iomega 2tb minimax hard drive review

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by weisjt, Jan 5, 2011.

  1. weisjt macrumors 6502a


    Dec 8, 2010
    Southern Pines, North Carolina
    i have had this hard drive for about 8 months now and i just wanted to share my thoughts on the performance and quality of the product for anyone who cares.
  2. billib macrumors member


    Apr 23, 2009
    Not Enough Info

    Whats the speed of the included Drive?
    Also, if its connected via FireWire
    can you also use the USB ports
    as a hub and not interfere with
    the FireWire part? Does it have a
    fan? If so how loud? It looks
    pretty good though you would
    think Iomega would have introduced
    an enclosure with the '10 mini's
    form factor instead of the old one.
    Go figure.

  3. philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
    pulled from website:

    Using the USB Hub and FireWire Ports
    The MiniMax drive includes a 3-port USB 2.0 hub that you can use to connect other USB devices to the computer. When using the USB hub, connect the MiniMax to the computer via USB.
    The MiniMax also includes two FireWire 800 ports that can be used for FireWire pass-through. The FireWire ports will transfer data at FireWire 800 speeds only when the MiniMax is using FireWire 800 as the interface connection to the computer. You can use the FireWire ports for pass-through when the MiniMax is connected to the computer via USB, but performance will be limited to USB 2.0 transfer speeds (up to 480 Mbits/sec). For best results, a device connected to FireWire pass-through should have its own power supply connection.
    Avoid connecting the MiniMax to more than one interface on the computer at the same time. Follow the instructions below if you want to change the interface connection used by the drive.

    If you plug in usb2 and fw800 at the same time only the usb2 works. you can only use one or the other.
  4. weisjt thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Dec 8, 2010
    Southern Pines, North Carolina
    i have my iphone dock plugged in the usb port and charge it everyday while the drive is being used. i dont use usb as a interface for other devices. if i needed to i would just it into the mac mini to keep a high data transfer rate with fw800.
  5. philipma1957 macrumors 603


    Apr 13, 2010
    Howell, New Jersey
    That is a good idea another use would be this a usb fan for cooling. you could even add an usb extension cord to it.
  6. jdryyz, Jan 10, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 10, 2011

    jdryyz macrumors regular


    Jun 12, 2007
    Too bad they couldn't go with a chipset that can offer both working at full speed. My original MiniMate enclosure did this and is still the best external Mac Mini-style enclosure built in my opinion. The Iomega MiniMax unit was looking good until I read this.
  7. getaperspective macrumors newbie

    Jan 16, 2011
    Iomega Minimax 2TB

    I have one of these. FYI the drive that came inside mine is a Samsung F4. It came formatted in APM so you may want to check the format and reformat as GUID if required for an Intel iMac/MacBook. Some start up noise but the drive is very quiet in operation and mounts faster than my WD Caviar Black 2TB. Write speed is not blazing but I use it as a backup drive anyway. I have also replaced a 1TB drive in a Minimax with a 2TB and have had no issues yet.
  8. dwelltime macrumors newbie

    Feb 2, 2011
    Iomega MiniMax 2TB Firewire/USB drive

    I am posting my experience with the 2TB MiniMax, as there seems to be some confusion on how it handles the two different data connections.

    I have an Iomega MiniMax 500GB drive and I use both the Firewire 400 and the USB hub with no problem. There is a minor issue you must accept, however. To use the Firewire as the active data connection, you need to power up the drive with the USB disconnected and after the drive appears on the desktop, hot-plug the USB connection. Then as long as you don't power-cycle the drive, both connections function properly. You can Eject, remount (Disk Utility) soft-boot or cold boot the Mac and the configuration will not change.

    Because I recently needed to increase my storage capacity I thought that the Iomega MiniMax 2TB would be ideal, replacing the 500GB one. After seeing these posts, reviewing the 2TB's literature and getting a non-answer from Iomega about the inability to use both the Firewire 800 and the USB 2.0 simultaneously, I was almost deterred. But--engineers, at least good ones, don't usually fix what ain't broke. I decided to try a 2TB unit and if it did not function as I expected it would, I'd just return same.

    The results are:
    Iomega needs to seriously revise its literature. It works the same as the 500GB unit.

