Review of the Jobo Spectator media viewer/ storage device

Manufacturer: Jobo
Model: Spectator
Price: £199

Jobo may be traditionally known for darkroom equipment, but recent years have seen its fortunes resurrected thanks to image storage.

Joining portable image viewers and hard drives such as the GigaVu, the Jobo Spectator is the latest addition to the range. This tough-looking device is rather more pedestrian in design than the curvy Giga Vu, with a small 2 inch LCD screen and card slots for CompactFlash, SD and Sony’s Memory Stick media.

It’s a back-to-basics approach, with no support for multimedia files such as video and music, commonly found on other models such as the Epson series, or some of the Vosonic drives, so if you like music while you travel, don’t forget your iPod.

It also lacks Raw support, which considering its likely audience of DSLR users is somewhat restricting. This is compounded by the realisation that it’s Raw files that take up lots of media card memory, so the need to download Raw files on the move – say during a holiday – is the primary reason for buying a gadget such as this.

Finally, the quality of the screen is okay, but it’s smaller than those found on most current DSLRs, so the Spectator doesn’t offer any particular viewing advantages.

In all, this isn’t a groundbreaking or
particularly great viewer, and doesn’t offer anything new or even
cost-effective when compared with its competitors

It works

Small screen, lack of Raw support, no multimedia, average build

What Digital Camera Score: 70%