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Which is faster HDD: 7,200 RPM SATA II or 10,000 RPM SATA I?

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January 9, 2007 3:59:02 PM

I am a gamer and need fast disk reads for online gaming. I would like to get a Raptor 10,000 RPM drive SATA II, but they don't make them yet. So my choice was between a WD Raptor 10,000 RPM at SATA I, or a Seagate 7,200 RPM with perpendicular recording at SATA II. Looking at the listed response times, it looked like the Raptor was still about twice as fast as the Seagate, so I went with the Raptor. Now I am wondering if I had the right idea. Can one of you experts let me know?
Thanks!
January 9, 2007 4:08:22 PM

I think the raptor is going to be much faster, because it can spin faster. Maybe someone who knows more can give more info into that.
January 9, 2007 4:23:18 PM

Raptor 10,000 RPM
sata 1 is still 150mbs
sata 2 is 300mb
i believe correct me if wrong
anyway most hard drives transfer data about 80 meg raptor abit more but not over 150mb so go with Raptor 10,000 RPM
Related resources
January 9, 2007 4:41:30 PM

Speed wise the Raptor is faster, while SATA II offers a higher throughput of data. But you aren't transferring gigs upon gigs of data constantly. Plus the drive is still restricted on how fast it can actually write. At least as far as I understand it to be.
January 9, 2007 4:55:13 PM

SATA I allows for a bandwidth of 150mb/s. Although SATA II has a higher bandwidth, at 300mb/s, hard drives cannot utilize all of this bandwidth. Even the mighty WD Raptor, the fastest mainstream consumer hard drive, cannot utilize all of this bandwidth. You definitely made the correct choice when you bought the Raptor.

Best of Luck
January 9, 2007 5:30:05 PM

Quote:
I am a gamer and need fast disk reads for online gaming.


Spare us the nonsense. Online gaming does NOT have any particular benefit from fast(er) disks than anything else. In fact it is one of the last areas in which drive speed matters.

What I really mean is, whatever made you think this, you need to re-evaluate, because you are not understanding what online gaming requires in a relative sense.

Quote:


I would like to get a Raptor 10,000 RPM drive SATA II, but they don't make them yet. So my choice was between a WD Raptor 10,000 RPM at SATA I, or a Seagate 7,200 RPM with perpendicular recording at SATA II. Looking at the listed response times, it looked like the Raptor was still about twice as fast as the Seagate, so I went with the Raptor. Now I am wondering if I had the right idea. Can one of you experts let me know?
Thanks!


First, SATA 300 (not II) does not matter. It was silly for you to think about wanting one. NCQ can matter and is a subset feature of SATA 300, but not in this scenario rather than a server - multiclient or heavy multitasking scenario, quite the opposite of a single task like a game.

So let's forget SATA300, and the focus is then does the higher RPM as related to lower latency seeks, matter?

If your game files are comprised of many small files, yes it does matter. If larger compressed files, it matters far less.

If you have enough games that you would fill much of a Raptor, you lose performance towards the end of the drive, inner regions of the platters, but we can't know how full it would be, so only the vague concept can be applied- that if you would fill over 2/3rds of it, you might be as well or better off with a far larger perpendicular drive.

However, this brings us back to the main point, that this isn't a particular issue with online gaming. If you are really desperate to tweak online gaming to the extreme, ensure you have a very good NIC, not the integrated options, and have enough memory to act as a substantial filecache.

With a substantial filecache, and tweaking of how much caching windows allows, you reduce HD access and no uber-fast HDD is nearly as fast as main memory caching. If you are a competitive gamer, if it matters THAT much, you could even preload the memory cache by reading the files, preloading the game level before playing it.

In short, of all things in online gaming, HDD latency from a Raptor, OR SATA 300, are both the least important factors.

What the Raptor is best for is fast OS operation. If you are looking for ultimate HDD performance, the answer is always "get more drives", divide the load and concurrent reads between different physical volumes. If the budget allows enough Raptors without filling them all too full, they are the best choice since capacity is not limiting and latency is still lower.
January 9, 2007 5:36:49 PM

While you provide adequate information for the questions people ask on these forums: I don't see anywhere here that asks for your put downs or attitudes. You've been rattling off insults and egotistical put downs in many of your posts lately. Just stay off the threads, no one wants or asked for it.
January 10, 2007 10:03:12 AM

Quote:
While you provide adequate information for the questions people ask on these forums: I don't see anywhere here that asks for your put downs or attitudes. You've been rattling off insults and egotistical put downs in many of your posts lately. Just stay off the threads, no one wants or asked for it.


