Top positive review
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ASMEDIA 1051 Chipset = WINNING
on July 2, 2013
I searched high and low for a quality enclosure that has ASMEDIA 105x chipset along with a cooling fan. I wanted an enclosure that would keep my hard disk cool, and also allow the disk to spin down to save electricity. With the fan on, the cooling characteristics are excellent. It can keep my 7200 RPM seagate drive at 34 degrees Celsius after sustained write activity. The temperature then drops back to 30 degrees Celsius. Compare this to the original plastic buffalo enclosure that this Seagate hard drive shipped with, that had no fan, and caused the disk to hit over 55 degrees Celsius and trip the disk's S.M.A.R.T max temperature threshold.
The ASMEDIA 1051 chipset is excellent and can support large disks (i'm using a 3TB seagate), and also provides the ability to spin down disks on system sleep, resume on system wake, spin down to standby on idle activity etc. It also works very well with disk monitoring tools like smartmon and disk management tools like hdparm. I updated the ASM105x firmware of my enclosure with Plugable 130220.81.F6.02 using MPTool which can be found with an internet search. i set the idle spindown to 15 minutes.
I currently have this enclosure connected to a circa-2007 Apple TV (revision one) through USB2. It is running Ubuntu. The hard disk is formatted with GPT and has a 3TB ext4 partition. The disk is detected and works perfectly, and auto-mounted using udisks-glue. The drive spins down to standby on 15 minute inactivity.
The reason I only give this enclosure currently 4 stars, rather than 5, is that the fan is either 'on' or 'off'. The fan does not turn 'off' when the drive spins down to standby or sleep modes (hdparm -y / -Y). The fan if set to on, will run 24x7. Ideally, the fan would be driven from S.M.A.R.T data, and activate when temperature threshold etc is met. The two blue leds as others have mentioned are ridiculously bright, and I disconnected them. If the fan stands the test of time, I'll update the rating of this enclosure to 5 star.