Should I Build a Drive Tower?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Cloud9, Jul 16, 2008.

  1. Cloud9 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2005
    Location:
    between flesh and thought
    #1
    Ok so I have 7 external hard drives sitting on my desk that I use for storing my photos and backing up those photos. I have a hydras head of power cables running to floor and a hodgepodge of usb and firewire cables running into the back of my ACD and my MBP. I want to eliminate this mess.

    I know you can start a mac in target disk mode if it has fire wire. I am wondering if I could build a tower to hold my seven hard drives, (maybe more later), that functions not as a computer but just powers them and has a fire wire connection and that is shared by all eight drives. Basically a big fire wire jbod box. Is that possible?
     
  2. 204467 macrumors 6502a

    204467

    Joined:
    Jul 13, 2008
    Location:
    Philadelphia, PA
    #2
    If that is possible (I don't know much about that firewire power thing you mentioned) you definitely should do it. It would reduce cable clutter, save space and look cool. If you do it, post pictures when you're done.
     
  3. iShater macrumors 604

    iShater

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2002
    Location:
    Chicagoland
    #3
    In order to get a single FW cable for all of them without daisy-chaining and losing speed, you probably need to configure them in a hardware raid enclosure. But then you won't be dealing with them as individual drives anymore.
     
  4. Snowbound macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 19, 2008
    #4
    I'm interested as well. Are they all the same size (i.e. 2.5" or 3.5")? You could also just buy a multiple drive enclosure? Though I'm not sure I've seen many of these with over 4 slots.
     
  5. sickmacdoc macrumors 68020

    sickmacdoc

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2008
    Location:
    New Hampshire
    #5
    I did a bunch of research because I wanted to do something similar and one of the few prebuilt cases that feature FireWire 800 out which hold up to 8 drives is the EBOX-F by DatOptic. A link to the product on their online ordering site is: http://www.caloptic.com/cgi-bin/quikstore.cgi?product=EBOX-F&detail=yes

    The cool thing about this is that it can handle IDE drives in it's native build (great for getting rid of a bunch of individual cases for my old IDE drives that I had migrated to external cases for system backups) but can also be configured at time of purchase to handle SATA drives instead.

    I chose not to get the 8 drive tower, but got two four drive towers from them instead (QBOX-F http://www.caloptic.com/cgi-bin/quikstore.cgi?product=QBOX-F&detail=yes ) and I have to say they are sweet! Really nice build quality- glossy black cases and large quiet case fan- and they test each enclosure by loading up a set of disks in each before shipping so you can be pretty sure you are not going to get a DOA case to deal with!

    There are plenty of multi-drive towers for use with SATA drives with eSATA interfaces on them, but this was just about it for towers outputting FW800 and being able to deal with IDE OR SATA drives. Do I like my pair? You bet- and that is 8 fewer external enclosure and 8 fewer power bricks to deal with too! :D
     

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