As computers are becoming more and more portable, so are external hard drives following suit. For a portable hard drive, versatility, portability and reliability are three criteria which determine its sale-ability. One company that has had a long experience in the manufacture of external hard drives is Iomega. Its image took a dent for producing some really bad products (the Screenplay in 2006). Over the past few years, the products have improved and their latest product the eGo Leather Portable Hard Drive should be putting the company back on track. The stylish and compact brown leather portable drive features the ‘Drop guard’ feature which makes it resistant to falls even from a height of 4 feet. Apart from the style quotient, it also features a bus powered connection eliminating the need for a separate power adapter. Does it manage to strike a chord with the audience? Read the review to find out whether the drive has what it takes to be popular.
Stylish leather casing:
In this era of digital entertainment, we often find the need to store data in external hard drives. But very often, the drives are either bulky or ugly looking. But the Iomega eGo leather Hard drive is a classic exception. It is amazingly fancy. Designed to add class to storage activities, it is wrapped in rich brown leather making it look like a hip drinking flask rather than a storage device. The chrome end caps add an exquisite touch to it. Had a spout been present, people would have assumed you to be a closet drinking alcoholic. The leather adds a bit of a soft feel to the device making it easy to carry. However, the leather would get abused over time and we suggest treating the cover of the drive with Lexol every couple of months to keep the skin soft and supple.
White LED indicator:
At the bottom of the drive is a white LED activity indicator. While most drives in the market feature LEDs that are blue, green or red and are usually super bright, the LED on the eGo is bright enough to be noticeable. Beside the indicator, there is also a USB 2.0 port which also functions as a charging point.
Great Build Quality:
When it comes to build quality, the eGo leather 3.5″ External Hard drive features one of the most durable designs we have ever seen. The leather wrapped all around the aluminium shell provides the much needed shock absorption providing it with the necessary edge to survive those nose dives on to hard floors. The drive scores points for being able to combine style with a purpose.
Plug and Play:
The Drive has a USB 2.0 interface and is preformatted. Hence all you need to do is just plug it in to start backing up data.
Drop Guard Technology:
As the name suggests, the guys at Iomega have come up with a new feature called the Drop Guard Technology which makes the drive resistant to what they call ‘un-sportsman’ like falls. As per Iomega’s claims the drive is capable of resisting damage by falls from a height up to 51 inches. That is roughly about 40 percent higher than the industry standards. Is the claim true? We dropped the drive several times from a height of 4 feet and the drive is still going strong. While we cannot exactly state the consequences of repeatedly dropping it, we feel it can resist the normal wear and tear of regular use.
The eGo leather portable USB External hard drive is available in capacities of 160GB, 250GB and 500GB. The drive of 250GB capacity, theoretically can hold up to a million photos and about 4700 hours of music or 400 hours of video. It is sufficient for most backups and is a nice choice for additional storage.
EMC Retrospect Express:
The eGo drive includes a license for the EMC Retrospect Express which allows fast backups and added protection for data. The interface allows one to schedule backup, personalise backup schedule and location, backup open files, encrypt files and obtain backup verification. The first time we used it; it erased the entire volume and required the usage of the hard drive exclusively for backup. This backup software also features integrated Mozy Home Online backup software that allows one to store data online and recover whenever needed.
Cost per Gigabyte:
After doing the entire math, we figured that it would be roughly 0.41 pounds per gigabyte. That makes it an average price for an EHD and a better deal than the 160 GB model released last year. The best drive in the segment is the Western Digital my Passport Studio for 0.39 pounds per gigabyte but the Iomega comes pretty close second.
Read and Write Speeds:
The USB 2.0 interface translates to great compatibility but not great transfer speeds when compared to the SATA interface. It’s read and write speeds are about 149 megabits per second. While it is most certainly not slow, it is not setting new standards for speed either. If the drive used eSATA or the native internal SATA connection, the speeds would have been double than those of the USB interface. When compared to the 320 GB Western Digital Passport drive, the eGo has a faster access time, lower processor usage and faster read & write speeds.
Heat and Noise:
The drive is so quiet, that one would not be able to distinguish whether the drive is in use or not without looking at the LED. The leather cover, we believe, isolates any sound produced from the drive making it one of the quietest in its category. A tick from the drive once in a while is not really much of noise.
The drive always felt slightly hotter than the room temperature. But of course, the internal drive is only 5400 rpm and hence we were not expecting much heat from the device.
The eGo is powered totally through a USB 2.0 port, but in case your PC would need an extra push, Iomega includes a cable with 2 USB connectors for extra power. There is also a five volt AC power port available too but we do not think it that a need for that would ever arise. A power cable is not available as an accessory and the manufacturer sells the power brick separately.
What is in the Box?
Apart from the eGo Brown leather portable hard drive, there is a USB 2.0 cable, a Quick Install guide, a HTML User Manual and Help files, Backup software license and Trend Micro Internet Security included in the package.
Service and Support:
Iomega provides a limited warranty of one year on all eGo hard drive series. The warranty covers damage at manufacturer’s discretion. All defective hard drives would be replaced and if they are unable to solve your problem, there will be a refund of the full retail price. The site features additional troubleshooting and other support items such as forums. Registering the drive on the site allows the warranty period to go up to a period of 3 years.
The Iomega eGo Leather Portable drive is an excellent little storage device with great looks, amazing durability and a decent performance. Often times we think of these portable drives has the equivalent of bringing a briefcase of information around with you, but much, much more, of course. For the professionals among us, why not bring your data with you in style? This portable drive is wrapped in a rich brown leather, making it look like a portfolio rather than a piece of tech equipment. Plus, the chrome end caps add an exquisite finishing touch. It has an edge against simple and plain dull hard drives and is sure to surprise most people around when one pulls it out. It would have been even better had an eSATA interface been available, but other than that there is nothing really that the drive lacks. Hence, we recommend the drive without any hesitations.
Check other Iomega External Hard Drive Reviews in this website.
Iomega eGo Leather Hard Drive (160GB, 250GB, 500GB) – Technical Specification Details
|Model Name||eGo Portable Leather Hard Drive|
|Colour||Brown Leather Casing|
|Dimensions (W x H x D)||.75″ x 3.5″ x 5.25″|
|Capacities available||160GB, 250GB and 500GB|
|Form Factor||3.5 inch|
|Spindle speed||5400 rpm|
|External Data Transfer||149 Megabits per second|
|Transfer Rate||480 Mbits/sec|
|System Requirements||PC Users : 300z processor or higher, Available USB connection,
Microsoft® Windows® Vista* / 2000 / 2000 Professional / XP Home /
XP Professional /
XP Professional x64 and 256MB RAM or
higher as required by operating system
Mac Users: Mac® PowerPC G3 or Intel Core Duo processor.
Mac OS X, version 10.1.5 or higher ,uilt-in USB connection
(USB 2.0 host connection
or controller for USB 2.0 speeds) and
128MB RAM or higher as required by operating system
|Plug and Play||Yes|
|Package contents||eGo Portable leather hard drive, USB 2.0 cable, a Quick Install guide,
a HTML User Manual and Help files, Backup software license
and Trend Micro Internet Security included.
|Warranty||One year limited warranty and can be extended to
Three years if product is registered.