Published on January 13th, 2014 | by Greg0
G-Dock ev: Slick Thunderbolt Dock Hides Portable Drives
Mac users, take note: the perfect solution for your storage isn’t a new hard drive. It’s two of them- plus a docking station. If you’re a proud owner of the new Mac Pro, you’ve probably noticed that there are some limits to the sexy hardware, namely the fairly anemic amount of onboard hard drive space. If you need extra room for your pictures, movies, music, or other projects, then you’ll want an external disk that is as fast as possible, and one that also looks great and offers plenty of additional room.
There’s also one other feature that’s critical, and impossible to get with any normal, single drive: RAID. And that’s one way that the G-Tech G-Dock ev stands apart from the competition. It also distinguishes itself by offering a way to take a pair of your fairly typical portable USB 3.0 7200 RPM 1TB drives and plug them into a single stationary docking station, meaning that you don’t have to worry about cables and cords. Each disk, on it’s own, offers a full terabyte of storage space and the kit comes with both drives and the cables to connect them individually while on the road. You can leave the base at home, grab the disk and take it to the office… or vice versa.
But wait- why not just use the individual drives? The answer is simple, and it goes beyond the fact that you could double the space with the two drives, or avoid a mess of cables and cords. The base offers a super-fast Thunderbolt connection, fast enough for even the most demanding applications and one of the fastest we’ve tested so far. And best of all- you can configure the drives in a RAID array, offering backup options. That way, even if one drive fails, you’ll have a second copy of all data, protecting your valuable information. And with a three-year limited warranty, you’re protected.
We liked the enclosure a lot, as usual with G-Drive gear and the solid, polished aluminum. Compatible with both PCs and Macs (just reformat; ours were HFS+ by default instead of NTFS), it’s super-simple to mount and unmount the disks. This can be a bit awkward, though, in one scenario- when you’ve set the disks up in a RAID formation, you cannot use them individually unfortunately, and ejecting the disks can be a bit too easy. Of course, you’ll need to use G-Technology drives with the enclosure, and are capped at 2TB at the moment. Individual drive speeds are perfectly competitive, and as a whole, the unit is one of the best systems we’ve seen for simple desktop RAID, and one of the only ones we’ve ever seen that allows you to change the configuration and take your disks on the go. Granted, it comes at a fairly steep price- $610 is a lot to spend, but perfectly reasonable for the expandability and configurability.