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Buyer's Guide 2007: External Storage And Backup

Hard drives, CDs and DVDs provide reliable backup for your thousands of digital images

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Recent advancements in storage technology make it easier than ever for photographers to back up and preserve precious image files. The most reliable systems are automated and leave little to chance, but good work habits also play an important role. There are many options, and the right hardware for you depends on both the volume of files you must protect and your budget.

External Hard Drives
Using a plug-and-play external hard drive offers many advantages, especially if you own more than one computer or if all of the drive bays in your main PC are occupied. Simply unplug the external drive from your notebook and plug it into your desktop, and you have effectively moved your archive from one PC to another. Buy one that has a larger capacity than all of your PC’s internal drives combined.

LaCie Brick Mobile hard drives are stackable and stylish (designed by world-famous artist Ora-Ito) and provide up to 120 GB of storage in a small footprint. They use Hi-Speed USB 2.0 to connect to a PC or Mac and come in a choice of three colors. LaCie offers a full line of storage solutions, including the Rugged All-Terrain hard drive and the colorful Skwarim. The All-Terrain model features a scratch-resistant outer shell and internal shock absorbers. The Skwarim is ultra-compact and is available in bright, hard-to-lose pink.

If you’re looking for the most bytes for your buck, take a close look at the new Maxtor Basics external hard drives. The Personal Storage 3200 is available in capacities up to 300 GB at very affordable prices. Its $149 estimated street price makes it one of the most economical backup devices around. It offers Hi-Speed USB data transfer and is finished in neutral matte gray.

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