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SATA 3 G/s drive in a 1.5 G/s tray?

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April 30, 2006 2:47:04 AM

I'm considering a SATA II (3 Gbps) RAID controller like the 3ware 9550SX to go with a bunch of SATA II (3 Gbps) drives.

But ... every single hotswap drive tray product I can find seems to be designed for the Serial ATA 150 speed drives.

Case in point, the 3Ware RDC-400-SATA drive cage ... which says "Data Transfer Rate: Up to 1.5Gbps"

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.asp?Item=N82E1681...

I haven't dealt with hotswap trays before. As I understand it, the SATA II drives would be backwards compatible and would fit in the tray, but would the tray's backplane throttle things down to 1.5 G/s? Or is the backplane just a trivial pass-it-through bit of dumb wire that doesn't know what's plugged in on either side?

IOW, can I put a "SATA II" drive in a "SATA I" tray that's connected to a "SATA II" controller and expect "SATA II" performance? Failing that, any recommendations and links for "SATA II 3 G/s" trays (either 1 3.5" drive in 1 5.25" bay, or a 5:3 or 3:2 cage product like the one above)?

Thanks.

More about : sata drive tray

April 30, 2006 3:08:11 AM

SATA drives are backwars and forwards compatible in regards to supported transfer rates.

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Long answer.

1) There are no SATA I and STAT II drives! And the two tranfer rate speeds are not functionally equivalent to two levels of SATA.

2) Currently there is no meaniful or practical difference between 150 Mbps drives and 3.0 Gbps drives. It means nothing and tells you nothing. Completely ignore such distinctions.

For hard drives SATA 150 MBps vs SATA 3.0 Gbps transfer rate doesn't matter because 1) desktop drives don't exceep 100 MBps let alone 150 MBps and 2) the higher speed interface in no way implies that the drive also has any other "advanced" SATA feature.

You got 150's with NCQ and 3.0's without NCQ.

So tranfer rate is completely irrelevant and is in no way an idicator of how advanced a drive is.
April 30, 2006 4:09:31 AM

You do get some increase but very small. I don't know if you could measure it in seconds over a large file transfer. It does offer more possibilities later down the road but it's mostly a marketing gimmick, like AGP 4x vs 8x. Boy, they sure make a lot of $$ off poor stiffs (like me :(  ) that want the latest and greatest.
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April 30, 2006 6:49:44 AM

Any links to some benchmarks?
April 30, 2006 7:46:03 PM

The first was a complete waste of time. These guys are using the terms SATA I and SATA II which means they spend zero time researching the technology.

A professional would have visited the SATA-IO website and spend 5 minutes of reading before writing on the technology.

http://www.sata-io.org/namingguidelines.asp

Strike one, they don't bother with research

Quote:
Here I will compare the performance of 1 Hitachi SATA 300 to a standard SATA 150 Seagate.


Strike two, they don't bother with logic

Lets examine their logic here.

This SATA 3.0 drive is faster than this SATA 150 drive.

Yippe we conclude SATA 3.0 drives are faster than SATA 150 drives.
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That makes as much since as this blue car is faster than that red car so blue cars are actually faster than red. I am going to buy a blue car so it will be fast.

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Damm where did those guys get their degrees.

By their same argments I could conlude.

The 150 GB Raptor is SATA 150 and its faster than the Hitachi which is the fastest 3.0 Gbps. 3.0 sucks SATA 150 is way faster. I am going to buy a SATA 150 hard drive.
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A better test would use a 150 GB Raptor to show that there were no performance differences between a certain SATA 150 controller and another SATA 3.0 controller.

Then test the Hitachi on both. On the SATA 150 controller it will be in SATA 150 mode. On the SATA 3.0 controller it would be in 3.0 mode.

If there is a difference then there is evicende that 3.0 transfers are better in some way. No conclusive, but compelling none the less.

For me the best evidence that SATA 3.0 drives have no advantage is that WD makes 150's and 3.0's and they chose SATA 150 for their 150 GB Rapto

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Anyway if you know of any properly done benchmarks that compare SATA 150 to SATA 3.0 I am still interested.
May 1, 2006 1:36:34 AM

Since you know it all, enlighten us. You spend more time bashing tests than reading them obviously. SATAII is a bit faster, not much but some. Did you not see that? Maybe that blue car hit you? Why don't you get your attitude out of your butt and look for yourself? Perhaps do your own testing, document it and post for us to pick apart? They clearly test SATAI and II. There it is, in living color. I've seen other test that confirm this as well as my own. Either put up or shut up.
http://www.sata-io.org/namingguidelines.asp They discuss SATAI and II and tell us (what we already know) neither will run at full speed. Big friggin deal. That all you got? Talk about a waste of time. Why don't you pay the $25 and D/L the spec sheet and post?
I award you: :trophy:
May 1, 2006 2:27:25 AM

I just browsed that first review and I must agree with codesmith, how can you compare sata1 and sata2 with 2 completely different drives? Regardless of weather sata2 even exists, that's a terrible way to benchmark anything.
May 1, 2006 2:30:11 AM

I don't know why they tested 2 different brands, perhaps one was touted as better? I have tested Hitachis in SATAI and II mode using the same drives. I get almost identical benches, why I don't see a big problem with this particular test.
May 1, 2006 2:42:05 AM

My prevous post says everthing thats needs to be said.

If you don't understand it then I suggest you get a book on logic or one on the scientific method. Look for words like OVERGERALIZATION.

Maybe after much struggle and hard work you will see that comparing one SATA 3.0 drive to a completely different SATA 150 drive and concluding that using SATA 3.0 makes SATA drives faster is an OVERGENERALIZATION.

Maybe then can move on to learn about the SCIENTIFC METHOD.

If you run tests where one variable is different then you can conclude that that variable made that difference.

If instead you run a single test where you change all the variable. For instance using a different hard drive from a different interface from a different manufacturer, using a different number of platters with a different density and different mechanical components and you see one is slightly faster than the other, you cannot conclude which variable made the difference.
May 1, 2006 2:46:05 AM

I understand what you are saying about testing identical drives and I agree. But after doing my own testing using the same drives just changing the SATAI to II, I came up with close to the same results. I even did the same test with NCQ on and off. I'll post the results if you like.
May 1, 2006 4:20:15 AM

Quote:
I understand what you are saying about testing identical drives and I agree. But after doing my own testing using the same drives just changing the SATAI to II, I came up with close to the same results. I even did the same test with NCQ on and off. I'll post the results if you like.


Now my friend is an entirely different matter!

I consider that strong evidence that SATA 3.0 is not just SATA 150 at a higher speeds, but that it also includes other enhancements that improve performance.

My reasoning is that the drive isn't fast enough to hit SATA 150's bandwidth limit.

So Either

1 SATA 3.0 includes other enhancements that allow it to handle traffic more efficiently.

OR

2 The drive simply works best with SATA 3.0 and must adust itself to work with SATA 150.

But if 2 was the case why did they make such drastic changes.

The only two possibilties are
1) to enhance performance
2) to work arround some problems caused by the higher speed

Of the two reasons to drastically change the interface I find enhanced performance to be the more plausible.

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Tell you what I take back any and all statments to the effect that your sciencen/logic skills are not top notch.

But it still bugs me when people say SATA II when what they really mean is SATA 3.0 Gbps.[/quote]
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