The Canon Connect Station CS100 kind of looks like an Apple TV box only bigger and uglier; it kind of has one gazillionth the functionality; and it kind of costs three times the price — but don’t mind that: we all have to start somewhere.
Seriously? Canon comes out with a little black box — not so little and not so “comes out” (it’s actually almost 7 times the volume of the diminutive Apple TV and it won’t be available until June) — that allows you to offload your photos to it and then display them on your TV?
Oh, and when it comes out in June, 2015 (that’s two thousand FIFTEEN), it has a USB 2.0 port?
As in: 2.0, not 3.0; 2.0, not Thunderbolt? For up to one terabyte’s worth of images?
Then again, what do you expect for something that was first shown as a concept back in 2010, when USB 3.0 had just begun shipping and Thunderbolt wasn't out yet?
I really have to stop asking so many questions. Except…
Is there ANYTHING to like about this thing? Well… Canon’s trying; it has NFC; and not everyone has discovered Apple TV, iPhoto, Shutterfly, Flickr, Tumblr, or pick your other cloud-based, consumer-focused social storage solution…
Canon Connect Station CS100 Review
The Canon Connect Station CS100 finally went from concept to reality at CES 2015. Canon originally showed the prototype device at Canon Expo 2010, a once-every-five-years event that showcases new technologies and upcoming concept designs. Now, nearly four-and-a-half years later, the Connect Station makes its debut. But is it it too little too late?
Maybe. And maybe not. While we've seen numerous attempts at media stations and media streaming devices that connect to our televisions, the Connect Station one is the first to support wireless transfers using NFC as the hand-off mechanism. While the wireless connectivity may sound gimmicky, the truth is it's a highly useful feature that considerably opens up the appeal of the CS100.
The CS100 is set to cost $299.99 (£199, about AU$370) when it launches in June. The compact, square device weighs 20.11 ounces (570g) and measures 6.13 x 2.01 x 6.13 inches (155.6 x 51.1 x 155.6mm). It's designed to look like it fits right in with the black components of your living room stack.
Inside sits a 1TB hard disk drive, and presumably a processor of some sort, though Canon's not talking about what the guts of the box are beyond the disk drive itself. At front, behind a rubberized flap that you can pull off, sits the CompactFlash and SDXC slots. At the rear are a gigabit ethernet connection, an HDMI port and a USB 2.0 port.
The USB 2.0 port is intended for backing up the contents of the Connect Station to another drive only; select the Backup option from the menu, and the CS100 will create a mirror image on the external hard drive, an image that can be read by your PC, for example, or restored to the CS100. Regrettably, Canon chose not to make this port a USB 3.0 port, in spite of the fact that just about all hard drives sold today are USB 3.0 drives. Another unfortunate design choice: The Connect Station's USB port cannot be used for expanding the storage capacity, as is common on network-attached storage drives; nor can it be used to import images from another hard drive.
Ultimately, the CS100's intent is to solve the perpetual problem of consumers leaving everything on their memory card or camera roll, sometimes for months at a time. By ditching the wires, the CS100 makes it far easier to get photos out of the camera, and onto a drive.
Read full article at techradar.com “Hands on: Canon Connect Station CS100 review”
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(cover photo credit: snap from techradar.com)