SD card to SD card transfer?

Andrea Berez aberez at UMAIL.UCSB.EDU
Tue Oct 12 02:53:30 UTC 2010

Thanks, everyone, for the responses. I especially like the small portable
storage for reading SD cards as a lightweight, reasonably priced, and
power-efficient solution for backup without a computer.

I'm not knocking netbooks or iPads in fieldwork (indeed I love my netbook
for certain things), I was just looking for for a solution exclusively for
backup for when weight and power are both at a premium.


Andrea L. Berez
PhD candidate, Dept. of Linguistics
University of California, Santa Barbara

On Mon, Oct 11, 2010 at 7:32 PM, Xavier Barker <
meibitobure.gaunibwe at> wrote:

> The problem with netbooks is that they are inherently low-end machines and
> as such they have low life spans.  That might be 15-24 months in ideal
> conditions, the absence of which is the motivation for purchasing something
> portable here anyway.  Very few are fitted with solid state drives,
> certainly none in the 300-800 range you're talking here.  This is a pretty
> important consideration.  I'm not a field worker, I'm a technician and I
> support hundreds of these devices in victorian schools and they have an
> outrageously high failure rate.  If you were taking any sort of backup
> device off-grid and out of a controlled environment, you want solid-state
> storage, not spinning discs. I wonder if there's a  good reason for not
> following the path of other fieldworkers and exploring the benefits of the
> iPad:
> <>
>  <>
> The specs of the iPad weigh up pretty well against any netbook and they
> occupy the same price bracket.  The iPad has a better battery, better
> screen, no spinning parts to fail, more easily weatherproofed and is far
> more portable.
> Cheers,
> Xavier
> On 12/10/2010, at 12:55 PM, John Olstad wrote:
> Hi all,
> Agree with Ric (Hi Ric!), netbook with solar charger
> I'm leaving next month for a between 6 and 9-month fieldwork trip to a
> remote atoll with no access to electricity whatsoever.  Even this situation
> is not a no-laptop fieldwork situation.  I'm using the lenovo x201s which is
> a fully-powered laptop with a 12-hour battery.  My electronics are all
> charged by a car battery that is kept topped up by solar panels.  There are
> also cheaper laptops by ASUS that have 11-hour batteries.
> That might sound like a cumbersome set-up, but I'm telling you it works and
> I'm not one of the first ones to do it by a longshot:)
> Flash cards are pretty resilient (DOA or last forever so make sure to test
> beforehand), but if you are really worried about it failing, you could
> record to magnetic tape (i.e. cassette tape).
> Good luck,
> John Olstad
> On Tue, Oct 12, 2010 at 11:38 AM, Xavier Barker <
> meibitobure.gaunibwe at> wrote:
>> Did this go through?
>> Hi Andrea,
>> There are indeed SD card duplicators.  Depending on your volume, you might
>> want to look at  If you're only doing
>> 1-to-1 duplication, you might be best off finding a USB bridge which will
>> let you back up SD cards (and other flash memory types) straight onto a USB
>> device.  The USB device might be a series of flash devices or it might be a
>> solid-state HDD in a ruggedised external enclosure.   THe difference is that
>> the duplicator is at about $7000, the USB bridge is about $30.  There was,
>> about 5 years ago, a portable SD cloning device from Panasonic but I'm not
>> sure it made it to market.  You can then get small Pelican cases to
>> weatherproof and shockproof everything.
>> Cheers,
>> Xavier
>> On 12/10/2010, at 8:28 AM, Andrea L. Berez wrote:
>> Hello list,
>> I am investigating options for transferring data from one SD card to
>> another without the use of a computer intermediary (think no-laptop
>> fieldwork). There must be some small device that can both read from and
>> write to SD cards. Any recommendations, or barring such a device, and
>> suggestions for work-arounds?
>> Best to all,
>> Andrea
>> -----------------------------
>> Andrea Berez
>> PhD candidate, Dept. of Linguistics
>> University of California, Santa Barbara
>> <>
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