There are few things worse than losing precious irreplaceable photos due to the unpredictability of technology. Regularly backing up photos from a camera is an essential part of a professional photographer’s workflow, but it’s also a healthy habit that everyone should get into. There are different ways to do it, however, most of them involve a computer or laptop and require some consistent observation. This isn’t ideal when you’re always on the go and moving between locations. Western Digital (WD) has created an alternate solution with the new My Passport Wireless SSD. Just press a button, and the drive will copy photos directly from the SD card you’ve been shooting with. An instant backup option whenever you’re away from the computer.
The My Passport Wireless SSD is a little bigger than a standard portable hard drive, but it’s still small enough to fit inside most camera bags. Because there are no mechanical parts inside the drive, there’s less chance of it getting damaged as it gets knocked about while you travel. On the side you’ll find the power button, USB ports for charging and data transfer, the SD card slot, and the one-touch backup buttons. The versatile USB port is capable of transferring files through a card reader, charging an external device like a phone, and making a second backup to another drive. Whilst the USB port is quite useful, it only uses the USB 2.0 protocol so transferring larger files between two drives can take a while. Perhaps the idea was that with the high-speed Wi-Fi, it was unnecessary to have a fast cabled option.
Where the Wireless SSD truly separates itself from other backup solutions is its ability to instantly copy files from an SD card with a single button press. It can be set up within the accompanying My Cloud app to automatically copy the whole card or just the new files, handy if you’re doing frequent backups. For the majority of shooting situations, we now only need to take the drive and our camera, leaving us room for extra lenses and batteries. Whenever there was a break in a shoot, we’d simply plug an SD card into the slot and press the backup button, freeing us up to continue shooting with another card. The four LED lights indicate the progress of the transfer, though a physical screen would be more reassuring to know your photos have been copied over properly; but we understand that there is a trade-off in keeping the price and size down.
The My Cloud app is packed with features that make transferring and exploring the files on your drive incredibly easy. Once you’ve connected to the drive over Wi-Fi you’ll be able to access all its files from an external wireless device. This gave us the opportunity to view the photos we’d just taken (in RAW) on our tablets or phones using Adobe Lightroom. If any changes needed to be made to the scene, such as adjustments to lighting or unwanted objects in the foreground or background of a shot, they could be made right away. Another handy feature allows you to connect the app to most popular cloud file services, so the drive will automatically backup your files when it has an internet connection.
The Wireless SSD isn’t just an automatic backup machine and can be used just like a standard hard drive. Available in capacities of 250GB to 2TB, it has enough space to store your entire media collection, and with ten hours of continuous streaming on the battery, it can power through a significant binge of a TV show’s season. One interesting feature we discovered on the Wireless SSD was that it has the ability to act as a wireless repeater when connected to the internet. This was particularly handy when we found ourselves using pay-per-client Wi-Fi setups and wanted to connect multiple devices.
WD My Passport Wireless SSD | The Wrap Up
There aren’t many portable drives that offer as long a list of features as the WD My Passport Wireless SSD. Having used it in a variety of ways over the past few weeks, we’ve grown quite attached to it. If you are constantly on the go capturing and editing visual content, we definitely recommend looking into getting one of these drives for the sheer convenience of an instant backup solution and easy access to all of your work on the go.