As the CPU/motherboard/memory/video card reviewer for ThinkComputers.org, I don’t get a lot of opportunity to review other items anymore. I know, the items that I review sound exciting…and they are…but it is hard work, and sometimes it is nice to review an item that isn’t as involved as these, which can take up to a week to accomplish the testing, etc.
Recently, I started making some movies, long story short, I will be making a movie pretty much weekly. They will be simple movies, but the raw files will be somewhere between one and two gigs, and the encoded finished product will be closer to two gigs. I’ve been thinking about a new external drive, my old 320 gig IDE external drive has served me quite well, and still does, but I’ve been thinking about the fact that it will finish filling up pretty fast if I’m adding 2-4 gigs minimum per week to it.
Of course, when making external hard drive decisions, you first have to decide whether to buy a pre-packaged drive/enclosure, or get them separately. Packages usually have some cool auto backup features and software, but this hard drive will never be used to back up my data, that is already taken care of. Packages are nearly always more expensive than buying the enclosure and drive separately, and though you can find them in most capacities, you usually don’t have the flexibility of getting your favorite brand of hard drive if you have one, there are a couple that I prefer.
The final decision is interface. There are eSATA, eSATA/USB, USB/Firewire, and Firewire only. Of course, the latter is more for Mac users, Firewire (IEEE 1394) has never really caught on with PC users, except those that happen to own camcorders or other devices that interface with Firewire. My desktop rigs all have eSATA, but this drive will most likely be shared with my laptop, which only has USB. Rather than use multiple cables, I prefer the simplicity of plugging one cable in the drive and leaving it.
Today I will be looking at the Icy Dock MB664UEB-1S USB/Firewire 3.5″ External Enclosure. Though this enclosure is USB capable, the big deal is that it has Firewire 800 (IEEE 1394b), which is theoretically twice as fast as USB 2.0, and probably ends up being even faster than that. Read on to check out the MB664UEB-1S.
Interface: USB2.0 + Firewire 800 combo
Chipset: Oxford 924DSB
Drive Fit: 1 x 3.5″ SATA I / II
Drive Type: Standalone with horizontal or vertical positioning
Transfer Rate: up to 480 Mb/sec. via USB2.0 ; up to800 Mb/sec. via Firewire 800
Insert and Extraction Connection: 15 pin direct hard drive connection
Materials: Aluminum body w/ partial plastic
Drive Cooling: Aluminum heat dispersion w/ top heat release
Indicators: Device Power & Drive Activity
LED Display Color: Mini White
O/S Requirement: Windows 98/SE/ME/2000/XP/VISTA ; Mac OS 9.0 or higher
Dimensions: 134 x 32 x 190 mm
– Plug & Play USB 2.0 + FireWire 800 combo for PC/Mac compatibility
– User friendly Screw-less design just plug in the hard drive and play
– Fan-less operation with aluminum body cooling & protection
– Horizontal / Vertical Positioning options with extendable foot stands
– Hard drive removable for multi-drive exchangeability & maintenance capabilities
– “Sleep Mode” supported by via FireWire connection
– Built in security slot for security cable kit
– 3 years limited manufacture warranty
– Takes 2.5″ SATA I/II HDD & SSD with Icy Dock MB882SP-1S-1 2.5″ to 3.5″ SATA HDD converter
The enclosure is packaged in a clear plastic package that makes it totally visible without opening the package. The bundle is in a box that is also visible, and has some features and specs on it.