Step back and look at what the problems were. Someone makes guesses and expects to burden others. THey spread urban myths and want their guesses disproven. Where would it end?? I guess the sun is purple and square shaped, prove that wrong. Dozens of people can waste resources doing so, but should not- I should have investigated whether the sun was square and purple.

The details like # of RPM, or throughput of a bus, type of interface, # of gigabytes, MHz, etc, etc, are all background noise to the central problem which is learning how to use a valid method of system specification, analysis, troubleshooting, etc.

An answer to # of (variable X) vs (variable Y) was pointless, the information is readily available by search engine, would have been more comprehensive, quicker to get the information, and more concrete examples when in an article style presentation.

What is the end result? The most useful answer is to point at the problem, which is often not the question, it is the person asking. Where did THEY go wrong, why is it they don't see the things others do. Finding that is of far more use than comparisons of the spec du joir. All these kinds of tech issues have been covered a million times and still repeated.

If I had started a thread where I was making guesses at something then trying to burden others with it, it would similarly be useful to have that behavior pointed out and derated. Some questions are stupid. I've asked dumb questions too, and call a thing what it is, if the answer was available and I was too lazy to look, I should've been reminded. "pretty please" doesn't work, try it sometime.

A post starts out with a problem of one sort or another, but the problem is often not what was asked but instead, why it was asked. Catering to the question instead of addressing the real problem will just result in same millions of questions asked over and over. What a waste that would be.
January 10, 2007 11:35:02 AM

"I", I was inclined to ignore you, but it has to be said. You are a jackass. But I'm sure it goes so deep you are practically incurable. As a child you were told you were "gifted", and the reason nobody liked you was because you were so far beyond them, when in reality, you were just always a sniveling, snotty little jerk. Flash forward a couple decades and you have a huge chip on your shoulder because no one recognizes what you see as your "brilliance" and you can't understand why you aren't further along in life at this point. You got into computers because they don't require social skills and are not yet able to get up and walk away when they become sick of you. So you pick a totally anonymous screen name and profile and spend your Friday nights cruising the Internet, writing arrogant and disparaging comments on message boards when you aren't surfing porn and imagining how this girl or that would fall in love with you if she only took the time to let you amaze her. Do everyone a favor and stick to the porn sites. There are plenty of people out there who can give out information that not everyone has devoted their sad little lives to, without feeling the need to act superior.

As for online gaming, yes, a fast read time on an hard drive CAN matter. Every time Battlefield 2 loads a new map during online gaming, it checks the game files on your computer against an online database to ensure that files aren't altered by cheaters. The faster you can do this, and the faster the new map can be loaded from disk into memory, the faster you can get back into the game and get a lead on everyone else.

Also, practice reading comprehension. I might have said I was a gamer, but the issue was not about why I want it, but whether a 7,200 RPM SATA II or 10,000 RPM SATA drive would give better performance. As I had mentioned, the information on the drives showed about half the latency on the Raptor, even though it is SATA I. Please forgive me for spending more time with my wife and kids and less time perusing technical manuals about the arcane details of data transfer protocols, and burdening you with my ignorance. If it is such a pain, here's an idea: Don't respond to posted questions! I know that will put the final nail in your social life, but I'm sure you'll be less stressed and it will even give you more time for your porn!

To everyone else, thanks for the info, it is much appreciated!
January 10, 2007 12:37:06 PM

Quote:
While you provide adequate information for the questions people ask on these forums: I don't see anywhere here that asks for your put downs or attitudes. You've been rattling off insults and egotistical put downs in many of your posts lately. Just stay off the threads, no one wants or asked for it.


Step back and look at what the problems were. Someone makes guesses and expects to burden others. THey spread urban myths and want their guesses disproven. Where would it end?? I guess the sun is purple and square shaped, prove that wrong. Dozens of people can waste resources doing so, but should not- I should have investigated whether the sun was square and purple.

The details like # of RPM, or throughput of a bus, type of interface, # of gigabytes, MHz, etc, etc, are all background noise to the central problem which is learning how to use a valid method of system specification, analysis, troubleshooting, etc.

