This image was lost some time after publication, but you can still view it here.

Last time we looked, the Monstor Drive from US Modular was topping out at 6GB, but now the shiny stainless steel scratch magnet can store double that, packing 12GB onto its 4200rpm disk whose enclosure is the size and shape of a Zippo lighter. How time flies, because a year ago it cost $99 for the 2GB model, and now this $129 12GB version is just $30 more than that.

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Even though these drives are said to be shock resistant, you can't rough them up too much like you can with flash drives, but then you'll pay a lot more for those. Heck, you could get a 64GB flash drive, but then you'll pay $5,739 for it. So maybe for the time being, these 12GB drives are a good value. Let's take a look at a couple of the other 12GB mini hard drives available these days, after the jump.


Come to think of it, that $129 price of the US Modular Monstor is a pretty good deal, considering we saw other 12GB USB drives that cost a lot more. For instance:

This image was lost some time after publication, but you can still view it here.

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Samsung Pleomax 12GB drive costs $180, but unlike the Monstor it spins at just 3600rpm. However, it does have the Secure Mobile Environment Platform, letting you store your files in secure folders and not worry too much if you lose the thing. Another advantage over the Monstor is its retractable USB plug, letting you easily slide it into tight spaces.

This image was lost some time after publication, but you can still view it here.

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EDGE DiskGO! 12GB drive is made of aluminum and also has a retractable USB plug, but it's still more pricey than the Monstor; the lowest price we found for it is $146. Think of it this way: you get a 6GB disk go for the same price as the Monstor: $129. We prefer stainless steel over aluminum, anyway.

Expect to see more of these portable hard disks as their Seagate 12GB 1-inch hard drive proliferates. We're thinking Verbatim might be next, where its heftiest hard-drive-based Store 'n' Go currently holds "just" 8GB.

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But for now, it looks like the Monstor is the price leader, and none of the other drives are as pretty. Such a deal for $129.95.

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Looks like a Zippo lighter, stores 12 gigabytes [Mobile Magazine, via CrunchGear]