We’re big fans of the Gnarbox, a unique external drive with a built-in computer, allowing you to edit photos and videos without a laptop anywhere in sight. The Gnarbox 2.0 further improves on the original with a more rugged building, simpler functions, and a richer suite of apps to let you work on your photographs and video footage using nothing but your mobile devices.
Like the original, the drive is designed as an on-the-go laptop replacement, allowing you to do a whole host tasks, from making backups and organizing files to editing images and rendering footage. And while it won’t quite make for a full-time laptop replacement, it is powerful enough to let you perform rough cuts and edits without needing access to your everyday computer.
The Gnarbox 2.0 is an external SSD drive with capacities between 128GB and 1TB, so you can get exactly the kind of size you need to bring on the road. Unlike other external drives, it has an integrated 2.4GHz quad-core Intel Atom CPU and 4GB of RAM to perform all the processing, as well as an SD card slot for loading new files and built-in Wi-Fi for connecting to it using a mobile device. A small OLED screen and physical buttons on the housing let you perform backups and file copies with the single push of a button, allowing you to transfer the contents of any SD card or thumb drive without the need to pull out your smartphone.
It can transfer files via SD cards at speeds of up to 100MB per second and via USB-C at up to 500MB per second, while the onboard 3200mAh battery can keep it running for up to five hours of backup operations and up to three hours of editing tasks. The battery is easily swappable, by the way, allowing you to switch in a fresh batch as soon as the loaded unit drains out.
The Gnarbox 2.0 comes with four mobile apps, namely Safekeep, Selects, Sequence, and Showcase. Safekeep is a backup and file management tool with Dropbox support, while Selects is a photography app for previewing RAWs and performing basic color correction. Sequence, on the other hand, is a video editing app that can use to trim and patch clips, render video into popular formats, and export to desktop applications, while Showcase allows you to watch your photos and videos on a large display over HDMI. Aside from the four apps, it also comes with full integration with Adobe Lightroom CC, Lumafusion, and, of course, the Gnarbox Classic app.
The whole thing comes in a rugged enclosure that’s IP67-certified against dust and water, so you can bring it to your outdoor shoots without fear of what the weather can bring your way. Dimensions are 6 x 3 x 1.16 inches, so this is small enough to drop in your pants’ rear pocket for easily taking anywhere you go.
A Kickstarter campaign is currently running for the Gnarbox 2.0. You can reserve a unit for pledges starting at $299.