Drobo's Mini packs up to 3TB of storage in a portable design, while the 5D boasts BeyondRAID technology.
Storage specialist Drobo took the wraps off
its two latest storage offerings, the 5D system for creative professionals
working with large amounts of rich media and the Mini, a portable digital
storage appliance measuring just 7 inches square, less than 2 inches tall and
weighing less than 3 pounds. The company said pricing, preorders and
availability will be announced in the summer of 2012.
The 5D can support up to 16 terabytes of
protected, solid-state-drive- (SSD-) accelerated data with up to five drives
and an additional SSD baythe equivalent of 32 million photographs, 4 million
songs, 1 million high-definition movies or 48 hours of uncompressed HD video.
Users can access the files through a choice of Thunderbolt or USB 3.0 ports.
Built with BeyondRAID technology with single- or dual-drive redundancy, the 5D
protects data without any user interaction, even in the event of multiple drive
The appliance also features Data-Aware
Tiering technology, which uses the high-performance flash in SSDs to accelerate
performance of the storage array, allowing applications such as Adobe Premiere
and Apple Aperture fast access to data. The 5D is also quieter than
previous-generation Drobos due to its tuned, large, variable-speed cooling fan.
Users can also configure the 5D to spin down drives when theyre not in use to
further reduce noise and save energy.
The Mini features a ruggedized design made of
metallic carbon fiber with a soft-touch rubberized finish that allows it to be
transported with the drives inside, as well as a carrierless design, which
allows up to four 2.5-in. drives to be inserted into a Mini without the need
for any additional drive carriers or screws. Users can carry up to 3TB, and
drives can be added or hot-swapped on-the-fly for storage expansion.
The appliance also protects users from
potential data loss after a power outage through a battery that protects all
data in memory, or cache data on its way to the drives. In the event of a power
outage, the battery, which recharges itself and is designed to last for the
life of the product, keeps the Drobo alive long enough for the data to be
written to non-volatile storage.
I will shoot thousands of images per day at
the Olympics, and having fast, protected storage is critical to my workflow,
Jeff Cable, one of the few photographers representing Team USA at the 2012
Summer Olympics in London, said in prepared remarks. The new Drobo Mini
provides Thunderbolt performance and RAID protection in a compact package that
is not much larger than a single external drive. I cant wait to get my hands
Earlier this year, Drobo teamed up with
Acronis, a provider of disaster recovery and data protection solutions, to
deliver a backup and recovery solution for small and midsize businesses. The
joint solution incorporates Drobos business storage arrays as well as backup
and recovery solutions from Acronis. The combined solution from Acronis and
Drobo is designed to help ease the IT management burden and accelerate data
recovery following an unexpected failure.
Nathan Eddy is Associate Editor, Midmarket, at eWEEK.com. Before joining eWEEK.com, Nate was a writer with ChannelWeb and he served as an editor at FierceMarkets. He is a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.