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Pros: Relatively inexpensive for a 2TB drive. While the drive idled (and I can only assume it was actually working), it was quiet and ran relatively cool. Naturally, as it was a failed drive, it's hard to tell whether this was normal.
Cons: The drive was non-functional out of the box.
A possible sign of impact damage was noted on corner of metal lid upon opening the packing protection; it looked as if the very corner of the flat lid overhang was bent downward. In retrospect it's hard to determine whether this was actually the normal shape of the lid (I don't think it was) or whether it had anythinng to do with the failure.
The drive would not format (2x1TB partitions) on MacOS X in an external LaCie enclosure; formatting errors were encountered while using Disk Utility. I swapped enclosures to a Thermaltake "toaster" and tried again, at which point I was able to format a single 1.8TB partition to HFS+. Disk Utility would experience random crashes, however, and reading the Console log suggested it was something on the device side. USB bus was occasionally not enumerating, etc.
I changed gears and switched to Ubuntu. I could mount the drive and recognize the HFS+ partition. However, the drive failed self-tests (read-back errors) in Ubuntu's "Disks" application, even though the SMART status was OK. I tried re-formatting to a filesystem that Ubuntu could write to: formatting to FAT32 failed several times under gparted ("Disks" has a known bug in 13.10 when formatting), and formatting to ext2 took longer than normal, although it was successful. SMART errors (bad sectors) were now seen on the ext2 volume and self test failures (readback errors) were still noted using several tools. I ran "badblocks" and gave up when the number of badblocks reported was in the dozens.
The drive is toast.
Other Thoughts: Drive was RMA'd to Newegg.
I've gravitated to WD drives over the years, and I've had luck with them, mostly long-term. This kind of infant mortality is disappointing. I'd read of some similar issues with the WD Green drives - as well as others, including the Red - and I thought I'd take my chances.
Pros: Very compact light, (seemingly) rugged case, bright beam with focus control. Single AA battery.
Cons: The rear integrated switch has failed after only a couple dozen cycles. It's been used as a nightstand flashlight, for occasional trips to the backyard and the breaker box. The flashlight is now unusable.
It's not acceptable for an item designed (and marketed) like this one to be unreliable because of poor QC or design.
Other Thoughts: As for why the switch failed, my opinion is that the design is flimsy. The switchcap contact button is a broad pad covered with soft-ish rubber. Underneath, it feels like the switch is a rather narrow, non-rugged microswitch of the latching variety, and it sometimes feels like an actuation of the light results in an off-center push of the switch body. It's possible that this design is prone to loading the switch unit in such a way that it will fail, especially if it's PCB-mounted (which is exactly what it feels like).
An improvement might be realized by including a different rubber fitting under the switchcap contact pad, one meant to center and distribute the force of actuation. That is, if the actual microswitch isn't itself faulty to begin with.
Pros: Quick shipping with no issues as usual - cheers to Newegg.
Cons: The Asus rebate page lists UPC numbers that DON'T MATCH the UPC/barcode on the shipped product? (As of 11/15/10.) What gives, Newegg? The advertised rebate on this item is a bit misleading, don't you think?
Other Thoughts: As with the previous poster, I'd agree that this item is probably worth the money regardless, but I'm considering RMAing the unit out of principle. I won't go so far as to suggest "bait and switch", but...okay, I just did. Any other folks with this issue?READ FULL REVIEW