1: Intro & spec 2: First impressions 3: Installing an HDD 4: User interface 5: Timings & performance 6: Compared to 7: Conclusion
Nexto CF Ultra ND2525 portable storage device review

1: Introduction and specifications

Nexto CF Ultra ND2525 - front

Have you ever run out of memory cards at an inconvenient time, or sat there wondering how you're going to store all the photographs you're planning to take whilst you're away from your computer? Sure, you could buy a bucket load of cards, and to be honest, if you're not shooting RAW or planning to be away for a long time, that may indeed be the best option given the prices of cards at the moment. But what if you're planning a long trip, and/or planning to shoot a lot? Well, that's where a standalone portable hard disk comes in.

The concept is simple enough; take a laptop hard disk, and add a battery and memory card interfaces. This gives you the ability transfer images from a card to the hard disk, without needing to use a computer - just insert the card, turn it on, and copy the files.

There are two main types of standalone portable hard disks, those with large colour screens, and those without. Large colour screens look nice, no question there, but they add significantly to the cost of the device, and they also reduce battery life because they draw a lot of power. Of those without colour screens the Nexto CF Ultra ND2525 stands out due to its relatively sleek appearance, and high performance.

Nexto CF Ultra ND2525 specifications

Street price (no HDD) UK: 102GBP (inc VAT)
Supported HDD type 2.5" PATA HDD (up to 2Tb)
HDD format FAT32
Supported card formats FAT12/FAT16/FAT32
Interfaces Compact Flash type I/II (Microdrive compatible)
USB 2.0 High Speed
IEEE1394 (iLink/Firewire400) - Tested
Size 135mm x 102mm x 36mm (measured: inc case and external battery)
128mm x 77mm x 23mm (measured: no case, internal battery only)
Body material Aluminium
Display Backlit 96 x 64 pixel mono LCD
Weight 236g measured (inc Toshiba 120Gb HDD: MK1234GAX)
Total travel weight 482g measured (inc HDD, case, external battery and PSU)
Supplied batteries Built-in 3.7V/1550mAh Li-poly
External 3.7V/2200mAh Li-ion
Package contents USB cable
IEE1394 cable
12V Car-adapter
External battery
AC adapter (international)
Leather case
Leather case
Optional extras External AA battery holder
17-in-1 CF to SD/xD/MMC/MemoryStick adapter
Supported OSes Windows Vista/XP/2000/ME/98SE (tested under Vista)
OSX/MacOS 9.2+
Linux 2.4.18+
Manufacturer's website www.nextodi.com

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