Articles: Storage

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We have already got used to the fact that if we need to connect a hard disk drive or an optical drive to the PC and there is no empty bay inside the case or we simply cannot open the system, there is always a possibility to do it with the help of an external chassis. However, there is an alternative even to that. You can use a special adapter-cable that will allow you to connect the HDD or optical drive with even less trouble. I believe that you have hardly seen any devices like that around, so I figured I may as well tell you a bit more about it.

Today I would like to introduce to you an adapter-cable from Brando that allows connecting SATA and IDE devices to your system via the USB 2.0 interface.

Closer Look

As you can see from the pictures below, the device consists of a set of cables and a power supply unit. Let’s try to find out what it is actually designed for. The first concern that comes to mind is: hm, if there are external chassis solutions that can perform the same function, why should I go with this cable set? It is true, there are a lot of external chassis solutions for 3.5-inch HDDs and optical devices out there, and we have even reviewed quite a few of them on our site. However, they are pretty large and will never fit into your jacket pocket, that’s for sure. Of course, if you know for sure that you will need a chassis, you can put in a bag and take with you, but there are situations when you think you might probably need to connect an external HDD or optical drive, but you don’t feel like taking extra stuff with you. In this case, a more compact device such as a special cable and a PSU seems to be a much more reasonable and convenient solution. It is much easier to carry around. Of course, if you are working with 2.5-inch HDDs, the situation is not so complex, as the external chassis solutions for them are considerably smaller, but still.

Now let’s take a closer look at the device we are talking about that allows connecting hard disk drives or optical drives with SATA and ATA interface to any PCs featuring standard USB ports:

The power supply unit has a cable with a standard 12V connector. According to the manufacturer’s website, the power supply cable is available in four different modifications for different world standards, but it comes equipped only with one, so you have to make sure you are getting the correct one. Anyway, you can always replace the power supply cable with any other cable, because the unit itself supports voltages from 100V to 240V and 50/60Hz frequency, i.e. is universal.

When working with SATA drives, you have to install a special converter to the default power supply cable connector, to make sure that the power interface is appropriate for solutions of this type.

The main interface cable has a USB connector on one end and a special adapter with three connectors at the same time on the other end. These three connectors support ATA devices of 3.5” and 2.5” form-factor as well as SATA devices. Besides, there was also a SATA interface cable included with the bundle.

Winding up the discussion of supplied accessories I would like to mention a brief user’s manual and a CD disk with the drivers that are also included.

The device sells for around $35.

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