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Pros: Has front panel power switching, and an intelligently chosen switch that's easy enough to operate without being very easily mis-operated. Power and activity LEDs, of course.
Contrary to description ("SHOCK absorption unit inside"), the drive frame is solidly connected to the side pieces, so this unit shouldn't have the problems with toolless bays that some others do.
Cons: Cheap. Poorly made, mechanically. Oh, they have good ideas, even little things like the springs to keep the drive aligned if the bay isn't mounted horizontally, but the quality of the metal forming is execrable. Both of the mounting plates were canted enough to be visibly misaligned. One rail was visibly not straight (malformed, as it was only one side), and aside from that the rails looked like two slightly different designs had been mixed together.
Does NOT have "zero-force" SATA connectors (ironically, since with the power switch the need for the carefully engineered staged contacts is largely motted).
No lock to prevent accidental removal, nor any interlock to coordinate power switching with opening/closing the door. It's a really weird mix of good ideas and boneheaded misdesign...
Other Thoughts: I've read (in reviews displayed for some other racks) about doors that won't close without the latch being held open, or that don't eject the drive smoothly, or need enough force to do so that one might reasonably worry about how long the lever's parts would last. I never saw a rack that actually matched those descriptions until this one arrived and nailed both. Sometimes it worked smoothly; a couple times I reached around to push the drive loose for fear it would damage something if I pulled harder on the door.
Overall, would not buy again. If unusable junk could be returned without spending much of the hypothetical refund on postage I'd do it. I guess I cna use it in the project chassis, which is nearly always open for reaching inside to push. :-(
This review is from: Rosewill RX-C525 5.25" SATA Trayless Hot Swap Mobile Rack for 3.5" SATA I/II/III HDD
Pros: Still works!
Cons: Can't edit old review to add/correct a few little things.
Other Thoughts: This rack, and the similar StarTech (see 7/27 review), have "zero force" contacts on the drive connectors, which I forgot to mention. This is perhaps a mixed blessing, since that MAY bypass the by-design staggered contacts that help make hotplugging safe in a normal SATA connector. OTOH, they've worked fine for me so far...
The Kingwin KF-1000-BK is another tray which looks exactly the same as the Rosewill, with the power adapter and the little circuit board to provide a drive activity LED.
The StarTech does lack a couple of little springs inside the channels, so it might not work so well if mounted vertically, since it relies on gravity alone to keep the drive lined up. Kingwin has these, from the pictures.
The Syba has a similar looking but NOT identical rear molding; in addition, it not only lacks those hold-down springs, the frame isn't milled to accept them (as the StarTech is). So this, and the others in the 7/27 review that are similar to it, may not be as similar to these three "Thermaltake clones" as it appeared at first.
This review is from: StarTech 5.25in Trayless Hot Swap Mobile Rack for 3.5in Hard Drive
Pros: This is identical to the Rosewill C525 without the LED or cabling to provide the drive activity indication. May avoid some issues inherent in the configuration that enables that indicator with some hardware/software.
Like the Rosewill, this has a sliding "zero force" SATA connector (on the drive side only, of course). Unlike the Rosewill it does include a SATA data cable to connect to your motherboard or controller if you need it.
Cons: There's one omission, compared to the Rosewill which may cause a problem in some applications. I hadn't noticed them in the pictures, but the Rosewill, like the Thermaltake it closely resembles, has a pair of little spring arms mounted towards the back of the drive guides. This provides a little push to keep the drive seated on the lower rail, and hence lined up with the connector. It may not matter if the rack is mounted horizontally, but if it's on end, thw StarTech will have nothing to keep the drive seated. I haven't tested it, but I suspect that will make it rather fussy about how you insert the drive if the rack is mounted vertically.
Other Thoughts: Has, of course, the same issues as the C525 with some (?) tool-less cases due to the flexible shock mount that floats the inner part of the rack. In a case that doesn't have any trouble with this, the mounts are a definite plus and seem pretty effective.READ FULL REVIEW