External enclosure for 3-4 drives

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by JWFerne, Jul 13, 2009.

  1. JWFerne macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2006
    #1
    I'm taking 3 of my internal hard drives out and replacing them with larger.

    If I wanted to take the 3 drives that I'm pulling out and put it into an external enclosure do you guys have any recommendations for nice looking and cost effective units?

    My main concern is noise & heat that would come from an external unit with a few drives. I love how simplisic the WD books are, but since i have the drives I guess that would be a bad solution.

    Thanks!
     
  2. JWFerne thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2006
    #3
    Can you format the drobo to have several mounted drives on your system? Like a Movie drive, time machine drive and bootcamp partition?
     
  3. mooblie macrumors 6502

    mooblie

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2009
    Location:
    The Highlands, Scotland
    #4
    Investigate Sonnet Fusion 500. This will take five SATA drives, all operating at full speed down a single eSATA cable (SATA port multiplier). You'll need a Sonnet Tempo E4P (or E2P) card in your MacPro.

    It matches your Mac Pro too and is pretty quiet! You can also use it without the caddies - i.e. slip bare SATA drives in there.
     
  4. uberamd macrumors 68030

    uberamd

    Joined:
    May 26, 2009
    Location:
    Minnesota
    #5
    $600 for the enclosure alone? Ouch. I would go with 2 of these for $58 each: http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other World Computing/MEFWU2HAL2/

    They hold 2 drives each, USB interface, with powered USB hub built in.
     
  5. cube macrumors G5

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    May 10, 2004
    #6
    I understand port multiplication shares the 1.5 or 3 Gbps bandwidth of the single port.
     
  6. JWFerne thread starter macrumors regular

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    Sep 1, 2006
    #7
  7. uberamd macrumors 68030

    uberamd

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    Minnesota
    #8
  8. nanofrog macrumors G4

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    May 6, 2008
    #9
    It does, and there's a speed penalty as well (latency due to switching between disks). A PM chip on 3.0Gb/s can only deliver 250MB/s max (halve it on 1.5Gb/s). Not bad though, given the cost savings that can be had by going this route. :)
     
  9. JWFerne thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2006
    #10
    Thanks guys, put an order in for that OWC enclosure. Fingers crossed it's as quiet as Uberamd said.

    Cheers!
     
  10. bearcatrp macrumors 68000

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    Boon Docks USA
    #11
  11. ChrisA macrumors G4

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    Jan 5, 2006
    Location:
    Redondo Beach, California
    #12
    I have one. Noisy fan. The box is very well built. I got it on sale for cheap. I replaced the fan with a smaller one and got a long FW800 cable and put the unit under my desk. Now I can't hear it.

    The only slilent drive is a no-fan enclosure and those only work for single drives. Why not just buy three FW800 single drive enclosures? Then you have enough drives to do a rotaing off-site backup.
     
  12. mooblie macrumors 6502

    mooblie

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    Apr 23, 2009
    Location:
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    #13
    Agreed - I'm sure it does. But the eSATA port speed is (always) WAY higher than the speed the actual drive is capable of, mechanically - with current rotating drive technology, anyway.

    In my case, I get around 75 MBytes/s R/W off a single SATA drive in that case.

    75 MBytes/sec x 5 drives = 375 MBytes/sec = 3 Gbits/sec. The raw bandwidth in the port is there!
     
  13. uberamd macrumors 68030

    uberamd

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    May 26, 2009
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    #14
    The fan is loud in yours? For an enclosure with a fan, mine is *dead* quiet in comparison to every other style I have owned with a fan.
     
  14. pprior macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 1, 2007
    #15
    It doesn't work that way.

    PM technology will work fine so long as you're using individual drives. but if you try to RAID them you will run into limits compared with individual cabling.
     
  15. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #16
    Yup. PM chips have a top end of 250MB/s (due to switching between drives) vs. 375MB/s for a single SATA port. So separate SATA or eSATA cables for each drive (1 drive per port) certainly allow for higher bandwidths in RAID use. :)
     
  16. aibo macrumors 6502

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    Jan 17, 2008
    Location:
    Southern California
    #17
    I'm also looking for a 4-drive enclosure but will probably wait for Drobo gen 3.
     
  17. geoffreak macrumors 68020

    geoffreak

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2008
    #18
    Yes and no.
    You can't put the bootcamp partition on ANY external drive. It must be internal (or eSATA). You also will only be able to access it under Mac OSX unless you format it as FAT32. You can format it as NTFS and have it work under Mac OSX if you install MacFuse (free).
    All the drives in a Drobo are treated by the OS as one drive, but you can partition it to as many partitions as you please.

    Already out. It is an 8 bay device with an iSCSI interface.
     
  18. aibo macrumors 6502

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    Jan 17, 2008
    Location:
    Southern California
    #19
    Hmm I will rephrase then -- I'll wait for the Drobo gen 3 consumer model. 4-bay is enough for me if it means ~$400 instead of ~$1200. :eek:
     

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