E-HDD Enclosure or Ready to use?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by swamesp, Dec 16, 2009.

  1. swamesp macrumors regular

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    #1
    Hello Everybody,

    I'm currently a PC user, looking to buy a MBP in very near future. I'm interested to buy a E-HDD for the mac and PC. I'm using WD-My passport 500GB and it works fine. I'll have to buy one more now as 500GB is already full and I'm looking at the range of 500GB to 1TB size.

    I saw some discussion going about the user made e-hdd with "enclosure" and readily available e-hdd's. Some of the questions that i have:

    - Advantages of using an enclosure?
    - If looking at portability, can I make some e-hdd like My passport or FreeAgent with the enclosures?


    Thanks and Regards,
    Swami.SP
     
  2. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #2
    Control over what kind of drive is inside the enclosure. It can be marginally cheaper, but this is less of an issue these days.
     
  3. swamesp thread starter macrumors regular

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    #3
    Thanks for quick reply.

    No problem in spending time, but will it get cheap or should I buy the ready to use stuff?

    I presume that if the interface with the enclosure would be USB alone then I should go with the ready-made as they are already around $90. Am I correct here?
     
  4. miles01110 macrumors Core

    miles01110

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    #4
    You're probably looking at a $10-20 USD difference between buying the two separately and buying a ready-made model. It used to be a much larger gap.

    Again, if you're anal retentive like me and a lot of people that will probably chime in later, buying a ready-made drive is usually frowned upon mostly because you don't have any control over what drive goes into the enclosure. With Seagate and WD the risk is lessened, since they use their own drives which are generally reliable (Seagate being somewhat questionable since they took over Maxtor and all its crappiness). Other manufacturers like LaCie are awful because they just throw in whatever they can get the cheapest at the time.
     
  5. swamesp thread starter macrumors regular

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    #5
    That's an informative reply.

    Ok now I'm thinking to try this user made this time as I already had the My Passport from WD. Now few questions are:

    1) Will I be able to make something portable like the small drives from WD/SG?
    2) What are the interfaces that I should opt for when trying these enclosure types?

    If yes for the above 1), could you refer any brands for it?


    Thanks and Appreciate your time.
     
  6. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

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    #6
    I would buy one which is ready to use. Building your own external used to be cheaper but nowadays the difference is so tiny that there is not really a reason to build one. Of course if you have a spare HD that you can use, then it'll be cheaper
     
  7. swamesp thread starter macrumors regular

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    #7
    Enclosure brand?

    I'm trying to compare what would be the cost difference to make the final call.
    If it is more than 15-20$ I would surely make it with enclosure else the ready-made only.

    For the cost comparison, can you guys refer any good enclosure brand.
    I want to have it portable like WD-Passport type, so what should be the enclosure size and the HDD (mostly WD brand) Size.

    If the addition of firewire or SATA or both could make it cheaper then I shall look at such an enclosure.
     
  8. jamesixgun macrumors newbie

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    #8
    Portable drives are generally 2.5" HDs. WD and everyone else makes such drives.

    I like the OWC Mercury On The Go cases myself. macsales.com
     
  9. swamesp thread starter macrumors regular

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    #9
    Oh, somehow (mistakenly) I thought the hard drive should be a 3.5" drive with a related enclosure.

    If it would be 2.5" drive, then the enclosure should be 2.5" hopefully.

    WD - 2.5" 500GB, 5400RPM - $87.99
    Enclosure - 2.5" - ~$10

    Does the above mean that the branded ready-made E-HDDs are cheaper?
    or am I missing anything here?
     
  10. mscriv macrumors 601

    mscriv

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    #10
    You can probably find a cheap USB 2.5 enclosre for under $20, but for a good multiple interface drive you will spend considerably more. The OWC drives are more expensive starting at 47.99 and going up depending on what type of connections you want. Also keep in mind that some portable drives are bus powered where as some will require an external power supply.

    EDIT: thegoldenmackid where are you? HD threads are your specialty.
     
  11. swamesp thread starter macrumors regular

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    #11
    Hey thanks for the link,

    Any specific reason why they are comparatively costlier than the other brands?
    I compared USB only portables and the OWCs are costlier than the WD. Are these OWC worth the extra.:confused:

    Appreciate for sparing your time....
     
  12. jamesixgun macrumors newbie

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    #12
    The OWC stuff uses a better chipset than other pre-built drives, they tell you exactly what parts go into the case, and they have great customer service (in my experience).
     
  13. swamesp thread starter macrumors regular

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    #13
    Ok, thanks everybody....!!!!

    Will there be any christmas deals from them on those external HDDs....????
     
  14. cz9h3d macrumors member

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    #14
    If all you want is a USB 2.0 interface, then you have a lot to choose from! I swear we're almost to the point where they'll be in the "jelly jar" at the cash register as an impulse purchase!! Seems like every retailer has one version or another on special each week. Heck - Costco has a 1TB 2.5" Seagate for $139 right now!! And I admit I wonder if I should have just gone for a USB drive (really just backup, so the lower speed would be fine). BTW, your passport is a 2.5" drive. If portability is needed, then go in that direction. Most are just powered by the machine you're plugged into.

    If you want to exploit a firewire interface, then you're going to spend more. My G-tech G-drive (3.5") was just dropped off by UPS 1 hour ago. $167 for a 1TB. I could have bought the bare drive itself for $80-$90 (good holiday sales), so figure the enclosure is another $80. I was looking at enclosures at MicroCenter a few days ago, but anything with firewire800 seems to be a no-name unit. MacMall has some good prices with rebates on the Fantom Green drives with firewire. I pretty much was going to go with OWC or G-tech.

    I'd suggest you go with a prebuilt unit - determine if you want smaller/portable (2.5") or max capacity & performance with lower price (3.5"). Decide if USB is fine or you want firewire (which limits you real quick - or eSATA for your PC?). One option is a prebuilt that you can replace the drive in the future with something bigger (i.e. the OWC).
     
  15. Badger^2 macrumors 68000

    Badger^2

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    #15
    wow, this aint rocket science, but this post is starting to make it look like it is.

    you have portable 2.5" drives that come in sizes all the way up to 1TB. you can buy them bare, and put them in your own enclosure, or buy them pre built.

    advantage to a 2.5" portable drive is they dont need power, they pull power from the USB or FW port on a mac. disadvantage is that they are slower than 3.5" desktop drives, only go to 1TB and cost more.

    you have desktop 3.5" drives that come in sizes all the way up to 2TB. you can buy them bare, and put them in your own enclosure, or buy them pre built.

    they do need to be plugged in, they are faster and larger and cheaper

    OWC, G-tech are the BMW of drives, thats why they cost more.

    For your use, it sounds like you need a simple 3.5" USB 2 desktop drive.

    I have seen pre built ones for $99 for 1.5 TB, but thats on sale.

    Like this

    500 gigs for $50 http://www.officedepot.com/a/product...ve-hard-drive/

    1.5TB for $99 http://www.frys.com/product/6002338
     
  16. swamesp thread starter macrumors regular

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    #16
    Thanks for the detailed reply.

    I was unaware that 3.5" E-HDDs (generally) have high speed drives than the portable stuffs. I will be buying a MBP soon, so I'm thinking to get one with FW.
    Again, thanks for your time.
     
  17. swamesp thread starter macrumors regular

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    #17
    Thanks for taking time to reply,

    Yeah, I understand that this ain't a rocket science, but just clarifying and learning things you know so that I too could help others. :D

    Thanks again, I appreciate it...
     

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