After a long search, I have found the perfect external hard drive for a laptop only owner. With that being said, I would like to introduce you to the Newer Technology Mini Stack v3 External hard drive. This little external hard drive offers plenty of additional features beyond just being an external hard drive.
Hard Drive: 750GB Bootable, 7200 RPM, 32MB Cache
Dimensions: 6.5″ x 6.5″ x 1.5″
Bridge Chipset: Oxford OXUF924DSb
Interface Ports: 1 x eSATA, 2 x Firewire 800, 1 x Firewire 400, 3 x USB 2.0/1.0
The Mini Stack v3 is an external hard drive with a built in powered USB/Firewire hub. It offers 3 USB 2.0/1.0, 1 Firewire 400, 2 Firewire 800, and 1 eSATA ports. I searched on google for over a week looking for a external hard drive solution that has a built in powered hub. When I stumbled upon this bad boy, I was so happy to see that not only did it have a USB hub built in, but it also had firewire and eSATA ports built in.
The Mini Stack v3 is offered in many different configurations, I opted to go with the 750GB/32MB/7200RPM model. They are offered up to 1TB but I choose to go with the 750GB model for financial reasons. One of the added bonuses about the Mini Stack is that it can be upgraded to a 1TB drive down the line. I am using the drive for Time Machine Backups and Aperture 2.0 vaults storage. With the built in eSATA port, I always have the option to use it with my Tivo HD as a expansion drive, which is a nice bonus
OK, so why was it so important for me to have a powered USB hub built in? Well, on my home desk, I have a USB wireless mouse, a Apple USB keyboard, a iPhone Dock, and an additional 250GB external hard drive. That is a total of 4 USB cords I have running behind my desk. Well, my Macbook Pro only has 2 USB ports on it, so I needed a USB hub. The way I have this all setup at my desk allows me to just plug in one single USB cord (the Mini Stack) and all my devices will automatically attach to my machine. This makes the whole process of plugging everything in a breeze. Also, it keeps my desk clean looking by hiding all but 1 USB cord behind the desk.
Overall, I am very happy with the product. It accomplishes exactly what I need it to do. The price is a little high, but when you understand what all it does, it is worth the price.Side note: I also wanted to add, that in the photos above, I have a white piece of paper over the blue front status light. This is purely because the light is on the bright side, and the device is located in my bedroom.