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First Look: Macpower M9-Mini Pod [Updated]
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 6:07 am    Post subject: First Look: Macpower M9-Mini Pod [Updated] Reply with quote

First Look: Macpower M9-Mini Pod
Tuesday June 28, 2005

Here is a first look at the Macpower M9-DX Mini Pod an external disk drive enclosure with a built-in USB and FireWire port replicator for the Apple Mac mini. In the box you'll find the M9-DX, top cover, external power adapter, power cord, USB cable, FireWire cable, screws, and instruction manual. Everything came packaged neatly and wrapped in plastic. The instruction manual provides ample information for usage and hard drive installation.

The M9-DX is a great looking enclosure. There's a single blue LED indicator light on the front of the M9-DX with no logos. The top cover has a raised lip around it to hold the Mac mini in place when it is stacked on top of the M9-DX. The bottom of the M9-DX has nice long rubber pads to keep it from sliding. On the back of the M9-DX you'll find a On/Off Switch, Exhaust Fan Vent, Power Receptacle, Fan Setting Switch, 3 USB 2.0 ports, USB to Mac port, 3 FireWire ports, Input Select Switch, and Micro Security Slot. All the ports and switches are solid and nicely made. The coloring of our M9-DX is slightly darker compared to the Mac mini. We wish the color match between the two would've been a little better.

The first step in installing the drive is to remove four screws on the bottom of the M9-DX to remove the heat sink. Once the heat sink is out you can fasten the hard drive to it using the four included screws. The hard drive needs to be placed upside down in the heat sink with the spindle motor facing up. After the hard drive is fastened to the heat sink you can attach the ATA cable and power cable to the drive. Make sure your hard drive is set to be the Master drive. You can now screw the heat sink back into the enclosure with the hard drive and cables attached. The last step is to attach the thermal probe with the tape provided to the spindle motor before closing the top cover. You're now ready to format or use your drive!

We found the M9-DX to be a solid performer with our 3.5" 7200RPM Seagate drive. The M9-DX's cooling system with the heat sink and fan do a fantastic job keeping things cool. The top of the unit was only slightly warm after five hours of usage. We're happy to report the M9-DX doesn't make a lot of noise while running. The sound level is totally acceptable and there's little to no drive vibration. Overall, we would recommend this product to our readers and give it a score of 9 out of 10. Our score may have been a perfect 10 if the color match was just a little better. Other World Computing will be selling the M9-DX and M9-LX in the United States. We should have more information on pricing and availability shortly.


Pros:
- Build quality is excellent.
- Quiet operation.
- Ports and switches are solid.
- Excellent cooling system with heat sink and fan.
- Raised lip around the top cover keeps Mac mini in place.
- Rear power switch is easy to manipulate.
- Front design with no logos.

Cons:
- Color is slightly darker than Mac mini.
- Top cover could have fit better.



http://www.123macmini.com/accessories/reviews/104.html

Update: OWC is now selling the M9 as the mini Stack for $99
http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Newer%20Technology/FWU2MS/

With Drives
NewerTech miniStack 80GB 7200RPM w/2MB Cache Performance FireWire/USB2 Solution w/Integrated USB2 and FireWire Hubs - Designed for Mac mini. 2 Year NewerTech Warranty. (NWTFWU2MS080GB2) $139.99 Same Day
NewerTech miniStack 120GB 7200RPM w/8MB Cache Performance FireWire/USB2 Solution w/Integrated USB2 and FireWire Hubs - Designed for Mac mini. 2 Year NewerTech Warranty. (NWTFWU2MS120GB8) $169.99 Same Day
NewerTech miniStack 160GB 7200RPM w/8MB Cache Performance FireWire/USB2 Solution w/Integrated USB2 and FireWire Hubs - Designed for Mac mini. 2 Year NewerTech Warranty. (NWTFWU2MS160GB8) $179.99 Same Day
NewerTech miniStack 200GB 7200RPM w/8MB Cache Performance FireWire/USB2 Solution w/Integrated USB2 and FireWire Hubs - Designed for Mac mini. 2 Year NewerTech Warranty. (NWTFWU2MS200GB8) $199.99 Same Day
NewerTech miniStack 250GB 7200RPM w/8MB Cache Performance FireWire/USB2 Solution w/Integrated USB2 and FireWire Hubs - Designed for Mac mini. 2 Year NewerTech Warranty. (NWTFWU2MS250GB8) $229.99 Same Day
NewerTech miniStack 300GB 7200RPM w/8MB Cache Performance FireWire/USB2 Solution w/Integrated USB2 and FireWire Hubs - Designed for Mac mini. 2 Year NewerTech Warranty. (NWTFWU2MS300GB8) $289.99 Same Day
NewerTech miniStack 400GB 7200RPM w/8MB Cache Performance FireWire/USB2 Solution w/Integrated USB2 and FireWire Hubs - Designed for Mac mini. 2 Year NewerTech Warranty. (NWTFWU2MS400GB8) $389.99


