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eSATA or USB casing better for my external hard drive ?

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May 26, 2014 9:03:11 AM

Guyz,
I recently installed a solid state drive in my core i7 desktop computer. Now the old WD 1TB hard drive just has some data, music and games which I require to access occasionally. So I'm planning to move the hard drive out of the box and purchase a casing for it so as to make it an external drive. I have the Intel DX58SO motherboard which has two eSATA ports. I'm wondering whether to buy an eSATA casing or a USB one ?
Also, is there any neat way to supply 12 volt power to the hard drive from the cabinet itself rather than using a 12v power adaptor ?
Please help !!
Thanks !
a c 362 G Storage
May 26, 2014 9:51:10 AM

You probably do not have to make that main choice. Most enclosures now come with two (sometimes 3) connection port options and you get to use only one of them at a time. But you have all of them available for different situations. For example, my enclosure has both USB2 and eSATA ports.

Given options, I would use the eSATA port system. Typically it is about twice as fast as the USB2 option. NOTE, however, that a USB3 port connection would be just as fast as eSATA, if your new enclosure AND your mobo have such ports.

Any 3½"-form-factor HDD (the type common inside desktop units) requires more power than a USB2 port can supply, and probably more than a USB3 port can supply, too. On the other hand, eSATA ports and (with a few exceptions) Firewire ports do not normally supply any power at all. For these reasons, ALL external enclosures for 3½" HDD units include their own power supply modules, and you can't really avoid that.

Well, there MAY be one way. There ARE non-standard versions of eSATA that DO supply some power to connected devices. So, IF your mobo eSATA ports happen to work this way, AND you buy an enclosure that does, AND the power available is sufficient for the HDD you have, then you could make it work. However, you might not be able to get that to work on someone else's machine that lacks the powered eSATA port - then you'd have to bring along your enclosure's power brick.
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