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Cubytus
June 11th, 2010, 05:16 AM
Hi to all,

as per-GB price of DVD+R DL has risen past per-GB on a hard drive, I ant to use the latters for storage of large files. I may buy other hard driveswhen time calls for it. Because of this reason and to remain evolutive for the next computers I'll use, I would like a dock that could at least support SATA II and FireWire 800 (USB 3.0 is virtually present nowhere, so not essential here).

Having it compatible with PATA would be a considerable advantage since I have many large capacity IDE drives available. It would also be great if it featured Gigabit Ethernet.I found out that it wouldn't be economical to buy an enclosure for each functional hard drive, hence the dock preference.

As a 3.5" hard drive needs at least 2 cables, it's less portable than a 2.5" one, and I will probably tranfer the needed files as needed, hence the need for a fast interface like FireWire 800, or Gigabit Ethernet.

Are there any suggested models, or alternate, economical solutions? I know I could build a home server, but I don't have the necessary room or money available to build that kind of gear.

LinuPP
June 11th, 2010, 09:49 AM
Hard drive dock is really a fine solution to operate your external hard drive... You want to get a dock that could at leastsupport SATA II, IDE, PATA and FireWire 800?? Newertech Qoyager $88.99 or Vantec NexStar Hard Drive Enclosure $84.99 can meet your need. Maybe it's a little expensive, if you don't need e-SATA or USB 3.0 interface, you can try a quad-interface ( firewire 800, firewire 400, 2 USB 2.0, 1 mini USB) hdd dock $59.99 which is the lowest price i've ever seen for your demand. It does support sata 1/2 and ide interface, but im not sure whether it supports pata.. Check it here:
http://www.espow.com/wholesale-sata-hdd-docking-station-for-mac-support-1394b-1394a-firewire-port.html
Hope it can help you, good luck.

Cubytus
June 11th, 2010, 08:07 PM
Agreed, I didn't knew I would have to spit so much for a dock. The Newertech and Unitek are both butt-ugly, but at least support the interfaces I want, except for IDE/PATA.

I also saw the Vantec NexStar LX Ultra (http://www.vantecusa.com/en/product/view_detail/403) which is mysteriously unavailable in North America. So far, I've been very pleased with Vantec's service; although the first enclusure I bought from them had a defective power supply, they sent in another one, without even asking for the defective one, which would have added $15 in shipping fees, a non-negligible cost on the enclosure's.

Small issue with the Vantec NexStar enclosure you list (NST-360FBSU-BK, I guess) is, well, it's an enclosure, so not as easy to swap drives as a dock, plus its premium cost makes it unattractive (for now) for adding multiple hard drives when time calls for it.

But so far, none of the proposed solutions feature IDE/PATA compatibility.

LinuPP
June 12th, 2010, 03:47 AM
Yesterday, i asked Espow CS about your question, and they definitely told me that the hard drive dock w/ fw800 @ http://www.espow.com/wholesale-sata-hdd-docking-station-for-mac-support-1394b-1394a-firewire-port.html - does support PATA, IDE, SATA I / II 2.5 or 3.5 hard drives.. And they will add it as soon as possible... If you have more questions about it, just write your question at the bottom of the above page - "Write a Review"...

Cubytus
June 13th, 2010, 04:12 AM
As I thank you for the time you took to ask, them, I'm still wary that this is the only site where this Unitek dock is listed as having IDE/PATA connector/capability.

I'm still investigating.

LinuPP
June 14th, 2010, 01:55 AM
Maybe many other sata hdd docking station can also support IDE/PATA hard disks.. perhaps other sites dont't make it clear, after all, very few people still use ide pata hdd.. BTW, if you get a "replica Unitek dock w/firewire" or an inferior product at espow, just to complain or refund..

Cubytus
June 14th, 2010, 02:43 AM
How could I tell the difference between the original and replica dock, only from an Internet description? Espow is not the cheapest place to have this dock, especially considering I may well be charged a large custom fees since it's not on this side of the border. I agree that right now, the price difference may be negligible, but some places have cheaper shipping fees, and operate from canadian soil.

Internet bought items are fine as long as you know exactly what you're looking for, but are a nightmare to return, between restocking fees, shipping and insurance fees, answers that don't come fast enough, or at all, from the vendors.

Unfortunately the Newertech Voyager Q is virtually unavailable here, due to Other World Computing using the two worst shipping companies with extremely high rates.

Oh, and as I forgot... I saw that many, if not all, docks and enclosures state a 2TB hard disk capacity limit. Since these disks exist since a little while, what should we do when bigger drives come out ?

LinuPP
June 14th, 2010, 09:11 AM
“Espow is not the cheapest place to have this dock”, agreed。And hope you can find a local retailer for this kind of dock or similar..
As “Since these disks exist since a little while, what should we do when bigger drives come out ? ”,consumer electronic products are upgraded frequently, and we need not to worry about the dock capacity limited problem... i believe, a Newertech, Unitek or Nexstar dock that supports 4TB hard drive will come out in the coming future...

Cubytus
June 15th, 2010, 07:06 PM
I'll ask some small retailers here. Truth is, there's no big name computer store here anymore.

But for the other issue, one of the understated goal is not having to buy another dock soon after this one.