Photo- and Videography and Storage

After a typical trip abroad I come home with about a thousand pictures. After culling the really bad ones (bad composition, out of focus, doubles) quite a few need to be stored.

Keenai’s logo

For years now I had been using Keenai (or Eye-Fi as it used to be called), an online photo and video backup solution. A WiFi enabled SD card in my camera automatically copied the RAW files and videos to my phone and then on to cloud-storage for safe keeping. This was a brilliant solution until a few weeks ago when Keenai officially closed on the 30th of November.

A good rule of thumb for making sure you don’t lose your files is to have three copies of which one is in a different location. Keenai provided me with this off-site backup.

Storage has become increasingly important, as a few years ago I started to do more filming. I filmed dozens of lectures and events at work and recently made a short documentary for a Chinese Mahāyāna Buddhist Temple in London.

Photo storage can be excessive at 30MB for a 20-megapixel 14-bit RAW image, but this is nothing compared to video, where a mere minute of FHD (1920×1080) can be a 150MB and 4K/UHD (3840×2160) can be four times that size. In addition to this, an hour of separately recorded audio (16-bit 44.1kHz stereo) is on average 500MB in size.

One option I looked at and haven’t yet totally dismissed is Amazon Web Services (AWS) Simple Storage Solution (S3). AWS S3 has three levels of storage: Hot, directly accessible storage ($0.024 per GB per month); Infrequent accessed files (stored for $0.013 per GB per month, but are charged at $0.01 per GB for retrieval); and cold storage ($0.0046 per GB, and retrieval from $0.0026 to $0.0315 per GB, depending on speed).

I could store my entire photo and video catalogue on AWS S3 Glacier for less than a hundred dollars per year plus retrieval costs.

Backblaze logo

A second option I looked at was Backblaze, and that is the one I settled on for now. At 5 dollars a month, you get unlimited storage (including external hard disks, but excluding network drives) and you can recover deleted files for up to 30 days. Single files or folders can be downloaded, or larger amounts can be ordered on either a large (128GB) pen-drive or a 4TB hard disk.

While I still have enough local storage I think Backblaze Backup will suit me fine. Once I run low on local storage, I will revisit the online storage issue and look closer at options from Amazon’s AWS S3, Microsoft’s Azure, Google Cloud, Backblaze B2, and the many others to use in addition to Backblaze’s backup solution.

(Click here to get up to three free months of Backblaze when you sign up).



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