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Macally PHR-S100SUA External Drive Enclosure

About.com Rating 3.5 Star Rating


Macally PHR-S100SUA External Drive Enclosure  - Review - Macally PHR-S100SUA eSATA, FireWire, USB 2.0 External Storage Enclosure

Macally PHR-S100SUA external drive enclosure

Photo © Coyote Moon Inc.

The Bottom Line

It’s hard to beat a triple external interface case at this price.

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  • Aluminum construction for excellent heat dissipation
  • Internal interface supports SATA I and SATA II
  • Three external interfaces: eSATA, FireWire 400, USB 2.0
  • Has a power switch (many cases don’t)
  • Built in anti-shock mounting


  • Power switch is small and difficult to use
  • FireWire interface doesn’t use standard Oxford chip set
  • Internal power and data cables are short and difficult to connect to HD


  • Power and activity indicator
  • eSATA port supports speeds up to 3.0 Gbps
  • Can be used horizontally or vertically
  • Includes a stand for vertical orientation
  • Can be stacked horizontally
  • No fan for quiet operations
  • Aluminum body dissipates heat from hard drive

Guide Review - Macally PHR-S100SUA External Drive Enclosure

The Macally PHR-S100SUA external drive enclosure is designed to contain a single 3.5” SATA I or SATA II hard drive. The universal external interface supports three types of connections (eSATA, FireWire 400, and USB 2.0), which means you can use the PHR-S100SUA with just about any Mac or PC on the market today.

The eSATA external interface is a nice addition. Although no Mac currently comes with an eSATA interface, many Mac Pro users like to add this interface for use with RAID arrays. A pair of PHR-S100SUAs would make a nice, inexpensive RAID set.

Adding a hard drive to the PHR-S100SUA is a pretty straightforward operation. I liked that this enclosure uses the mounting points on the side of a hard drive rather than the ones on the bottom; side mounts are easier to install. The PHR-S100SUA also uses an anti-shock mount system to help reduce the drive’s susceptibly to shock when you move the enclosure around, something I do frequently (from one Mac to another).

The only trouble I had in setting up the PHR-S100SUA was that the internal power and data cables are backwards. That is, the power cable is on the right-hand side and the data cable is roughly centered in the enclosure. This lets the data cable have almost straight-ahead access to the hard drive, but the power cable has to be twisted around from the right side to the left side of the hard drive, where SATA power connections are made. While this can be done pretty easily, it’s a shame that Macally didn't either provide a longer power cable or design the interface board with the power on the correct side.

Aside from the single problem in assembly, I found the Macally PHR-S100SUA to be a very good, versatile, and attractive external hard drive enclosure.

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