Building external hard drive for recording; enclosure advice?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by cmccarten, Mar 17, 2007.

  1. cmccarten macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2006
    #1
    I'm looking at buying this seagate drive (400gb for $100!).
    It is a 3.5" drive @ 7200 rpm, and I want to connect to it using an enclosure with Firewire 800.
    I really don't care about the aesthetics of the case, I just need something that will work (ie., cheaper is better). Any advice?
    Will this drive suffice? My main use for it will be recording audio and storing samples, if that makes any difference.
    Thanks in advance,
    Cliff.
     
  2. livingfortoday macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2004
    Location:
    The Msp
    #2
    Yeah, that'd a pretty nice drive. I would recommend newegg.com for cases, they have a ton and they're easy to navigate. You might wanna consider FW400, as it'll be cheaper and I don't know that you'll see that much of a gain going to FW800.
     
  3. djellison macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2007
    Location:
    Pasadena CA
    #3
    My advice - buy a external drive that's ready to go, not an enclosure and a seperate HDD to fit in it.

    We have a LOT of HDD's at work, and we started using enclosures to read some of them...bad move. They've been unreliable and in some cases have actually killed the drives. Whereas ready to go external drives ( the WD Mybook range is excellent ) have been perfectly reliable. I can't give you a scientific reason or catagoric pointer - but personally, I'm not going down the 'seperates' route at work or at home again. Even if an all in one from WD is a few $/£ more, it's worth it in my opinion. We're slowly accruing a collection of the WD Mybook drives at work (and as a result we have a power supply on every desk ready to go ) - they've been fantastic, and as External drives go, they're not too ugly.

    Doug
     
  4. adk macrumors 68000

    adk

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2005
    Location:
    Stuck in the middle with you
    #4
    I completely disagree with djellison. So long as you buy a quality enclosure (pretty much any enclosure that includes FW800 will be of decent quality) you're much better off buying HD and enclosure separately. If you buy a Seagate drive it comes with a 5 year warranty, whilst that same drive in a seagate enclosure marketed as an "external hard drive" comes with a 1 year warranty.

    Also, for video, FW800 is worth its weight in gold.
     
  5. Multimedia macrumors 603

    Multimedia

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2001
    Location:
    Santa Cruz CA, Silicon Beach
    #5
    Fry's Nearby?

    Ditto. Are you near a Fry's? That's where I get my drives and enclosures when they're on sale. They do put 400GB drives on sale for $100 regularly. I like Acomdata enclosures a lot.

    This weekend the deal is $90 for either a Maxtor or WD 320 - not quite as good as the last few weeks when they sold Iomega and Acomdata 500GB drives in USB2 enclosures for $130 after $50 and $40 rebates respectively. I bought 2 of each. Iomega allowed 2 rebates per household and I have a buddy who lets me use his name etc for a second one when I want it.

    I know. USB2 is sort of the basterd child of external storage. And it is a little slower than FW400 and a LOT slower than FW800. But if you have a lot of stuff to store like me, max speed doesn't really matter. And USB2 doesn't have the kind of address confusion issues you get when you hang more then 12 HDs outside like me.
     
  6. netdog macrumors 603

    netdog

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2006
    Location:
    London
    #7
    I have built 5 500GB Seagate drives with Icy Box enclosures and NEVER had a problem.

    I have bought 3 LaCie and 2 Maxtor drives and they are all dead.
     
  7. cmccarten thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2006
    #8
    Thanks for all the opinions offered so far.

    I'm in Canada, so it might be difficult to order from Fry's online, but I'll give it a shot.
    So the Seagate 400gb drive + a firewire-capable enclosure (so far recommended: MacAlly, Acomdata, and IcyBox). Sounds good.
    Unfortunately, I will have to get a Firewire 800 express card because I'm an a core duo macbook pro. But I really think the 800 is necessary for the data transfer rate; I will be recording directly onto it.

    But the real question: how difficult are they to put together? I'm fairly capable at technical stuff, but I haven't done this before. Are there any online tutorials? Is compatibility ever an issue?
     
  8. Multimedia macrumors 603

    Multimedia

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2001
    Location:
    Santa Cruz CA, Silicon Beach
    #9
    FW 400 is plenty fast

    No FW800 isn't necessary. FW400 will do fine. I've done it many time on FW400 with no problems at all.

    There's nothing to building your own. You set the drive on Master, open the case, connect the power cable, connect the data cable, screw down the drive and close it up. A kindergardner could do it. These are for PATA 100/133 drives not normally SATA although those enclosures do exist for more money.
     
  9. djellison macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2007
    Location:
    Pasadena CA
    #10
    I've built three Icy Boxes with a variety of WD's, Seagates and Maxtors - and have had nothing but trouble. Our 1 LaCie and 3 MyBooks have performed perfectly.

    Just my personal experience.

    Doug
     

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