Vantec NexStar 2.5" HD Enclosure

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Compact package but some drives may not fit – Joe

SUMMARY: Compact, but some drives may not fit.

The good guys at Vantec were nice enough to send a sample of their external USB 2.5″ hard drive enclosure, the Vantec NexStar.

Nexstar

Size: 130 x 75 x 12mm; Weight: 65 grams

The NexStar features

  • USB 1.1 and 2.0 compatible
  • Provision for separate DC 5 volt power source, if needed
  • Cable with two USB connectors, if needed for powering the HD
  • Carry pouch, install Cd and manual

The unit is very slim – only 12mm high – and very compact:

Parts

The PCB is compact and attaches directly to the HD:

HD

The drive is held in place by two very small screws:

Screws

You need a small Phillips head screwdriver for these, such as the kind you get in a jeweler’s pack.

To test out the unit, I tried two drives; an IBM Travelstar (DBCA-206480) and a Toshiba (MK2110MAT). Here I found a problem – the IBM did not fit in the sleeve:

Fit

I looked down into the sleeve and saw a small foam strip; figuring that maybe this was the problem, I managed to remove it and tried again – no luck. This was not the problem. At the bottom of the sleeve is a small tab:

Inside

It seems that this tab hits the IBM just right so that it prevents the drive from fully enclosing. I compared the two

HDs

and perhaps the screws at the base are just high enough to prevent it from fully closing.

I used both drives with the NexStar and had no problems.

CONCLUSIONS

Vantec’s NexStar is a very nice, slim package for an external 2.5″ hard drive. The manual that ships with it covers installation and even formatting for various OS’s. The only caveats I have is that some drives may not fit (not good) and the screws are so small that losing one is a distinct possibility. If you plan to change drives frequently, this can be a concern.

Thanks again to Vantec for sending this our way.

Email Joe

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