An answer to # of (variable X) vs (variable Y) was pointless, the information is readily available by search engine, would have been more comprehensive, quicker to get the information, and more concrete examples when in an article style presentation.

What is the end result? The most useful answer is to point at the problem, which is often not the question, it is the person asking. Where did THEY go wrong, why is it they don't see the things others do. Finding that is of far more use than comparisons of the spec du joir. All these kinds of tech issues have been covered a million times and still repeated.

If I had started a thread where I was making guesses at something then trying to burden others with it, it would similarly be useful to have that behavior pointed out and derated. Some questions are stupid. I've asked dumb questions too, and call a thing what it is, if the answer was available and I was too lazy to look, I should've been reminded. "pretty please" doesn't work, try it sometime.

A post starts out with a problem of one sort or another, but the problem is often not what was asked but instead, why it was asked. Catering to the question instead of addressing the real problem will just result in same millions of questions asked over and over. What a waste that would be.

I completely agree. Its like people don't even try to be self sufficient.

P.S.- There is no such thing as SATA II
January 10, 2007 12:54:10 PM

Quote:
P.S.- There is no such thing as SATA II


Jeez, another one...

Look, everyone knows that when someone refers to "SATA I" , they mean the 150 mb/s standard and that when someone says "SATA II", they are referring to the newer 300 mb/s standard.

If all you have is nitpicking, please don't waste board space.
January 10, 2007 1:21:41 PM

Quote:
Quote:
I am a gamer and need fast disk reads for online gaming.


Spare us the nonsense. Online gaming does NOT have any particular benefit from fast(er) disks than anything else. In fact it is one of the last areas in which drive speed matters.

What I really mean is, whatever made you think this, you need to re-evaluate, because you are not understanding what online gaming requires in a relative sense.

Quote:


You are quite wrong. Take Battlefield 2. I can have any vehicle in the game I want during the first go around on any map because I load the map so quickly I am first in the server. ((3) raptors in raid 0)

I am taking flags while most people are still sitting there verifying their data. Now, the second round of any map things are pretty even because the map data has already been loaded from the first round.

hball
January 10, 2007 1:27:30 PM

Pretty heated discussion for such a dry topic... lol

The raptor's faster. From what I remember, I don't believe either can fill the 150MB/sec. Also, latency isn't a big issue for gaming, because your disk shouldn't be loading info while you are aiming your gun. As long as the games you play aren't loading during fights, just look at the drive's throughput.

An alternative might be raid. 2 7200.10's. Lots of space and speed for the same price as raptor.
January 10, 2007 1:29:08 PM

Quote:

sata 1 is still 150mbs
sata 2 is 300mb


SATA I spec is 150GB/sec
SATA II spec is 300GB/sec

either is hardly likely to be a restriction when when drive throughput is measured in hundreds of MB/sec
January 10, 2007 3:30:15 PM

Actually james11ace is right....

SATA I is 1.5Gb/s
SATA II is 3.Gb/s

(Giga Bits as opposed to Giga Bytes)

1.5Gb/s = 150 MB/s
3.0Gb/s = 300 MB/s[/quote]
January 10, 2007 3:39:30 PM

Quote:
Look, everyone knows that when someone refers to "SATA I" , they mean the 150 mb/s standard and that when someone says "SATA II", they are referring to the newer 300 mb/s standard.


Sorry, but that is not correct. SATA-IO has a statement on this.
January 10, 2007 4:05:54 PM

Get the Raptor...period. It will be faster than a comparably sized 7200rpm drive. Will it blow the doors off it? Nope, but it will still be faster.

I've got 2 of the 1st gen 36Gb Raptors in RAID 0 inside of a 3-year old system and it still loads faster than most other people in certain online games, especially for large levels that need to load frequently. Having 2Gb of RAM helps as well, so if you are running less than that, you might see less of a boost in HDD related performance.

Also, no present drive can saturate the SATA bus even to the "SATA 1" standard of 150/mbps, so "SATA II" is just a spiffy marketing ploy to get you to buy the newest drive. Other features such as NCQ, etc. will yield more tangible results, and is present in the 2nd gen 74Gb Raptor. I forget what the newest 150Gb raptors use, but I'm sure it's a smoker either way 8O
January 10, 2007 4:08:56 PM

Quote:
P.S.- There is no such thing as SATA II


Jeez, another one...

