Introduction

ORICO Technologies Co., Ltd. is one of the global leading manufacturers of computer peripherals and digital accessories, whose brand ORICO is based on the innovative concept of “Easy Your PC” who has completed its nine years of in development. Devoted to excellent electronic products and accessories, ORICO owns the most comprehensive computer peripherals and digital accessories involving Storages, Hubs, Chargers, Surge Protectors, Batteries and other accessories. They term themselves a leader of external storage, USB 3.0/3.1 and mobile phone USB intelligent fast–charging technology. Orico maintains the strategic cooperation with premium brands like Western Digital, VIS, NS,, Norelsys, Realtake to name a few. Much of this specialty is coming from their own specialized product development and production industry chain. ORICO is not so much a brand as an inventive philosophy. ORICO de-emphasizes so-called fashion but becomes the trend of markets all the time, which concentrates on every single detail of product so as to bring you great experience by using ORICO product more easily and cozily.

Today, we will be taking a look at Orico’s main business line aka external storage. We have earlier reviewed their USB 3.0 2.5” hard drive enclosure and this time they sent us their USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type C based 2.5” hard drive enclosure. Each of their product carries a model no to identify the product. The model of this enclosure is Orico 2139C3-G2-CR. The simple 2139C3 is for the USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type C enclosure. It is a tool-less assembly to convert any 2.5” SATA based HDD/SDD of up to 4TB into a ready USB 3.1 external drive. It is using the UASP protocol for which the USB cable is provided with the product. It is compatible with Microsoft Windows XP / 2000/ 7 / 8 / 10, Linux, Mac OS 9.1 or above and does not need any driver. It has a transparent body and if your drive has some bold stickers on it, it would show off that good. It is as simple as opening the cover, putting the drive in, closing the cover and plug n play!

  • Item: 2.5” SATA USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type C Hard Drive Enclosure 2139C3-G2-CR
  • Manufacturer: ORICO
  • Price: $20.99 [At the time of the review]

Specifications

Packaging and Unboxing

The product is shipped inside a rugged black color shell which is placed inside the paperboard cover on the top. The top side of the outer packing has a white color background. ORICO brand logo and name are printed on the top left followed by the model no of the unit. There is a picture of the unit in the main section. Salient feature highlights are printed at the bottom pictorially. 10Gbps is printed on the bottom right side indicating that it is USB Type 3.1 Gen 2 interfaced.

The backside of the outer packing has a real picture of the unit in action. Specifications are printed in the tabular format below the picture. Product features are printed in Chinese and English languages below the specifications table. Serial no sticker is pasted on the bottom right side.

The left side of the outer packing has HDD Enclosure printed on the left along with the model no.

The right side has ORICO brand name and logo printed on the left.

There is a puller cap on the top of the box. Pull the inner shell using it. The SSD is nicely tucked inside another plastic made shell. Removing it will show the accessories bundled with the unit.

Contents

The ORICO has provided following items in the box:

  • 1x External Enclosure
  • 1x USB Type-C to USB 3.1 Adapter Cable
  • 1x USB Type-C to Type-C Adapter Cable
  • 1x User Guide

Closer Look

The ORICO 2.5” SATA USB 3.1 External Enclosure 2139C3 is a handy external enclosure and converter to transform your 2.5” SATA III/II SSD/HDD drive into an external drive. The idea is simple but beautifully executed by the ORICO. The main enclosure measures 125x79x13mm where 13mm is the thickness of the enclosure. This enclosure brings the portability of otherwise non-portable drives. The enclosure is made of the PC transparent board material and finishing is right on the money. It is still plastic, peeps! The killer feature is the see-through design of the unit. Now, you can show the good looking sticker – if you have got one – on your 2.5” SATA drive. Taking a look at the enclosure from the top side, there is an ORICO brand name and logo printed in the white color at the extreme end.

Looking at the enclosure from the backside, it immediately gives the impression of two-fold design. In our testing of their USB 3.0 enclosure, there was approximately 19mm of the frame on the left side fixed to the front side. There is no such design on this USB 3.1 enclosure many thanks to the see-through styling. You would get to see the PCB as well on both sides. The top cover is removable. Just slide it to open it for the installation of the drive. The unit has a protective sheet wrapped around on both sides. This is done in a way as it still allows to slide open the top cover. Kudos to ORICO design team for this level of thinking. My tip is not to remove or peel off the protective sheet to avoid scratching the transparent body of the unit. At least this is how I have done it. The backside of the PCB has two LEDs. One is blue and the other one is red. Blue will light up when the unit is connected to the PC and the red will blink during data transmission. This combination of static blue and blinking red would give the color tone of pink.

The PCB side of the enclosure has a USB 3.1 Type-C port. Lovely! Ain’t it! This is the fun part of this enclosure. It comes with the USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C interface which is why we were interested in testing it out in the first place.

To make up for this, ORICO has bundled two USB cables. One is Type-C to Type-C cable having a length of approximately 450mm. the second cable is Type-C to USB 3.1 cable having the same length. The length of these cables is where my gripe comes in. ORICO is clearly targeting them for the Laptop users but there is no stopping us to use it with the PC and we have tested the unit on our test bench and such short length was not adequate.

As mentioned above in order to open the enclosure, the top cover needs to be slide out to remove it. Let’s take a look at the inside of the enclosure with all the magic. The enclosure is for the 2.5” size SSD or HDD with the thickness of <9.5mm. There is a single SATA ports jack on the left side. The drive is placed on the main body and slided inwards with matching the SATA data and power headers on to the enclosure’s SATA port. A solid click is heard when the connection is established. As simple as it could!

