iPhone’s Camera Roll.
While there are more sophisticated editing apps for stills and
video, the Gnarbox app includes all the basics. There are a dozen
adjustment options ranging from exposure and contrast to setting
white, mid and black points; a slider controls the intensity of the
edit. With the latest release, Gnarbox supports 100 percent of
the cameras and RAW files as iOS and Android, so it’s a pretty
comprehensive list. Editing a RAW file was simple, speedy and
Video editing is fairly simple with the ability to set in and end
points, add an audio track and quickly create a reel of your favorite
clips. Plus, up to four people can access the images from the
WHAT WE LIKED
It’s not easy to create a versatile device that can handle
numerous file formats and offer a connection selection as expansive
as the Gnarbox. That’s one of the product’s strong points, along with
being able to view and edit RAW and 4K files on this compact device.
Its sturdy, rugged build is perfect for photographers who need to
shoot outdoors, as well as those who are on the go, providing them
with a storage and backup solution that doesn’t have to be treated
with kid gloves. Gnarbox is continuing to work on updates and new
features, which is a sign that your investment will pay off. Battery life is
relatively long-lasting at an estimated 4 to 6 hours.
WHAT WE DIDN’T LIKE
The indexing and transfer processes are slower than we’d
like and the Wi-Fi has some connection issues (Gnarbox is working
on it, though). The top of the device, which sits above the passive
heat sink, can get very hot when it’s importing or exporting images,
but it will shut down if it starts overheating. Given that Gnarbox
can handle RAW and 4K, 128GB of storage won’t get you very
far—whether you’ve booked a couple of weddings over a weekend
or are on an adventure without an option to backup your files
The app is designed to work in portrait (vertical) orientation,
so you have to scroll left and right to see all your editing options,
which makes it less convenient to edit on a smartphone than a
As far as we know, there’s no other product on the market
that can go head-to-head with Gnarbox’s features and functions.
You can pick up a WD Wireless Pro hard drive with storage
measured in terabytes with an SD card slot for less (4TB at $220).
But that’s an HDD versus the more desirable SSD, and it’s limited in
functionality compared to the Gnarbox; you can view files on the
WD Wireless Pro, but not RAW files, and you can’t edit them.
Is the Gnarbox ready for pro photographers for whom speed is
critical? Maybe not, but the device offers so many options that it’s
hard not to consider it as a constant companion when you’re away
from your laptop.
Theano Nikitas has been covering photography for more than 20
years. Although she loves digital, she still has a darkroom and a
fridge filled with film.