Look, everyone knows that when someone refers to "SATA I" , they mean the 150 mb/s standard and that when someone says "SATA II", they are referring to the newer 300 mb/s standard.

If all you have is nitpicking, please don't waste board space.

So, where does the spread of misinformation stop?
January 10, 2007 4:09:31 PM

I know that is not correct, but for the sake of simplicity, let's go with what Wabbit said. For all intents and purposes, it's the same thing.

@ the OP: The Raptor will be faster. Neither drive will utilize even the full SATA I bandwidth. In the hard drive world, more RPM = faster.
January 10, 2007 5:14:29 PM

So, where does the spread of misinformation stop?

Valid point, but being an asshat about it to someone who just wants a question answered is just wrong.
I have used computers for 20 years, but that does not make me an expert. I come here to listen and learn. I don't build my own computers, I buy them, simply because I have more money than tech ability.
People like (I) are the reason I don't post here. I am 45 years old and play games for fun, I just bought an Alienware computer based on specs seen here, and its a shame I dont feel comfortable asking things here because of arrogent responses. Some people come here because it's a tech site and its fun for them to be around like minded people. Yes, you could google info on anything but HUMAN INPUT is better than dry tech data. :?
January 10, 2007 5:30:58 PM

Ran HDTune on a 74GB 10k Raptor and my 320gb ST3320620AS. The raptor transfered around 73MB/S with an access time around ~8ms. The 320 transfered around 74-75MB/S with an access time around ~13ms.
January 10, 2007 5:53:35 PM

im running 2x74gb raptors (SATA I)in raid 0, using HDtune as well i got an average of 93.1MB/sec, and access time 7.8ms. I also have a seagate 500gb with perpendicular tech (SATA II with ncq), HDtune gave me 63.1mb/sec as an average transfer rate, and access time 13.6ms
January 10, 2007 6:26:56 PM

Does 3 raptors really make your map load time better? I assumed that it was all Internet and server speed that decided how fast your map loaded. Also I could someone explain raid to me because I don't totally get it. If someone could just send me a link that would be nice too.
January 10, 2007 6:47:40 PM

higher rpm's mean faster access and lower latency. now not only will your games load faster but anything thats in that hard drive including windows and the rest of the programs will too.

now basic raid explained in english will be:

RAID 0 = Performance Gain, itll stripe the data in two or more hard drives accesing them even faster. bad side to this is that if one drive fails u loose all the info on all the drives in the raid. You need two or more drives for this

RAID 1 = Security. it will make an exact image of a drive so in case one fails the other will continue working. Theres no performance gain in this raid

RAID 0 + 1 = Its a mixture of the two before

RAID 5 = Uses at least 3 hard drives, but the sum of space will be as if there were only two installed. Theres performance gain and security as well, the cost is lower because youll need fewer drives then a RAID 0+1, but the performance gain aint as big as a RAID 0. Also when one of the drives fails all your info will be safe, there will also be a performance lost until you replace the bad hard drive and rebuild the array.

JBOD = Just a Bunch Of Drives. In this array the space of two or more drives will appear as one whole drive. no performance gain and no security as well

There are also several other array types, but these have become the most common ones
January 10, 2007 7:14:22 PM

Let me think if I got this right. Lets say you have 2 hard drives. In raid 0, when you want to access a file you use both drives so the data is obtained faster for whatever technical reason. In raid 1, your data is basically written on both hard drives. In raid 0+1 you have each of the the hard drives basically chopped in half so half one of each hard drive is for each raid 0. Or do you need 4 drives for this to work. Or is that raid 5? Now that I basically understand it I am most interested in raid 0. How much faster would your computer be in general if you got 4 hard drives in raid zero compared yo one measly drive?
January 10, 2007 10:54:26 PM

Quote:
"I", I was inclined to ignore you, but it has to be said. You are a jackass. But I'm sure it goes so deep you are practically incurable. As a child you were told you were "gifted", and the reason nobody liked you was because you were so far beyond them, when in reality, you were just always a sniveling, snotty little jerk. Flash forward a couple decades and you have a huge chip on your shoulder because no one recognizes what you see as your "brilliance" and you can't understand why you aren't further along in life at this point. You got into computers because they don't require social skills and are not yet able to get up and walk away when they become sick of you. So you pick a totally anonymous screen name and profile and spend your Friday nights cruising the Internet, writing arrogant and disparaging comments on message boards when you aren't surfing porn and imagining how this girl or that would fall in love with you if she only took the time to let you amaze her. Do everyone a favor and stick to the porn sites. There are plenty of people out there who can give out information that not everyone has devoted their sad little lives to, without feeling the need to act superior.


