Pages: [1] 2   Go Down

Author Topic: how to backup photos in the field?  (Read 13724 times)

rolei

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 16
how to backup photos in the field?
« on: January 12, 2015, 10:49:54 am »

Hello



I would like to ask if you can advice me/ give me any recommendations on how to back up photos in the field (from CF cards into hard drive) without bringing my laptop?

what are basically my options?

 ???

Thank you very much
« Last Edit: January 12, 2015, 11:00:49 am by rolei »
Logged

digitaldog

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 20677
  • Andrew Rodney
    • http://www.digitaldog.net/
Logged
http://www.digitaldog.net/
Author "Color Management for Photographers".

spidermike

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 535
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2015, 12:00:00 pm »

The first question is how many pictures?
You can use a tablet to transfer to hard disc: http://petapixel.com/2013/03/26/how-to-back-up-your-pictures-using-an-android-tablet-and-external-hard-drives/
I don't think you can do this very easily with iPads because they do not allow you to add external memory

Or you could use something like a tablet and load your pictures into Dropbox (no idea ofthe transfer speed) if you have internet connection


I used to have one of the Epson Media Viewers with a small screen (similar to the Colorspace) but I think they are discontinued now. But there are similar devices like these that do the same thing. have a small inbuilt screen so you can view your images (several years ago I used to have the Epson equivalent and it was quite neat). But they can be expensive side compared to things like small laptops or tablets.
Logged

DeanChriss

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 592
    • http://www.dmcphoto.com
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #3 on: January 12, 2015, 12:18:29 pm »

Just to clarify, making a "backup" (i.e.; second copy) is different than transferring data from the cards to a hard drive to allow formatting and reusing the cards.

Back when CF cards were small and expensive I used something similar to the device Andrew described. I can't think of anything smaller or lighter. But, if you only want to transfer the data so you can reuse the cards, you might consider just getting more cards. Whether that's practical depends on how much data you expect to have in total. If you're talking about a couple days of shooting that may work well. If you're talking about a month of shooting then it's probably not the answer.

For me, having enough card capacity combined with a small laptop and cheap 12VDC to 120VAC inverter in the car to charge laptop and camera batteries is enough to handle nearly any situation. When I copy images to the laptop they also end up on a small portable hard drive (the backup). YMMV
Logged
- Dean

dwswager

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1375
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #4 on: January 12, 2015, 01:01:00 pm »

Hello

I would like to ask if you can advice me/ give me any recommendations on how to back up photos in the field (from CF cards into hard drive) without bringing my laptop?

what are basically my options?

Thank you very much

Do you mean Backup (have 2 copies) as opposed to MOVE or Transfer them so you can reuse the memory cards?  Unless you need to do some sort of processing with them in the field, leave them on the card.  If your camera as dual slots, the camera will handle the backups automatically writing the images to both cards.

I would suggest buying more memory cards instead of futzing with trying to back them up to a hard drive in the field that is inherently more likely to fail than the memory cards.  I don't have a lot of history with SD cards, but flash memory is much better in any form than rotating hard drive platters, especially in the field!  I've washed and dried a CF card before with no ill effect.  I pretty much stick with Sandisk and Lexar for my photography cards because of reliability and speed.

If your camera does not have two slots, I'm not sure, unless you are hard over, I would even duplicate them.  Flash memory is very reliable.  In all the time I've been dealing with flash cards, I've had one issue and it wasn't the memory itself, but the controller on a CF card that was flaking out.
Logged

brianrybolt

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 625
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #5 on: January 12, 2015, 01:16:00 pm »

You can also check out Wireless HD with SD card port.  After you download them to the HD you can then transfer the images (not the whole files) to an iPad so you can see them, etc.
Western Digital and others make them.

Colorado David

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1178
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #6 on: January 12, 2015, 02:07:49 pm »

Quote
I would suggest buying more memory cards . . .

This is an excellent idea.  I was photographing moose in Denali one fall and there was a photographer running around to everyone in this clump of photographers asking if anyone had a card they would sell.  You can't have too many cards in the field as long as you are able to manage them.  A friend of mine who shot film all of his professional life and is now retired asked me why you'd ever use a card twice.  His point was that if you factored in film and processing costs against the cost of cards, you should just store the original files of all your images on the card they were shot on and just buy more cards.  I can see his point.  It would become a storage management problem though.  But not unlike the film days.

Alan Smallbone

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 788
    • APS Photography
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #7 on: January 13, 2015, 10:39:10 am »

The UDMA Colorspace is an excellent way to go, downloads fast and can handle CF and SD cards. I got one without a drive and I stuck in a 1TB drive and it works great. I tried the WD wireless HD drive with the card reader and it is very slow to transfer from SD cards. I used both side by side on a trip and the UDMA Colorspace was by far the easiest one to use and it can recover images from a corrupted card as well.

