Date Joined: 04/23/10
Pros: Functional trayless drive bay; no connectivity issues; quiet fan in low noise mode; SATA power connectors, drive activity lights; locking bays.
Cons: Too esthetically nice! No power switches for the drives.
Overall Review: After my recent bashing of the SNT-SAC3141TL and my complaints about the "SUPER NOISY FAN!" in my last iSTar hot-swap bay, I'm really happy to report that they got the noise level right in this third revision of their trayless hot-swap bay. When the fan switch is on low, it's really quiet. This is the first hot-swap bay I've bought that I didn't have to modify!
This hotswap bay looks like the Ferrari of hot-swap bays; in fact, all of the case is brushed and painted aluminum, which is a bit much since 90% of us use opaque cases to house our systems. The only thing I miss is the individual drive power switches from their tray models, but other than that it's a class act. Blue/purple power and activity lights, locking trays... what I wrote in the Pros. It's an excellent product.
One thing worth noting about trayless vs tray: on my iStar 4-disk bay, I can optionally screw an SSD to the tray instead of an HDD. A trayless HDD bay needs an adapter like the ICY DOCK MB882SP-1S-1B, but that's $30 a pop... Food for thought.
Pros: Um... the fans spin.
Cons: Doesn't work out of the box. Drives aren't registering with the system. Immediate RMA candidate.
Overall Review: I have to concur with the other two recent reviews on this product. I also have both versions of this hotswap bay and the original version has worked without issues since I got it. I use it for my WHS box and apart from a mod to quiet THE INCREDIBLY LOUD FANS! (why does no one make hotswap bays with quiet fans...) it's worked just fine. I only swap drives when there's a problem, so I didn't need anything industrial grade for my purposes.
But this new version has a fundamental design problem and I think the other reviewers got it right: there are now springs mounted on the back plastic that stick out of square holes in the PC board at an angle and end up parallel to the SATA connectors. The original doesn't have these; I assume someone thought it would help to push the drive out or to secure the drive in... When a drive is inserted, the spring is pushed back but also pushes the PC board and the sockets back too. What an IDIOTIC design!
I installed this bay with 4 drives from the get go, and none of them registered with the system. I removed them one at a time and restarted the system each time: none of the drives ever showed up in the BIOS.
IMO, Newegg should send these back to the manufacturer and stop selling them altogether. This version is fundamentally flawed. Caveat emptor...
Pros: Installed and worked without issues. This cage is more than just a physical support for 4 drives: it has combo button-LEDs that show drive activity and allow the drives to be powered up and down. The Temperature sensor/alarm is good to have.
Cons: The instructions are somewhat superficial; for the price I expected properly formed sentences and words ("Made in China") and thorough explanations. I can't move the jumper for the temp sensor to the higher 50 degree position because the case opening is flush with the pins (("Made in Chine"). And the fan... here let me turn the computer on...
THE FAN IS INCREDIBLY LOUD AND ANNOYING!! AND IT'S IN THE LOW POSITION!! I WOULD HAVE TO WRITE BIGGER IF I SWITCHED TO THE HIGH POSITION, AND NOT HAVING LARGER LETTERS, I WON'T BOTHER!
If you have an isolated machine room, then you'll be ok. It's the loudest thing in mine, and I expected better considering the price. I bought this cage because I have an iStar Rack case which I'm very happy with, but frankly iStar, you really need to pay attention to the quality of what you're selling. The fan issue is a real deal breaker and I will not be buying any others unless I hear (or don't hear!) that something has changed... before we all go deaf!
Overall Review: Please fix the fan issue on this unit.
Pros: Offers cheap hot-swap capabilities to a standard computer case.
Well built. Good design.
Set and forget.
Cons: REALLY LOUD FANS!!!
No drive activity indicators.
Overall Review: This is a great drive bay for the money and works fine. But I work in audio and I have my computers in the next room because I want my work area quiet. I used to hear nothing from the computers in the next room, but now I do THANKS TO THE REALLY LOUD FANS IN THIS DEVICE!. People were not kidding! There's loud and then there's LOUD! One egg down because of this. I can't imagine buying another one, and it's a pain, because now I'm going to have to find a way to either change them or slow them down. It's that loud.