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VCR seen as PC storage device

Danmere launches a device that enables home users to backup PCs with VCRs.

A British firm has launched a storage device that enables home users to backup PCs with VCRs.

Backer 32, from Danmere, allows users to store up to 4GB of information on one four-hour videotape.

The company is marketing the Windows-based storage product to the home user who may find the low price point more attractive than larger and pricier peripheral storage options like Zip drives. Backer 32 retails for a suggested price of $69, compared to Iomega's 100MB Zip drive, which costs around $200. Traditional hard drives go for still more.

The product, designed for PCs using Windows 3.1 or higher, can perform the data transfer in the background while the user runs other programs.

Backer 32 uses either an internal 8-bit ISA PC expansion card to connect from a PC to a VCR (or camcorder), or an external interface between the PC's printer port and an external module. Both transfer data at speeds up to 9MB per minute.

Backer 32 is available directly from Danmere or through distributors.