External Data Storage: Tsunami UltimateII 3500 3.5" External 2xHDD JBOD enclosure

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Tsunami UltimateII 3500 3.5The Tsunami UltimateII 3500 3.5" External 2xHDD JBOD enclosure is another two SATA hard drive enclosure from Tsunami.  It allows the installation of two drives in either JBOD (Just a Bunch of Disks) or BIG mode (both disks contribute to make one big disk).

The enclosure comes with interchangeable faceplates (black, yellow and red) and the main casing is in gun-metal black aluminium.  The front faceplate is perforated and their is a 40mm cooling fan, which together allow for greater airflow for cooling the hard drives.  The overall dimensions of the enclosure are much smaller than other two drive enclosure and allows for a much smaller footprint.

Access to the enclosure is as straight forward as other Tsunami enclosures:  The main assembly is held within the casing by two discrete philips screws, which when removed allow the main assembly to be slid out from the casing.  The hard drives are mounted one above the other with ~0.5mm gap between to allow for airflow.  The SATA cabling is easily connected and screws are supplied for securing the drives in place.  Reassembly is simply a reversal of disassembly.

Tsunami UltimateII 3500 3.5The drive mode (JBOD/BIG) for the drives is selectable by an external jumper switch on the back of the enclosure.  In order to activate the chosen drive mode, the enclosure must be switched on, the default button held for 5 seconds, and the unit switched off and then on (presumably to reset the firmware).  We found that the enclosure was very easy to install drives to and they were immediately recognised under Windows XP and Vista.  The one touch backup software was easy to setup for XP and worked well.  However, the drivers were incompatible with Vista which was disappointing and presumably a driver update will be made available by Tsunami in the near future.

Tsunami UltimateII 3500 3.5The fan was inobtrusive and made little noise in comparison to other enclosures we have tested and produced a nice stream of hot air, so the airfow across the hard drive is sufficient to transfer most heat away and extend drive life in comparison to passively/non-cooled enclosures.

The Tsunami UltimateII 3500 3.5" External 2xHDD JBOD enclosure is a relatively cheap two drive enclosure (~£40 at the time of review) with active cooling and what appears to be a stable interface for one touch backup and should not be overlooked for those simply requiring more data backup space.