Smart Drive 2002C

Coolers

Testing

Testing this device is pretty simple. The testing was done outside of a case and the ambient temperature stayed constant throughout at 19C.

The hard disc was a DiamondMax 20 Maxtor 80GB 7200.9 SATA model.

Smart Drive 2002C
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Methodology

For the naked testing the hard disc was laid on top of centimetre high spacers to allow underside air flow. The hard disc was then allowed to idle for an hour, then a low level disc scan and transfer was used for another hour for the load testing. Then a 120mm fan was placed a couple of centimetres away from the hard disc to simulate what happens in most cases where a front fan will blow directly over your HDD’s.

The SD2k2 testing was the same deal but with the hard disc in the enclosure.

Results

First impressions were that even without the enclosure this hard disc is pretty much silent and can only really be heard with your ear right up close. The read sound and the platters rotating are not going to be louder than even the quietest fan, which is how most hard discs are now.

With the enclosure rapped round the HDD, there was literally no noise coming from it; silenced completely. While this is definitely what you want in a system, the fact that the HDD didn’t make a great deal of racket in the first place means that the noise reduction factor isn’t a major deal.

Smart Drive 2002C

As you can see from the results, the HDD cooler didn’t really do anything to reduce the temperature of the hard discs. When the fan was introduced, it actually impeded the cooling of the hard disc, as the HDD didn’t make contact with the top of the copper cradle. With nearly every case out there, there will be no direct airflow over the 5.25” bays which is where the Smart Drive would sit. This is much different from the hard disc location which normally always has direct airflow.

This is another point against the Smart Drive in regards to keeping your HDD cooler. In our testing we can show that it actually does the opposite; even in the best case scenario for it.

The only benefit for using the enclosure would be keeping the temperatures from spiking. As the hard disc is essentially sat in a metal block, the temperature of the drive is normalised meaning it won’t quickly gain heat, but slowly increase. Of course this then means it’ll take longer to cool down, and obviously in our testing the hour that the SM2k2 was given with the fan wasn’t enough time to remove all of the heat from the device. Granted you’ll usually never be using your hard disc as much as this testing did, but it does show the worse possible situation for your HDD to be in.

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Last modified: February 15, 2011

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