1. Talldog's Avatar
    I have an occasional need to copy large files (maybe 100Gb total) from a USB thumb drive to a Silicon Power 1Tb external USB drive while my SP3 is running on battery power. I want to buy an unpowered USB 3.0 hub to do this, but I'm wondering if the SP3 USB port can drive both of those devices. Does anyone know?
    08-29-2015 09:51 AM
  2. EMitchell's Avatar
    I would think it unlikely, unless your Silicon Power drive is powered. There have been many reports of not getting enough power out of the USB port to power even a single DVD drive. By using a hub, you're powering the hub, plus the two downstream devices from the SP3 USB port. I don't think it can provide enough current to do it.
    08-29-2015 04:50 PM
  3. Talldog's Avatar
    How much power would the hub use? It's just a passthru. The Silicon Power drive works fine in the SP3 USB port, so I would think the thumb drive would be the only additional load, unless the hub needs something.
    08-29-2015 06:34 PM
  4. EMitchell's Avatar
    A hub is actually an active device, rather than a passive pass-through. It's got an on-board uC, memory, and it has to negotiate the USB generation protocol back to the host port. It's been a while since I've been involved with these, but I checked my old employer's web site, and looked at a USB3.1 hub controller, http://ww1.microchip.com/downloads/e.../00001855C.pdf. This model only supports HS and FS downstream ports, not SuperSpeed (SS). The hub electrical specs show it will use ~10% of the available power from a USB port just to generate 4xHS downstream ports. If you use a hub that supports SuperSpeed ports, which you will probably want to do for that amount of data, the power consumption will likely go up. In addition, this device requires two voltages, 3.3V and 1.2V. The 5V from the USB port will need to be stepped down, losing some additional power through inefficiencies of voltage converters. So then it comes down to the load of the two downstream devices. A thumb drive shouldn't use much power, but I'm not sure that these hubs allocate power as needed to the downstream ports, or if they allocate equal power to each downstream port, regardless of the load. It would be something to check on any hub you're considering. Have you got power numbers for the Silicon Power USB drive?
    08-29-2015 07:25 PM
  5. Talldog's Avatar
    The only thing the specs say is that they have 5v power supply from the port . It's a Silicon Power Armor A80 1Tb. The hub I've been looking at is a Cable Matters 4-port mini 3.0 hub. The only thing it says in the specs is that it should not be connected to devices consuming combined current of 5 volts 900 mA. The other device that would be connected is a PNY 256Gb thumb drive. I can't find anything in the specs about how much power that uses.
    08-29-2015 08:07 PM
  6. EMitchell's Avatar
    Yeah, I looked up the A80, looks like a great drive, but I couldn't find any specs on it, just that it runs on the 5V from the USB port. And like you said, the Cable Matters hub says the total amount of load has to be less than 5V@900mA. I wish there were more details about the power consumption of the A80. Well, you could give it a shot. If it doesn't work, Amazon is pretty good about returns for the hub. :-)
    08-29-2015 08:44 PM
  7. Talldog's Avatar
    Yeah, I'm going to do that. Thanks for helping me think it through.
    EMitchell likes this.
    08-30-2015 07:47 AM
  8. gernerttl's Avatar
    I tried using a USB 3.0 hub with my 500GB Western Digital USB3.0 external drive. It didn't work. The SP3's USB port didn't provide enough power to run the drive AND the hub. That was with my SP3 plugged into power. My intent was to be able to use my external USB drive and a USB card reader simultaneously so I could download pictures from my camera.
    08-31-2015 01:34 AM
  9. BGrewer's Avatar
    I tried using a USB 3.0 hub with my 500GB Western Digital USB3.0 external drive. It didn't work. The SP3's USB port didn't provide enough power to run the drive AND the hub. That was with my SP3 plugged into power. My intent was to be able to use my external USB drive and a USB card reader simultaneously so I could download pictures from my camera.
    Have you tried Toshiba's external hard drives? I've got a 500gb store.e external hard drive and it was able to use the USB 3.0 without ANY external power
    08-31-2015 06:06 AM
  10. kenjancef's Avatar
    I have one of those Hoo Too 3-port USB 3.0 ports with the Gigabit connection, which I am VERY surprised I got working with Windows 10, and if I connect my Toshiba Canvio 1TB unpowered drive to it, it keeps connecting/disconnecting until I unplug it. If I connect another drive, a powered USB 3.0 1TB external hard drive, it stays connected without issue.

    I guess the SP3's USB port doesn't have a lot of power after all.
    08-31-2015 08:40 AM
  11. gernerttl's Avatar
    Have you tried Toshiba's external hard drives? I've got a 500gb store.e external hard drive and it was able to use the USB 3.0 without ANY external power
    I solved it by getting one of these; a Western Digital My Passport Wireless. It solves a few problems.

    1. I can access it either by WiFi or cable.

    2. It has a built in SD card reader, so I can download pictures directly on to it from camera's my SD card without having to use my SP3. I use a Canon EOS 6D and at 20MP per image, it can eat up a 32GB SD card really quick; and downloading a 32GB card to my SP3 can eat up space really quick too.

    3. It also allows me to connect to WiFi hotspots via the drive, so I can either connect to my Icon's hotspot, or whatever public or private hotspot I am able to connect to. I connect to the drive via WPA2 and the drive acts as a portable firewall making connections to public hotspots a bit more secure.

    My Passport Wireless - Wi-Fi Mobile Storage

    It has 2TB of storage, so I'm not running out of space anytime soon.
    Last edited by gernerttl; 09-01-2015 at 01:36 AM.
    BGrewer likes this.
    08-31-2015 01:51 PM
  12. Talldog's Avatar
    Well, my Cable Matters hub came in, and it works fine with the Silicon Power and PNY drives together. The only thing that seems odd is that when trying to copy a very large file (>20Gb) from one to the other, File Explorer copy failed saying that there wasn't enough memory to complete the operation. I don't recall that happening when the SP3 was in the dock with one drive in the built-in USB port and the other drive in a docking station port. In any event, TeraCopy handled it without a problem.
    09-01-2015 02:50 PM

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