Screwless design; eSATA; fast speeds; good looks. The best we've ever seen.
An actual icy dock
Finally, somebody gets it right.
Although it seems impossible, we have reached an apex of technology in the exciting world of external storage. Icy Dock’s MB664US-1S hard drive enclosure is an absolute dream come true. It’s a marvel of functionality and form, a shining beacon that serves as an example to every competing product we’ve come across. It is the steel-colored Lancelot of your storage needs, the kind of friend you hope your hard drive keeps for the entirety of its life span. With the MB664US-1S, your data will stay safe, speedy, and easily swappable.
The MB664US-1S connects to your computer using either the nigh-antiquated USB protocol or fresh and speedy eSATA. Speeds for the two are just as fast as they could be. We tested the device using a 150GB Western Digital Raptor drive and found that the hard drive utterly fills the pipe. The MB664US-1S doesn’t hamper performance in the slightest, as eSATA speeds were nearly identical to the figures we received when we connected the drive directly to the motherboard. That’s the kind of performance we like to see from an external enclosure.
But eSATA and USB are hardly new features for an external device. We love the MB664US-1S for its fringe benefits, like its totally screwless design. To mount a hard drive, you simply push on the front of the unit—the front bezel slides up and you insert the drive into the device’s hot-swap-style bay. Push the bezel back down and you’re good to go; it’s that simple.
This might seem obsessive, but we adore the MB664US-1S’s feet. The rubber-tipped mechanisms do an OK job of keeping the device vertical by default, but you can get better balance by swinging them out to the sides to create a sort of landing gear for the enclosure. Indeed, Icy Dock has left no stone unturned when it comes to usefulness. And for that, we leave no Kick Ass unrewarded.
|USB ||eSATA ||SATA|
|Burst Speed (MB/s)||35.2||125.9||132.2|
| Average Read (MB/s) ||33.0||78.0||77.8|
|CPU Usage ||9%||1%||4% |
|Random Access (ms)||8.2||8.0||7.7 |
|Best scores are bolded. HD Tach benchmarks were run using 150GB WD Raptor|