USB Powered Drive, or External? No switch required?

Discussion in 'Wii - Hardware, Devices and Utilities' started by KennyLeam, Nov 5, 2009.

  1. KennyLeam

    KennyLeam Member

    Nov 15, 2008
    United States
    I had previously bought a Rosewill SATA enclosure that had a switch to run my Wii drive that worked great with the WD1600AAJS, however, I never liked the fact that I had to turn the switch on and off due to the way our entertainment center is in our house. It is enclosed in a nearly impregnable fortress due to toddlers roaming the house. After an unfortunate accident (I dropped the drive while it was powered on!) I am left shopping for a new drive. I'm wondering about people's preferences.

    The froogle side of me says I should purchase a cheap drive, perhaps a WD2500AAJK for $45 and stick it in my enclosure and drive on. However, I know that certain drives such as the WD Passport essential are powered by USB exclusively so they should turn off when the wii is off. My enclosure never powered down on its own due to the Wii being in standby (even with wc24 off) because the enclosure detected something active. I've read varying reports about "no spindown" on the compatability wiki, however I've seen conflicting reports such as a search on this site that shows this topic that states those drives do indeed need a spindown fix. I'm concerned at someone's mention of a directly attached usb controller.

    With all that said, my questions are these:

    Do you have a favorite drive that works without having to power it on and off with a switch (that is, when the wii is off, is the drive completely stopped?)
    If you have a WD Passport Essential, have you had to apply a spindown fix? (I play my wii infrequently, but when I do it is over 2-7 hours in a stretch)
    Have you read of any reports about 'frying' USb ports ? There are vague irregularities about USB powered drives malfunctioning.

    thanks in advance.
  2. Szalkow

    Szalkow RawkSD Cheerleader

    Jul 9, 2009
    United States
    I have two drives which I have successfully used with my Wii, both externally-powered.

    My favorite of the two, a Maxtor OneTouch4, will automatically spin up and turn on if it detects USB activity (such as during the Wii's power on and hardware check) and will spin down when its USB port is not receiving power (i.e. the computer has been turned off or entered full Standby mode - translating perfectly to the Wii being off and in WiiConnect24 mode). You can find many externally-powered drives which do this, although you'll need to read the specs carefully to make sure the drive won't idle unnecessarily.

    I don't see any major threat of a USB-powered drive frying the USB ports; the USB port on a Wii operates under the same specs as the ports on a computer. However, I have no experience first-hand with these drives.
  3. omarroms

    omarroms GBAtemp Regular

    Nov 26, 2002
    United States
    The Internet
    i mainly use usb powered drives due to the small size and that it powers down when the wii is off. i attach the hard drive to the wii with Velcro mostly because i take my wii to school everyday. i'm currently using cavalry 500GB portable hard drive and i have not had any problems with it and does not need a spindown fix. i dunno about frying usb ports but i've been playing games off the hard drive for hours everyday and have not had any problems with the usb ports.
    i would recommend usb power drives mostly because it draws power from the wii (when the wii is on) and you don't have to plug it to an outlet (less wires.)