I wrote a review of my experiences with them if you want further information:
http://www.aps-photo.com/2014/11/portable-image-backups/

Alan
Logged
Alan Smallbone
Orange County, CA

brianrybolt

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 625
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #8 on: January 13, 2015, 10:57:55 am »

The UDMA Colorspace is an excellent way to go, downloads fast and can handle CF and SD cards. I got one without a drive and I stuck in a 1TB drive and it works great. I tried the WD wireless HD drive with the card reader and it is very slow to transfer from SD cards. I used both side by side on a trip and the UDMA Colorspace was by far the easiest one to use and it can recover images from a corrupted card as well.

I wrote a review of my experiences with them if you want further information:
http://www.aps-photo.com/2014/11/portable-image-backups/

Alan
Thanks for the feedback on the WD wireless HD.  I was just about to buy one and may now go back to the UDMA Colorspace.  When I spoke to them (UDMA) the representative (UK) wasn't sure if it would ingest X-Trans files.  Do you know anything about this?
Cheers,
Brian

Alan Smallbone

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 788
    • APS Photography
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #9 on: January 13, 2015, 11:42:47 am »

Thanks for the feedback on the WD wireless HD.  I was just about to buy one and may now go back to the UDMA Colorspace.  When I spoke to them (UDMA) the representative (UK) wasn't sure if it would ingest X-Trans files.  Do you know anything about this?
Cheers,
Brian

Brian,
I can download them just fine and I can view the thumbnails and the histogram, etc. Viewing the thumbnails is really not that great because of the display but it works just fine. No problems with the Fuji files. On the trip I went on comparing the drives, my wife and I shot Fuji cameras and I also shot some Sigma cameras and all downloaded great.

If you want to download files from a GoPro you will need to download the latest beta firmware from their forum, then it will read the Exfat format cards as well.

I carry my Colorspace drive on most trips, and even on day trips when I am shooting timelapses. Nice product.

Alan
Logged
Alan Smallbone
Orange County, CA

brianrybolt

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 625
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #10 on: January 13, 2015, 11:45:01 am »

Many thanks Alan.

Brian

Some Guy

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 729
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #11 on: January 13, 2015, 12:42:52 pm »

I vote for more cards and leave all backup gear at home.  I've done field backup and it is a pain dealing with the backup unit's battery that might die - and did - during a backup.  Then you have the question of "What got transferred, and what didn't?" But you don't know because it's dead so you need to file that card away and use another as it is.  Plus you wonder if the files got corrupted during the transfer.

Just get more cards and an empty Pelican card case with a label saying "USED CARDS" and continue on.  No need to format since that should have been done prior to all the cards, and not left to being done in the field either.  Less gear is always easier to carry too.  Been that "Kitchen Sink" route before.

SG
Logged

brianrybolt

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 625
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #12 on: January 13, 2015, 12:49:00 pm »

It's ALWAYS good to have a backup strategy.  What if this Pelican case got lost?  Camera bag stolen at a train station?  Happened to me.

It' no big deal to transfer images onto a Colorspace or other such devise.  Do it during lunch. . . or whatever.  No Big Deal. 

BACK IT UP!!

Brian

digitaldog

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 20677
  • Andrew Rodney
    • http://www.digitaldog.net/
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #13 on: January 13, 2015, 12:49:22 pm »

IMHO, more cards are not a useful solution unless one has a way to backup the other cards to the newer ones. The idea the OP has (backing up) is a good one! Having just one copy of an image file on location is scary for some of us, much like taking one camera body on location. More card with something like the UDMA then leaving the existing files on those cards represents a backup. I believe that is what the OP is asking for.
Logged
http://www.digitaldog.net/
Author "Color Management for Photographers".

dwswager

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1375
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #14 on: January 13, 2015, 02:32:24 pm »

IMHO, more cards are not a useful solution unless one has a way to backup the other cards to the newer ones. The idea the OP has (backing up) is a good one! Having just one copy of an image file on location is scary for some of us, much like taking one camera body on location. More card with something like the UDMA then leaving the existing files on those cards represents a backup. I believe that is what the OP is asking for.

I don't believe those of us suggesting more cards are suggesting leaving the images on the card forever.  I certainly do not. 

My cameras have dual slots so having 2 copies an automatic function if you set up the camera that way.  And depending on the realities in the field, if common mode or common cause failures are not accounted for, having multiple copies is a mute point.  Flash is inherently more reliable than spinning disks and much more likely to survive impact or water trauma.  Given my experience, I would rather have 1 copy on CF than 2 copies on 2 different spinning disks!  1 Copy on CF and 1 one disk would be ok, but 2 copies on 2 different flash cards would be the best.  And CF much better than SD because they are inherently more durable.

The best or even a really good or necessary strategy requires more information than originally presented.  Things like:

1. Is power an issue.  Do I have a power source available at night or at regular intervals or am I limited to what I can carry and what is the duration of my stints between power availability.

2. Can I physically separate the 2 images and keep track of their locations or at least keep them with me, but in physically separate storage such that loss or theft of a single bag does not lose both copies.

3.  How many images and of what size do I need to deal with.  Big difference if you are talking 500, 1,000 or 10,000 images. 