Have you considered getting professional help? Whatever delusions you hold about knowing my motivations, it is a folly inside your own head.

Like it or not, I am right. At this point in time mankind has never known the vast wealth of information access presently available, and yet never before have resources been so wasted, and so misused trying to employ so many on forums out of sheer laziness.
January 11, 2007 12:57:54 AM

Quote:
Let me think if I got this right. Lets say you have 2 hard drives. In raid 0, when you want to access a file you use both drives so the data is obtained faster for whatever technical reason. In raid 1, your data is basically written on both hard drives. In raid 0+1 you have each of the the hard drives basically chopped in half so half one of each hard drive is for each raid 0. Or do you need 4 drives for this to work. Or is that raid 5? Now that I basically understand it I am most interested in raid 0. How much faster would your computer be in general if you got 4 hard drives in raid zero compared yo one measly drive?


damn... so who bans "I" from here ?

yeah in raid 0 + 1 you need four drives, because your running two of them in raid 0 and the other two are making an image of the first raid. and the pc running four dirves in raid 0 is way faster then a a single drive... lets say for example in one of the pcmarks i scored 6000 points with a single raptor, then when i put the second one i scored 9000.... so its like a 50% increase per drive installed. but remember if one fails all your data is lost, and thats why i have another drive for my important info, the raptors practically have windows, apps and games. the other one has my mp3's, docs and pr0n :D 
January 11, 2007 4:47:08 AM

I find it hard to believe that having two drives in raid 0 could give you THAT much of an increase. I'm saying this because does a pc really bottleneck that much because of a hard drive?
January 11, 2007 5:30:50 AM

its a 50% increase in drive performance, not in the whole pc performance. and YES hard drives is one of the biggest bottlenecks. Im thinking about getting either two more raptors for a 4x74gb configuration or switching to SCSI and getting two 15,000 RPM drives in RAID 0
January 11, 2007 1:01:15 PM

Quote:
So, where does the spread of misinformation stop?

Valid point, but being an asshat about it to someone who just wants a question answered is just wrong.
I have used computers for 20 years, but that does not make me an expert. I come here to listen and learn. I don't build my own computers, I buy them, simply because I have more money than tech ability.
People like (I) are the reason I don't post here. I am 45 years old and play games for fun, I just bought an Alienware computer based on specs seen here, and its a shame I dont feel comfortable asking things here because of arrogent responses. Some people come here because it's a tech site and its fun for them to be around like minded people. Yes, you could google info on anything but HUMAN INPUT is better than dry tech data. :?


The distinction is quite simple. Search for information first. That is not a new idea, not a novel invention on my part. There is absolutely NOTHING wrong with asking for information or help when it is not information readily available already.

Human input is also part of the continually growing data available with a simple web search, or forum search, any number of ways. While it might initially seem that asking yet again, and again, and again, would have some novel new information, it is actually the opposite- the most complete replies and discussions are NOT repeated over and over again, at most you would get a brief summary that mostly ignores all the finer details.
January 11, 2007 2:06:29 PM

Owning a total of 5 Raptors, between two machines.I can honestly tell you that the Raptors are your better choice. Go with two 150Gb Raptors.You will never regret your choice.
January 16, 2007 6:18:07 PM

Quote:
Actually james11ace is right....

SATA I is 1.5Gb/s
SATA II is 3.Gb/s

(Giga Bits as opposed to Giga Bytes)

1.5Gb/s = 150 MB/s
3.0Gb/s = 300 MB/s
[/quote]

Just for sake of acuracy, I don't know about SATAs, but I know that 1 byte = 8 bits

Consequently, using this factor 8
1.5Gb/s should be 188 MB/s
3.0Gb/s should be 375 MB/s
January 16, 2007 6:46:18 PM

Quote:
Just for sake of acuracy, I don't know about SATAs, but I know that 1 byte = 8 bits

Consequently, using this factor 8
1.5Gb/s should be 188 MB/s
3.0Gb/s should be 375 MB/s


You would think this is right, and technically it is, but the crackhead HD companies decided to go with 10^9 bytes to one Gb instead of using 2^30, which is actually one Gb.

