That isn’t the case anymore as you can pick up the Plextor PX-LB950UE for $220 and plug it in externally to burn single or dual layer Blu-ray disks, as well as DVDs. With both USB 3.0 and eSATA connections you should have no trouble with compatibility and you will want the fast transfer rates due to the volume of data that Blu-ray can handle. Unfortunately PCStats could not get the Plextor to play back the movie that they were using for testing, no matter what software they tried to use to play it. A diagnostic showed nothing wrong with the disk nor with the player and a Google search showed that many people have similar problems with a wide variety of disks and players. They did have a very early version of the firmware; perhaps an updated version will resolve that particular problem. Certainly something to keep in mind before picking up this external drive.
"In recent weeks the talk of the town has been a sleek black external 12x Blu-ray WRITER from the folks at Plextor. The Plextor PX-LB950UE connects via USB 3.0 or eSATA cables and is capable of burning single layer Blu-ray Disk (BD) media at 12x, double layer BD media at 8x and DVD-R media at 16x speeds. In addition, it supports the playback of Blu-ray 3D movie titles. The bonus to going the Blu-ray writer route, is that BD-R media is even more useful than DVD media for archiving MASSIVE amounts of data."
Here are some more Storage reviews from around the web:
- Battle of the SATA 3.0 Controllers @ Techgage
- Apacer Handy Steno AH130 USB 2.0 Flash Drive Review @ Madshrimps
- HornetTek Slipper U3 External Dock @ Bjorn3D
- Thermaltake Max 5G USB 3.0 HDD Enclosure Review @ Tweaknews
- Synology DS110J NAS @ XSReviews
- ineo 3.5? USB3.0 External Enclosure Review @ TechwareLabs
- Corsair Force 3 vs. Force GT 120 GB Solid State Drive Review @ Hardware Secrets
- OWC Mercury Extreme Pro 6G 240GB SSD w/ SF-2282 & Toshiba Toggle @ Tweaktown
- Corsair Force Series 3 – 240GB SSD @ HardwareHeaven
- Plextor PX-M2 128GB SSD @ Hardwareoverclock
- Crucial M4 256GB SSD Review @ Hardware Canucks
- Crucial M4 SSD Firmware Update (0009) Posted – Tests Display Definite Performance Increase @ The SSD Review
- Runcore T50 mSATA SATA 3 (SF-2281) EXCLUSIVE Review – The Worlds First 6Gbps mSATA SSD Hits The Streets @ The SSD Review
Haven’t external hard drives
Haven’t external hard drives replaced optical media and aren’t the actual media still way too expensive relative to hard drive backup (even multiple hard drive backup)?
Right you are. Common optical
Right you are. Common optical media breaks down quickly, so it is in no way safer than any other storage media. Also, the “MASSIVE” amounts of data the article mentions are unfortunately laughable. 25 GB is NOTHING, especially when storing raw photos.
Buy an external 2 TB hard drive instead. It’s dirt cheap and fits the content of ~80 bd-r discs. It’s also a LOT faster and a LOT more convenient. Don’t want to trust a single hard drive with all of your archive storage? Well, then buy two. Or three. From different manufacturers. Clone them.
When the hard drives become obsolete in terms of storage capacity or communication interface (usb etc), then simply buy something else in the future and transfer the content to that new device in one single go. A lot more convenient than transferring the content of truckloads of slow optical discs.
It’s also quite simple to encrypt the whole hard drive using e.g. TrueCrypt. Doesn’t work very well with bd-r discs, atleast not as conveniently.
The consumer optical storage market, as it is in its current state, is doomed. It’s just a matter of time.