If you are not a PC Specialist up until recently you had to go to a dedicated service center when you wanted to clone your hard disks. Why I said up until recently? Because now anybody can do it. You don’t even need a computer to clone a hard disk. How? Using the Sandberg USB 3.0 HDD Cloner. Sorry if I am confusing you, but there’s no other way to put it. The Danish manufacturer has a great product in their catalog (Item no.: 133-74) which allows you to copy data from one SATA-3 drive to another with a push of a button, with no PC required.
The Sandberg USB 3.0 Hard Disk Cloner is the perfect solution for when you need to copy, read and write large amounts of data quickly and easily.
Why USB 3.0 then? Because when you are not cloning hard drives, you can use it as a docking station for external hard drives and you can connect them to your PC to access data and copy files. The cloner has two SATA slots, so you can connect two hard disks to your PC at the same time.
Packaging and Specifications
Sandberg USB 3.0 HDD Cloner comes packed in a 15×14.5×12.5 cm black and blue package with the Sandberg logo on top and the image of the hard disk cloner in the middle.
Inside the box we have the USB 3.0 HDD Cloner, one 1 meter USB 3.0 connection cable, 1 230 V power supply and one quick install and use guide.
The HDD Cloner is small in size, it measures 13.4 cm on the width, 6.6 cm on the height and 11.3 cm on the depth and it weights 380 grams.
The HDD Cloner supports all SATA 2.5” & 3.5” hard disks with up to 12 TB capacity. It has an USB 3.0 interface for transfers. Inside it has 2 SATA connectors for data and power connections.
Sandberg USB 3.0 HDD Cloner has an aluminium body cover for the sides, while the top is made out of plastic. On the front we have the Sandberg logo and on the back we can find the power connector, the USB connector and an ON/OFF button switch.
On top, the HDD Cloner has 2 slots (named A and B). They can fit 2.5” (Notebook standard) and 3.5” (PC Standard) SATA HDDs. The clone is done by a press of a button, which is located on top of the unit alongside some led lights.
The package is simple, small and looks durable. Let’s see how it performs.
To copy two hard drives using the Sandberg USB 3.0 HDD Cloner you do not need a PC. You just need your original (functioning) Hard Drive, that will act as source drive and a second HDD (same size or larger) that will act as destination.
First step is to enter the 2 drives in. The source drive will go into slot labeled “A” and the destination drive will go into slot labeled “B”. Once the hard drives are inserted into position you need to plug in the power supply and press the ON/OFF button to power on the hard drives.
To start the copying process you will have to hold down the “Clone” button for 2-3 seconds until the 4 %-lights on the front of the cloner begins to flash. Then release the button, and press short one more time to confirm. The cloning process will begin.
IMPORTANT: All data on the hard disk in slot B will be deleted and overwritten with data from the hard disk in slot A.
You can monitor the cloning process using the light on the front of the cloner. The light moves from left to right (25%-100%). As the process progresses, the lights on the left-hand side will remain constantly lit and there will only be movement on the right-hand side. Once cloning is complete, all the %-lights will be constantly lit.
The process is not complicated and anyone can do it. I would have liked to see a more precise labeling so you don’t mix up the hard drives, as the clone process is ireversible, but if you are paying attention you can’t mess it up. A screen with details would have also been nice to have, but I guess I can’t argue since the item only costs 50 €.
To test out the function we went on and cloned a 300GB Seagate HDD on a 500GB TOSHIBA HDD.
Cloning took 55 minutes and went on without issues. At the end of the procedure you have to turn off the cloner and you can remove the two HDDs from the Cloner and connect them using the USB cable to the PC to see the result.
The Sandberg USB 3.0 HDD Cloner acts as a docking hub for your hard drives when used with the USB cable so you can access data from your Hard Drive on your PC. To test out the capabilities of the Cloner acting as a hub we will run a series of tests to see how the hard disk performs compared to a standard docking only solution and, of course, compared to how the hard drive performs when connected internally in the PC.
Used as a docking we managed to get writing speed up to 3 GB/s which is phenomenal. We ran this test multiple times with multiple folders just to convince that it’s the real speed showing and, as you can see, we got this speed every time.
Sandberg USB 3.0 HDD Cloner is a great tool to have and it is the first independent (no PC needed) HDD Cloner we’ve tested. It has a dual function (disk copy and docking) and we could at least compare the docking part to other products. The cloning procedure takes about 55 minutes depending of the size of your HDD.
The Sandberg USB 3.0 HDD Cloner works as advertised and it’s a powerful device to have on your desk. Even if you don’t need to clone any HDDs, you can use it as a docking station with great read/write speeds.