Western Digital Introduces Media Savvy My Passport AV External HDD

Western Digital has found a pretty safe spot when it comes to external storage, and anyone who has followed the industry for any amount of time will notice that the My Book and My Passport lines haven't changed much over the years. Today, WD is adding a slight twist to the existing My Passport line by introducing the My Passport AV Portable Media Drives, which are said to be "optimized for video storage and playback."

These are designed to work with select Sony camcorders, Blu-ray players and other popular media players, but we have to question this claim. How can an external HDD really be tailor made to work with media? Aren't they all? We suspect this is just a bit of marketing makeup in order to get the attention of those looking to store their growing media collection, but frankly, we suspect this drive will work just as well for any other type of storage. One notable extra is this unit's ability to operate seamlessly with Sony's Direct Copy feature (for archiving footage from Sony camcorders), and the compact size makes 'em easy to squeeze into most any AV center.

As of now, the drive is available in a 320GB version for $109.99, but we suspect bigger versions will be out soon. Also, WD points out that this drive is fully compatible with Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7 and the most recent versions of OS X (Tiger, Leopard, Snow Leopard).

The My Passport AV portable media drives are compatible with the following devices:  

  • WD TV family of media players;
  • 2010 and later Sony camcorders with Direct Copy functionality;
  • Sony 2010 Blu-ray Disc Players including BDP-S370, BDP-S470, BDP-S570;
  • Sony 2010 Blu-ray Disc Home Theater Systems including BDV-E370, BDV-E570;
  • JVC LT-32P689 television;
  • Samsung® LN32A550 television;
  • Phillips® 42PFLA332D television;
  • Microsoft Xbox 360® (compatible with the USB media playback feature); and,
  • Sony PlayStation®3.

For a complete list of devices compatible with the My Passport AV portable media drives, please visit the WD Web site. A product specification sheet and photos of My Passport AV drives are available on the company's Web site at http://www.westerndigital.com/MyPassportAV.