Advice on HDD caddy's

static123

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Apr 28, 2016
10
1
Hi

I am hoping you guys might be able to advise me on the following.

I am making the switch over to an iMac 27 5k i7 16gb 512 ssd and I will be needing to connect my old WD hdds that contain my samples and projects to the mac.
I have been looking at USB 3 caddy’s and I have few questions.

1. Does OSX Support UASP ?

2. Would it be better for me to have each drive in separate caddy’s or should I try and find one that supports 2 ?

3. Should I make sure the caddy's have there own power?

4. Do you guys have any suggestions of any that are tried and tested, ones to look at or ones to stay away from.

Thanks so much and I am looking forward to your replies
 

Weaselboy

Moderator
Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
30,174
9,853
California
1. Yes.

2. Multiple drive USB setups that I have seen are usually much more expensive and only run multiple drives in a RAID configuration. I would just get a single drive setup.

3. I assume here you are talking about 3.5" desktop drives? If so, those will need a power source. If just a 2.5" laptop drive it does not need a power source.

4. For 2.5" I like this one. I don't have any 3.5" enclosures, but a lot of people like the ones from OWC.
 

static123

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Apr 28, 2016
10
1
Hi and thanks for your quick reply, sorry yes there 3.5. I have noticed that some of the enclosures that take more than one drive have some settings that apparently make OSX see them as separate drives, but I am not totally sure.

If you had two hdd's being used at the same time but over the same USB port would that slow it down ?
 

Weaselboy

Moderator
Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
30,174
9,853
California
Hi and thanks for your quick reply, sorry yes there 3.5. I have noticed that some of the enclosures that take more than one drive have some settings that apparently make OSX see them as separate drives, but I am not totally sure.

If you had two hdd's being used at the same time but over the same USB port would that slow it down ?
I think all those multi enclosure setups with USB are using a RAID setup to use multiple drives and make it appear as one large drive. I don't believe there are any USB enclosures that can run two drives at once as separate drives.
 

static123

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Apr 28, 2016
10
1
I think all those multi enclosure setups with USB are using a RAID setup to use multiple drives and make it appear as one large drive. I don't believe there are any USB enclosures that can run two drives at once as separate drives.
ok thanks again, ill keep on digging about and see what i can come up with.
 
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hfg

macrumors 68040
Dec 1, 2006
3,576
281
Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
There are many USB and Thunderbolt enclosures which house 2 or more 3.5" disk drives and will work as you desire. Look under the specs for "JBOD" which indicates the disks can be individually accessed. I like OWC enclosures and have had good luck with them, but there are many more brands as well (search on Amazon or Newegg). Many of these also have a switch which allows hardware RAID of several types if you so desire, or you can utilize software RAID under OS X with a JBOD installation.

OWC currently has a "garage sale" going on with some their enclosures:
https://eshop.macsales.com/Search/?...aderCL06.16&APC=READERSPC&Source=Clear16June2
 
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Weaselboy

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Staff member
Jan 23, 2005
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There are many USB and Thunderbolt enclosures which house 2 or more 3.5" disk drives and will work as you desire. Look under the specs for "JBOD" which indicates the disks can be individually accessed.
Thanks for the clarification.
 

static123

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Apr 28, 2016
10
1
There are many USB and Thunderbolt enclosures which house 2 or more 3.5" disk drives and will work as you desire. Look under the specs for "JBOD" which indicates the disks can be individually accessed. I like OWC enclosures and have had good luck with them, but there are many more brands as well (search on Amazon or Newegg). Many of these also have a switch which allows hardware RAID of several types if you so desire, or you can utilize software RAID under OS X with a JBOD installation.

