can we connect external hard drive?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by Techexp2, Jun 30, 2016.

  1. Techexp2 macrumors member

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    Feb 23, 2016
    #1
    Hello,

    Is it possible to connect external hard disk with iPad 3?
     
  2. sparksd macrumors 6502a

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    Seattle WA
    #2
    Directly? No. Indirectly, yes. There are a number of wireless solutions that allow connection to a hard drive, either a wireless hard drive itself or a wireless filehub with a hard drive connected to it. I have a Seagate wireless hard drive and wireless filehubs made by RAVPower and Kingston. I prefer the filehub approach as it allows the use of any USB storage with the devices as opposed to a single wireless storage device.
     
  3. rui no onna macrumors 601

    rui no onna

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    #3
    There's the Lightning to USB camera kit for wired connection of HDD and flash drives to the iPad. However, the iPad likely won't be able to provide enough juice to portable HDDs so you'd likely need an external HDD with its own power adapter.

    Another wireless option is the WD My Passport Wireless Pro. Just bought one recently for use as a mobile Plex Server. It also has a USB 2.0 port and SD card slot.
     
  4. TheRealAlex macrumors 65816

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    #4
    We need a SSD sized battery powered external hard drive with built in WiFi that way we could connect to it via 2.4Ghz or 5Ghz and have 256GB in something the size of a pack of cigarettes. Or even. A device like that which allowed USB Drives or SD cards to plug in

    Price wise it's diverse and it's not the insane premium Apple charges for a 256GB iPad Pro
     
  5. millydog macrumors regular

    millydog

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    Australia
    #5
    I use a Seagate Wireless 2TB drive with my iPads. The iPads connect to the drive via its own wifi (no Internet connection is required). The drive can also connect to your wifi for Internet access as well so as devices connected to the drive can still use the Internet via wifi. The drive can sync your Dropbox account to it too so you have access to your Dropbox on the go without Internet.
    I use it to back up photos from my iPhone & iPads as well as download or stream video from it on my iPad & kids iPads.
    There is a Seagate Wireless app which I use for set up & backing up the photos. You can also use that app to watch video on the drive, but I prefer to use OPlayer or Infuse with it & they work well.
     
  6. sparksd macrumors 6502a

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    #6
    The RAVPower and Kingston devices both support USB drives and SD cards. I have both and they work well for me:

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00T5XQE3U/

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B019PY0ORK
     
  7. Techexp2 thread starter macrumors member

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  8. rui no onna macrumors 601

    rui no onna

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    Oct 25, 2013
    #8
    http://www.wdc.com/en/products/products.aspx?id=1660
    https://wdpassport.plex.tv

    Bigger than a pack of cigarettes but this has a built-in 2 or 3TB HDD and the ability to use an additional SD card or USB drive.
     
  9. sparksd macrumors 6502a

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    #9
    That looks interesting - do you have one? If so, how well does it work for you? There are a number of negative reviews on Amazon (though there are only 12 reviews in all).
     
  10. rui no onna macrumors 601

    rui no onna

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    Oct 25, 2013
    #10
    CPU is pretty weak but I already expected that going in. Just barely enough to run Plex. Some preliminary testing seems to indicate it works okay with the My Cloud app, though. Haven't really tested the USB and SD card functions. The drive is also accessible as a Windows/Samba share so it might work with Infuse (sp?). I've never gotten Infuse to work exactly as I want so can't really expound on that.

    The primary/sole reason I bought the Passport Wireless Pro is for Plex. I updated the firmware and installed Plex but I'm still in the process of research and testing at the moment. Some no-no's appear to be filling up the device in one shot else background analysis, metadata processing and caching can grind it down to a halt.

    I keep original quality Blu-ray and DVD rips on my home server so I still need to convert those to mobile friendly format before I can fill the device full of movies and TV shows. I only have 10 movies stored there right now. No idea yet how it's gonna handle a relatively large library.

