Article Index

We look at a rather unique external hard disk enclosure that promises to be technically advanced as well as eco-friendly called Bytepac.

This cardboard product does not mean we have to skimp on capacity or performance however, we paired the BytePac kit with Seagate's new power efficient yet speedy Barracuda 3TB drive.

We also discuss the pros and cons of external drive enclosures.

Background

I dislike external disk enclosures, especially generic types suited for 3.5" drives. Why? The majority of them are buggy, highly cost-reduced, poor build quality, lack any sort of industrial design and most importantly have a tendency damage drives which can result in data loss. If a $20 external enclosure dies that is fair enough and we can cheaply replace that but if the failure damages installed HDD and priceless data then that is not on especially if a minor flaw in the enclosure is to blame.

Enclosures from HDD manufactures often have strong industrial design, good reliability and there is after sales support and warranty however these are not suitable to the D.I.Y. market who are after an enclosure to install their drive into rather than a sealed external hard drive.

Some aspects to keep in mind form a technical point of view with generic enclosures:

  • Cheap external enclosures (cases) may use badly installed internal cables to connect drive power and data which may eventually break or short circuit, damaging the cases controller, power supply or the HDD itself.

  • The controller chips used in the cases are often no name themselves with compatibility issues with particular drives especially large capacity drives.
  • Generic External enclosures often have poor fit and finish, proving difficult to install the HDD and the top cover of the enclosure and are held together using smallest screws possible.

  • Generic External enclosures are mainly manufactured by faceless companies who rely on the distribution channel and point of sale for any technical or warranty issues.

  • Thermal and Power management is not a main concern for generic enclosures due to the cost and effort to implement or engineer. Some enclosures still ship with inefficient bulky power supplies

  • Generic cases can be poor value for money with some types, up to half the cost of a name brand external HDD

  • If the electronics fails, this is a non replaceable part rendering the rest of the case a paperweight, especially the bulky and inefficient power supplies which use a 5-pin DIN connector and supply 5 volts and 12 volts separately rather than the modern 12V only energy efficient compact sized power supplies

How do we solve such issues? There are several methods. Buy a modular type enclosure which separates the electronics and the enclosure, the Bytepac kit we are looking at and the Seagate line of GoFlex drives are examples of this; or buy a brand name enclosure from a HDD or NAS vendor such as Western Digital which typically have excellent engineering.

