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Digital Photo Storage Devices

What are they and why would I need one?

Well, primarily you could say that digital photo storage devices were what they said they were. A device in which the professional or serious, amateur digital photographer would store their digital images (and videos). However, I think they're so good with such cool features, ​everyone should have one! The trouble is working out what size you need. Then you need to think about HDD or solid state (I love solid state for speed).

Digital Photo Storage Devices

With larger sensor DSLR's come much larger files, especially RAW. Add to that the fact that many photographers are getting into video and the need for storage reaches another level. High end, 4K video takes the equivalent of 24/24 or 30 frames per second at 6-10mb per frame!

That's an average file size recording of:

  • 240mb per second or...
  • 14.5gb per minute or...
  • check
    864gb (.86tb) per hour!

I have been shooting video for many years and when HD video came out, I thought those files were huge. Then came the amazing 4K and the files got even bigger. I then ventured into the world of 10-bit 4K and RAW 4K video and boom! I am now looking at 4tb hard drives minimum...for a single job as you can see above.

Old drives can fail

Not only that, the older I get, the older the hard drives I already have get. The older they are, the more chances of becoming corrupt they get. I now find myself buying 4tb hard drives to offload all my old drives onto for safe, reliable and long-term storage. It's a nightmare...

Digital photo storage devices for the photographer

We will look at the humongous hard drives required by modern, professional photographers and film-makers in a moment. Before that, have a look at these hard drives and gadgets at Amazon (below). These would suit most amateur, semi professional and even the professional photographer.

One I particularly like is the Gnarbox of which I have a copy to review soon. This comes with a free app and allows you to do all manner of cool stuff. Oh, and it is super tough and durable in all weather conditions too. Check it out at Amazon below.

Digital photo storage devices for the film​ maker/videographer

If like me, you now shoot video too, you are going to need bigger drives. You may still be shooting in HD which is fairly easy to work with and doesn't take up too much space. However, the benefits of 4K are widely becoming recognised and people are starting to switch and shoot 4K.

Quick tip : By shooting 4K, you are able to zoom in and out and pan left and right during edit. Whilst still outputting to 1080p. This makes your shoot look like you had multiple cameramen or zoom lenses. When in reality, you were using static cameras. Superb and adds a real "Je ne sais quois" to your shoot!

Not only would I recommend looking at large hard drives and network systems, I would go for speed too. For processing, always try to use an internal, good-sized SSD (solid state) drive. That will eat through 4K footage like a knife through butter.

Once the edit is done, I would move the entire shoot over to a large external hard drive for safe keeping. Check out the options below and get more info and reviews at Amazon. By the way, I personally use Amazon for just about all my business shopping now. If you don't have Amazon Prime yet, get it. For the yearly cost, it is a no brainer for free, super fast shipping. I make back the cost of Prime 3-4 times over each year on shipping alone!

For archival only and for fun, check out our reviews of these older, cheaper devices below. These were all I had when I first went digital!

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