Firewire enclousure questions:

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by wjones, May 28, 2005.

  1. wjones macrumors member

    Oct 25, 2004
    Here's my setup- I've got a powerbook, an XP box, and a handfull of 2.5" and 3.5" hard drives that are going unused. I like the idea of buying one firewire enclosure for them to share. I could have a couple OSX formatted drives.. and few for the XP box- I have a 2.5" to 3.5" cable adapter, which I figure I can use inside a 3.5" enclosure.

    Here's the twist:
    I'm also looking to get an external DVD burner in the near future. If I get a 5.25" enclosure now, then theoretically I could use it for my hard disks as well as the cheap internal DVD drive that I might get later- That way I can use the DVD burner on both machines, and be able to use these extra hard drives for backup etc.. Can you tell I'm poor?

    The question is this: Do you guys forsee any problems with this setup? Even though the enclosures say they work with OSX, I'm not fully convinced. Is anyone using a "homemade" external DVD burner with their mac? If so what kind? What types of inexpensive enclosures and burners are best?

  2. deebster macrumors 6502

    Oct 21, 2004
    Olde Englande
    I've bought unbranded 3.5" and 5.25" firewire boxes, and both work fine with all flavours of OS X (currently on Tiger).

    Initially I had just the 5.25" one and used to unplug my external combo drive and plug in a hard disk, but it became a pain in the arse to do that and once or twice resulted in errors with the HD not mounting. The cables attached to the box are short and need a good solid push to connect to whatever is put in it, and I'm pretty sure that over time the regular plugging in and unplugging will weaken the cables and cicruit board to which they are attached.

    So I bit the bullet and got a dedicated 3.5" box.

    In summary then, yes, any old box should work, and (in my experience) any old burner and HD will too, although you may want to double-check that the box allows HD's of greater than 120 GB to be used. Some don't, and if you have an unbranded one finding any firmware updates is a bit like looking for an honest politician ;)

    I'd give it a go with the larger box only and see how you go, but my guess is that pretty soon you'll get tired of the setup and want a smaller box too. Or maybe more than one.

    Hope this helps a bit

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