If you ever plan to make your own NAS with an Arm Linux board, the Raspberry Pi board should not be your first choice, as regular readers will already know they are already cheaper and/or better solutions such as NanoPi NEO2 NAS Kit, ODROID HC2, or Popcorn Transformer to name a few.
But if you already own one of the Raspberry Pi boards and a 3.5″ hard drive, you considering going with Suptronics X830 add-on boards – also sold under Geekworm brand – instead of a DC powered USB enclosure since it avoids extra cabling and the use of two power supplies.
SupTronics X830 board features:
- SATA connector for 3.5″ SATA drive up to 10TB implemented via USB 3.1 Gen1 to SATA 6Gb/s bridge controller
- USB 3.0 port to connect to Raspberry Pi board
- Power Supply
- Input – 14 to 40V DC input via 5.5/2.5mm power barrel jack (Powers the Raspberry Pi, so a separate USB power supply is not needed)
- Output – 5V or 12V DC headers
- Dimensions – 15.5 x 11.8 cm
- Compatibility – Raspberry Pi Model B+, Pi 2 Model B, Pi 3/3+ Model B, and other electrically and mechanically compatible boards like ODROID-C2, or Rock64.
The board comes with a USB 3.0 port, so it should also be a good fit to Raspberry Pi compatible boards with at least one USB 3.0 port such as Rock64 or Libre Computer Renegade boards. The USB 3.0 port can also be used to connect the hard drive to your computer, since the whole board acts as a USB 3.0 expansion drive enclosure.
A little more information is available on the Wiki, where for example, they warn in all caps that you should not connect a USB power supply:
DO NOT APPLY POWER TO YOUR RASPBERRY PI VIA THE PI’s MICRO USB SOCKET!
A 19V/4.7A power supply is recommended, but that seems a little over the top, and I’d assume any 19V laptop power supply should do. Just make sure the plug is of the right dimensions, or purchase a $10 plug converter kit.
Suptronics X830 3.5″ SATA HDD shield ships with a 10 cm power cable, a 80cm USB 3.0 cable, the USB adapter between Raspberry Pi and X830, and a pack of screws, and is sold for around $35 including worldwide shipping on DealExtreme and Aliexpress.
Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as a software engineering manager, and starting to write daily news, and reviews full time later in 2011.
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