With the introduction of the Asus EEE ultra portable more and more manufacturers designed small portables. Very small devices featuring 1.8 inch or Solid State Hard disks. These drives have most of the time smaller to very small capacities (think of 2 and 4 Gb drives for the Asus EEE).
This and the lower prices of 2.5 inch SATA disks have increased the popularity of those external drives. Most 2.5 inch drive cases don’t even require an extra power connection, let alone a complete AC power cord with adaptor. This makes it a lot more portable.
But the market is overwhelmed by different kind of drive cages. It’s hard to stand out. In this review we’ll try to find out if the Spire HandyBook SATA (SP175SU-BK) will have enough tricks up its sleeve. Price, performance, quality, – wise.
A closer look at the box... As you can see the HandyBook comes in Silver or black.
Keep your data safe and cool in Spire's all new HandyBook 2.5-inch Hard Drive enclosure. The HandyBook is a nifty little enclosure, a great design in appearance and functionality. Keep your Hard drive stored safely and cool, allowing you to operate the hard drive continuously.Spire product websiteFeatures:PC & MAC compatible
The HandyBook can be opened at the touch of one button; simply install your drive, connect it to your computer and start transferring your data at blazing speeds. The HandyBook is made with a special dual-layer design that reduces noise and is lightweight for maximum portability.
Hi-Speed Data transfers
Compact and Slim Design
Easy installation, no jumpers needed
Powered by USB, no external adapter required
Plug and play, Tool-free design
And the more technical features:
Data transfer USB 480Mbit/sec
Dimensions 145*100*20 mm
Features Hard drive support up to 200GB, USB easy plug and play installation
Interface USB2.0(Backwards compatible with USB1.1)
OS support Windows 98/ME/2000/XP/VISTA Mac OS 8.6,OS X
Some remarks of course. The 480 Megabit would equal about 60 Megabyte per second. This is the absolute theoretical maximum. Later on in our benches we'll see some different speeds. Due to hard drive limitations, loss in the SATA to USB conversion, and just limitations of the motherboard itself as well.
The casing can support drives up to 200 Gb, but I cal already say that larger disk work without a hassle. In our test setup we are using a 250 Gb drive from Samsung.
In the box you can find following items:
Stand for the external casing
Screws to attach the harddisk to PCB
Short manual + driver CD
Usb A to mini USB cable
USB to DC power plug
Adding a screwdrivers and screws might seem a bit odd for a tool less installation...
The print is attached with four screws to the casing. Just flap open the Handybook, unscrew the 4 screws and remove the PCB. Just put it in your desk.
Next we click the Hard disk on to the SATA data and power connector.
Flip the PCB, and use the 4 screws that were in the packaging to tighten the drive.
Now we put back in the PCB with the hard disk on it, and screw it into the casing. You're ready to go. Simply by pushing the power led you can open the casing as a book. I don't really see the use of this feature unfortunately.
Powered on we see a blue led...
And while we use the disk we have a red led indicating disk activity. Looks very nice combined with the black casing.
On to the benchmarking part. >>>