LaCie's new d2 Quadra drive is a compact, 500GB drive designed for people who need high data transfer speeds over an eSATA connection or FireWire 800. Slower connection options -- in the form of USB 2.0 and FireWire 400 -- are also available, so you can use it with a variety of PCs. The drive comes with backup software for both Windows and Mac users, as well. It's speedy to boot, but it's expensive: £200 is twice as much as the cheapest 500GB drives.
The d2 Quadra measures 43 by 160 by 173mm and weighs 1.5kg. The drive can be oriented vertically or horizontally, or rack-mounted. A front-mounted blue LED button indicates power and activity, and it can be programmed as a one-touch button to launch any application. There's also a three-way power switch that lets you manually turn the drive on and off or set it to auto so that it powers up and down with the connected PC. (It must be connected via USB or FireWire for this option.)
It supports Windows 2000/XP or later and Mac OS 10.2.8 (OS 10.3 for eSATA) or later. The bundled software includes LaCie 1-Click Backup software, SilverKeeper software, EMC Retrospect Express 6.1 (for Mac), and EMC Retrospect Express HD 2.0 (for Windows).
In our read/write tests, the 7,200rpm d2 Quadra proved itself to be a speedy drive. Over a FireWire 800 connection, it wrote our 10GB folder of mixed file types in 6 minutes, 7 seconds and read back the same folder in 6 minutes, 41 seconds.
Additional editing by Nick Hide