Microsoft Store SYDNEY  - Grand Opening Press Conference Microsoft Store SYDNEY - Grand Opening Press Conference HP 6th Gen Core Intel Skylake PC & Jet Intelligence Printing Launch - Melbourne Experience Centre HP 6th Gen Core Intel Skylake PC & Jet Intelligence Printing Launch - Melbourne Experience Centre HP Experience Centre Melbourne Tour -Part 2 HP Experience Centre Melbourne Tour -Part 2 HP Experience Centre Melbourne Tour -Part 1 HP Experience Centre Melbourne Tour -Part 1 Parrot Interviewed - Flower Power Wireless Plant Monitor Parrot Interviewed - Flower Power Wireless Plant Monitor Parrot Interviewed - ZiK 2.0 Headphones Parrot Interviewed - ZiK 2.0 Headphones Parrot Interviewed - AR. Drone, MiniDrones, Bebop Drone Parrot Interviewed - AR. Drone, MiniDrones, Bebop Drone MOTO G 3rd Gen IPX7 Water Proofing Demo & Moto X Style/Play/G Q&A MOTO G 3rd Gen IPX7 Water Proofing Demo & Moto X Style/Play/G Q&A Motorola Mobility Interviewed - 3rd Gen Moto G, Moto X Play, Moto X Style Motorola Mobility Interviewed - 3rd Gen Moto G, Moto X Play, Moto X Style NVIDIA GEFORCE GTX 950 Launch Ep.2 | MOBA/DOTA 2 Latency and Smoothness NVIDIA GEFORCE GTX 950 Launch Ep.2 | MOBA/DOTA 2 Latency and Smoothness NVIDIA GEFORCE GTX 950 Launch Ep.1 |  Gamestream Co-Op - A New way to share games NVIDIA GEFORCE GTX 950 Launch Ep.1 | Gamestream Co-Op - A New way to share games Intel SKYLAKE i5-6600K LN2 overclock at 6.33 GHz with ASUS Z170 ROG Hero Intel SKYLAKE i5-6600K LN2 overclock at 6.33 GHz with ASUS Z170 ROG Hero Intel Skylake i7-6700K @ 4.8 GHz & DDR4 @ 3.5GHz on ASUS Z170 Deluxe Overclocking Guide Intel Skylake i7-6700K @ 4.8 GHz & DDR4 @ 3.5GHz on ASUS Z170 Deluxe Overclocking Guide ASUS Z170 Deluxe Motherboard for Intel Skylake 6th Gen Core CPU Overview ASUS Z170 Deluxe Motherboard for Intel Skylake 6th Gen Core CPU Overview Review - ASUS Installation Tool for Intel SKYLAKE 6th Gen Core CPU Review - ASUS Installation Tool for Intel SKYLAKE 6th Gen Core CPU HP Pavilion and Envy 2015 Consumer Notebook First Look HP Pavilion and Envy 2015 Consumer Notebook First Look HP Envy Phoenix 2015 Overclockable Gaming Tower First Look HP Envy Phoenix 2015 Overclockable Gaming Tower First Look Ashes Of The Singularity - DirectX 12 Hands-On Demo with AMD FURY X Ashes Of The Singularity - DirectX 12 Hands-On Demo with AMD FURY X Simplivity Omnicube Server Accelerator - Hyperconvergence Live Demo and Technical Interview Simplivity Omnicube Server Accelerator - Hyperconvergence Live Demo and Technical Interview Simplivity Interviewed - What is Hyperconvergence & the Omnicube Server Accelerator Simplivity Interviewed - What is Hyperconvergence & the Omnicube Server Accelerator ASUS Interview - AMD Radeon R9 300 STRIX, Auto Extreme Technology and ROG MATRIX cards ASUS Interview - AMD Radeon R9 300 STRIX, Auto Extreme Technology and ROG MATRIX cards AMD’s Richard Huddy Interviewed - AMD Radeon Fury X ‘Fiji’ Graphics comes to Australia AMD's Richard Huddy Interviewed - AMD Radeon Fury X ‘Fiji’ Graphics comes to Australia MSI Interview - AMD Radeon R9 300 Gaming, Armour and Lightning GPUs MSI Interview - AMD Radeon R9 300 Gaming, Armour and Lightning GPUs Media Q&A - NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti, Mobile G-SYNC & Gameworks VR Launch Media Q&A - NVIDIA GeForce GTX 980 Ti, Mobile G-SYNC & Gameworks VR Launch Mobile G-SYNC explained - NVIDIA Mobile G-SYNC & Gameworks VR Launch Mobile G-SYNC explained - NVIDIA Mobile G-SYNC & Gameworks VR Launch Gameworks VR explained - NVIDIA Mobile G-SYNC & Gameworks VR Launch Gameworks VR explained - NVIDIA Mobile G-SYNC & Gameworks VR Launch DirectX 12 Explained - NVIDIA Mobile G-SYNC & Gameworks VR Launch DirectX 12 Explained - NVIDIA Mobile G-SYNC & Gameworks VR Launch NVIDIA Mobile G-SYNC & Gameworks VR - First Look, Q&A and Demos NVIDIA Mobile G-SYNC & Gameworks VR - First Look, Q&A and Demos HP Zvr 3D Virtual Reality zSpace Monitor First Look and Hands-On Demos HP Zvr 3D Virtual Reality zSpace Monitor First Look and Hands-On Demos HP 2015 Zbook Workstation Ultrabooks and Displays First Look HP 2015 Zbook Workstation Ultrabooks and Displays First Look EPIC Unreal Engine 4 Kite Demo on NVIDIA GEFORCE GTX TITAN X EPIC Unreal Engine 4 Kite Demo on NVIDIA GEFORCE GTX TITAN X ASUS Transformer Book Chi T300 Australian Launch ASUS Transformer Book Chi