As I mentioned in a previous post, I've decided to purchase a Drobo to use as a central media hub for my home set up. Previously I had used an External hard drive, but a power source failure was enough to scare me into getting something a little more secure. See my "Backup Solution" thread for more on that.
I'll preface this by saying the obvious: Drobo is not a backup solution. It's much better than an external hard drive in that it will protect you from a single drive failure, but its still a single device, and if the drobo fails and goes all Sara Palin on your data (Going Rogue), then its not going to be pretty. Hard drives are inherently the weakest link in the computer chain, so some protection is better than none. A true backup solution involves storing the data on a different device in a different location.
So if its not a backup solution, why drop $320 (after $30 rebate) after on a diskless drobo? Because hard drive failures happen. I've had pretty good luck on my own computers, but I'm on my third drive in 6 years at work. It's not a question of If... its a question of when. With a drobo, if that drive fails like... let's say immediately after a well paying shoot (for my lady... nobody will pay me for my photography... yet). I can still access and use my data. Running it as an air disk on my airport extreme, I can access the same photos from any computer in my house (wired and wireless). Presumably this will solve my problem of having duplicate data all over the place and free up some gigs on my hard drives. More on that to come.
Drobo also allows you to install apps that allow you to do things like create a centralized iTunes repository, and there's also one for remote access over the web, which will let me get to my files at work or on my phone. I'll update this thread as I get more experience with that.