Icy Dock MB982IP-1S-1
The front of the cardboard package shows images of both the SAS and SATA versions of this product. Icy Dock has a whole range of solutions for customers, and there are both plastic and metal versions available for typical SATA usage.
The rear of the package highlights the specifications of the converter.
The drive bay slides out in a bubble wrapped envelope. Once unpacked, we find the converter, instruction pamphlet and the screws necessary for securing the converter into the case. The converter does not require any fasteners for installation of the drive into the converter itself.
The case is attractive, sturdy and made of high quality steel. With the rugged and high quality construction, it is surprising that the case is so light, weighing in at a mere .72 pounds.
The front of the converter has a plastic button that when pushed releases the top of the case. We also observe the slots on the top and front of the case that allow for excellent thermal dissipation characteristics.
Flipping the case over reveals the SAS connection that is compatible for all versions of SAS, including the ultra-fast 12Gb/s SAS that we are testing with today. We also note another set of ventilation slots on the bottom of the case as well.
The other end of the case also has a long row of ventilation slots, allowing airflow through the converter to cool the drive located inside.
Once the case is opened, we can observe the PCB. This provides a straight-line connection through to the drive. There are no chips or logic devices placed between the drive and the SAS connection, enabling the converter to provide pure performance with no impact.
Looking from another angle reveals the internal SAS connection, nestled underneath a guide rail.
The SSD fits nicely into the converter, but leaves a large gap above the SSD. This is due to the SSD being only a 7mm design. The converter fits all drive thicknesses up to 15mm.
As we close the case over the SSD, we can see that the thin curved metal strips will hold the SSD in the case firmly. These strips create what Icy Dock refers to as Smart-Fit technology. This system works beautifully, securing the SSD into the case snugly, without damaging the surface of the drive. The snug fit protects against vibration in multi-drive deployments, and compresses enough to hold the wide range of drive sized supported by the Icy Dock.
The installation of the drive does not require any fasteners, which is bonus when deploying a large number of converters. Another key aspect is the sliding action of the converter. As the lid of the Icy Dock closes, the drive slides forward and mates to the SAS connector. This easy method works smoothly and without issue. On cheaper converters, we have suffered from broken SAS and SATA connections due to misaligned connectors. The Icy Dock provides one of the smoothest actions we have experienced with this type of solution.