Hardware Setup:

Standard Test Bed
Playback of iPEAK Trace Files and Test Application Results
Processor Intel QX6700 - 2.66GHz Quad Core
Motherboard DFI Infinity 965-S
RAM 2 x 1GB OCZ Reaper PC2-9200
Settings - DDR2-800 - 3-4-3-9
OS Hard Drive 1 x Western Digital WD1500 Raptor - 150GB
System Platform Drivers Intel 8.1.1.1010
Intel Matrix RAID 6.2.1.1002
Video Card 1 x MSI 8800GTX
Video Drivers NVIDIA ForceWare 158.19
Optical Drive Plextor PX-760A, Plextor PX-B900A
Cooling Tuniq 120
Power Supply Corsair HX620
Case Cooler Master CM Stacker 830
Operating System Windows XP Professional SP2

We are utilizing an Intel QX6700 quad core CPU to ensure our current benchmarks are not CPU limited. A 2GB memory configuration is standard in our XP test bed as most enthusiasts are currently purchasing this amount of RAM. Our choice of high-range OCZ Reaper PC2-9200 memory offers a very wide range of memory settings with timings of 3-4-3-9 used for our benchmark results.

Our test bed now includes a water-cooled MSI 8800 GTX video card to ensure our game tests are not completely GPU bound and to reduce noise/heat levels. Our video tests are run at 1280x1024 resolution for this article at High Quality settings. All of our tests are run in an enclosed case with a dual optical/hard drive setup to reflect a moderately loaded system platform. Windows XP SP2 is fully updated and we load a clean drive image for each system to keep driver conflicts to a minimum.

The drive is formatted before each test run and five tests are completed on each drive in order to ensure consistency in the benchmark results. The two high and low scores are removed with the remaining score representing our reported result. We utilize the Intel ICH8R SATA ports along with the Intel Matrix Storage driver to ensure consistency in our playback results when utilizing NCQ, TCQ, or RAID settings.


Our test drive today will be the Samsung SpinPoint T166 500GB that we recently reviewed. We implemented AHCI (advanced host controller interface) in the BIOS to properly test the hot swap capabilities of this drive enclosure when utilizing the SATA interface. Without the proper matrix storage driver support and ACHI implementation, hot swapping was not possible with our test bed setup.

We did update our Intel Matrix Storage driver to version 7.5.0.1017 for this review after experiencing burst rate issues in our review of the ICY DOCK M559 drive enclosure. Application performance numbers remained the same or within our benchmark tolerance range with the exception of the HD Tach burst rates that were slightly lower than our original results in the Samsung drive review. We are still investigating this issue as it only occurs on our ICH8R test bed.
Specifications and Features HD Tach Results
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7 Comments

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  • takumsawsherman - Monday, July 16, 2007 - link

    is how long this model lasts. I've had a couple of very similar looking Masscools die on me. There is a real lack of a reliable, metal enclosure, with a built in power supply, quiet fan, and a chipset that just works.

    Though initially disappointed with my PPA/Bytecc with the dreaded Prolific 3507 chipset, after a couple of firmware updates, it seems to be rock solid. ByteCC now sells a mostly metal 5 1/4 inch enclosure with Firewire daisy chain, USB2, and a built in power supply and fan. Still uses that Prolific chipset, but so far I have not had any issues.

    The biggest disappointment for me is how many manufacturers seem to think that we want to carry AC-DC bricks around with us. Using an standard IEC cable means one less thing to remember.
    Reply
  • AmberClad - Monday, July 16, 2007 - link

    I've had an IDE version of this exact same model for the past three years and it's still working fine. The one I had was manufacturered by PPA though, not Masscool or GMG.

    This particular design (with the anodized aluminum body and Metal Gear Solid knock-off artwork) seems to have been around for quite a few years and it's built by various different companies (makes me wonder who was behind the original design). The SATA interface seems to be new though.
    Reply
  • RamarC - Monday, July 16, 2007 - link

    My metal gear box with ide drive and fw/usb ports has been running for over 2.5 years now. I've had no problems/issues since installing it. Reply
  • Slash3 - Sunday, July 15, 2007 - link

    Has anyone from Konami seen these things yet? It's bad enough that they put "Metal Gear Box" on the side, in the Metal Gear Solid font, but then they go one further and add the Substance subscript. How Do they get away with it...

    Cheese Factor +10
    Reply
  • AmberClad - Monday, July 16, 2007 - link

    I'm not sure which is more blatant -- this, or SuperTalent's Walmart-inspired heatspreader artwork :-D. Reply
  • Souka - Monday, July 16, 2007 - link

    They could've put another line under the logo....something like, "It's SOLID"

    :)
    Reply
  • mojotronic - Monday, September 7, 2009 - link

    A solid POS.

    I bought one (a "Substance 2" model -- and I suspect the "substance" referred to is brown and smelly) with a 320 GB Seagate drive and the defective circuitry of the enclosure fried the HD. It worked for about a week when I got it, then one day the blue led light on the bottom flickered erratically and the HD icon disappeared from my desktop. I removed the drive and tested it in my tower and it was dead. As in killed.

    I subsequently tried an old but working 20GB drive in the Metal Gear Box just to confirm that it was the enclosure at fault. The drive mounted. My computer froze. The drive icon disappeared. Upon restarting the drive icon was gone. The drive was dead.

    I will now take a hammer to the nice-looking but ravenous enclosure. I wouldn't trust a replacement, and will never buy another product from Galaxy again.
    Reply

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