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External HDD

General chit-chat on the Linx 7

Re: External HDD

Postby nememo » February 26th, 2015, 9:47 pm

Although not an HDD, I quite like my You need to be registered to view this link, please log-in or register. It basically turns a MicroSD card into an OTG pendrive. Plus you get the benefits of being able to swap out the μSD card so you can carry quite a lot about in an incredibly small space. Powered by the Linx 8 without issues.

Turns out that specific version has been discontinued and replaced by a newer and faster model too!
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Re: External HDD

Postby trogggy » February 26th, 2015, 9:48 pm

JAHLU wrote:Oh, so 8 offers more power on the internal hub, I guess. I thought it was always 500mA.

If you think about it, a (modern) portable HDD usually works fine in a desktop usb2 port without y-cables etc, so they're obviously pushing out more than the 7.
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Re: External HDD

Postby JAHLU » February 26th, 2015, 11:10 pm

trogggy wrote:
JAHLU wrote:Oh, so 8 offers more power on the internal hub, I guess. I thought it was always 500mA.

If you think about it, a (modern) portable HDD usually works fine in a desktop usb2 port without y-cables etc, so they're obviously pushing out more than the 7.


Good point, 'though it is possible to have issues on some hubs, particularly front hubs, like on my case. My portable HDD has two USB outputs to get that extra power for just such an occasion.
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Re: External HDD

Postby jcksn.paul » February 27th, 2015, 2:53 am

Thanks for the replies everyone.Some people have strayed from my original question though. I am not looking for USB memory sticks, or SD cards they are too expensive and are of limited capacity. As for powered external hard drives they are useless in an off grid situation

I know I can purchase External HDDs with a battery backup like the Corsair Voyager Air or the Seagate Wireless Plus but they are more than twice the price. Price comparison:

256Gb USB memory stick from £76
500GB Seagate Wireless Plus £101
500GB Freecom Mobile Drive Classic USB powered £33

Obviously an External HDD that is powered from the USB port is by far the most cost effective of my 3 options. Also I am not bothered about it draining the Linx7 battery as it will be used very occasionally and only to copy small files.

Now for these External HDD drives to be powered by a USB2 port they must require at most 500mA which is the standard.

Now as a test and connecting my phone to my tablet, so my phone starts charging I can measure the current drawn from the tablets USB port from the display on a connected 'Charger Doctor' device (£1.50 on ebay and very handy). It states that the phone is drawing 300-400mA. However it does vary and drops as low as 200mA at times. Now charging my phone from its dedicated charger it draws about 350mA which doesnt vary very much.

I am guessing that the problem is the current output from the tablet is either too low or it varies too much for an External HDD powered by a USB2 port .

Therefore if somebody had a working External HDD powered by a USB2 port and also had a 'Charger Doctor' device that would solve the problem. They could just plug it into a laptop and tell us how much current they required. I have tried to look at the specs of various drives but they just state they are powered by the USB port and dont list the input current
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Re: External HDD

Postby nememo » February 27th, 2015, 7:36 am

One of the issues is that the same retail products may end up having different drives inside - therefore a different power consumption. You'd need to know exactly what you had tested against exactly what you were buying - which is much easier said than done.

I remember when there was a Toshiba external - pretty much the 1st 1TB for under £50 - and there were 3 different drives in the same product. It was pot luck as to which you got, and the only way you could tell was to crack the drive open.
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Re: External HDD

Postby trogggy » February 27th, 2015, 8:46 am

I think you have 2 realistic options...
1. Swap your 7 for an 8.
2. Use a power bank and y-cable.
Otherwise you're banking on finding an especially low-powered portable HDD, which may or may not be out there.
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Re: External HDD

Postby JAHLU » February 27th, 2015, 1:16 pm

What about an SSD? They take less power to run than a regular HDD. It'll cost a heck of a lot more, but you seem pretty determined to get this one specific thing. xD
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Re: External HDD

Postby trogggy » February 27th, 2015, 1:19 pm

That would be the least cost-effective option I could think of.
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Re: External HDD

Postby JAHLU » February 27th, 2015, 1:22 pm

Same, but there's really not much in the way of options here. I think pendrives are the best way, but that's just what I'd go with if I absolutely must have even more space.
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Re: External HDD

Postby trogggy » February 27th, 2015, 1:30 pm

There are at least 2 options for using a (cheap) mechanical drive.

On another note my charger doctor (usb ammeter) showed up today - I tried both my 2TB drives, and the highest current they showed (doesn't mean it's the peak, but still...) was about 0.65A. So there may be hope with a different drive.
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