    I was testing simultaneous video streaming to 3 client devices last night but was getting intermittent pausing. I'm not sure what's the cause of that since it appears the drive may have also been processing around 2,500 images at the same time (extra background/fanart for movies). I think I'll need to do some retests. So far, no really big problems streaming to a single client, though. The internal HDD seems to have some shock protection built-in since it paused a couple of times when we hit some potholes.
     
  11. sparksd macrumors 6502a

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    #11
    I use the RAVPower and Kensington devices primarily for streaming mp4 videos from an HDD to my Air 2 when traveling. I use Infuse for video. The Ethernet connection has been useful when the hotel wireless is poor (or non-existent) and a wired connection is available. I also just used the RAVPower for doing photo backup on a 3-week trip - I used the SD card slot to transfer from my camera's card to a HDD. For this I usually just used my smartphone as the the controller since I was moving around 10GB from the card to the HDD - I just set it off to the side and let it rip. This worked well but the drawback was that using the AIR 2 to review the RAW format photos on the HDD was relatively slow - 5-7 secs/shot. Because of that I'll probably go back to taking my laptop along on similar trips.
    --- Post Merged, Jul 2, 2016 ---
    A separate question – when I attempt stream to my Air 2 high bit rate videos taken with my camera or GoPro, the videos will freeze after a second or so. By high bit rate, these videos (MOV & mp4 format) are in the 88000kbps range. Lower bit rate mp4s – 5000kbps – do not have this problem. I am assuming the bit rate is the problem but I have not tried intermediate bit rates as a test. I see this with the RAVPower and Kensington devices as well as on my home network (videos stored on a NAS). On my home network or the RAVPower’s network, if I stream the videos with a PC I don’t have the freeze problem. If I copy the video to the Air 2, it works fine; I just can’t stream the high bit rate videos wirelessly, irrespective of the network I use or the app used to access the video (e.g., Infuse, FileBrowser). Do you see any similar issues?
     
  12. Gjwilly macrumors 68030

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  13. rui no onna macrumors 601

    rui no onna

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    #13
    Wi-fi's somewhat prone to latency and drop outs and video streaming is particularly sensitive to that. YouTube, Netflix, etc get around that by buffering and use of adaptive bitrate streams. It's pretty congested where I live so I wouldn't even attempt streaming 20 Mbps on 2.4 GHz much less 88 Mbps. I believe even Blu-ray maxes out at around 40Mbps. At home, all my fixed location devices (desktop/HTPCs, game consoles, AppleTV) are connected via wired gigabit ethernet.

    While it is possible to get much higher throughput via wi-fi, you'd need 802.11ac (both router/access point and client) and a relatively interference-free environment.

    Note, the Passport Wireless Pro has 802.11ac with 1x1 antenna. That gives a max 433 Mbps negotiated speed with real world throughput in ideal conditions of around 150-200 Mbps.
     
  14. sparksd macrumors 6502a

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    #14
    Right. My home network is b/g/n, not ac, and all on 2.4GHz. The headscratcher is that streaming the high bitrate video is fine on my wireless PCs & laptops but not on the Air 2. Different localized buffering?
     
  15. nbourbaki, Jul 3, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2016

    nbourbaki macrumors member

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    #15
    I've had the WD Passport Wireless Pro 3TB for a week and I can confirm that with the Twonky server I'm able to stream H.264 High@4.1 26.9 Mbps video without stutter with InFuse as the client on an iPad Air on 5ghz AC. The same video will stutter with IOS VLC. It's a very nice solution that allow me to take my entire media library with me when I travel. The only problem I've had is with the Plex server. Had it working and then it stopped and I haven't been able to get it working again.
     
