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Old Jul 3, 2012, 8:17 PM   #1
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Default Memory Card Backup

Hi,
Can anyone reccomend the best way to back up memory cards when on vacation if you don't have a laptop. In looking on the net it appears that there are porable devices where you can view & store your photos in case a memory card becomes corrupted. But I don't think I can get anything like this where I live & don't want to order something without knowing how good it is. I don't really want to spend a lot of money on something like this but am going away on vacation & will be taking lots of photos that I will never get again. So I don't know if I should just take a chance that I don't get a corrupted memory card or something or whether I should definitely try to invest in something to back up my memory cards. Is backing up my memory cards while on vacation something I should worry about?
Any suggestions or comments?
Thanks
Janice
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Old Jul 4, 2012, 3:28 PM   #2
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The concept of backup is to have two or more copies of your files in different locations. If you copy your photos to a backup device then clear the card then you don't have a backup any more. Likewise if you copy your photos to a backup device but keep it with the same baggage as the card you are only protecting against card or device failure, not loss. You can't win!

The typical backup device is usually a portable hard drive with an appropriate card reader and smarts to copy the card once inserted. The fancier models will have a view screen but by then you are into the price range of laptop computers. The only benefit is that the device is much smaller then a laptop.

I use an Epson P6000 with an 80gb drive and 4 inch screen but there are cheaper devices on the market that are as good now.

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Old Jul 4, 2012, 5:40 PM   #3
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Get an Eye-fi card and a Flickr (or similar) account. As soon as you take a photo, the Eye-fi will upload it to your smartphone, which will upload to your photosharing site. If you shoot RAW, you may have some additional hoops to jump through.
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Old Jul 4, 2012, 9:05 PM   #4
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I was reading about eye-fi cards but they will only work if you are near a wi-fi connection so it won't help if there isn't one close by.

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Old Jul 4, 2012, 11:03 PM   #5
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Most smartphones can do double-duty as WiFi hotspots. If you've got a smartphone with e-mail or web-browsing, you're all set. Eye-fi even has free apps for Android and iPhone/iPad.
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Old Jul 5, 2012, 6:30 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TCav View Post
Most smartphones can do double-duty as WiFi hotspots.
Not necessarily. A lot of the carriers tend to block their use that way unless you want to pay x dollars per month for a certain amount of bandwidth.

Now... I do have this WiFi Tether Software installed on my phone running Android:

http://code.google.com/p/android-wifi-tether/

But, it requires a rooted phone to work (or jailbroken as Apple users like to call it), as the ability to use the phone I have as a hot spot was disabled by the carrier. So, I used a technique that made use of a script via the Android Debug Bridge utility when booting it to get root access to it and installed a custom ROM image.

Many carriers frown upon using one that way and will terminate your service if they see usage indicative of using your phone as a hotspot. So, do that kind of thing at your own risk (rooting your phone, installing and using WiFi tether software), if it's unsupported by your carrier. I only use mine that way for emergencies (for example, power outages when my cable service is down), as I suspect my service provider would frown upon me using it for a hotspot.
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Old Jul 5, 2012, 7:18 PM   #7
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I've got a client that runs his business through the internet connection he gets through his Motorola Droid X from Verizon. He's out in the boondocks and can't get internet any other way (except satellite.) The WiFi hotspot is an option in the setup. (I set it up for him.) My wife's iPhone does the same thing (also with Verizon.) So do my step-son's and his wife's iPhones (with AT&T.)

In my experience, Verizon has always been a big proponent of turning off features, but I've never heard of them turning off that feature.
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Old Jul 5, 2012, 8:18 PM   #8
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It all depends on your plan. With the current Verizon 2 year shared plans, you only get 300MB of data usage per month with the cheapest phone plan. Then, it costs you about $10/month more for a plan that allows up to 1GB, then another $10/month for a plan allowing 2GB, etc. IOW, expect to pay approx. $10 per GB per month for data usage when you get a plan that includes what you need. Then, overage runs $15/GB with their current plans if you go over what your plan has in it.
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Old Jul 5, 2012, 9:57 PM   #9
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Quote:
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Most smartphones can do double-duty as WiFi hotspots.
OP may be going to an area without cell service or may be subject to excessive roaming charges.
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Old Jul 6, 2012, 5:16 AM   #10
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OP may be going to an area without cell service or may be subject to excessive roaming charges.
True, but at the very least, the Eye-fi card can automatically transfer new photos to his smartphone, whether there's cellular service or not, and when he ventures back into civilization, the smartphone will automatically transfer his photos to his photo sharing website of choice.
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