The new Ultra Max Plus 1TB hard drive from Iomega is clearly designed with the Mac user in mind. Its sleek metal finish, angular curves and perforated vents make it a perfect match for the PowerMac or Mac Pro, and it would also look right at home next to an aluminium iMac.
It's preformatted as a Mac OS Extended (Journaled) drive so there's no need to go through the tedious reformatting procedure demanded by some high-capacity drives, unless of course you wish to change the RAID option.
As well as being stylish, the UltraMax Plus 1TB is also versatile. Connection to your Mac is via USB 2.0, FireWire 400/800 or eSATA, if you're lucky enough to have this new ultra-fast option. Connect through USB and you can make use of its three extra USB ports to daisychain your peripherals, and there's one FireWire 400 and two FireWire 800 ports, offering pass-through options here too.
You can set your chosen RAID arrangement via a couple of switches on the rear of the unit. Offering RAID 0 off the shelf, you can also opt for Simple (non-RAID), RAID 1 (Mirrored) or JBOD.
Under the default RAID 0 setting, the drive averaged random read-speeds of 9.5MB/s and write-speeds of 15MB/s when connected through USB 2.0, with FireWire 400 offering 10MB/s and 16MB/s, and FireWire800 giving 14MB/s and 22MB/s.
The casing is well put together and stays cool during operation, but we'd prefer a bit more room for air to circulate underneath the unit.
The UltraMax Plus 1TB is not the cheapest drive around, but nor is it viciously overpriced. It's true that you can get USB 2.0 drives of this capacity for less than £100 if you keep your eyes peeled, but you get what you pay for. Given the quality of the enclosure and the comprehensive range of connection and RAID options, it's not outrageously priced, but it might be more than you actually need.