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Date: March 17th, 2009
Article by: Jackie Mueller (Hardware Reviewer)
Edited By: Nathan Glentworth (Owner / Head Editor)
Product was submitted by: IcyDock
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PRODUCT PICTORIAL AND WALKTHROUGH



A carrying pouch is included that is large enough to hold the docking station and a 2.5 drive. The on/off switch and all ports are accessible through the pouch, essentially turning it into a portable enclosure (if you're using a 2.5 drive).



If you don't already have an eSATA port on your case, don't worry. Simply install the included PCI bracket in your system, and you can immediately enjoy the benefits of faster file transfers.


That about does it for the walkthrough on this simple product, so let's install a hard drive and test it out.

 

PRODUCT INSTALLATION AND TESTING



Installation is the same whether you're using a 2.5 or 3.5 drive. Slide it on to the exposed SATA connector on the docking station, and that's it! Plug all the necessary cables in and turn it on, and Windows will automatically detect and install the drive.


There are pros and cons to having a bare drive out in the open on a docking station like this. Obviously, being exposed means it is susceptible to elements such as dust, spilled drinks, pets, or just an accidental bump causing damage to it. The advantage to this though is since there are no fans, there is no noise. There is nothing surrounding the drive to trap heat so it dissipates quickly, making overheating unlikely. The bottom line is to just use common sense and be careful when working with a hard drive out in the open.


Now, it's time to test out transfer speeds.


I first transferred a 4.35GB file between two internal SATA hard drives in my Windows XP PC. It took 1 minute, 37 seconds. The time was documented in order to compare it to the time it takes to transfer the same file to and from the docking station.


The same 4.35GB file transferred to and from the enclosure using eSATA gave the following results:

4.35GB File Transfer (eSATA)

 

Time (minutes:seconds)

Write to docking station

1:56

Read from docking station

1:35


The same file transferred to the enclosure and back again using USB gave the following results:

4.35GB File Transfer (USB 2.0)

 

Time (minutes:seconds)

Write to docking station

2:10

Read from docking station

2:02


Both interfaces showed solid transfer speeds, and after a few hours of continually moving files to and from the docking station, I noticed no signs of file corruption or any problems related to overheating. Another thing to note is if you have rails on the sides of the drive, they can stay attached while docked. If the drive is mounted inside a tray it probably won't fit, however.

 

 


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