This enclosure harnesses the SATA 3 bandwidth over the USB 3.1 Gen 2 interface. The bandwidth of the SATA III is 660MB/s running at 6 Gbps whereas it is 1250MB/s for the USB 3.1 running at whopping 10 Gbps. This enclosure carries a multi-protection safety system which includes:

  • Shockproof
  • Anti-Static
  • Anti-Scratch

We could not get any information about the operating temperature range of this enclosure. We are not sure about the shockproofing of this unit as it does not has any anti-vibration pads which were provided with their 2189U3.

Testing

Following test bench was used to test the drive:

  • Intel i7 6850k
  • Asus ROG Rampage V Edition 10
  • Ballistics Elite 4x4GB @ 3000 MHz
  • Noctua NH-U12S CPU Cooler
  • Nvidia GeForce GTX 1080 FE
  • Corsair AX1200i
  • Samsung 840 EVO 250GB for OS
  • HyperX 120GB SSD [Test Drive]
  • PrimoChill Praxis WetBench

In order to measure the read and write speeds, following software were used:

  • ATTO Disk Benchmark v3.05
  • AS SSD v1.8.5636.37293
  • Crystal Disk Mark 6.0.0 x64

The idea is simple, first, we connected the HyperX 120GB to the PC using the SATA III port and ran the above-mentioned tests. Then the same SSD was installed inside the ORICO 2.5” SATA USB 3.1 Hard Drive Enclosure and connected using the USB 3.1 Type-C port on the rear I/O of the motherboard. Tests were repeated afterward. The pictures in the test results are categorized using the USB 3.1 and SATA III nomenclature to avoid any confusion. Let’s take a look at the results.

ATTO Disk Benchmark

On a transfer length of 8GB using default transfer size range, the test drive did a read speed of 500MB/s maximum and write speed of 512MB/s maximum. When the test drive was tested on the PC using the same settings, the maximum read speed was 546MB/s and maximum write speed was 522MB/s. This is closer performance range and any bottleneck or performance hit could be attributed to the PC configuration.

Crystal Disk Mark

Using the CrystalDiskMark the maximum read speed (sequential) of the test drive was 338MB/s and the sequential write speed was 138 MB/s. With the test drive’s testing on the PC, the sequential read speed was 512.2MB/s and write speed was 121.2 MB/s.

AS SSD

Next, we ran the AS SSD software to test the sequential read and write performance of the drive. The sequential read speed using the USB 3.1 was 464.21 MB/s and write speed was 108.34 MB/s. When the test drive was tested on the PC, the read speed was 476.19 MB/s and the write speed was 82.69MB/s.

Next, we ran the Compression benchmark tool of the AS SSD software. The read speed started from approximately 270MB/s for the USB 3.1 and went up to 459MB/s straight from where the ups and downs started along the graph with a maximum read speed of 483MB/s. The write speed started from the 120MB/s and there were continuous dips along the graph. Maximum write speed was touching the 483MB/s. With the drive connected to the PC using SATA III, the read speed started from 230MB/s and reached 470MB/s with few dips along. The maximum speed was 510MB/s. The write speed started from 151MB/s and immediately took a dip. There are more dips on this interface than on the USB 3.1. The maximum write speed was touching approximately 490MB/s.

Next, we ran the copy benchmark of the AS SSD software. Interestingly, we could see a difference for the ISO category where USB 3.1 gives better performance but not so much difference for the Program and Games category. In Games, the SATA III has a timing of 9.18s as compared to the 10.40s on the USB 3.1

Conclusion

The ORICO USB 3.1 External Enclosure for 2.5” SATA SSD/HDD is definitely a handy case which allows the user to convert their extra storage drive into a portable one with USB 3.1 Gen 2 interface. This enclosure can support up to 4TB of storage capacity drives. There is more beneath the surface than being a simple an external enclosure. The case is made of PC transparent board material and measures 125x79x13mm where 13mm is the height/thickness of the case making it convenient to carry around even with SSD drive installed, it does not weigh much. The case is transparent and full discloses or shows the drive inside. This has its own unique touch for sure.

The top cover can be slided to remove it. There is a container where the 2.5” SATA based SSD/HDD is placed by aligning the SATA ports on it to the enclosure’s SATA ports. There is a dedicated PCB installed inside the mainframe. The backside of the PCB has two LEDs. One is blue which lights up static indicating that the drive is connected to the PC. The other is red which continuously blinks during the data transmission. The main selling feature of this enclosure is USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type C interface of it. Besides, this enclosure is using USAP protocol. ORICO has bundled two USB cables. One is Type-C to Type-C and the other is Type-C to USB 3.1 interface (Type-A). The length of these cables is 450mm each which is slightly short of what is needed.

This enclosure does not need any driver support and is compatible with Microsoft Windows XP/2000/7/8/10, Linux, and Mac OS 9.1 and above. This enclosure has multiple protection features like shockproof, anti-static, anti-scratch etc. This makes the ORICO 2139C3 be the best of its class that it has to offer. It has a built-in sensor which puts the drive in sleep mode after 10 minutes of inactivity to save power.

The ORICO 2.5” SATA USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type C External Enclosure is listed at $20.99 at the time of the review. In our testing, this enclosure has performed quite well with a 2.5” SSD inside and makes its case on the table in an affordable package coming with multiple protection features, see-through finishing and hassle-free installation. I am thankful to the ORICO for giving the opportunity to review their 2.5” SATA USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type C Hard Drive Enclosure 2139C3-G2-CR.

Tech4Gamers Recommended Award