T300 Australian Launch Intel RealSense 3D Camera Demos & Games - ASUS Chi T300 Launch Intel RealSense 3D Camera Demos & Games - ASUS Chi T300 Launch The Great ASUS Comedy Debate  - Laptop v Tablet Toilet Humor The Great ASUS Comedy Debate - Laptop v Tablet Toilet Humor The Science and Psychology of Dolby Voice The Science and Psychology of Dolby Voice Who is Dolby and What is Dolby Voice Who is Dolby and What is Dolby Voice Dolby Conference Phone and BT MeetMe Service with Dolby Voice - Demo and Q&A Dolby Conference Phone and BT MeetMe Service with Dolby Voice - Demo and Q&A Dual Intel XEON E5-2643V2 Benchmarked - Cinebench & Blender Dual Intel XEON E5-2643V2 Benchmarked - Cinebench & Blender 2015 HP Pro Slate, Pro Tablet EE & Elitepad 1000 First Look 2015 HP Pro Slate, Pro Tablet EE & Elitepad 1000 First Look 2015 HP Business PC First Look - Elite X2, Elitebook Folio & Revolve 2015 HP Business PC First Look - Elite X2, Elitebook Folio & Revolve Interview with HP Australia - 2015 Business Tablets, 2in1s & Intel/AMD Notebooks Interview with HP Australia - 2015 Business Tablets, 2in1s & Intel/AMD Notebooks Battlefield Hardline - Developer Q&A with Visceral Games Battlefield Hardline - Developer Q&A with Visceral Games NVIDIA GTX 980 Maxwell Apollo 11 Tech Demo - 1080p 60 FPS NVIDIA GTX 980 "Maxwell" Apollo 11 Tech Demo - 1080p 60 FPS CoinJar Swipe - Australia’s first EFTPOS debit card for Bitcoin CoinJar Swipe - Australia's first EFTPOS debit card for Bitcoin HP OMEN Gaming Notebook - F1 2014 Benchmarking HP OMEN Gaming Notebook - F1 2014 Benchmarking HP OMEN Gaming Notebook  - First Looks HP OMEN Gaming Notebook - First Looks NVIDIA GTX 980 ShadowPlay Demo at 4K 60 FPS - War Thunder Pacific Evening NVIDIA GTX 980 ShadowPlay Demo at 4K 60 FPS - War Thunder Pacific Evening Street Fighter IV Benchmark 60 FPS test clip Street Fighter IV Benchmark 60 FPS test clip HP innovations - HP ZBook 14,15 G2,17 G2 Mobile Workstations,  Z840,Z640,Z440 Desktop Workstations HP innovations - HP ZBook 14,15 G2,17 G2 Mobile Workstations, Z840,Z640,Z440 Desktop Workstations Behind the scenes - How Gone Girl was made using Adobe Premiere Pro, After Effects & HP Workstations Behind the scenes - How Gone Girl was made using Adobe Premiere Pro, After Effects & HP Workstations Inside the HP ZBook 14, 15 G2 and 17 G2 Mobile Workstation - 2014 HP Z Workstations First Look Inside the HP ZBook 14, 15 G2 and 17 G2 Mobile Workstation - 2014 HP Z Workstations First Look Inside the Z840 Dual Xeon Workstation - 2014 HP Z840, Z640, Z440 Desktop Workstations Inside the Z840 Dual Xeon Workstation - 2014 HP Z840, Z640, Z440 Desktop Workstations NVIDIA GTX 980 Shadowplay Demo at 4K - War Thunder Eastern Front NVIDIA GTX 980 Shadowplay Demo at 4K - War Thunder Eastern Front Monster Cable Premium Black 27.7 Gbps high bandwidth HDMI 2.0 cable review Monster Cable Premium Black 27.7 Gbps high bandwidth HDMI 2.0 cable review NVIDIA Editors Day - PhysX, Flex and Gameworks demo on GeForce GTX 980 NVIDIA Editors Day - PhysX, Flex and Gameworks demo on GeForce GTX 980 NVIDIA Editors Day - GeForce GTX 980 Voxel Global Illumination Apollo 11 demo NVIDIA Editors Day - GeForce GTX 980 Voxel Global Illumination Apollo 11 demo Adobe Photoshop CC and AMD Radeon GPU Smart Sharpen Benchmark using OpenCL Adobe Photoshop CC and AMD Radeon GPU Smart Sharpen Benchmark using OpenCL Recording Crysis 3 with NVIDIA Shadowplay, GeForce Experience and MSI GTX760 HAWK video card. Recording Crysis 3 with NVIDIA Shadowplay, GeForce Experience and MSI GTX760 HAWK video card. ASUS ROG Rampage IV Black Edition Motherboard ASUS ROG Rampage IV Black Edition Motherboard Lenovo Yoga Tablet  - Beta Test commercial with Ashton Kutcher Lenovo Yoga Tablet - "Beta Test" commercial with Ashton Kutcher Lenovo Yoga Tablet  - 18 Hours commercial with Ashton Kutcher Lenovo Yoga Tablet - "18 Hours" commercial with Ashton Kutcher NV30FlowFX - NVIDIA GeForce FX 5800 Fan Noise NV30FlowFX - NVIDIA GeForce FX 5800 Fan Noise Intel 4th Gen Core Haswell CPU and Iris Pro Graphics. Can it run GRID 2 well? Apparently... Intel 4th Gen Core "Haswell" CPU and Iris Pro Graphics. Can it run GRID 2 well? Apparently... Media Q&A with AMD and Richard Huddy - AMD Fury X ‘Fiji’ Graphics comes to Australia Media Q&A with AMD and Richard Huddy - AMD Fury X ‘Fiji’ Graphics comes to Australia