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Originally featured on BroadcastEngineering.com
Sep 14

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9/14/2009 6:49 PM  RssIcon

IRVINE, Calif. — Sept. 10, 2009 — Sonnet Technologies, a leader in providing storage systems for professional users of Macintosh®, Windows®, and UNIX® systems in the film, video, and broadcast industries, today announced the Qio™ professional universal media reader/writer and eSATA controller. Qio (pronounced Cue-Eye-Oh) is a convenient and high-speed alternative to stand-alone card readers, SATA controllers, and various adapters, combining their functionality in a compact rugged case and fulfilling the data handling needs of videographers with multiple cameras using different memory card formats.

The Sonnet Qio supports major HD video memory card formats — Sony® SxS™, Panasonic P2, CompactFlash®, and SDHC — with two slots for each (SDHC shared with SxS) and the ability to transfer data from all cards concurrently. For quick migration of data, the Qio contains an eSATA controller based on Sonnet's acclaimed Tempo™ SATA E4P SATA host controller card, which through its four eSATA ports enables users to connect two Sonnet Fusion™ F2 portable rugged RAID storage units, four Sonnet Fusion DQR5 4-drive RAID 5 systems, or any other drive system with an eSATA interface. Users can copy files between any cards, attached drives, or host computer with aggregate bandwidth of up to 250 MB/sec.

"We talked to many customers who had combinations of Sony, Panasonic, and RED™ cameras and wanted some way to transfer the data from any of them at full speed to hard drives, needed drive-to-drive copy capability, and desired a compact, portable, rugged, and battery-operable package," said Robert Farnsworth, CEO of Sonnet Technologies. "The Qio does this and more. The Qio can also attach and power two Fusion F2s — the Qio's companion portable rugged RAID drive units — each with 1TB capacity."

The Qio connects to a Mac® or PC through an included cable and either an ExpressCard/34 (for notebooks) or a PCIe interface adapter (for desktops). The included adapter extends the computer's 2.5 Gbps PCIe bus to the Qio, delivering performance far superior to USB and FireWire® adapters. The unit's SxS and P2 slots also accept ExpressCard/34 adapters and CardBus cards, respectively, enabling users to utilize WiFi, FireWire, USB, Gigabit Ethernet, and other adapters as well. For notebook users, the Qio sextuples the number of expansion card slots. Desktop users can swap adapter cards without having to open the case.

Designed for in-studio or on-location use, Qio's robust aluminum case is a perfect match for the Sonnet Fusion F2 RAID storage system, sharing the same 15-cm (5.9-inches) by 16-cm (6.2-inches) footprint. The Qio measures just 3 cm (1.2 inches) tall, and attached 1TB Fusion F2s add just 1.8 cm (0.7 inches) each as they stack on top. A universal 12V output AC power supply with wall plugs for U.S., Japan, Europe, U.K., and Australia is included that will power the Qio plus two F2s. For battery-powered operation, the included XLR 4-pin adapter cable can route battery power to the Qio plus attached Fusion F2s. Qio and Fusion F2 are compatible with Mac OS® 10.5+, Windows Vista®, and XP.

The Qio, which includes a carrying case, will be available in October at a suggested retail price of $999 with either a PCIe interface card or an ExpressCard/34 interface card. Additional interface cards may be purchased separately. Fusion F2 is $499 to $599, available with 5400rpm or 7200rpm 2.5-inch drives.

More information about Sonnet Qio Universal Digital Video Media Reader is available at www.sonnettech.com/product/qio.html. More information about Fusion F2 is available at www.sonnettech.com/product/fusionf2.html.

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About Sonnet Technologies

Sonnet Technologies Inc. of Irvine, Calif., is a leader in providing storage systems for professional users of Macintosh®, Windows®, and UNIX® systems in the film, video, and broadcast industries. Since its founding in 1986, Sonnet has pioneered and brought to market innovative solutions that enhance the performance and connectivity of Macintosh and industry-standard computers. Today, the company is a world-leading computer hardware upgrade company with a product line featuring a range of high-performance, cost-effective, and reliable storage solutions, as well as a variety of performance-extending upgrade cards. More information is available at www.sonnettech.com.

ENDS

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