Inateck FE2007 USB 3.0 Drive Enclosure with 3-Port Hub Review

by - 7 years ago

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Introduction


Inateck_FE2007-Photo-top

I’ve taken a look at quite a few of Inateck’s products so far, and I have yet to be disappointed. They are taking known concepts but improve on them with a twist of some sort. They have done exactly that again with their new FE2007 Tool Free UASP USB 3.0 HDD Enclosure with built-in and powered 3-Port USB 3.0 Hub.

Inateck_FE2007-Photo-side-one

Thanks to the power of the USB Attached SCSI Protocol (UASP), the FE2007 is able to utilize the entire USB 3.0 bandwidth and provide excellent transfer speeds.

You connect the enclosure directly to your system via the micro USB port on the one side of the enclosure and that is all you need to do. The enclosure is both tool-less and driverless. Another bonus feature is the ability to power down the inserted drive when you don’t need it. Save on your power bill and save lifetime on your drive.

Inateck_FE2007-Photo-side-two

There is one problem that you often run into and that is the problem with too few USB ports. This is especially the case on notebooks and compact systems that generally have fewer ports, but not exclusively. Inateck added a three-port USB 3.0 hub to the enclosure and increases the functionality of this tiny device a lot.

There is a second USB cable included that isn’t for data transfer, but rather to provide extra power to the connected devices. This allows you to use more power hungry devices at the same time and charge mobile products faster.

Inateck_FE2007-Photo-usb-hub

 

The top cover slides off without the use of much force, at the same time it still stays where it should be when closed. The enclosure has the same width internally as your 2.5-inch drive, so all you need to do is slide it in until it’s plugged into the SATA connector and close it again.

Inateck’s FE2007 can take 2.5-inch drives with a height of up to 9.5mm, making sure that you’re also able to mount the thicker drives.

Inateck_FE2007-Photo-open

Inateck also included a foam pad with the package that helps to keep a thinner 7mm drive in place inside the enclosure. This is especially useful when you take the enclosure with you on the go.

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I’d also like to point out that I really like how Inateck is packaging their products. For the most part the package is just a brown box with a sticker. While this might be boring, no one actually looks at the box after you got it and it’s much better for the environment as well as saving production costs and machine maintenance that ultimately would end in a more expensive products. Well done.

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Test Procedure


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There are two things we are interested in when testing an enclosure like this. We want to know how well it perform by means of total speed possible as well as how big an effect the adapter will have on the transfer rates.

To be able to test both these things I’ve picked a Solid State Drive that outperforms the maximum speed possible on the USB 3 bus while reading and at the same time stays within the speed margin when writing data. After benchmarking the enclosure on a UASP enabled USB 3 port, I’ll take the drive and attach it directly to the SATA port and run the same tests again.

This will help me to achieve the two goals mentioned above. The read speeds will tell us how close we can get to the possible maximum while the write speeds will give us a direct view of the performance impact due to the conversion from SATA to USB3 and the natural limitation that comes with USB.

Inateck_FE2007-Photo-rear

When looking at the coming pages and speed comparisons, you need to keep in mind that USB3 is naturally slower than the baseline SATA speeds.

Test system:

  • Gigabyte Z79X UD5H-BK
  • Intel Core i7-4790K
  • EVGA GTX 980 SC
  • Corsair Vengeance Pro 16GB 2400MHz
  • Kingston Savage 240GB SSD

Software used:

  • AIDA64 Disk Benchmark
  • Anvil’s Storage Utilities 1.1.0
  • AS SSD Benchmark 1.7.4739.38088
  • ATTO Benchmark 2.46
  • CrystalDiskMark 3.0.3 64-bit
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AIDA64


AIDA64 is a streamlined Windows diagnostic and benchmarking software for home users. It provides a wide range of features to assist in overclocking, hardware error diagnosis, stress testing, and sensor monitoring.

It has unique capabilities to assess the performance of the processor, system memory, and disk drives and is compatible with most Microsoft Windows operating systems. It also has a disk benchmark tool, and that is the one we’ll be using.

Inateck_FE2007-Bench-aida-suite

Read and Write Tests

The Linear Read and Write tests measure the sequential performance by reading or writing all sectors without skipping any while the Random Read and Write tests measure the random performance by reading or writing variable sized data blocks at random locations on the surface of the drive. The Random tests are actually combined tests of both speed and access times as it moves the position before each new operation.

Inateck_FE2007-Chart-aida_linear

Inateck_FE2007-Chart-aida_random

Average Access Times

The Access time tests are designed to measure the data access performance by reading or writing small 0.5KB data blocks at random locations on the drive surface.

