HDDs, SSDs, MB/s, Thunderbolt, USB-C... What does it all mean?
We're here to help you out. This week on #TutorialTuesday, Caleb Arias gives us a look at 3 different external storage solutions from G-Technology to help you figure out which device suits your needs best.
Thanks, Caleb. Let's go more in-depth with each device, to find out what you'll need to store your data.
What storage capacity do I need?
If you're a beginner:
The average entry-level DSLR produces a ~30MB RAW file. With the 2TB G-DRIVE Mobile USB-C, you should be able to store up to 30,000 RAW images. That's crazy! And for JPEGs, you could triple that. That's even crazier! For you, 2TB should be more than enough.
If you're a seasoned amateur or semi-pro:
However, if you're shooting RAW images on a full-frame or medium-format camera, that number is going to be dramatically reduced. That's why for more semi-pro shooters, we'd recommend greater storage space, with a dedicated archival storage solution that stays at home.
If you're a video enthusiast:
Obviously, video files are much larger than images. You're gonna want as much storage space as is afforable, and is in a package that's reasonable for you to carry. Here, read/write speed is gonna be more of a crucial consideration for you.
USB-C? 3.1? Thunderbolt?
This is easy! This is simply the port that your laptop allows you to plug in externals to. The majority of laptops will be USB 3.0. This port is not the fastest, which means you won't be able to avail the full potential of some of these drives, but it's still pretty quick at it's top speed. USB 3.1 is this same port, with a little upgrade.
USB-C is a newer port, which you'll find on the new MacBook Pro lineup. This is also Thunderbolt 3 compatible, allowing you to squeeze the most speed out of your external drive.
Thunderbolt 2 is the older port on MacBooks. This is the asymmetrical, squarish one. None of the drives Caleb tested uses this, however G-Technology offer drives with this port option. It's quicker than most USB ports, but is a little older.
MB/s? What does this mean?
Everyone knows what a megabyte is, and MB/s is simply megabytes/second. It's how quick information can move on and off your external drive!
As in the #TutorialTuesday above, this varies greatly, and is arguably more important than storage space. G-Technology offer drives that vary greatly in capacity and speed, so here's a breakdown of when each of them would be most appropriate:
G-DRIVE mobile USB-C: up to 140MB/s
With a write speed of up to 140MB/s, this is not the quickest drive out of the three. At this speed, transferring 100GB of data is gonna take about 10 minutes. For most people, this is gonna be the drive that they'll find the most sensible. It's not the quickest, but it's not slow either.
Keep in mind that this is the most affordable drive of the three, so you get a lot of storage space at a decent speed and price.
G-DRIVE mobile SSD: up to 560MB/s
Wow! 560MB/s is pretty quick. This is gonna be perfect for the enthusiastic amateurs (and the pros) that work with larger RAW files, and edit in Lightroom. Moving 100GB in 3 minutes is going to be more than enough for most people. This is also the smallest drive, perfect to throw in a bag to edit on-location.
G-DRIVE mobile Pro SSD: up to 2800MB/s
Okay. This is ludicrous. This is gonna move that 100GB folder in 30 seconds. What?!
As Caleb demonstrated in the #TutorialTuesday, this is blazing fast. This is gonna be for those of you that shoot and edit 4K video, so you can work directly off of the external drive and not have to muddy up your internal SSD.