MUKii TransImp Hard Drive Dock

Posted by on Sunday, October 17, 2010 - 12:00am

Mukii dockThe last alternative is the good old hard drive dock. This is one of the quickest and easiest ways to get a drive connected to your system. The dock simply and casually sits on the desktop out of the way just waiting to be used. All it takes is snapping a drive into the slot and waiting for the PC to recognize it. No screws or cables to worry about just snap and go. And in order to show-off the simplicity of a hard drive dock, our new pals MUKii were nice enough to ship over one of their TransImp USB3 docks for testing.

 

Introduction to the MUKii TransImp SuperSpeed Hard Drive Dock

Over the past couple of years it seems like hard drive prices are dropping like flies. Two terabytes drives are the largest on the shelves at this moment and they can be had for less than $99, and 3TB internals just around the corner. Now compare that to the price of a 10GB drive a billion years ago (that's in computer years, as we all know about 7yr IRL = 500mil/yr for computer technology). With these dropping prices we sometimes find ourselves with previously used, but still perfectly good, drives lying around. When this is the case there are times where we must go back and retrieve data off these drives.

Now there are enclosures we can buy to connect these drives to our system, but if you don’t plan to make this a permanent solution then this route will be too time consuming. Forget having to take it all apart to get inside the enclosure just to retrieve a few megabytes of data off a drive.

Next, are the very popular SATA/IDE USB adapters like the ones shown here and here. These are obviously quicker to setup than the enclosure, but it does mean having to deal with cables and power adapters in order to achieve the same results as above. But an advantage here is you can collect data from either an IDE or SATA drive.

The last alternative is the good old hard drive dock. This is one of the quickest and easiest ways to get a drive connected to your system. The dock simply and casually sits on the desktop out of the way just waiting to be used. All it takes is snapping a drive into the slot and waiting for the PC to recognize it. No screws or cables to worry about just snap and go. And in order to show-off the simplicity of a hard drive dock, our new pals MUKii were nice enough to ship over one of their TransImp USB3 docks for testing.

MUKii's take on the TransImp Dock

As digital and high-resolution media contents become more and more popular, the demand for file storage increases. Because of that, high-speed storage peripherals interface is an inevitable trend, which saves time, energy and improves work efficiency. MUKii TransImp TIP-D180U3 2.5"/3.5" hard drive enclosure uses USB 3.0 interface that supports a transfer rate up to 5Gbps. You can install and access hard drive in seconds. No need to add enclosures or open cases, it's designed for simple use. The professional PCB design, high-end control IC & AC adapter ensure data transfer smoothly and stabilized. It also passed the strictest compatibility tests and is compatible with all 2.5"/3.5" SATA hard drives on the market. M one tuning system included (Auto format/ Smart energy saving/USB Turbo/Auto backup/Status feedback) are powerful and yet easy to use. White paint with Aluminum Hair-line Surface Treatment plate in sleek design. MUKii TransImp-series Hard Drive Enclosures are designed to meet the performance requirements of saving time, energy and data security.


Specifications

  • Model : TIP-D180U3-WH
  • Device support : SATA hard drive or SATA SSD
  • Device size : 2.5" / 3.5"
  • Internal interface : Serial ATA
  • External interface : USB 3.0
  • Material : Aluminum / Plastic
  • Dimension : 152.7 x 91 x 85.5 mm
  • Power : AC power adapter

Features

  • Easy Installation with Tool-free Design.
  • Simple to Use Design; No Need to Add Enclosure or Open Case.
  • Considerate take-in storage bucket design Keep your desk neat & tidy any time.
  • USB interface for easy data access.
  • LED indicates Power / HDD status.
  • Compatible with any 2.5"/3.5" SATA hard drive / SATA SSD.
  • Compliant with USB 3.0 Backward Compatible with USB 2.0. Transfer rates up to 5Gb/s with USB 3.0.
  • White paint with Aluminum Hair-line Surface Treatment plate in sleek design.
  • Hot Swappable : Plug and play
  • M One Tuning System Included: Auto Format / Smart Energy Saving / USB Turbo / Auto Backup / Status Feedback. (Only for USB Interface)

Closer look

The TransImp Dock comes in either a brilliant white, like our review sample, or a slick looking black. The JMicron controller it is built around has a max transfer rate of 5Gbps, thanks to it's SuperSpeed USB3 support, which offers quick and easy transferal of any stored files. When it comes to setting up the dock, it’s just a matter of connecting a USB cable, the power adapter and plugging in the desired 2.5" or 3.5" SATA hard drive.

Just like the MUKii USB adapter and hard drive enclosure we review last week, the hard drive dock also is bundled with the M-1 software. The software allows you backup, partition and put the docked drive in a power saving mode. But one of the true benefits of the software comes in the form of TurboHDD, which enables the caching of data to enhance the drive performance. MUKii has taken external storage access to whole 'nother level.

The white model we will be looking at today is quite good looking if you ask us. MUKii added a nice brushed-aluminum accent plate to the front of the unit, to give it a bit more class. The front of the unit has no extra buttons or fancy lighting whatsoever, providing for a very clean look.

The top of the dock is where you find the drive slot, supporting both 2.5” and 3.5” SATA drives. This is also where we fine the only button on the unit, which is simply to turn it ON or OFF, but also serves as the power indicate LED. Seeing as that is the only button, that means the unit does not consist of an ejecting mechanism. So you will have to secure the dock first before pulling the drive out.

A nice little added bonus is the storage slot on the side, and is the perfect fit for a SSD or 2.5” drive. So if you are swapping data between 2, you don't have to leave one laying around on the desk to accidentally get knocked off!

The rear of the dock consists of just the USB3 port, power jack and four thin air vents 


Testing and results

We tested the dock under both the USB 2.0 and SuperSpeed protocols, as not every may yet have a USB3 equipped motherboard yet, so you can get an idea of the speed difference between the two.

 


Conclusion

The MUKii TransImp Hard Drive Dock does what it supposes to do very well. It allows for easy and quick access to data that is sitting around collecting dust, no matter if it is 2.5” or 3.5” form factors. With the addition of the M-One software the TransImp has a little help in the transfer of data resulting in faster transfer rates. If you are in the market to purchase a dock then this alone should put the TransImp ahead of most on your list.

Given that this is a dock after all, it means you will not have to spend time assembling enclosures, or continuously connecting cables to your PC. The dock sits idly by on the desk out of the way, waiting to be used when you need it, but won't be an eye sore thanks to it's sleek looks.

Since the TransImp comes with all the USB3 cable, power adapter and optional software, it is ready to use right out of the box. However, because the dock does require external A/C power, we feel that it could benefit from having an eSATA connection as well. Reason being is not everyone has USB 3.0 support as of yet, but the chances of having eSATA is greater. Just an idea for the next model.

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