Windows or Mac OS users looking for a high-performance desktop storage device should consider IOGears latest 3.5-inch combo Ion Drive, which shipped last week. Targeted for home or office use, the drive supports FireWire 800 and USB 2.0 interfaces and can store as much as 250GB of data. The Ion Drive provides capacities ranging from 80GB to 250GB. The 250GB edition is priced at $420.
I tested the $220, 80GB Ion Drive. The drive has a sleek form factor thats small enough to save space on almost any desktop . It also runs quietly, thanks to its fanless cooling system.
The FireWire 800 interconnect provides data transfer speeds of up to 800M bps, ideal for transferring large data files such as streaming audio/video content.
However, the device doesnt come with a FireWire adapter. Because most current desktops dont support FireWire 800 by default, users will have to spend some cash to get the high-speed transfers. Users who dont want to pay extra for the FireWire 800 adapter can still get the 480M-bps data transfer performance using the USB 2.0 interface.
Like other external hard drives on the market, the Ion Drive is easy to set up, and my Windows XP desktop quickly detected and installed the drive. Users will see multiple partitions after initial installation because the drive is preformatted with the FAT32 file system, which supports maximum partition sizes of 32GB.
For more information on IOGears latest storage offerings, check out www.iogear.com.