Inateck_FE2007-Chart-aida_accessread

Inateck_FE2007-Chart-aida_accesswrite

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Anvil’s Storage Utilities


Anvil’s Storage Utilities is a new benchmarking utility that is completely free to download and has the ability to test mainly hard drives and solid state drives, but also any other form of storage medium that you can throw at it. As well as testing the drive in a variety of benchmarking tests, it also has a drive endurance test that consistently reads and writes data to the selected medium to give days, months and potentially even years of use in a shorter period of time to see how the drive copes in the longer term.

Enclosure USB3 Speed

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Baseline SATA3 Comparison

Inateck_FE2004-baseline_Anvil_compressible

Inateck_FE2004-baseline_Anvil_incompressible

Drive Comparison

Inateck_FE2007-ChartDC-Anvils

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AS SSD


The AS SSD software determines the performance of Solid State Drives (SSD). The tool contains five synthetic and three practice tests. The synthetic tests determine the sequential and random read and write performance of the SSD. These tests are performed without using the operating system caches. In Sequential tests, the program measures the time it takes to read and write a 1GB file respectively.

To give a clearer picture of the drives tested, I’ve chosen to include all tests.

Enclosure USB3 Speed

Inateck_FE2007-Bench-asssd-combined

Inateck_FE2007-Bench-asssd-compr

Baseline SATA3 Comparison

Inateck_FE2004-baseline_ASSSD

Drive Comparison

Inateck_FE2007-ChartDC-ASSSD

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ATTO


The ATTO Disk Benchmark is a performance measurement tool is for Microsoft Windows. It measures your storage systems performance with various transfer sizes and test lengths for reads and writes. It has multiple options to available to customize your performance measurement including queue depth, overlapped I/O and even a comparison mode with the option to run continuously. ATTO Disk Benchmark can be used to test any manufacturers RAID controllers, storage controllers, host adapters, hard drives and SSD drives.

Enclosure USB3 Speed

Inateck_FE2007-Bench-atto

Baseline SATA3 Comparison

Inateck_FE2004-baseline_ATTO

Drive Comparison

Inateck_FE2007-ChartDC-ATTO

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CrystalDiskMark


CrystalDiskMark is a small HDD benchmark utility for your hard drive that enables you to rapidly measure sequential and random 4KB/512KB read/write speeds.

Enclosure USB3 Speed

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Baseline SATA3 Comparison

Inateck_FE2004-baseline_CDM

Drive Comparison

Inateck_FE2007-ChartDC-CDM

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USB Hub Performance


Testing the USB performance of a hub is a straight forward task. We are not as much interested in the maximum possible speeds, but whether the USB hub will have any impact on our overall transfers speeds when compared to a direct connection.

I will first connect the SSD to the USB hub and test it with several applications after which it will be connected to the same onboard USB port instead of the hub. I will run the same tests again and compare the results, giving you an easy view on the performance impact, if any.

ATTO Disk Benchmark

 

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Inateck_FE2007-Chart-hub_atto

AS SSD

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CrystalDiskMark

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Conclusion

The USB 3.0 hub performed just as great as the SATA port did. We barely see any differences between a direct connection to the motherboard and a connection through the Inateck FE2007 USB 3.0 hub.

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Final Thoughts


Pricing

The Inateck FE2007 USB 3.0 Enclosure and Hub has an MSRP of $39.99, but at the time of writing this review you can pick one up for just $27.99, £25.99, or €25.99 through Amazon.

Overview

Inateck didn’t just create an extra useful gadget by combining two normal devices into one, they also created a unit with an impressive performance.

Thanks to the ASmedia ASMT1153 we get top speeds with barely any impact on both the USB 3.0 and SATA ports. The differences are so small that they could be misread for normal statistic anomalies and as such the perfect choice for such a device.

Design wise the unit is very simple. A slightly longer, but still very portable, 2.5-inch hard disk or solid state drive enclosure with an extra USB hub at the end. The addition of the extra power source option ensures that all connected devices have enough power and Inateck even added a power button to shut down the SATA drive when you just need it as hub. This will both save power, increase your hub performance, and increase the lifespan of the inserted drive.

Pros:

  • Two-in-one convenience
  • UASP and ASmedia chip for top USB 3.0 speeds
  • Drive power button
  • Extra power connection
  • Tool-less and driverless

Cons:

  • No feet on the bottom side.

“Inateck created another great Enclosure with the FE2007. Not only can you take your HDD or SSD on the road, it also adds a 3-port USB hub.”

Extreme-Performance

Inateck FE2007 USB 3.0 Drive Enclosure with 3-Port Hub Review

Thank you Inateck for providing us with this review sample

Article Index

  1. Introduction
  2. Test Procedure
  3. Aida64
  4. Anvil's Storage Utilities
  5. AS SSD
  6. ATTO
  7. CrystalDiskMark
  8. USB Hub Performance
  9. Final Thoughts
  10. View All

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