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SANS DIGITAL TR4UTBPN 4Bay USB 3.0 / eSATA Hardware RAID 5 Tower RAID Enclosure (no eSATA card bundled)
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 week to 1 month

Pros: This enclosure is simply amazing. I had read horror stories about similar enclosures here and on the web, so I was a bit nervous about dropping several hundred dollars on this enclosure plus 4 x 3TB Seagate drives. Im very glad I didnt listen to the negative hype.

My setup is as follows: Asus G75VW, Samsung 830 256GB Primary, Seagate 750GB secondary. Enclosure has the drives mentioned above.

Physically setting up the enclosure was pretty straightforward. Putting the drives in was very easy. Pop the cover off, slide the drives in until the snap into the connections at the rear and screw the drives down. However, the factory installed SATA cable routing was very poorly done and had to be redone. Basically, they clumped up all the excess cabling in front of the rear fan, thus blocking it. This would surely restrict air flow. No big deal. Cut some zip ties and move the slack to the bottom of the case where there is plenty of room. Just be careful not to bend the headers, as you would probably void the warranty.

As for the formatting, etc., I set mine up in RAID 5. The included software was very intuitive and created the array in about 2 minutes. Once that is done, you must create the partitions in the OS and thats it.

I use the USB 3.0 interface. I decided to use the one high power USB 3.0 port on my laptop, as opposed to the regular USB 3.0 ports. As a result, Ive been running nearly a month now without a single disconnect. Performance is simply amazing! The numbers stated by the manufacturer are not exaggerated. Sustained reads of 220MB/s and writes of 100MB/s or higher are totally happening with large file transfers. Small file transfers are nowhere near that fast, but good enough. Of course, thats between my SSD and the array. Obviously, you are not going to get those numbers with a slow target drive, network drive, etc.

On the outside, the enclosure is very appealing. The black finish has a very nice texture to it. The ventilation holes are well-placed. The front door, although really not needed, is a nice touch. Overall, the case has a nice fit and finish to it on the outside. Also, it is very quiet for a ventilated 4-bay array.

Cons: 1. The manual is inadequate. Inexperienced users will face hardships.

2. The lights on the front overall are too bright, too big, cheap looking and wrong colors. The power on light is amber. Amber usually signifies there is a problem. This light should be blue or green when everything is ok. The activity light seems redundant as the individual bay lights blink when the drive is active. Id say, make the power on light smaller, dimmer and blue. Make the bay lights smaller, dimmer and green (or blue also).

3. The fan, although nice and quiet, may be inadequate in hotter environments. Its good enough for my setup and environment, but under heavy use in a hot room it wont be.

4. USB Superspeed software interferes with other USB 3.0 connected devices. Sure, it makes your array perform a little better with certain types of file transfers (lots of smaller files), but your mouse will be real jumpy even when you are not transferring to or from the array. No thanks.

Other Thoughts: Raid 5 Array 4 x 3.0TB Seagate 7200RPM
CrystalDiskMark 3.0.1 x64 (C) 2007-2010
Sequential Read : 187.279 MB/s
Sequential Write : 179.551 MB/s
Random Read 512KB : 43.330 MB/s
Random Write 512KB : 11.512 MB/s
Random Read 4KB (QD=1) : 0.475 MB/s [116.0 IOPS]
Random Write 4KB (QD=1) : 0.146 MB/s [35.7 IOPS]
Random Read 4KB (QD=32) : 0.482 MB/s [117.8 IOPS]Random Write 4KB (QD=32) : 0.143 MB/s [34.9 IOPS]
Test : 1000 MB [F: 22.0% (1844.1/8383.3 GB)] (x5)

For comparrison:
1 x 750GB Seagate 7200RPM 2.5" HDD
CrystalDiskMark 3.0.1 x64 (C) 2007-2010
Sequential Read : 121.041 MB/s
Sequential Write : 118.778 MB/s
Random Read 512KB : 44.540 MB/s
Random Write 512KB : 47.888 MB/s
Random Read 4KB (QD=1) : 0.562 MB/s [ 137.3 IOPS]
Random Write 4KB (QD=1) : 0.885 MB/s [ 216.0 IOPS]
Random Read 4KB (QD=32) : 0.962 MB/s [ 234.8 IOPS]
Random Write 4KB (QD=32) : 0.871 MB/s [ 212.7 IOPS]
Test : 1000 MB [D: 0.0% (0.1/698.5 GB)] (x5)

For comparrison:
1 x 256GB Samsung 830 SSD
CrystalDiskMark 3.0.1 x64 (C) 2007-2010
Sequential Read : 496.048 MB/s
Sequential Write : 425.168 MB/s
Random Read 512KB : 332.271 MB/s
Random Write 512KB : 393.390 MB/s
Random Read 4KB (QD=1) : 22.295 MB/s [ 5443.1 IOPS]
Random Write 4KB (QD=1) : 59.052 MB/s [ 14417.1 IOPS]
Random Read 4KB (QD=32) :303.060 MB/s [73989.2 IOPS]
Random Write 4KB (QD=32):150.172 MB/s [36663.0 IOPS]
Test : 1000 MB [C: 48.7% (103.9/213.2 GB)] (x5)

The enclosure performs very well in RAID 5. I would definitely buy this again.

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NETGEAR 5 Port Gigabit Desktop Switch (GS605AV)
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 week to 1 month

5 out of 5 eggs Its a Switch 01/13/2013

This review is from: NETGEAR 5 Port Gigabit Desktop Switch (GS605AV)

Pros: It looks great in black. Performance seems to be on par with other Gigabit gear.

Cons: Wasnt free.

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Kaybles NMHD-35MM 35 ft. High Speed HDMI Cable with Ethernet, CL2 rating, 24AWG Gold Plated M-M
  • Verified Owner
  • Owned For: 1 week to 1 month

Pros: This cable is a great product. Perfect picture with zero noise, artifacts, etc., which is what I wanted most. There is a very small signal delay, but that is expected for HDMI cables of this length. It isnt a problem for me. But, some extreme-o-phile may find it annoying.

Cons: The cable is rather thick. It is not a con for me, but can be for others. If you really need to make very tight turns with your setup, this cable is not for you.

Other Thoughts: Great value for a 35 ft HDMI cable. I would totally buy this again.

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Alan G.'s Profile

Display Name: Alan G.

Date Joined: 01/19/08

  • Reviews: 26
  • Helpfulness: 13
  • First Review: 05/19/09
  • Last Review: 01/13/13
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