Sunday, April 18, 2010

Fast Video Edits and Storage on USB Drives

As I’ve mentioned before, I have utilized low-cost USB flash drives for my video content transport applications. Initially, the largest drive that I used had a 4GB memory capacity. Recently, I’ve been using a much larger 16GB drive and discovered that the benefits go beyond storage capacity.

The developers of non-linear video editing software recommend that you store the video content that you are editing on a separate drive, to help improve performance. Typically, that meant adding a new hard disc drive to you PC configuration.

Transporting in-progress video content requires that you either use an external hard drive designed for mobile apps, or a USB drive (also known as memory stick or thumb drive). In the past your applications were greatly limited by the USB flash drives capacity – and the relative high-cost per gigabyte of storage.

As the cost of high-capacity flash drives decreased, that new development has opened up opportunities to apply these devices for more routine video applications. However, you have to consider the data transfer time – to and from the USB drive – when selecting an appropriate device for video use.

I use a Verbatim 16GB Store 'n' Go PRO USB Drive, and have been very pleased with the results. This device can transfer even large video files quickly – it features up to 80X write (12MB/s) and 200X Read (30MB/s) speed. Moreover, these devices contain advanced security features which allow you to securely encrypt and protect sensitive data from unauthorized access.

I’ve found the Windows ReadyBoost capability (introduced with the Vista OS) to be a useful added bonus – as an example, on a notebook PC with 2GB embedded memory capacity. With Windows ReadyBoost, you can use non-volatile flash memory, such as a USB flash drive, to improve performance without having to add additional memory inside the PC.

The flash memory device serves as an additional memory cache -- meaning, the memory that the PC can access directly, that’s usually much faster than on a typical hard drive. When you insert the USB drive in the PC you’re asked if you want to use this device to speed up system performance. You can choose to allocate part of a USB drive's memory to speed up performance and use the remainder to store your files.

In summary, if you have a need to transport video content, keep common video assets with you when you travel, or edit and store updates to video content on several PCs, then I recommend that you consider the Verbatim Store 'n' Go PRO 16 GB USB 2.0 Flash Drive.

No comments: