eSATA for external HTPC storage.

Silencing hard drives, optical drives and other storage devices

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eSATA for external HTPC storage.

Post by Jackal5 » Wed Feb 06, 2008 11:41 am

Has anyone tried using an eSATA HDD for recording HDTV shows and such?

The new case that I'm going to be using for my new HTPC can only hold one HDD and I'll be using a 2.5" Scorpio, 160GB for the main drive in the case. I want to use an external drive but I don't think that USB and firewire will be fast enough. If anyone has tried this or have any input I would appreciate the feedback. My parts should start arriving tomorrow. The GMC case, PSU and slim optical drive. Possibly the diNovio keyboard too.

I am considering one of those Western Digital "My Book" or Seagate "Free Agent Pro" drives.


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Post by Lawrence Lee » Wed Feb 06, 2008 3:49 pm

Using eSATA, the drive will be the same speed as if it's connected internally.

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Post by CA_Steve » Thu Feb 07, 2008 7:25 am

eSATA is the way to go. Here's one enclosure reviewfrom Anandtech.

Be aware that WD software messes with file-sharing certain common media file types.

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Post by michaelb » Thu Feb 07, 2008 8:12 am

Just FYI--last time I checked the WD website, the 160GB Scorpio was 2 platter. Samsung offers a single platter 160GB if you care, and in case the 160 Scorpio is still 2 platter.

I'd rather go with eSata myself if similar price, but I'd have thought USB or FW on a new PC would be plenty fast enough for HDTV recording. There are USB HDTV tuners that I don't believe add extra compression to broadcast HD. I believe broadcast HD is only about 19 Mb/sec. I think a good USB hard drive and modern PC would be about 12-15 times as fast. So even a fairly cheap one I'd expect would do.

I don't know about Bluray though.

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Post by Jackal5 » Thu Feb 07, 2008 9:30 am

Thanks for the responses. The My Book is definitely out of the running now. I'll find other options.

I was actually looking at the Icy Dock reviews over at Newegg yesterday. I like to read the reviews at sites to see what people that have the products have to say.

The WD Scorpio should be fine. It will be the system drive and will be partitioned to hold music and picture files. Maybe even Linux. All TV recording will be done on the external drive since the GMC case can only hold 1 HDD and has no vibration dampening.

Thanks again.

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Post by Immortals » Thu Feb 07, 2008 2:48 pm

Don't get the Antec MX -1. My one wasn't quiet at all and a lot of people had have the same experience. i recommend getting a passive esata enclosure and combining it with a WD greenpower drive (which are only 5400rpm and generally considered to produce less heat)

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Post by Nice Marmot » Thu Feb 07, 2008 5:13 pm

Had an MX-1 on loan from my old job. Either it was from an early batch or the QA is hit and miss, but that one was as quiet as the SPCR review indicated.

The enclosure I bought myself, before the MX-1 came out, was the Azio: ... 6817106097

Passive, aluminum, USB and eSATA, power switch, separate power brick. Use it for swappable backup drives. During large transfers it gets warm to the touch, but not hot. I like it.

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