4.  Do I need access to the images during my time in the field or am I just needing storage?
Logged

digitaldog

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 20677
  • Andrew Rodney
    • http://www.digitaldog.net/
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #15 on: January 13, 2015, 02:51:23 pm »

I don't believe those of us suggesting more cards are suggesting leaving the images on the card forever.  I certainly do not. 
Neither would I. Either a 2nd set of cards or something to have TWO copies of images shot on location. That's the backup. Once back in the office or studio, the data will be transfered and ALL cards can then be formated.

Quote
My cameras have dual slots so having 2 copies an automatic function if you set up the camera that way.
Mine doesn't, we don't know if the OP's does either. But he wants a backup, that seems clear.

Quote
  And depending on the realities in the field, if common mode or common cause failures are not accounted for, having multiple copies is a mute point.
Yes that's possible but the OP and others want to reduce the possibilities of data loss as much as we can. That means having more than one copy; a backup as the OP as asked about. Suggesting more cards is only going to provide that IF there's a way to copy the files from the original card to the other backup card. 

Logged
http://www.digitaldog.net/
Author "Color Management for Photographers".

dwswager

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1375
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #16 on: January 13, 2015, 05:11:35 pm »

Yes that's possible but the OP and others want to reduce the possibilities of data loss as much as we can. That means having more than one copy; a backup as the OP as asked about. Suggesting more cards is only going to provide that IF there's a way to copy the files from the original card to the other backup card. 

My point is that redundancy is not a panacea.  In my previous career, I was a national SME in Probabilistic Risk Analysis for nuclear reactors and nuclear weapons systems. Having 5 copies all in the same bag doesn't help if the bag goes overboard or is stolen.  Having 5 copies doesn't help if they are all on electromagnetic media and they all have to go through the same scanner that scrambles them.  At Browns Ferry having redundant systems didn't help when the control cables were burned in the same cable tray by the same fire leading to 10 CFR 50 Appendix R.

You have to understand what the credible threats might be in any situation and if you are vulnerable to those threats.  Then the countermeasures (redundant copies, different types of media, different handling/storage/transmittal) need to be selected based on those vulnerabilities. Worrying about threats that are not credible or vulnerabilities that do not exist is pointless.   

Something as simple as keeping your cards on your person rather than putting them in a bag, might be the best protection in some situations.  Might be the exact wrong decision in others!
Logged

stever

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 1250
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #17 on: January 13, 2015, 06:00:51 pm »

and the credible threats are theft, loss, damage -- the only way to protect is multiple copies that are packed, stored, and carried separately -- what's so complicated?
Logged

Adam L

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 220
    • http://adamlozo.com
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #18 on: January 13, 2015, 06:12:12 pm »

You can attach this to an external HDD and backup:  http://www.amazon.com/RAVPower-FileHub-Wireless-External-sharing/dp/B00INMB23Q/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1421190408&sr=8-1&keywords=memory+card+backup&pebp=1421190421048&peasin=B00INMB23Q

Transfer photos/movies/music/files between iOS and Android Devices and Desktop/Laptop, between mobile devices and SD Card/USB HDD, and between SD Card and USB hard drive.
Built-in 3000 mAh power bank (5V/1A) for charging smartphones
NAS File Server (Web Interface): Can connect up to 5 devices (Laptop,Mobile Phone,Tablet/PAD,Desktop etc) at the same time
WiFi Hotspot: Can connect to your existing WiFi network so you can share files and access internet at the same time
Wireless Storage For Ipad / Iphone5,4s,4 / Samsung Galaxy S4,S3,S2,Tab2,Note2 and All Other IOS/Android Device

$40 USD
Logged
"That's a lot of money to move a few pix

digitaldog

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 20677
  • Andrew Rodney
    • http://www.digitaldog.net/
Re: how to backup photos in the field?
« Reply #19 on: January 13, 2015, 06:13:09 pm »

My point is that redundancy is not a panacea.  In my previous career, I was a national SME in Probabilistic Risk Analysis for nuclear reactors and nuclear weapons systems. Having 5 copies all in the same bag doesn't help if the bag goes overboard or is stolen. 
So you're proposing the OP not backup despite his desire to do so? S*&T happens yes. Redundancy is helpful in some but of course not all situations. Frankly when on a far way location, I'm not going to forgo backing up my images because:

1. it really doesn't take much time at all (with the right product).
2. it makes me sleep better at night.
3. I've personally had one of the copies go bad and was rather happy I had the backup.

Yes, if the earth is swallowed by a black hole, or the nukes go off, none of the redundancy is going to be helpful. In such cases, I'll have more on my plate than worrying about my images. Nothing you've stated is convincing in terms of not backing up my important data but thanks for the effort. The OP made a simple request for information; how to backup his data on location. I think he's got a good game plan, even if there's no 100% assurance anything he does will save his data in every situation.
Quote
Something as simple as keeping your cards on your person rather than putting them in a bag, might be the best protection in some situations.  Might be the exact wrong decision in others!
Agreed and I'd hope this would be obvious to most. That said, one copy can be on your person and be corrupted while the copy isn't (which is exactly what happened to me). S*&T happens to media and in such a case, redundancy is the difference between having an image and not. 
Logged
http://www.digitaldog.net/
Author "Color Management for Photographers".
Pages: [1] 2   Go Up