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By Thomas McKinnon 8 July 2009

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Consumer electronics of late is as much about innovations in look as innovations in technology. From notebooks to printers and every other bit of hardware with a case you can think of, manufactures are luring consumers with stylish products.

Samsung is the ideal example of a company pushing a style agenda. Known for its penchant for pink, Samsung launched their S2 Portable hard drive earlier this year in a range of modish colours on a high glossy casing with matching leather back-cover. Available colours include piano black, snow white, wine red and chocolate brown, with ocean blue and sweet pink apparently on the way.

The S2 Portable is not just a pretty face, with Samsung deciding to offer a little hardware innovation as well. Cleverly, they have replaced the conventional SATA native hard drive interface with a USB controller. This allows for a smaller, lighter, more power efficient device. Thus the 2.5\" drive has a foot print of just 111 x 82 x 17 mm and weighs only 150 g.

We tested the 320GB, snow white version and were very satisfied with the device’s performance. There were no recognition problems when plugging the device in (Windows Vista 32-bit). Once installed the device will autorun giving you the option to install Samsung’s software which includes SecretZone (file encryption), SafetyKey (password protection) and Auto backup. While straightforward, these features really to round-off the device’s features well. It terms of data transfer rates the S2’s performance was average as far as portable hard drives go.

With a cool mix of style and hardware innovation the S2 is a solid product. The price tag attached is a little steep, but when you consider the build quality of the device as well the device is worth the price. It is also available in 160GB, 250GB and 500GB capacities.

PROS
It's neat, small and light weight. It has a very stylish look to it.
CONS
Transfer rates are average and it is quite pricey.
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