Buffalo DriveStation Quattro £300
17th May 2007 | 23:00
A terabyte of high-speed storage
The amount of digital media we store is constantly changing and growing. With the advent of high-definition video, it is only going to get bigger. So, it makes sense to invest in an external storage source.
The Buffalo DriveStation Quattro (£400 inc. VAT) is built around four 250GB hard drives all running at 7200rpm, making this is a great way to store and share your files. It isn't intended for the mobile user, but is the most secure way we've found of making sure your data is kept safe.
The Quattro isn't the best looking of devices, being a large black box with five lights - one for power and four for drive activity - on the front and that's it. However, such a device isn't intended to sit on your desktop and is more likely to live in a cupboard or under a desk. The drives inside proved fast and reliable, offering close to 25Mbps transfer rates in test.
You can plug in the device and it'll be identified as a single large drive, or you can install the supplied DriveStation software to make setting up partitions and controls easier.
Bundled with the drive are two worthwhile tools too. You'll find Memeo Auto-Backup, which will allow you to make the most of the RAID configuration of the disks, so you can back up the files either from one disk to another or to a partition on the same disk.
Then there is SecureLockWare which, as the name suggests, sets up passwords and encryption of files for the drive, which you'll need if you're planning on using this device for anything other than storing your family photos and music library.
There is even a USB 2.0 port on the back that allows you to plug in a USB memory key and have data automatically moved across, negating the need for a laptop to be attached.
External storage is tumbling in price all the time and while the Quatro isn't the most cost-effective solution out there, it offers good value for money.