OWC currently has a "garage sale" going on with some their enclosures:
https://eshop.macsales.com/Search/?q=garage.sale&sort.popularity=desc&arID=650&filter.category_hierarchy=External Enclosures&SPC=ReaderCL06.16&APC=READERSPC&Source=Clear16June2
Thank you that's great to hear, I am still trying to work out if two separate ones would be better for speed, wouldn't each USB port be on a different bus ? So two drives each with there own would be better than two fighting for one, what do you think ? Thanks again
 

hfg

macrumors 68040
Dec 1, 2006
3,576
281
Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
Thank you that's great to hear, I am still trying to work out if two separate ones would be better for speed, wouldn't each USB port be on a different bus ? So two drives each with there own would be better than two fighting for one, what do you think ? Thanks again
Your computer is really only accessing one drive at a time (ignoring command queueing), so there is no real benefit in normal use having separate interfaces. However, you will probably benefit from less "clutter" around your computer with separate cables, separate power supplies/cords, separate chassis, and of course a single enclosure won't use up all your USB ports. If possible, you might even put a multi-drive chassis under your desk so you will not even hear it running. Also, multi-drive cases usually have better cooling than most single drive cases, many of which don't have any cooling at all and often overheat and die early.
 

static123

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Apr 28, 2016
10
1
Your computer is really only accessing one drive at a time (ignoring command queueing), so there is no real benefit in normal use having separate interfaces. However, you will probably benefit from less "clutter" around your computer with separate cables, separate power supplies/cords, separate chassis, and of course a single enclosure won't use up all your USB ports. If possible, you might even put a multi-drive chassis under your desk so you will not even hear it running. Also, multi-drive cases usually have better cooling than most single drive cases, many of which don't have any cooling at all and often overheat and die early.
Thank you for your info, is helped me make up my mind now. the only one i can find is https://www.amazon.co.uk/StarTech-i...+USB+3.0+SATA+III+Hard+Drive+Enclosure++4+bay

I decided to go with a 4 bay so i can keep a time machine drive in there with one space free. I am just a little concerned with the build quality of Startec stuff and how noisy the fan is. Anyone on here have any experience with there products?
[doublepost=1464958187][/doublepost]just found this one http://www.icydock.com/goods.php?id=218

Just found out it not due for release here in the uk for a while, dam I need one now, so its looking like the only one is the Startech.
 
Last edited:

Fishrrman

macrumors Core
Feb 20, 2009
19,084
6,530
OP:
By "caddy", you are referring to what's also known as a USB3/SATA docking station, is that correct?
Or -- do you mean USB -enclosure- ??

If it's a dock you're talking about:

"1. Does OSX Support UASP ?"


Yes. If possible, get a caddy/dock that has UASP support. But be aware that this really only matters with an SSD in the dock. Platter-based HDD's probably won't benefit from it.

2. Would it be better for me to have each drive in separate caddy’s or should I try and find one that supports 2 ?

I've never had a "2-bay" dock. I've heard reports from others that sometimes, you can't eject a single drive without causing problems with the other one. Again, just something I've heard.
Here's one that might be worth investigation (I don't own it):
http://www.amazon.com/Syba-Drive-Do...721&sr=8-1-fkmr0&keywords=syba+usb3+sata+dock

3. Should I make sure the caddy's have there own power?

I've never seen a USB3/SATA docking station that doesn't have it's own power supply. They all come with one. I don't think the Mac would supply enough power for one in any case.

4. Do you guys have any suggestions of any that are tried and tested, ones to look at or ones to stay away from.

I've had plugable.com docks that work fine.
Also have an older Syba dock that still works after years of use.

Check amazon.com -- many are available.
Also -- you might consider a USB3/SATA "dongle" adapter, as well.
 

elf69

macrumors 68020
Jun 2, 2016
2,322
482
Cornwall UK
I have a usb 3.0 dual drive caddy made by dynamode (yes not great) but works in my windows 7 and 10 pc.

Not tried my macbook yet.

It support JBOD as well as raid.

however it is fussy about which chipset the usb3.0 drive is connected to.
will not work in my friends PC with usb 3 but likes my pc.

No issue with usb 2.0 ports so far.

I plan on upgrading to a NAS box though so my android tablet can also use the data.
 

static123

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Apr 28, 2016
10
1
OP:
By "caddy", you are referring to what's also known as a USB3/SATA docking station, is that correct?
Or -- do you mean USB -enclosure- ??

If it's a dock you're talking about:

"1. Does OSX Support UASP ?"


Yes. If possible, get a caddy/dock that has UASP support. But be aware that this really only matters with an SSD in the dock. Platter-based HDD's probably won't benefit from it.

