A new range of products that made me regret not being in Las Vegas during CES 2015 wasn’t a consumer electronics product. It was G-Technology’s Rugged Family of hard drives, an exciting move by the San Jose-based company into truly portable, ruggedized and waterproofed hard drives.
The Rugged Family’s G-DRIVE ev RAW and G-DRIVE ev ATC look set to join the other G-Technology drives in my production kit — photograph lower down the page.
I am also considering other G-Technology drives including the G-DOCK ev with Thunderbolt.
Professional Photographer Lucas Gilman gets Rugged
One of the first things I advise digital stills and moviemaking newbies to do is set in place a decent storage and backup solution. The response, inevitably, is that they plan on going down to the local computer superstore to pick up a cheap USB hard drive or two.
I shouldn’t be surprised. Professional quality hard drives are hard to find in the Australian retail stores and the price difference between Australian and US online retailers is high and growing. The Australian dollar keeps growing weaker but even when it was at parity top quality drives were pricey and a problem to locate.
I rely on the online Apple store because it offers the best selection anywhere, yet you will only see a few of those products on the shelves of Apple Stores here. I wish there were more to be seen – Australian creatives need to be shown the options available to them and the best way of doing that is by having the hardware plugged in and working, lights flashing and drives turning. Then the message might sink in.
Or they can wait until the inevitable catastrophic hard drive crash wipes their data and really drives the message home. Its not just cheap consumer hard drives that crash never to be raised from the dead. I have a box of expensive, now worthless, hard drives at the back of a storage closet.
Their manufacturer used to be considered the default brand by all the photographers and moviemakers I know. I will never buy another drive made by them again. I am keeping a close eye on my remaining drives in that brand and they are earmarked only for temporary storage that isn’t mission critical.G-Technology’s new Rugged Family has got me all excited about portable hard drives again. Click To Tweet
I am by no means a model citizen when it comes to storing and backing up my data. As I am independent and self-funded, money is often a problem and there are inevitable compromises. I don’t have a primary hard drive that is really big enough for today’s massive movie files right now. I am waiting for the next decently-sized project to add more back-up too. But one thing I will never compromise on ever again is the best brand.
And that brand, based on what I have been able to get hold of locally and really put to the test, is G-Technology. I know that there are other hard drive brands out there besides G-Tech and the brand that shall-not-be-named. But the thing is that I have not been able to see any of those other brand products in a store nor try them out nor have I seen them in operation 24/7/365 at a high-end production studio. Seeing is believing.
I was able to test a borrowed G-Technology drive by running it constantly for ages. In contrast to the brand-that-shall-not-be-named, it never failed and it is run almost 24/7 still. That proven reliability is priceless. So I was overjoyed to see that G-Technology has now moved into making ruggedized, droppable, waterproofed portable hard drives.
Even better is that G-Tech’s new black and blue portable drives are part of a plug-in ecosystem that joins location to studio, acquisition to editing and then to safe archival back-up in a way I have not seen with any other hard drive manufacturer.
I haven’t had the pleasure of actually witnessing these new drives in operation nor how they fit into that ecosystem. I don’t know if Apple will be stocking them or when. But I trust G-Technology more than enough to buy them online, from a certain megastore in New York city, for my next big project. I suspect plenty of other Australian moviemakers are going to be doing the same.
And if you are based in the United States and especially New York, you have the benefit of proximity, of being able to see and handle G-Technology drives and you a decent currency to buy them with. I have just been to one US online store and they have new stock just in and more to arrive over the next few days. The prices are trivial in the scheme of things. You’ve got no excuses.
Declaration of non-interest:
I don’t have any sort of relationship with G-Technology nor that other brand-that-shall-not-be-named other than as a happy user. G-Tech does not seem to have an office in this part of the world and I don't know any of their employees. Emails to PR staff in other regions remain unanswered.
Two Australian moviemakers. however, are included in G-Technology's G-Team — Clinton Harn and Jason Wingrove. There are even three female photographers — Dixie Dixon, Lindsay Adler and Lou Freeman — included in the 21-strong G-team membership along with DSLR moviemaking pioneer Vince LaForet. Now there is a name to be reckoned with.
G-Technology Rugged Family of Products
READY FOR ANYTHING
These products have been designed to handle all the knocks, scrapes and splashes of everyday life. So whether you’re in the jungle or the urban jungle, the G-Technology rugged range has the perfect storage solution for you.
DROP & SHOCK RESISTANT
The G-Technology rugged family of products are built to work in unforgiving territory. The G-DRIVE ev RaW is made from a lightweight shock-resistant compound which in its rubber bumper can withstand a drop of up to 1.5m.
When the drive is combined with the ev All-Terrain Case, it is further protected from pressure, shock and dust and can survive a drop from a height of up to 2m. All backed by our industry-leading 3-year limited warranty.
The ev All-Terrain Cases feature a watertight* compartment that floats and protects the enclosed G-DRIVE ev RaW hard drive should it be dropped in water. Giving you enough time to launch a rescue mission!
Compatible with the Evolution Series, the G-DRIVE ev RaW can be used with the G-DOCK ev or as a standalone device.
See full product details at G-Technology's site
Check out Product Guide Here
(cover photo credit: snap from G-Technology)