IoSafe SoloPro: Serious external storage gets speed

IoSafe ships a new fire-proof, water-proof external hard drive that offer high-speed connections.

The SoloPro is the first rugged external hard drive from IoSafe that sports a high-speed USB 3.0 connection.
The SoloPro is the first rugged external hard drive from IoSafe that sports a high-speed USB 3.0 connection. Dong Ngo/CNET

IoSafe released on Wednesday a new member of its family of disaster-proof external hard drives, the IoSafe SoloPro.

Measuring 5 inches by 7.1 inches by 11 inches and weighing 15 pounds, the IoSafe SoloPro is about as serious as a single-volume external hard drive can be when it comes to physical size and ruggedness. For comparison, the Seagate FreeAgent GoFlex Desk, one of the biggest conventional desktop single-volume external hard drives, weighs about 2 pounds.

All the extra weight in the SoloPro comes from layers of protective materials, which are designed to keep it safe from potential fire and water damage.

The ioSafe SoloPro is available in either USB 3.0 or eSATA/USB 2.0 configuration.
The ioSafe SoloPro is available in either USB 3.0 or eSATA/USB 2.0 configuration. Dong Ngo/CNET

The SoloPro is not the first disaster-proof external hard drive from IoSafe. The company has shown us multiple demonstrations to prove the effectiveness of its external hard drives' capability to withstand extreme conditions.

The most recent demo that CNET was invited to witness and participate in was for the Solo SSD . The SoloPro has the same protection as the Solo SSD, but the internal hard drive is a regular 3.5-inch SATA hard drive instead of a solid-state drive.

To make up for this, the SoloPro offers a much larger storage space, up to 2TB, and most importantly, it's the first external hard drive from IoSafe that supports USB 3.0. If your computer doesn't support USB 3.0 yet, you can also opt for an eSATA or just use it with USB 2.0.

According to IoSafe, the new SoloPro offers transfer speeds of more than 100 MBps and the drive can handle the extreme heat of up to 1,550 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 minutes, or being submerged up to 10 feet deep for three days, without damaging its internal hard drive.

To show its confidence in the effectiveness of its products, IoSafe backs its external hard drives, including the SoloPro, with a one-year warranty that includes the company's Data Recovery Service, which takes care of getting the data back for you should disaster strike.

In case the hard drive is so badly damaged by fire or water and an expensive forensic recovery service is required, the warranty will cover up to $2,500 of the cost. Customers can upgrade to a three- or five-year warranty for $50 and $100, respectively.

The IoSafe SoloPro is available in 1TB, 1.5TB, and 2TB capacities, which cost, $250, $320, and $420, respectively. To see if it's worth your investment, check out CNET's in-depth review here.

Read the full CNET Review

Seagate FreeAgent GoFlex Desk Kit (3TB, USB 2.0)

The Bottom Line: The Seagate FreeAgent GoFlex Desk is the largest single-volume external hard drive on the market and has arguably the best combination of design, performance, and storage capacity. / Read full review

Read the full CNET Review

IoSafe SoloPro (1TB, USB 3.0)

The Bottom Line: For those who need to ensure that their data will survive disasters, the IoSafe SoloPro is one of a few, if not the only, worthwhile options on the market. General users, however, won't find much appeal in it. / Read full review

About the author

CNET editor Dong Ngo has been involved with technology since 2000, starting with testing gadgets and writing code for CNET Labs' benchmarks. He now manages CNET San Francisco Labs, reviews networking and storage products, and also writes about other topics from online security to new gadgets and how technology impacts the life of people around the world.



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