you actually need more than 16GB or 24GB of storage.

16GB directly on Compact Flash can be had for $260.00 and 24GB can be had for less than $400.00.

And, no risky downloads, no bent pins, no ROM problems, no cords, no batteries, no bulky devices, no loss of time to move your images to only a temporary home, and flash memory has to be intrinsically more reliable than a mechanical based hard drive.

I can understand why these hard drive based storage devices were so popular, but I am have a hard time understanding why they remain so popular.

Enjoy! Lon


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ScottE
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Sep 23, 2006 22:48 |  #9

On my 5 week trip I took 2,829 pictures. I normally shoot RAW and get about 100 images per 1 GB of CF card. That means I would have needed seven 4 GB cards just to store the pictures I took. I would not have wanted to completely fill my cards, so I would want to take at least 40 GB which means a minimum of ten 4 GB cards. I prefer to use Sandisk Ultra or Extreme cards, so that get rather expensive.

The reason I chose to use an 80 or 100 GB storage device was that I want to be certain to have enough capacity. That means 20 to 25 4 GB CF cards if I just took cards and no storage device. In addition to to purchasing, carrying and sorting that many cards becomes a problem.

On this trip I had one 4 GB, two 2 GB CF cards and two 4 GB microdrives. That was the reason I was able to switch to JPEG when the Hyperdrive failed and have enough capacity for the rest of the trip. I miss being able to make some of the adjustments I would have with RAW, but am actually pleasantly surprised with the quality of most of the JPEG images. If you are willing to shoot JPEG, carry lots of CF cards appears to be a viable option. I don't consider it practical for shooting RAW on a long trip where you are doing lots of shooting.

In any case, I now consider it a necessity to keep two copies of every image. That means either two storage devices and reformat the CF cards after saving or one storage device and a whole pile of CF cards to shoot the trip without reformatting.




  
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FlashZebra
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Sep 24, 2006 00:07 |  #10

So, you would prefer two hard drive based devices that by your own experience have proven to have shaky reliability (ballpark cost of $550.00), to 5-8 GB, much higher reliability, Compact Flash cards (ballpark cost of $650.00) to give you your needed 40 GB of storage (admittedly, not your desired Ultras or Extreme cards).

And, the added rigor of double downloading everything to both of those hard drive devices, all those cables, all those batteries, and all that extra volume, weight and space. And, then downloading those files to a more permanent location.

Each to their own, but that seems like a lot of pain for just saving $100.00, and using very good quality Compact Flash cards, not the most expensive spread.

Surely the current second tier of Compact Flash cards like Ridata and Transend have to be as good (that is what the $130.00 per 8 GB cost is based on), and likely more reliable, than those microdrives you are already using.

Possibly we need to just suspend the discussion for three months or so, then it is likely that 40GB of Compact Flash storage will be less than two of those harddrive based storage devices.

At some cost, and it is not going to be long, the price of Compact Flash cards will be such that humans will be wondering what they ever saw in those hard drive based, temporary, storage devices. Kind of like the situation with the microdrives now.

Enjoy! Lon


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rhys
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Sep 24, 2006 11:25 |  #11

When I bought my Hyperdrive I'd not long before spent $30 an a 1GB card and figured I needed the extra storage.

All is not lost, however. It makes a very nice backup drive for my laptop although it is horribly slow.


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jevidon
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Sep 24, 2006 12:28 |  #12

the idea that a hyperdrive takes up a ton of space is a mystery to me...I use the same Energizer rechargeable AA's with the Hyperdrive as I do with my 580EX and, in a pinch, my battery grip for my 30D (which I have never had to resort to). The charger for the batteries I carry with me anyways to ensure that I have enough flash power.


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rhys
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Sep 24, 2006 14:26 |  #13

jevidon wrote in post #2030366 (external link)
the idea that a hyperdrive takes up a ton of space is a mystery to me...I use the same Energizer rechargeable AA's with the Hyperdrive as I do with my 580EX and, in a pinch, my battery grip for my 30D (which I have never had to resort to). The charger for the batteries I carry with me anyways to ensure that I have enough flash power.

The hyperdrive takes the same amount of space as the 420EX and becomes a second large lump to put into a camera bag beside lenses, bodies and cards. In relation to the same storage capacity in CF cards, it takes up a ton more space. Imagine 10 x 4GB cards as a small pile in comparison to the hyperdrive. Also note that CF cards weigh next to nothing while the hyperdrive weighs a ton. Also note that because it contains a hard drive it's fragile and one bang is liable to destroy the drive and lose 40GB worth of data. CF cards are much more rugged.


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jevidon
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Sep 24, 2006 18:57 |  #14

rhys wrote in post #2030713 (external link)
Imagine 10 x 4GB cards as a small pile in comparison to the hyperdrive.

Ok, I'm imagining that "small" pile. It's creating a huge mess in my bag and I am unable to keep track of which one has what on it.

rhys wrote in post #2030713 (external link)
Also note that CF cards weigh next to nothing while the hyperdrive weighs a ton.

You just won't convince me that my Hyperdrive is weighing me down that much. Sorry.


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rhys
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Sep 24, 2006 20:41 |  #15

jevidon wrote in post #2031882 (external link)
Ok, I'm imagining that "small" pile. It's creating a huge mess in my bag and I am unable to keep track of which one has what on it. You just won't convince me that my Hyperdrive is weighing me down that much. Sorry.

Ok. No problem. I'm not trying to convince you of anything. I'm merely stating my experience and my opinions. Have you considered numbering your CF cards? That way you should be able to remember which you have used - particularly if you use them in order. Personally, I used to put empty ones in one ziploc bag and filled ones in another.


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