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No matter how big the hard drives in our Macs get, there’s still never enough storage. And while flash drives are handy, there are plenty of occasions when we need way more space for data--whether it’s carting around an entire issue’s worth of InDesign files or transferring our collection of ’90s alt-rock MP3s from home to our office machine.
Iomega’s eGo line offers specific versions for Mac users. Besides coming preformatted, Iomega offers backup options in the form of software for Mozy online backup, Retrospect Express, and Iomega’s QuikProtect For Mac. Retrospect and QuikProtect both required installation of Rosetta on our Snow Leopard–equipped test Macs, however, and we eventually gave up when the QuikProtect installer failed after multiple installation attempts.
Go ahead, drop it on the ground.
Where speed is concerned, we were happy with eGo’s performance. The triple interface makes the drive a bit larger than other portables (3.5 inches by 5.5 inches), but it’s a small price to pay for flexible connectivity. And at a little more than half an inch thick, the eGo is still quite portable. FireWire 800 and 400 cables are included, as well as a double-headed USB cable, which will work even with Macs that don’t supply enough current through a single port to power the drive. It’s a nice touch--and a necessary one, since the eGo lacks a port for an AC adapter. The back of the drive features an LED activity indicator, but everyone who saw it complained that the light was excessively bright. After a few hours of being distracted by it, we covered the LED with tape and were much happier.
Speedwise, the eGo performed well for a 5,400 rpm drive. Via FireWire 800, we achieved read and write speeds of 73.1 MB/s and 51.1 MB/s, with USB speeds coming in at 16 MB/s and 14.2 MB/s. And the drive is pretty rugged: The case is made of aluminum, and the drive features Iomega’s Drop Guard to protect the drive mechanism from falls of up to 51 inches. We reluctantly tested the feature, and after a couple drops from varying heights, our data survived unscathed.
Despite the fact that its bundled software choked on Mac OS 10.6, the triple interface eGo is a solid, sturdy option for shuttling data between multiple Macs.
eGo Portable Hard Drive, Mac Edition
PRICE: $99.99, 250GB; $109.99, 320GB; $149.99, 500GB
REQUIREMENTS: G3 or Intel Core Duo processor; Mac OS 10.1 or later; USB 2.0, FireWire 400, or FireWire 800 port
Connectivity options. Plenty fast. Formatted for Mac.
Painfully bright LED. Triple interface makes drive a bit large. Bundled software is dissappointing. No carrying case.