  16. Fn1889m macrumors newbie

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    May 6, 2012
    #16
    I bought a MediaShair2 hub for about $50. It takes a camera chip, a thumb drive, or a disk drive with a USB. It also operates as an extender. Its not the most elegant solution - that is, its not very portable. If you are just working at your desk, its perfectly fine. But I also pay about 2.99 a month for 50 gigs of storage on iCloud, and its easy to stick a folder of files in there for a couple days.
     
  17. rui no onna macrumors 601

    rui no onna

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    #17
    Air or Air 2? Iirc, Air only has 802.11n although it does have 5GHz and I believe MIMO. Of course, the MIMO is pointless with the Passport Wireless Pro (PWP) as the 1x1 antenna config means the iPad will work like any N150 client.

    Mind, Samba and Twonky does seem to use far less resources than Plex. On the upside, tried streaming the original quality Blu-ray MKV rip of Deadpool (US release) from the PWP to the iPad Pro and that worked fine. Seems the PWP is capable of remuxing and audio transcoding although there was a fairly long delay with initial playback. Haven't tried scrubbing though. I think that might be too much for the wee processor.
     
  18. elf69 macrumors 65816

    elf69

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    #18
  19. nbourbaki macrumors member

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    #19
    You are correct, it's a Air 1 and I'm connected via n150 5ghz to the Wireless Pro. The Wireless Pro does not transcode with Plex. I'll have to put in a trouble ticket with WD. I re-enabled the Plex server (like the 5th time), SSH into the Wireless Pro and I can't find the Plex server in the process list. It's a good size library at 1.85TB but it was working and now it's not.
     
  20. sparksd macrumors 6502a

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    #20
    Not sure why this would keep you from getting an iPad. I have 3 Android tablets and an Android smartphone and my Air 2 works as well with a HDD on my home network or a file hub away from home just as well as the Android devices. Can't burn DVDs but I can't remember the last time I did one on my PCs, either.
     
  21. elf69 macrumors 65816

    elf69

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    #21
    I cannot plug in HDD or USB stick out and about on ipad.

    I CAN in my android phone and tablet I do it alot.

    Apple needs to sort usb support.
     
  22. sparksd macrumors 6502a

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    #22
    Ah, got it - I was thinking in terms of the wireless devices in the discussions. I occasionally connect a USB stick to one of my Android devices using an OTG cable but found that for even most of the portables HDDs I use that the devices won't supply adequate power (it appears that a 500GB drive is knee in the power curve). Since I prefer using larger drives - 2TB usually - I have to use a wireless connection of some kind (e.g., my file hub). My Asus TF700T Android tablet has a USB slot in the clamshell keyboard cover that is nice - except that the tablet itself is a laggy piece of dung and is why I bought the Air 2, my first Apple device.
     
  23. elf69 macrumors 65816

    elf69

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    #23
    I use SSD in my externals so less power.
    I have 128GB USB sticks.

    Apple needs get usb working. adaptor is fine but get it working apple.

    That is the main reason for not owning ipads.

    I had a wifi hdd before but battery kept dying
     
  24. M. Gustave macrumors 68000

    M. Gustave

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    #24
    Why would you expect a modern device like the iPad to be compatible with a legacy deprecated connection format like USB? Please move into this decade.

    iPad is designed around wireless and cloud storage. For legacy connections and storage, see the Mac lineup.
     
  25. rui no onna macrumors 601

    rui no onna

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    #25
    The Passport Wireless Pro is not capable of transcoding video. CPU's just way too weak for that. When I installed Plex, it disabled Twonky so perhaps you can only have one of them running at a time. Right now, I only have 10 videos in the Passport's Plex library. As I mentioned earlier, I'm still in the process of putting it through its paces not to mention I still need to convert my existing library to mobile friendly format for Direct Play. Dumping 1.85TB in one shot may be too much for Plex to process on the dual-core ARMv7 CPU.

    Technically, there's already a Lightning to USB camera adapter for transferring photos. Unfortunately, I doubt we'll get any official support for other types of usage as Apple seems firmly against providing traditional file system access.
     

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