i-Star BPU-2535V2 Dual 2.5 to 3.5-inch Enclosure Review

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Conclusion

Many users will want to use this device to mount small drives and SSDs into their small HTPC and gaming appliance builds, but this requires adding more mounting holes. This device was intended for use in a standard desktop or server to add additional storage in a space that would otherwise go unused. There are several practical applications for this device. You could use it to reduce or eliminate noise in a HTPC (using SSDs would make the drives absolutely noiseless). This device could even be an alternative to using backup tapes… just plug in a new drive and let the backup schedule continue as normal. If you’re a fan of several operating systems, you could hot-swap your boot drive to alternate between several versions of Windows, Linux, or a “sterilized” test environment. You can even test the limits of SSDs by RAIDing them together, and don’t forget that IT shops will find cloning drives so much easier with this.

The iStar BPU-2535V2 hard drive enclosure is rather innovative in that it allows you to fit two 2.5″ hard drives into a 3.5″ bay that usually goes unused. The mechanical parts are rather high quality (iStar does have expertise with professional server parts), and has thoughtful installation features. Many enthusiasts would be interested in taking this enclosure a step further, and use RAID features on this device, and those users should consider the “upgraded” version of this enclosure, the BPU-2535V2-R, which has onboard hardware RAID and only requires one SATA cable.

This hard drive enclosure is so cute and nifty that hardware enthusiasts just can’t resist having one in their desktop rig. It is perfect for small SSDs. Now that I have it installed, I’m not sure how I ever lived without a cage like this. The RAIDed version is the next part on my list…

 

REPORT CARD : iStar BPU-2535V2 2.5″ to 3.5″ Internal Drive Bay Cage
category rating comments
Quality 4 Small, compact and sturdy. Steel construction with plastic parts
Innovation 5 Why hasn’t there been a device like this before?
Performance 5 Drive performance is not affected by the enclosure. No heat problems from tested drives
Installation 4 Easy to install, but internal mounting options would have been nice.
Value 4 Really nifty device for $30.
FINAL VERDICT: 5 out of 5 stars

 


 

Alan is a web architect, stand-up comedian, and your friendly neighborhood Grammar Nazi. You can stalk him on the Interwebs via Google+, Facebook and follow his ass on Twitter @ocmodshop.