AcomData PureDrive 1 TB USB 2.0/eSATA Desktop External Hard Drive PHD10000USE-72
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- ESATA - Transfer Rates Up To 1.5 Gbps
- High-speed USB 2.0 - Transfer Data At Speeds Up To 480 Mbps
- Mac & Pc Compatible
- Security Lock Slot Physically Secures Your Drive
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1000GB (1TB) 7200RPM USB 2.0 eSATA External HD. Includes: AcomData 761 pureDrive external hard drive. Slide-on stand USB cable. AC adapter QuickStart Guide. CD (USB 2.0 driver for Win 98SE; User's Guide).
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Anyway, I've got a Dell XPS 420 running Vista Home Premium, and with that eSATA port that I paid for and was determined to use, so after almost tearing out my already thinning hair I decided to go for this one. One bonus is that the styling matches my new Dell perfectly. They look like they belong together.
So, I plug it all in and my computer immediately recognizes it, just like the start-up guide says. But this thing comes formatted in FAT format, so the main selling point -- backing up those huge video files -- cannot happen until the drive is reformatted as an NTSC drive. This is easy enough to do with Vista; it just took an extra couple hours or so up front.
So, now I've got it reformatted and I copied a folder with about 160 gigs of avi files and it took a bit over a half an hour. It seemed to do about 60Mb a second (I never thought that I was ever going to get 1.5 Gig a second). That's reality, and it's still by far the fastest external hard drive I've got.
The one bummer is that my Vista machine will not recognize it when I click on "Safely Remove Hardware". So, I can't dismount it and switch it off. I'll have to power it up or down when the computer is off, and that's an inconvenience. Perhaps that's due to the eSATA connection.
Finally, this thing runs hot. I've got it mounted vertically to maximize surface exposure and it really heated up while formatting and copying those files. I've ordered a mini desk fan that I'm going to run to circulate air between my computers and external hard drives.
So, as far a longevity goes, that remains to be seen, but if this thing dies before a year is up I'll be updating this review for sure.
Oh yeah, the bid blue bar light (blue when it's ready, red when it's not) is not cool. It's annoying. How many bright lights do I need in my face in my peripheral vision when I'me using my computer? A little "dot light" would have done the same thing. I'll probably end up covering most of it with electrical tape.
Postscript: I just purchased a second external hard drive. It turns out that one need not buy an "all in one" unit like this, but you can also get "package deals" where you get a hard drive enclosure with the eSATA plug, and then you can choose your own hard drive for the enclosure. I've got an eSATA enclosure with a Seagate Barracuda drive with a three year warranty inside it. That's cool!
After all, with this unit, you don't know what exatly you got for a hard drive in there. So, go for the hard drive you know, and find an eSATA enabled enclosure for it.
Connector Types: USB and eSATA I (1.5Gbps)
PCs setup: From dual Xeon workstation to the 5 years old 2.4GHz PIV Sony Vaio.
Since the dimensions, weight, and various other specs are given by the manufacturer, I'm not going to give the lecture about the unit to you again. But here is the critical info:
[Access Read/Write speed and time]
I use various IO monitoring software to check the access speeds for the unit. The best one I've used is H2TESTW ([...]) as a free tool.
USB 2.0: Max Read 20.6MB/s and Max Write 24.2MB/s. Major shy on the 60MB/s possible access speed for USB 2.0.
eSATA I: Max Read 60.2MB/s and Max Write at 61.4MB/s. Three times faster than the USB 2.0, but massively shy of the the 1.5Gbps access capability, which is 192MB/s. Ofcouse no HDD has that capability yet.
Access time: Depending on what you have in your OSes (such as monitoring tools and antivirus programs), the fastest access time from cold boot to writable/readable time is 5.2 seconds, which was the Wii. Linux takes second at 8.7 seconds, and bare minimum Windows XP SP3 takes third at 15.7 seconds.
[Universal Hardware Detection]
From the Wii to the PCs with Linux and Windows XP OSes, the external drive gets detected the second the power to the case is on. No software drivers needed, and no headache in searching around in how to install it.
The external drive runs cool for the first 10 minutes, but between 15 to 20 minutes, the drive reaches up to 98 degress on the metallic shell. Use the baby digital thermometer for reading. Quite handy tool. It remains at 98 degrees for hours on end. Max temperature sitting in an enclosed media center case reached up to 110 degrees F. Let the HDD enclosure cool down a bit in the open air, it goes back down to 98 degrees F.
It works shy of two weeks, and the drive failed to read/write/format, but detectable by the systems. Apparently, the Hitachi HDD sitting in the enclosure is not as reliable as the Western Digital or Seagate. Can't say the same with the WD or Seagaste HDDs, since similar issues get reported in with them. I have the 1TB WD Caviar Black, use with the Thermaltake BlacX external HDD case. Work fine for the past month or so without a hiccup. If the replacement drive suffers the same faith as the first one, I might as well get the WD HDD and BlacX casing combo for my other systems. It's not the enclosure that's the problem. It's the Hitachi HDD.
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HDD failed and had to replace it