In addition to physical protection, the Skin series also includes a suite of software , including a one-year free subscription to Trend Micro Internet Security, Roxio Retrospect Express Backup HD, Iomega's QuikProtect file backup, and a lifetime 2GB per month subscription to MozyHome Online backup. The free software comes with purchase of the drive, but there are no CDs in the packaging; Instead, Iomega cleverly includes license codes for each program to download directly off the Iomega Web site.
Roxio Retrospect Express Backup HD is a lighter version of Roxio's $50 professional backup software, but it can still perform all the backup functions you need to protect your data, including incremental backups and dated restore points. The layout of the program is intuitive and easy to use, especially since there aren't many options on the home page. In the setup process, you can choose to either backup using simple file duplication or compress an entire data dump into one file. The second method is a little easier to organize, although you'll need to reinstall the software onto the new host drive in order to restore the files. The deal also includes a free lifetime subscription to Mozy.com, a Web site that offers online backups and storage. You only get 2GB per month with the deal, but you can upgrade to unlimited storage for $4.95 per month if you want to take full advantage of the software.
Cost per GB
The Iomega Radical isn't the absolute cheapest hard drive you can buy- that accolade still goes to the Verbatim Acclaim, an Editor's Choice winner for both its quick throughput speeds as well as its $0.14 cost per gigabyte. Still, the aesthetic appeal plus all the extra software in the bundle and the 3-year warranty definitely offset the slightly more expensive price tag.
|Cost||GB||Cost per gig (in cents)|
Using our same test methodology, the Radical Skin read our 6GB data file at 32.17 megabytes per second (MB/s) and wrote it back at 26.67MB/s, fast enough to bump the aforementioned Verbatim Acclaim out of top position. We typically see an insignificant difference in speeds across the majority of external hard drives that come through our labs, but Iomega manages to break out from the pack, although you won't notice a big difference unless you transfer files upwards of 10GB.
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
|USB Read (MB/s)||USB Write (MB/s)|
Service and support
Iomega continues to set the bar for external hard drives with a generous three-year limited warranty that covers standard parts and labor, and we applaud the company for taking care of its customers. The Iomega Web site and its user-to-user support forums are an excellent source for troubleshooting, but Iomega will replace the drive in the event of a manufacturer's defect.