    1. Connect the Firewire 800 to the Mac.
    2. Connect any peripherals which are going to use the USB hub to the MiniMax.
    3. Do not connect the MiniMax USB to the Mac.
    4. Boot the Mac (if not already up)
    5. Power up the drive.
    6. After the drive is recognized and mounted, hot-plug the USB between the MiniMax and the Mac.

    Again, as long as you do not power-cycle the drive, you can happily use both the FireWire and the USB at the same time.

    Other items of note:

    Data throughput.
    1. I copied a large (22GB) file to both the 2TB MiniMax and a 500GB WD USB drive connected to the MiniMax hub. I simultaneously performed a Duplicate on both files and timed the operation. The duplication on the MiniMax took 19 minutes and the duplication on the WD took 45 minutes.
    2. I disconnected the MiniMax USB/Mac connection and performed another Duplicate operation. The duplication took 17 minutes. This suggests that the simultaneous use of the Firewire 800 and USB2.0 slows but does not materially affect the Firewire 800 data transfer rate.

    Firewire pass-through.
    1. I connected the MiniMax 500GB to the MiniMax 2TB drive using a Firewire 800-400 cable. The 500GB drive mounted as a Firewire drive and functioned properly.

    The drive runs noticeably cooler than the 500GB unit (whose fan may not be working). It is is very quiet except when spinning up after sleeping. It sleeps when the Mac is put to sleep or when the Mac's Energy Saver sleep mode is active.

    As long as you are willing to leave the drive powered up, I see no reason not to use it as a Firewire 800 drive with a USB2.0 hub. The sleep mode does reduce the power consumption and drive wear and tear.
  9. DukeOfHunslet macrumors member

    Jan 31, 2011
    Hunslet, England
    I have a 1TB version of this.

    Does what it says on the tin and worked great straight from the box.

    I wouldn't say it is loud... but it is louder then the MacMini that sits on top of it.
  10. Jaunty macrumors regular

    Oct 13, 2004
    London, England
    dwelltime, thanks for your post. Do not need the usb hub as yet but good to read it can be utilised with firewire. Re the drive, I got the 2tb to sit under my AEX for my media storage. All good so far, and looks smart too.
  11. jkr77 macrumors newbie

    Mar 16, 2011
    dwelltime thanks for a thorough review of the minimax 2tb. i just bought this (waiting on shipment) from amazon, so was looking for additional info on FW800 and USB simultaneous connections, and this helped me greatly.

    fwiw, the apple store wanted $40 more than amazon so I thought it was a great deal at $165.
  12. ttate90303 macrumors regular

    Nov 22, 2008
    It's a fairly good drive for the price for the 2TB. I'm using it with my Mac mini as a media storage drive connected via Firewire 800. I only hear spin-up noise after drive has gone to sleep when idle otherwise fairly quiet.
  13. manwyddan macrumors newbie

    Jan 29, 2012
    Using the iomega minimax 2TB for two iMacs

    Hi, does anyone know if it's possible to configure the Iomega 2TB minimax external hard drive simultaneously as backup for two separate iMacs using the two firewire 800 ports?
  14. Mojo1 macrumors 65816

    Jul 26, 2011
    Thanks For The Heads-Up...

    The NewerTech miniStack v3 does not have the limitation of the Iomega enclosure:

    "To use either the USB 2.0 or FireWire 1394 Hub feature, you must interconnect the cables provided between your computer and the miniStack. Connect the FireWire cable between the computer and enclosure using any of the FireWire ports on the miniStack, and a FireWire connection on your computer. The USB 2.0 connection between the machines is the same, except use the USB 2.0 Uplink port on the miniStack and any of the ports on the computer."

    Thanks for letting us know about the Iomega workaround. Personally, I don't want to go to that much trouble every time I start-up an external drive, so I'm going to skip the Iomega drive.
  15. haylostachoo macrumors newbie

    Mar 7, 2013
    Thank You dwelltime!

    Super! Previously, Airport Express was my hub for internet, printer and the Iomega Minimax 2 tb firewire/usb external hard drive. I used a 500 gb Iomega external hard drive on USB as my Time Machine plugged in to my late 2007 MacBookPro. I accepted the speed constraints until this article from dwelltime provided an answer Iomega missed in the manual. I removed the Airport Express, connected the internet with an ethernet cable, then firewire to the Minimax. Following dwelltime’s instructions, I now sit with the Minimax as my hub to the 2 tb files, Time Machine and the Canon IP100 printer. Works like a charm!

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