What will this cost? That is a very good question. Unfortunately, the answer is not easy. There is no minimum cost, but let's be honest with each other. It takes time, special equipment, effort and expertise to do this work and it is going to cost you something to have this service performed. Only you can determine if the exercise is worth the cost.
Could the cost be as little as $100? Yes, in some cases the recovery of the data is quite easy and that savings is passed on to you. Quite frankly, though, a recovery at this cost level is rare and only happens in cases where the drive behaves normally for us and requires no special effort to recover the data.
What's the price range? Zero and up. That's the short answer, but you want more information. As mentioned above, simple recoverys can be as little as $100. The more common simple recovery price is in the range of $350 to $850. Once we enter the arena of clean room work, you will most likely be looking at a price range beginning at around $700, yet we have accomplished clean room recoveries below that amount. More common clean room costs fall in the range of $800 to $1,600. The cost can be even more depending on the parts and micro-surgery required to bring the drive to a point where the data can be recovered. The rarest of clean room recoveries will fall in a range above $2,000. After an initial clean room evaluation, we will be able to better predict your cost.
Why not a flat rate? Some labs quote a flat rate based on the size of the media with a minimum charge that begins in the stratosphere and goes up from there. It's a practice known as skimming -- taking only those jobs where the customer agrees to an inflated price, regardless of the actual work involved. Our rates are based on the actual amount of time and parts required to do the job. You certainly wouldn't want to take your car in for an oil change and be charged for an engine replacement! Since you enjoy the same price with us as other shops that send us work, it's like buying at wholesale prices when you deal with us.
Is it worth the cost? The answer is one only you can provide. If the missing data can be re-entered by clerical staff at a "person-hour" cost of $8.50 and the data re-entry time is estimated to be ten hours, then you should probably just re-enter the data. If, on the other hand, it would take 20, 30 or 100s of hours to re-enter -- then let's try
. If the data cannot be reconstructed from any source other than the hard drive itself, then you must determine the value of that data. That value may be based on its usefulness and how much you would be willing to pay to have it back. That would be the price point at which you would either accept or reject our price for the recovery.