Iomega Mac Companion external hard drive
iMac-friendly storage and USB hub
Review If the name of this hard drive isn’t explicit enough, one look at it will tell you exactly who it’s aimed at. The brushed aluminium surround and smoky black top mean that it looks right at home sitting beneath an iMac or Apple Cinema Display.
Iomega's Mac Companion: storage plus USB hub
Iomega’s attempt to woo style-conscious users of Apple kit goes further than fluttering its eyelashes and showing a bit of leg, however. The 2TB or 3TB drive, depending on which version you choose, is formatted as HFS+, for out-of-the-box compatibility with Mac OS X.
There’s also a choice of USB 2 or FireWire 800 ports, with an additional couple of USB ports on the back to allow you to use the Mac Companion as a powered hub, and a second FireWire 800 port for daisy chaining other devices. A third USB port on the side of the chassis provides enough power to fast charge an iPad.
Three USB ports and two FireWires round the back
There is a catch, however. In order to use the drive as a USB hub, or to charge an iPad, iPhone, or iPod, you’ll obviously need to connect it to a computer using USB. And if you do that, you lose the benefit of the faster transfer rates offered by the FireWire interface. Connect by FireWire, and you lose the USB hub and charging facility. You can’t connect to a computer using both USB and FireWire simultaneously.
Four LEDs on the front of the Mac Companion act as a capacity gauge. If all four are lit, the drive is less than 20 per cent full, 3 lights means it’s between 20 and 40 per cent full, and so on. Useful guide or gimmick? I’ll give it the benefit of the doubt.
Next page: Sustainable developments
Too bad the name "Iomega" immediately makes me flash back to the endless upsets caused by failed Zip & Jaz cartridges and lost data.... never again!
A new "pretty" Mac Compatible hard drive that does NOT include a Thunderbolt port.
Are they mad?
Thunderbolt & Lightning
I believe the reason for the lack of Thunderbolt support is the infancy of the interface itself
This is all about numbers and the majority of Macs out there just do not have Thunderbolt ports, so the logical choice is to focus on connectivity that appeals to the mass users' market. Rest assured that IOMEGA will ship a revised version out with Thunderbolt support in the not too distant future.
The fact that "You can’t connect to a computer using both USB and FireWire simultaneously." is a bit of a bummer, but I guess if you're using it as high speed data storage that may be physically shared with (as in unplug and moved to) other Macs, the Firewire connection makes more sense.
As per the article, the USB 2.0 interface should suffice for static use like scheduled backups and hosting iTunes content.
Oh, and yes, it pretty but there is some stiff competition out there for £/Tb value "if" looks are not an issue.
Iomega - never again
Completely agree with other comments r.e. Iomega. I got badly burnt by these guys when Snow Leopard became available. They never released compatible drivers for Snow Leopard, and they were *INCREDIBLY* slow at bringing out drivers for Leopard. Which never allowed you to format the drive cartridge as HFS, by the way. In order to do THAT, you needed to boot up under Tiger, believe it or not!
Executive Summary: Iomega - AVOID.
Can't Connect *Both*? Try NewerTech
I was hoping that IOmega would follow the NewerTech Ministack; rest its departed soul....
They managed to have both USB and FW connectors.