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Thread: Experiences with 2.5" SATA HD/FW800 Enclosures?

  1. #1
    Thawley
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    Exclamation Experiences with 2.5" SATA HD/FW800 Enclosures?

    Short version: I'm looking for a good, fast, portable 2.5" hard drive enclosure.

    Full version: I had a similar setup with my PowerBook G4 and it worked bitchen. But that's all obsolete now & I need the modern equivalent... What I did last time was buy a new, big/fast 2.5" drive for the laptop. That left me with a better performing laptop. And a 2.5" Apple OEM hard drive left over. MacGurus sold an empty 2.5" portable drive enclosure with USB-II and FW400 connectors. It was a nice little road warrior setup that saw use only for overnight/travel jobs or as backup for the occasional off-site editing session or presentation gig.

    Worked slick.

    So now I'm starting again with a new 15" 2.8GHz MBP and new 500GB 7200rpm Seagate. The 5400rpm OEM drive needs a new home and while we're at it, upping the ante to FW800 seems in order.

    So this is where I seek the experiences of those who've traveled this path before or may be geeks enough to know something about the different controller chipsets (which I do not).

    Examples on the theme…
    Tango Pro
    Oyen Digital EB2
    This one (which appears to be the same manufacture as the ATA to FW400 unit I had before)
    Weibetech

    I realize I'm getting a little OCD on the research here, but I'm not in a huge hurry and I hate dealing with issues & returns. An once of prevention... something something.

    Thanks.

    PS: Much love to those who've posted the SSD experiences. When the prices get more reasonable I'll be looking to use the new 500GB/7200rpm drive for data only. Looking forward to that.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Eoin's Avatar
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    Re: Experiences with 2.5" SATA HD/FW800 Enclosures?

    I've used a Weibetech for a couple of years now, flawless IMO. However it can run a little hot depending on which drive you place in it. I've used both the Apple and Hatachi 7.2k drives without problems. Get the slip case for the Weibetech as well, pretty strong stuff and will provide some protection.

    If I was buying more 2.5" enclosures I still choose Weibetech.

    It looks like the Oyen Digital EB2 and Weibetech are the same unit?.
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    Re: Experiences with 2.5" SATA HD/FW800 Enclosures?


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    Re: Experiences with 2.5" SATA HD/FW800 Enclosures?

    The Rosewill RX82 doesn't have the eSATA port the OWC product has, but if you just want USB 2/1394b, then it's about $30 cheaper here at NewEgg. Or, if you want to go with a RAID'd solution - I've used the G-Technology products in the past with good luck. But, they are a bit on the spendy side for these...

    Can't speak to how well they work on a Mac, but they do fine in Windows 7...
    -- M.

  5. #5
    alanwf
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    Second the OWC

    I've had close to ten different enclosures by them (two sit aglow just feet from me as I type) and none have ever given me any problems. Desktop or portable, they're fast and just seem to mount/unmount without worry until their interfaces become outdated...

  6. #6
    Oxide Blu
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    Re: Experiences with 2.5" SATA HD/FW800 Enclosures?

    Quote Originally Posted by Thawley View Post

    ... It was a nice little road warrior setup that saw use only for overnight/travel jobs or as backup for the occasional off-site editing session or presentation gig.

    If your external HD will see moderate use you might want to consider a case that is powered by a port (USB ?) instead of having to tote around a power supply for the external drive. If your drive will be used extensively and left in the same place, like on your desk, then an external power supply/wall wart thingy seems tolerable. -- Just a thought.

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    Re: Experiences with 2.5" SATA HD/FW800 Enclosures?

    Yet another option here: http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/firewire/on-the-go
    I pulled my 5400rpm drive out of my MacBook Pro and installed it in one of these. Works great and the price was right. The hard plastic case is pretty bullet proof and won't dent like aluminum cases will.

  8. #8
    sjms56
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    Re: Experiences with 2.5" SATA HD/FW800 Enclosures?

    i have 3 of the Macsales enclosures

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    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: Experiences with 2.5" SATA HD/FW800 Enclosures?

    Quote Originally Posted by apocolibri View Post
    Yet another option here: http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/firewire/on-the-go
    I pulled my 5400rpm drive out of my MacBook Pro and installed it in one of these. Works great and the price was right. The hard plastic case is pretty bullet proof and won't dent like aluminum cases will.
    That's the one I use and so far it has been perfectly reliable. I've even dropped it more than once. I prefer it to the aluminum enclosures because of the slight cushioning effect of the plastic in case of a drop --- so far seems to work in my case . Thinking of a second one too.
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    Re: Experiences with 2.5" SATA HD/FW800 Enclosures?

    I have three of these: http://www.transintl.com/store/categ...?Category=2810 They appear to be the same as the Weibetech version, though the interface options may differ. When I bought them (over a bit of time) they were cheaper than the Weibetech branded version though otherwise appeared identical. Interface ports have changed slightly, in that earlier models were available w/o eSATA, etc., but they provide cables with the current versions to accommodate FW 400, etc. Nice folks there too.

    I use a lot of OWC/Macsales stuff, including external enclosures. An earlier version of the transparent model mentioned above is the only one I've had fail (though I'm sure that could happen to anything, so not suggesting a likely trend). I believe that OWC has long since changed the design (I think there was a chipset issue).

    For "drop-ability" I'd likely consider one of the rubber-armored enclosures, but prefer not to test them in this manner.

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    Re: Experiences with 2.5" SATA HD/FW800 Enclosures?

    I am looking in a external Hard drive, I saw a 1tb western digital USB 3 comes with the PCI card.

    Any opinion on that model?

    Michel

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    Sr. Administrator Jack's Avatar
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    Re: Experiences with 2.5" SATA HD/FW800 Enclosures?

    Quote Originally Posted by MMPhoto View Post
    I am looking in a external Hard drive, I saw a 1tb western digital USB 3 comes with the PCI card.

    Any opinion on that model?

    Michel
    Probably really fast for a desktop. But it is a 3.5" drive in a larger box, so if you want it for use with a laptop, then you need to carry an external power supply for it, and of course the PCI card won't fit so it will be USB2 max. Big advantage to the smaller enclosures is that for laptops with ample power at the FW or USB ports like Macbook Pros, the drive will power off the port
    Jack
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    Re: Experiences with 2.5" SATA HD/FW800 Enclosures?

    Yes Jack,
    forgot to mention that is for a desktop. 3 weeks ago I tried the G-Drive 2tb FW 800 on a Mac Pro laptop. It was great and fast with LR, of course you need to have a power supply.

    Michel

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