Sony is breaking new ground by releasing an external hard drive for its home entertainment products. The model is called the HD-PG5U and it will connect to a wide range of Sony products ranging from camcorders to TV's and of course the PS3.

Sony is breaking new ground by releasing an external hard drive for its home entertainment products. The model is called the HD-PG5U and it will connect to a wide range of Sony products ranging from camcorders to TV's and of course the PS3.

The HD-PG5U will allow users to record HD TV programs when connected to compatible Sony Bravia TV's and it will allow owners of some of its Handycam camcorders to transfer footage directly to the drive without the need of a PC.

The PS3 will be able to play back AVCHD video and photos via an app known as "Filmy" and the drive will of course also connect to any PC via either USB 3.0 or USB 2.0. Sony has pre-loaded the drive with its "Data Transfer Accelerator" software which is said to double the effective transfer rate, something we'll believe when we see it.

The drive can also be password protected and support 256-bit encryption. Sony also provides backup software for PCs. For some reason Sony is supplying the drive formatted in NTFS, but provides a piece of software that re-formats it in FAT32 (we're not sure why this is needed, since this is a standard Windows feature) so that it can be used with Sony's camcorders and the PS3. Not exactly what we'd call an ideal solution.

The HD-PG5U is only available in 500GB as the drive is a 2.5-inch model. Sony will offer it in a choice of either black or white. No word on pricing and apparently for the time being it's exclusive to the UK, France and Germany.

Source: Sony Europe