Last edited by admin on Tue Jul 05, 2005 5:05 pm; edited 7 times in total
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andp
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 7:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm going to get one if the price is good! Very Happy
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SStreet
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 9:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This enclosure looks promising, but I remember reading about "auto-power" something or other. Can someone find out about the power on-off and sleep. If you just leave the power switch on, will it automatically power up and down with the Mini? Secondly, will it come back after sleeping (perhaps more of an OS issue then hardware).

Secondly, is it a bootable Firewire bridge?
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 12:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

SStreet wrote:
This enclosure looks promising, but I remember reading about "auto-power" something or other. Can someone find out about the power on-off and sleep. If you just leave the power switch on, will it automatically power up and down with the Mini? Secondly, will it come back after sleeping (perhaps more of an OS issue then hardware).

Secondly, is it a bootable Firewire bridge?


Yes it has a "smart power switch". If you leave M9's power switch to the on position it will start up automatically when you turn on your Mac mini. The M9's drive will shut down when you turn off the Mac mini, however, the blue LED on the front will stay on all the time unless you turn the power switch to off.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 7:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I will be getting one of these. Nice to hear OWC will be selling them ..

Many thanks for the first look article! Very Happy
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 8:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

But is it bootable??? Question Please!!!
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 28, 2005 9:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great news. I think my 160GB Seagate finally found a home.

Let me get this straight: The drive is mounted upside down? Question I guess that doesn't effect operation at all?
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2005 3:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

FishKepr wrote:
Great news. I think my 160GB Seagate finally found a home.

Let me get this straight: The drive is mounted upside down? Question I guess that doesn't effect operation at all?


You can mount most modern drives upside down or on their sides.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2005 5:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

LouieMacGoo wrote:
But is it bootable??? Question Please!!!


Absolutely! I had the chance to clone my 1.42GHz Mac mini with SuperDuper last night. This is just a "First Look" at the M9-DX. We should have more information on the M9-DX and LX in our Mac mini Gear Guide. It should go live in the next few weeks.

Here are the Xbench scores:

Standard Boot >80GB, 4200RPM Toshiba>109.82
http://www.123macmini.com/images/standboot.jpg

M9-DX Boot >80GB, 7200RPM Seagate>122.47
http://www.123macmini.com/images/m9boot.jpg

Nice boost! Very Happy

I think my overall scores are a little low because of all the widgets I have running.

Brian
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2005 7:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

andp wrote:
I'm going to get one if the price is good! Very Happy


Me too. I'm going to use mine for storage, backups, and the extra ports. No plans to boot from it at the current time.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2005 7:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Now what do you think a fair price would be for this? $70 - $80 US?!?!
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2005 9:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

LouieMacGoo wrote:
Now what do you think a fair price would be for this? $70 - $80 US?!?!


Plastic with no drive = $50 - $70.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2005 9:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd say $130-150. Put it in perspective:

USB hub $30
FW hub $60
HD enclosure $60
Total: 150

cool factor: Priceless

add in the small build and small market and you have a expensive product. Not for what it is but for what it does.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2005 10:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

SHHHHH! They haven't priced it yet so let's not give them any expensive ideas! I like $70 better!
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 29, 2005 10:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

ninjamini wrote:


cool factor: Priceless

add in the small build and small market and you have a expensive product. Not for what it is but for what it does.


The first Mac mini Visa commercial. Laughing

I agree that when there's a small market you have an expensive product, but in the end it's just a plastic enclosure. You can get the MiniMate with a drive installed for $160. I think anything over $79.99 is going to be pushing it. JHMO
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