2. Would it be better for me to have each drive in separate caddy’s or should I try and find one that supports 2 ?

I've never had a "2-bay" dock. I've heard reports from others that sometimes, you can't eject a single drive without causing problems with the other one. Again, just something I've heard.
Here's one that might be worth investigation (I don't own it):
http://www.amazon.com/Syba-Drive-Do...721&sr=8-1-fkmr0&keywords=syba+usb3+sata+dock

3. Should I make sure the caddy's have there own power?

I've never seen a USB3/SATA docking station that doesn't have it's own power supply. They all come with one. I don't think the Mac would supply enough power for one in any case.

4. Do you guys have any suggestions of any that are tried and tested, ones to look at or ones to stay away from.

I've had plugable.com docks that work fine.
Also have an older Syba dock that still works after years of use.

Check amazon.com -- many are available.
Also -- you might consider a USB3/SATA "dongle" adapter, as well.
Hi thank you for the help, I am referring to An enclosure, sorry I got my words mixed up.
 

hfg

macrumors 68040
Dec 1, 2006
3,576
281
Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
I generally prefer Thunderbolt enclosures over USB 3.0 and currently use several OWC ThunderBay 4 units on my iMac and MacMini Server. On the iMac, I have a 6TB hard disk for TimeMachine backup, a 4TB hard disk partitioned for 1TB daily clone of my internal SSD and 3TB for music, video, photo libraries and archive type data, a 500GB SSD for bootable Windows 10 also accessed as a VM in OS X, and a spare slot currently holding a scratch SSD. The MacMini Server has 2 ThunderBay 4s in SoftRAID 5 for whole house backup and shared data/libraries.
https://eshop.macsales.com/item/OWC/TB2IVKIT0GB/

On my cMacPro I have a OWC MercuryElitePro Qx2 because it is USB 3.0 and eSATA. Although I have used it in the past as a JBOD storage, it is currently running in hardware RAID-5 mode for backup of my Mac Pro disks. Not the fastest enclosure, but has been stable for me.
https://eshop.macsales.com/item/OWC/M3QX2KIT0GB/

Here is a group of enclosures at OWC:
https://eshop.macsales.com/shop/hard-drives/External-Enclosures/3.5-Inch-Drives

I also have a couple of their 2-drive enclosures with USB 3.0 and Thunderbolt interfaces which I use for portable storage.

I don't know the availability of these units in the UK ... they might be available through Amazon there.

The only enclosure I have tried and didn't really like was a Drobo 5 because it was slow.

-howard
 

static123

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Apr 28, 2016
10
1
I generally prefer Thunderbolt enclosures over USB 3.0 and currently use several OWC ThunderBay 4 units on my iMac and MacMini Server. On the iMac, I have a 6TB hard disk for TimeMachine backup, a 4TB hard disk partitioned for 1TB daily clone of my internal SSD and 3TB for music, video, photo libraries and archive type data, a 500GB SSD for bootable Windows 10 also accessed as a VM in OS X, and a spare slot currently holding a scratch SSD. The MacMini Server has 2 ThunderBay 4s in SoftRAID 5 for whole house backup and shared data/libraries.
https://eshop.macsales.com/item/OWC/TB2IVKIT0GB/

On my cMacPro I have a OWC MercuryElitePro Qx2 because it is USB 3.0 and eSATA. Although I have used it in the past as a JBOD storage, it is currently running in hardware RAID-5 mode for backup of my Mac Pro disks. Not the fastest enclosure, but has been stable for me.
https://eshop.macsales.com/item/OWC/M3QX2KIT0GB/

Here is a group of enclosures at OWC:
https://eshop.macsales.com/shop/hard-drives/External-Enclosures/3.5-Inch-Drives

I also have a couple of their 2-drive enclosures with USB 3.0 and Thunderbolt interfaces which I use for portable storage.

I don't know the availability of these units in the UK ... they might be available through Amazon there.

The only enclosure I have tried and didn't really like was a Drobo 5 because it was slow.

-howard
Hi nice one for the info, unfortunately the ones your have suggest there are only a few available in amazon uk and tbh they are a little out of my price range, especially just forking out on the i7 iMac5k, its a shame as there perfect and would look very nice next to the new toy. I am finding it hard to find 4 port one's that have UASP, and staring to think that perhaps i should just go with a standard usb 3 one, I am going to be putting standard drives in it and not SSD, (hopefully in the future ill upgrade) would having a UASP one be beneficial to me?
 
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