It's time to stop buying those standard USB external hard drives. We've found a much better solution.
For the past few years, we have been traveling with a 2-bay Synology NAS (network attached storage) device. This NAS was fairly big, especially when it had to fit in my backpack for three months while we filmed with Elia, but it allowed Patrick and me to edit footage simultaneously, and it gave us peace of mind knowing that the footage was always on two separate drives. Soon after we wrote a post about how clever we thought our solution was, Synology contacted us and informed us that there is a much smaller option, the DS416slim.
The DS416slim is an incredibly small NAS device. It's almost half the size of our previous unit. It holds four laptop-sized hard drives (or SSD drives if your budget permits), and it allows you to use RAID to keep your data redundant and safe. My favorite feature of this little box is that it has two Ethernet ports on the back meaning that we no longer have to travel with a switch if there are only two of us. We simply plug two laptops directly into the DS416slim and we can download footage, or edit footage at the same time.
If we are going to be working on a project with a larger crew, I'll bring along the MikroTik hAP AC wireless router (I showed the wrong one in the video). This little box allows five computers to be connected to the NAS at once via Ethernet and even more users wirelessly.
The only downside to this current setup is that laptop hard drives are maxed out at 2 TB meaning that you can only get 4 TB of storage with redundant RAID 1. This may or may not be enough for you. However, if 4 TB is enough, I'm not sure there is a more convenient option currently on the market.