drobo 5d mini

Everybody loves Drobo, but they've been a bit quiet with new products recently and have been overtaken by other storage manufacturers. Things might change, they've just announced two new products, the 5D and the Mini.

Our old Drobo has been clunking away for a few years now providing a place for backup files that we want to keep without having to use the connected Timecapsule. It's been rock solid, but slow.

If you haven't come across a Drobo before, the main USP is the ability to swap out drives should they fail and replace them with a new disk that can be larger than the original. This proprietary RAID system means that the RAID can grow with the availability of faster and bigger capacity disks.

Drobo have announced two new models that can connect to your Mac via Thunderbolt and USB3. Most important to us is that both new models feature two Thunderbolt ports which means it won't be an end of chain device.

No speed specifications are published as this will depend on what type of drives you install, spinning disks or SSD and the speed of each drive. Drobo have said that these are aimed at professionals who use FCP and other editing apps so we expect a pretty high read and write data rate.

“Our customers love Drobo’s ease of use, but they want it all—the easiest, the fastest, the safest for their data, plus the smallest and quietest,” said Tom Buiocchi, Drobo CEO. “That’s why we are here—our new Drobos will deliver on our promise of the best storage experience ever.”

The yet unpriced 5D with five drives and an additional SSD bay can support up to 16 terabytes of protected, SSD-accelerated data. One nice touch we noticed was the fact that a 2 metre thunderbolt cable is included in the box.


The Mini is designed as a portable device that takes up to four 2.5" HDD or SDD drives. It comes in a ruggedized design with a miniaturized power supply making it ideal to shove into your laptop bag.

drobo mini

“I will shoot thousands of images per day at the Olympics, and having fast, protected storage is critical to my workflow,” said Jeff Cable, one of the few photographers representing Team USA at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. “The new Drobo Mini provides Thunderbolt performance and RAID protection in a compact package that is not much larger than a single external drive. I can’t wait to get my hands on one.”

Again, no price has been announced but you can log your interest on the Drobo website and they will send you information when both models become available. We will be interested to see some speed tests of these units as they are entering a competitive thunderbolt marketplace that will feature products such as the portable Promise J4 & J2 drives from Promise.


Written by
Top BloggerThought Leader

I am the Editor-in-Chief of FCP.co and have run the website since its inception ten years ago.

I have also worked as a broadcast and corporate editor for over 30 years, starting on one inch tape, working through many formats, right up to today's NLEs.

Under the name Idustrial Revolution, I have written and sold plugins for Final Cut Pro for 13 years.

I was made a Freeman of Lichfield through The Worshipful Company of Smiths (established 1601). Though I haven't yet tried to herd a flock of sheep through the city centre!

Current Editing

great house giveaway 2020

2020 has been busy, the beginning of the year was finishing off a new property series (cut on FCP) for Channel 4 called The Great House Giveaway. I also designed and built the majority of the graphics as Motion templates. It has been a great success and the shows grabbed more viewers in the 4pm weekday slot than any previous strand. It has been recommissioned by C4 for 60 episodes, including prime-time versions and five themed programmes. The shows have also been nominated for a 2021 BAFTA.

Tour de france 2020
Although both were postponed to later in the year, I worked again on ITV's coverage of the Tour de France and La Vuelta. 2020 was my 25th year of editing the TdF and my 20th year as lead editor. The Tour was the first broadcast show to adopt FCPX working for multiple editors on shared storage.


BBC snooker the crucible

BBC's Snooker has played a big part in my life, I've been editing tournament coverage since 1997. I'm proud to be part of a very creative team that has pioneered many new ideas and workflows that are now industry standard in sports' production. This is currently an Adobe Premiere edit.

amazon kindle BF

Covid cancelled some of the regular corporate events that I edit such as trade shows & events. I was lucky however to edit, from home, on projects for Amazon Kindle, Amazon Black Friday, Mastercard and very proud to have helped local charitable trust Kendall & Wall secure lottery funding.

As for software, my weapon of choice is Final Cut Pro and Motion, but I also have a good knowledge and broadcast credits with Adobe Premiere Pro, MOGRT design and Photoshop.

Plugin Design & Development

I'm the creative force behind Idustrial Revolution, one of the oldest Final Cut Pro plugin developers. It hosts a range of commercial and free plugins on the site. One free plugin was downloaded over a thousand times within 24 hours of release.

I also take on custom work, whether it is adapting an existing plugin for a special use or designing new plugins for clients from scratch. Having a good knowledge of editing allows me to build-in flexibility and more importantly, usability.


Now in its 10th year and 4th redesign, running FCP.co has given me knowledge on how to run a large CMS- you are currently reading my bio from the database! Although it sounds corny, I am pretty well up on social media trends & techniques, especially in the video sector. The recent Covid restrictions has enabled live FCP.co shows online. This involves managing a Zoom Webinar through Restream.io to YouTube and Facebook. 

The Future

I'm always open to new ideas and opportunities, so please get in touch at editor (at) fcp.co. I've judged film competitions, presented workflow techniques to international audiences and come up with ideas for TV shows and software programs!


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