Enforced with a military design, we review In Win’s 2009 Red Dot Design Award winning 2.5″ enclosure, the Ammo.
Designed with a military theme in mind, the Ammo features many things that set it apart from ordinary 2.5″ enclosures. Made of military grade metal, the Ammo is designed to withstand harsh conditions. Along with its data access RFID security feature, the physical protection of the drive was thought of as well. Within the enclosure is a silicon absorbing unit that reduces vibration and physical damage to the drive. Paired with the military grade casing and RFID security feature, In Win’s Ammo is much more than a standard drive enclosure.
IN-WIN Development Inc., an ISO 9001 manufacturer of professional computer chassis, power supplies and digital storage devices, is the leading provider of enclosure solutions to system integrators worldwide. Founded in 1986, IN-WIN provides high quality chassis that conform to all safety regulations, as well as unsurpassed customer service.
Company founded as IN WIN Development Inc., focus on chassis selling and marketing.
Established chassis assembly facility.
Established Taoyuan factory in Taiwan.
Established in house painting department and facilities
Established stamping and tooling department to enhance the ability of technician and product quality control on yield rate.
Established facility automation on progressive stamping equipments.
Executed TQM (Total Quality Management) system.
ISO 9002 certified
Established facility automation on robot stamping equipments.
ISO 9001 certified
Established USA branch to explore the US market.
Established New CHANGHEIN factory in Taoyuan, Taiwan.
Established UK branch to explore European market.
Established Japan office.
Established Power Supply Group for Power Supply development and manufacture.
Re-build and enlarged Taoyuan factory to become the Headquarter.
Implementation of ERP system.
ISO 14001 & ISO 9001, 2000 version certified.
Listed on Taiwan OTC market.
Implementation of IN SHIN factory plan at China.
Implementation of e-Documents.
Established NL branch office and warehouse as European Market Center.
Established IN SHIN factory at China.
Listed on Taiwan SEC market.
Established UPS Group for UPS development and manufacture.
All product lines are compliance with RoHS directive regulation.
Obtained IECQ 080000 HSPM certification.
USB2.0 up to 480mbps (60MB/s)
USB High Speed (2.0)
Windows 2000/XP/Vista Mac OS 9.0 and greater (FAT)
145 x 85 x 20 mm
RFID Data Encryption
2.5” SATA Hard Disk Drive
CE, FCC, RoHS
3 Years Limited (The PCB board and USB 2.0 Cable are covered under the 1 year warranty)
The Ammo comes packaged in standard cardboard. On the front of the box is a quick listing of what the Ammo features and a label showing what the Ammo has so proudly won, the RedDot Design Award. On the back of the packaging is a complete features and specifications listing. The packaging is plain and simple. No glossy paper, no wild colors, just basic packaging with black coloring.
Included with the Ammo is a high powered USB cable, two RFID keys/tag, and a philips screw driver. I was pleased to see the Ammo came with the appropriate sized screw driver. Its not often you get a peripheral that comes with everything needed to use it.
With the Ammo in hand we were able to examine its features and understand what makes this enclosure so special. The casing the Ammo is made with is very similar to military grade ammunition casing. It is hard, tough, and certainly strong. Within the casing is the silicon hard drive housing. The silicon housing is very nice. It keeps the drive in place while adding extra physical security to the drive. We are definitely liking what In Win has done with this enclosure. Now that we’ve seen the Ammo, it’s time to test it out.
To test the Ammo we used a Hitachi 120GB 5,400RPM SATA 2.5″ (30Mbps) hard drive and HD Tune to evaluate the transfer rate.
To utilize the RFID feature of the Ammo, a new drive with a new partition needs to be created. Following the included manual, we encrypted the Ammo. To encrypted the Ammo, a certain process is required. When first powered on the Ammo will give off three short beeps, one long beep and then the LED indicator will flash in red. This means the Ammo is ready to be encrypted. With the indicator flashing, we took one of the keys and placed it over the RFID icon. Once placed over the icon, the Ammo gave off two beeps and the indicator turned to green. This means the key is programmed and the drive is now encrypted. The same procedure has to be done to both keys if both keys will be used. This process insures that only certain keys can be used with the drive it was encrypted with. After encrypting the drive and configuring the keys, we partitioned the drive following the manual. Once partitioned, we checked the devices listing to see how it shows the Ammo.
After encrypting the drive we wanted to test the security of the drive. From reading the manual we learned the Ammo has a fail safe feature. If the wrong key is placed over the RFID sensor 3-5 times, the Ammo will go into idle mode for 3 minutes before it will read any key again. If the wrong key is used 6-8 times, the Ammo will go into idle mode for 5 minutes. If 8+ failed key attempts are reached, the Ammo will sit in idle mode for a maximum of 10 minutes before it will attempt to read a key. To test this feature we programmed only one of the two keys. Just like the manual stated, the Ammo would not read the non-programmed key. Long story short, make sure you program both keys in case one of them gets lost! If you don’t, your not getting to your data! The RFID feature definitely works.
With the RFID feature tested, it was time to test out the transfer rates. To test the speed and rates of the drive we used HD Tune. Here are the results:
Being a standard 2.5″ 5,400RPM drive, the transfer rates, access time and burst rate are right where they should be. Testing complete. On to the conclusion.
There isn’t much we didn’t like about the Ammo. It’s visually appealing, its durable, it keeps your hard drive safe, it comes with everything needed (minus hard drive of course), and its got RFID security that works. The Ammo is well worth the asking price of $40. The only negative thing we can think of is the manual art and the shape of the case. Not everyone is a military fanatic. A manual that doubles as a shooting target and a ammunition themed enclosure might not be on mommy’s or grandma’s list for little Jimmy. Either or, military fanatic or not, the Ammo is an awesome product. Taking the theme into consideration, the Ammo hits the bullseye.
We are trying out a new addition to our scoring system to provide additional feedback beyond a flat score. Please note that the final score isn’t an aggregate average of the new rating system.
- Performance: 8.5
- Value: 8.5
- Quality: 9
- Warranty: 8
- Features: 9
- Innovation: 8.5
+ Unique syling
+ RFID security
+ Durable design
+ Silicon hard drive housing
+ Great build quality
– Not everyone is a military fanatic
Final Score: 8.5 out of 10 and the Bjorn3D Seal of Approval.