Archive Home
VIZO Master Panel II Expansion Interface E-mail
Reviews - Featured Reviews: Accessories
Written by Ronald Tibbetts   
Wednesday, 07 November 2007
Table of Contents: Page Index
VIZO Master Panel II Expansion Interface
Closer Look: Master Panel II
Detailed Features: Master Panel II
Testing and Results
Final Thoughts and Conclusion

Final Thoughts: Vizo Master Panel II

The Master Panel II has been designed for a growing market that demands easy access and support for modern devices, yet It isn't without its flaws. However, it whole heartedly succeeds in its claim of "No need to go to the back...Do it in the front!" This is a little piece of hardware will free you from constantly pulling out a case to get to obscure ports hidden in back, and doing so without loss of performance. Embodying the "everything-but-the-kitchen-sink" approach, I did not find the Master Panel II lacking in its support for modern connections. Personally, I would have liked to seen a digital LED readout for Temperature Monitoring to go along with the fan controllers, but I see how this straight forward design has its own appeal, ensuring ease of use, while maintaining a certain price point.

Vizo_Master_Panel2_Front1.jpg

Conclusion

The package containing the Master Panel II is perhaps the best I have seen to date. The box is clearly labeled, informative, and the items are securely placed within. However, I still fault Vizo for not packing their product more securely, and I hope resellers will include added protection.

With its matte black finish the Master Panel II should seamlessly fit in with many case designs. However, should someone want a different color, they will be at a loss with the only current color option only being black.

Constructed of light weight, high-grade plastic the Master Panel II is rugged enough to take some physical abuse. It even withstood being dropped inadvertently several times without a scratch. The treaded copper mounting screws make installation in the 5.25" bay very easy, while also being secure. And although the pins headers have me concerned they will not survive after many re-installations, they offer a secure and universal interface.

If support for almost everything under the sun is whats desired, then the Master Panel II will not leave you wanting. And though you will find many controller panels on the market today, for perspective, none of the other controller panels at this price point offered the eSATA standard that has become so vital to external storage needs.

It may be a humorous statement, but Vizo's claim "No need to go to the back...Do it in the front!" couldn't be any more true when it comes to the Master Panel II.

Pros:

silvertachaward.png

+ Sharp looking design
+ Support for control of up to four fans
+ Light Weight (90g)
+ Multifunction Card Reader can actively transfers data between cards
+ Space saving design consolidates everything in one place
+ Well placed front ports prevent clutter
+ Support for all modern data interfaces, including eSATA
+ RoHS Compliant

Cons:

- No color option other then black
- Excessive force needed to connect cables to pin headers (potential to bend pins)
- Not all cables are sleeved
- SATA connector from motherboard is not locking
- Cards can be inserted in the wrong orientation

Ratings:

  • Presentation: 9.0
  • Appearance: 8.75
  • Construction: 8.75
  • Functionality: 9.0
  • Value: 8.75

Final Score: 8.85 out of 10.

Quality Recognition: Benchmark Reviews Silver Tachometer Award.

Questions? Comments? Benchmark Reviews really wants your feedback. We invite you to leave your remarks in our Discussion Forum.


Related Articles:


 

Comments have been disabled by the administrator.

Search Benchmark Reviews
QNAP Network Storage Servers

Follow Benchmark Reviews on FacebookReceive Tweets from Benchmark Reviews on Twitter