On Set Hard Drive - WD My Passport Wireless Pro
Although media-streaming hard drives haven’t been the most essential piece of gear during our video production shoots, the WD My Passport Wireless Pro has definitely provided our video team and camera crew with some very welcomed benefits on the field during and after filming. It allows film crews, “one-man band” style videographers, filmmakers and camera operators easy back-up and access to their video files on the go.
WD My Passport Wireless Pro
A couple of improved features it has in comparison to its predecessor (the original My Passport Wireless) are well-improved battery life and the ability to charge other devices. Setup is extremely easy, the hard drive comes with a sticker indicating you need to connect to its internal Wi-Fi network, and then you simply insert the given password. This can be done either with the mobile app or the computer.
The interface walks you through a few steps to set up options like updates and auto important. The web interface shows you the hard drive’s usage and vitals. And navigating the mobile app is pretty straightforward.
The hard drive has an SD memory-card slot with an option to automatically transfer files on insert (USB port has the same option). This has tremendously benefited our video productions on site when our video crew is working with multiple cameras. For example: When a camera crew is filming long conferences or events, once it’s time for a camera operator to change cards, our production team no longer has to sit behind computers on the field to make sure the card is backed up. The cameraman simply inserts the card directly into the WD Wireless Pro and it automatically starts backing up the video footage (and formats the card afterwards if you so choose).
SD Memory-Card Slot
The drive also integrates with popular cloud services such as Dropbox and Adobe Creative Cloud, meaning you can move video files easily through the cloud and drive, allowing the videographer, filmmaker or video editor to open and edit video files on the fly. The device can of course be used when connected via USB to a computer, allowing video editors and videographers to use it as a regular hard drive. It’s important to notice however that in those instances wireless functionality is not possible.
USB 3.0 Connector
Overall performance when it comes to viewing the video footage on portable devices such as mobile phones or tablets using the My Cloud app was in general ok, but not perfect. Our video crew noticed that when shooting and transferring AVCHD footage to the drive, the mobile app had a hard time streaming the .MTS files (same thing goes for 4k footage). However, the more “normal” codecs such as h.264 was completely fine and our camera team had no issues regarding playback with those.
WD Wireless Pro
When it comes to video production, this device is obviously useful for the traveling, “run and gun” videographer or cameraman on the go who needs to quickly back up his or her video footage on the field. Our video production company here in Vienna Austria often hires freelance camera operators and videographers who bring along their own cameras and cards on set. We often do this when shooting corporate interviews or testimonials with two or more cameras is necessary on set. So having the WD Wireless Pro on the field during those production days has been extremely helpful, especially at the end of a long video shoot. While the freelance cameraman is packing up his camera gear, the SD card is at the same time automatically being backed up to the WD drive. Much less hassle!
Videographer On The Go
Posted by Vitor Goncalves
Vitor is a filmmaker, cameraman and editor based in Vienna, Austria. He is the owner of Reel Arts Media.