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Date: September 4th, 2008
Article by: Jackie Mueller (Hardware Reviewer)
Edited by: Nathan Glentworth (Owner / Head Editor)
Product was submitted by: Thermaltake USA
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PRODUCT INSTALLATION AND TESTING



I will be using a Western Digital WD2500AAKS 250GB SATA drive inside the Vi-On for this review. To install a drive, the first step is to remove four screws on the bottom of the base unit. This releases a metal plate, and then the side cover can be popped off.



Inside is a large area for the HDD, a SATA PCB board, and a 40mm fan. The drive rests on four posts that have a spring inside to help absorb vibration. I'm curious about the noise level of the fan because typically the smaller a fan is, the louder it is. Testing will tell for sure.



The drive is secured by simply sliding it into the SATA connector until it clicks in place. The manual states that if the drive isn't securely connected the side panel won't fit back on properly, so it's best to double check it is in place before putting it all back together.


All that's left to do now is plug everything in, turn it on, and transfer some files. Like I said before this is product is completely plug and play with Windows XP/Vista or Mac OS 9.04+, so there's no software setup to worry about.


An eSATA connection will provide a faster transfer rate (up to 3.0 Gbps) than a USB 2.0 connection (up to 480 Mbps). Both interfaces will be tested for this review.


Using eSATA:


I first transferred a 4.35GB file between two internal SATA hard drives in my Windows XP PC for comparison. It took 1 minute, 45 seconds


The same file transferred to and from the freshly formatted Vi-On drive yielded the following results:

 

4.35 GB File Transfer

 

Time (minutes:seconds)

Write to external drive

1:56

Read from external drive

1:47


It took about the same time to transfer a file to the external drive as it did to transfer a file between internal drives. Not bad! Now let's see what happens with USB:


Using USB 2.0:


The same file transferred to the Vi-On drive and back again using USB yielded the following results:


4.35 GB File Transfer

 

Time (minutes:seconds)

Write to external drive

2:18

Read from external drive

2:14


Of course, transfer speeds will vary just a bit from system to system but overall these are good numbers when both reading and writing.

 

 


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