external enclosure?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by faumble, Apr 18, 2008.

  1. faumble macrumors regular

    Jan 8, 2008
    need some help with a hd external enclosure for a mac pro, there are so many to choose! and dont know anything about any of these brands.
    having a fan is really helpful? I really dont know how to choose, am looking for recommendations :) I'm searching for something that has esata and either firewire or usb or both (is firewire substantially better than usb?)
    these are some I found and think might be good

    Thanks in advance

    edit: am about to order and would really appreciate any advice, thanks in advance!
  2. Oldschoolwax macrumors member

    Feb 5, 2007
    Well, without a doubt the first one is too cute, I've been thinking of trying one out myself.

    IMHO no system is really better or worse, yes, speeds may be faster, but it really depends what you're going to do with the drive.

    IF it's just for storage and speed isn't really an issue, then I think anything will be just fine ( Warning! Mac Pro with Tiger will eject without notice some usb 2.0 drives... They will work fine under Winblows XP on the same system, but will dump on OS X Tiger! They've fixed this problem with Leopard... but always act surprised when it's mentioned. )

    ARE you going to be using these drives with software that have specific requirements such as Pro Tools? If so, you need to use hardware that's approved for the software, anything will be a gamble.

    WILL you want to boot your Mac from the external drive? If so it will have to be FireWire or at least have that as an option on the enclosure.

    I like to have an enclosure around that will handle SATA and IDE, as I find that I sometimes need to transfer data from other people's drives or from dead computers and it just makes life easier, but if you just need an external drive, I'd go with a simple SATA enclosure, the format is really up to you and your personal needs.
  3. waremaster macrumors 6502

    Aug 27, 2006
  4. gdieter macrumors member

    Nov 21, 2007
    owc mercury elite pro

    I got one of these recently:

    http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Other World Computing/MEFW924AL1K/

    It's pricey, but very well-constructed and has 4 interfaces (USB, FW400, FW800 and ESATA). No fan - and with a 1TB Seagate drive installed, only runs warm to the touch.

    There is a significant difference between transfer rates between USB and FW800 (which is how mine is currently connected):

    1.4GB folder transfer from internal to external:

    FW800 - 24 seconds
    USB - 49 seconds

    I didn't find that much difference between standard FW and USB when I compared a few weeks ago.
  5. faumble thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 8, 2008

    Thanks very much.
    I will only use it for storage, mainly backup.
    Yes, macally seems to be the best, i think it will be this one or vantec as they have usb, firewire, and sata. the only thing is that it does not have is a fan. do i need a fan? (will plug 750 and 1TB drives)

    and how do I know if its firewire 400 or 800?
    Thanks again :)
  6. aibo macrumors 6502

    Jan 17, 2008
    Southern California
    I use a Mercury Elite-AL 2-drive enclosure (firewire 800 and 400 interfaces) and it's very good. The firmware can be configured for RAID (stripe or span) or as 2 independent disks. It's quiet and matches the Mac Pro look very well.

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