HD Bay Enclosure

Discussion in 'Buying Tips, Advice and Discussion (archive)' started by Nuc, Jan 26, 2004.

  1. Nuc macrumors 6502a


    Jan 20, 2003
    My question is regarding a HD bay enclosure that has 2 or more hard drives. I have looked at cooldrive, firewiredirect, FWdepot, and ebay. I will want to mirror the drives which a raid system will do. I was wondering the best route for to go for making a raid system without the large cost. I want either 1394a/b or possibly USB 2.0. I will be upgrading to a PM so I can use the 1394b on it... Also how can a serial-ATA be used in these?

    Thanks in advance for your help!


    here is an example for what I would like to get..

  2. pianojoe macrumors 6502


    Jul 5, 2001
    N 49.50121 E008.54558
    I don't see the point in this. You can get single HD FW enclosures for around 60€. Advantage: You may want to connect each of them to a dedicated FW port, thus doubling the theoretical bandwidth.
  3. Makosuke macrumors 603

    Aug 15, 2001
    The Cool Part of CA, USA
    There are a lot of factors involved in RAID, and firewire raid in particular. What is right for you depends wildly on what, exactly, your needs are, but here are a few thoughts I've come up with in shopping for dual FW cases:

    1. Serial ATA: Not yet. I don't think I've seen any SATA FW cases, and I don't know why you'd really care anyway--there's no significant speed difference at this point, and SATA drives are more expensive. The FW bus would be the limiting factor in either case, anyway.

    2. As the previous poster said, two individual cases will work just as well as a dual-drive case, with the added bonuses that you can put each on a different FW bus to increase speed, and you can use/sell each seperately if you want.

    Two seperate FW enclosures with a software RAID setup (OSX has RAID built in, so I'd just use that) is probably the cheapest way to go as well; the only dual-drive case I've seen that was cheaper than two seperate cases was from computergeeks.com. I bought one, for about $70, but it's very industrial, is only FW400, and has no built-in RAID featuers. I'm trying to sell it now, since I decided I preferred to use seperate cases.

    3. That said, since you want to do RAID 1, I'd personally get a hardware RAID case like the Vanguard III from FirewireDirect. I much prefer hardware RAID to software, since it doesn't rely on any specific OS or software installation, and if you're willing to spend the cash for the enclosure, it'll be completely plug-and play with no worries about your computer recognizing the software RAID format, etc. All around the safest, smoothest, and slickest way to go, but it's also the most expensive.

    Good luck.
  4. theadvocator macrumors newbie

    May 3, 2004
    i havent seen any SATA/FireWire RAID boxes, but firewire depot offers a SATA drive tray that works with the 1394a hot swappable drive trays and a couple of their new enclosures so you can use SATA drives in their FireWire boxes.

    Also, as much as firewiredirect likes to tout themselves as the only company to sell 1394b RAID enclosures, firewire depot (www.fwdepot.com) was the first and continues to offer the largest selection of 1394a and 1394b and 1394/USB2 combo RAID enclosures. We are using a pair of fwdepot's RAID1 boxes and a pair of their new eRAID RAID5 boxes (which offer 1394a, 1394b, USB2 and SATA connectors on the rear panel)


    firewire depot also offers a 1394b bridgeboard which has dual channels and offers RAID SPAN capability built into the bridgeboard so you can SPAN 4 drives from a single bridgeboard and if you have those old industrial type scsi enclosures, you could install one of these boards, 4 drives, and have a RAID SPAN setup for minimal investment


    hardware RAID is definately the way to go - RAID 0/1 is the fastest, RAID 5 is the safest
  5. Bhennies macrumors 6502

    Mar 20, 2004
    NYC & Baltimore

    not too cheap though, but 7 year warranty (got one on order- see my sig).

    Firewire 800 with dual seagate barracuda in removable drive bays.

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