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Photo 5 Jan 11, 2007 10:50 PM

I will be traveling this summer for a week to Baltimore for the annual fire and rescue convention and to visit family. They have a parade on the last day that features 100s of fire vehicles. I know I will not have enough digital memory cards/memory card space to storage all of the images I might take over the course of the week.

I do have a laptop but something inside of me doesn't feel like I should take it with me as I will be staying at a hotel for the entire week and the laptop will either be a hot trunk of my car or the hotel room. I can't afford to loose the machine as it is my own computer now.

My original thoughts are to either buy more memory cards or go to a walmart each day and ask them to download my memory cards to a CD.

Any and all ideas would be appreciated.


eric s Jan 12, 2007 12:28 AM

The solutions that you gave will definitely work (I'd have Walmart burn two CDs... one scares me.)

Another solution is something like the Epson P-3000. Its a portable hard disk with display that you can use in the field and download pictures too. It can store around 10G per battery charge (if you don't use the display much.) Most don't have anywhere year that much battery power.

The problem is that it isn't cheap. You could look for something with fewer features (and therefor cheaper) but when I last looked into it, none had anywhere near the battery life as that one (I have the previous model, the P-2000.)


Photo 5 Jan 12, 2007 9:08 AM

Thanks for the info. Can you tell me if any of the ones you are takking about can read 1GB xD cards. A year ago I was looking at them and none of them could read 1GB xD cards.

I bought a wolverine portable hard disc device in 2005. Model 6020. I bought it to read smart media cards at the time. Since then I have changed cameras that now use xD cards. The problem I have is that with a Compact Flash adaptor that excepts xD cards I can only read 512MB cards maximum and not 1GB cards which renders this unit useless for me.



TCav Jan 12, 2007 10:03 AM

Most hotels have computers that you can use. Bring a card reader with you, along with some blank CDs, and burn your own.

Another option is to get one of those external hard disk drives that have card readers built into them. When you insert a card, they will automatically copy its contents to the drive. Some of them even have displays so you can see your photos.

milrodpxpx Jan 12, 2007 1:52 PM

there are several solutions.

any mp3 player or personal media player that has something called USB-to-go - which allows you to attach the camera or a memory card reader directly to the device and upload it to the harddrive (the toshiba gigabeat s30 or s60 both work, although mine only did it from the camera directly - which means you'll be down while the photos upload; i also previously had an archos gmini402 which you can find on ebay. that allowed transfer directly from my memory card reader - all you need then is 2 memory cards and there is no down time. it took just under 15 minutes to txfr 512mb).

there are other players that can do that, it is kind of hard unfortunately to find out if they do or not. the only way to is go to a website like and read the review of several players that would be in your price range and see if they have that feature.

a second option, which i'm going to be trying out soon, is to use a USB bridge device. the most prominent one can be found at and will run you about $30 on ebay. you can plug your camera, or a memory card reader in one side, and a usb powered harddrive, thumbdrive, or mp3 player into the otherside and transfer the files at the touch of a button.

i suppose those are both variations on getting one of the harddisk drives that you can directly put your memory cards into and transfer files, but they may end up being a slightly better deal in the end. there are alot of options out there though!

Photo 5 Jan 13, 2007 10:10 PM

Thanks for the ideas. I do not own an MP3 player. I do own a small 40GB external hard drive (that is small enough to go into my camera bag) so the USB bridge device sounds like a good idea.


milrodpxpx Jan 16, 2007 12:17 PM

I was trying to find more info myself on the USB bridge that i will be getting in the mail soon (hopefully today!). I found a post on that was from an actual delkin rep. He stated that the USB bridge does not have enough energy to power a USB-powered small harddrive (the ones that draw power from your computer through USB), so for me that option is off the table. If you are going on a vacation and have enough memory cards to last the day, until you make it back to your hotel where you can plug in a DC powered harddrive, it will work in that case. That is probably the route I will end up taking, though I will give the USB powered harddrive a go (doesn't hurt to try!).

Greg Chappell Jan 16, 2007 1:34 PM

Last May-June I used a 40GB Wolverine image tank that had built-in drive slots for various card cost me $140. Between my 13MB RAW files and my girlfriends Digital Elph, I wound up dumping 27 GB worth of files into itover two weeks in France. Everytime you download a new card, it creates a new folder so it was easy to plug it into my computer when I got home and just move the files to one of my computerconnected hard drives.

The only drawback to it was, once downloaded the files were not viewable until I got them onto my computer at home. After every download I did get an "OK" light showing the download happened successfully, so it's kinda like the days of shooting film where you couldn't see your images until after getting home and processing.You can buy an image tank with a screen to view, but they cost quite a bit more and I'm not even sure if they would be able to read RAW files and supply an image on the screen. I think the same drive as mine but with an imagescreen was around $400 vs. mine at $140.

TCav Jan 16, 2007 1:36 PM

The generic term for the devices I mentioned is "Digital Wallet".

Epson has the P3000 and the P-5000 []].

SmartDisk has the PhotoBank and the FlashTrax XT []]

Sony has multiple devices [;Dept=cameras.]].

Other companies offer similiar products. I think these would meet your requirements nicely.

tmoreau Jan 25, 2007 10:36 AM

Easy, insure the laptop, backup everything on it, and leave it in the hotel room (out of sight). Insure your camera gear while your at it, average cost is about $1 annual per $100 of gear.

The price of those external drives is as much as a cheap laptop these days. They also have much too short of battery life, but are smaller than a laptop.

I find myself shooting around 2gb a day, buying memory for four days is feasible but a week is too much.

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