Just FYI
January 16, 2007 7:30:03 PM

Quote:
Just for sake of acuracy, I don't know about SATAs, but I know that 1 byte = 8 bits

Consequently, using this factor 8
1.5Gb/s should be 188 MB/s
3.0Gb/s should be 375 MB/s


Unfortunately, it's not that simple.

SATA uses a transmission/encoding scheme called 8B/10B. It means that for every 8 bits of user data to be transmitted, 10 bits are actually transferred down the wire. This is done to maintain synchronous clocking of the receiver and transmitter, and as a weak form of error control.

Thus, the SATA150 raw signalling rate is 1.5 Gb/sec, resulting in a user data transmission rate of 150 MB/sec. This "mega" is the 10^6 definition, so if you want to express it in operating system terms of 2^20, it is 143 MiB/sec.

The SATA300 raw signalling rate is 3.0 Gb/sec, resulting in a user data transmission rate of 300 MB/sec, or 286.1 MiB/sec.
January 16, 2007 7:38:22 PM

WD2500KS a good drive?Thinking about getting one.Does this drive have NCQ (no mention on WD website).
January 16, 2007 7:59:12 PM

God, I love these forums...can't we answer a simple question w/out starting a flamewar? Are we just a bunch of antisocial s.o.b.'s posting from our parents' basements?. C'mon, people!
January 16, 2007 8:19:32 PM

it's nice that someone finally called this what it really is. although I don't promote flam wars I love to watch a whole bunch of guys electronically slap each other over the internet.
January 16, 2007 9:26:48 PM

*deep breath*
There is no such thing as a SATA II device, especially if equating "SATA II" with a 300mbps phy speed.
http://www.sata-io.org/namingguidelines.asp
There was a "SATA II" spec that defined numerous extensions to the SATA protocol. 3gbps and NCQ were two of them. There were many more and implimenting one of them does not necessitate implimenting others.

Hence you have 150mbps drives with NCQ that are among the fastest SATA drives available. You also have drives with a 300mbps interface and no NCQ that are near the top of the charts in some benchmarks. Also there are SATA drives with a 300mbps interface and NCQ that are near the bottom of the charts for some benchmarks.

Rotational Speed, Interface Speed, Buffer Size and NCQ are features, not performance. The drive that provides the most performance for your application is the faster one.

HDs are not yet capable of saturating 150mbps sata, so 300mbps has very little performance advantage for most applications.
January 16, 2007 10:07:44 PM

Just echoing what you, by now, know. If you can get the Raptors, get them. Almost all of the time they'll be faster. You made a good choice UNLESS noise is an issue for you, as the Raptors are some of the loudest drives around...but they're so quick we forget and forgive that.

I'm sorry some of folks gave you a hard time...they can't help it. Many of the gals here are just plain beeaaaatttcheesss., as you've seen. Good luck.
January 16, 2007 10:14:23 PM

Quote:
Just for sake of acuracy, I don't know about SATAs, but I know that 1 byte = 8 bits

Consequently, using this factor 8
1.5Gb/s should be 188 MB/s
3.0Gb/s should be 375 MB/s


Unfortunately, it's not that simple.

SATA uses a transmission/encoding scheme called 8B/10B. It means that for every 8 bits of user data to be transmitted, 10 bits are actually transferred down the wire. This is done to maintain synchronous clocking of the receiver and transmitter, and as a weak form of error control.

I thought I should expand on the what and why of "to maintain synchronous clocking of the reciever and transmitter": SATA uses a serial phy (physical interface) with no reference clock. The signal itself is responsible for maintaining the clock. Whereas IDE sends the signal as a series of 0s and 1s with a reference clock allowing it to send 1 or 0 forever without becoming corrupted SATA cannot not do this. The problem was that parallel signals with reference clocks have numerous shortcomings that make them expensive and prone to error (and, largely as a function of expense and error rate: slow for many applications). SATA uses a serial differential signaling technique with the same 8b/10b encoding algorythm that has been used in fibre channel. Instead of sending 1s and 0s it essentially sends 1s and -1s by subracting the difference between the two signals so if the signal is affected by EMI it still remains intact as the difference between the two differential signals will still be roughly the same. Also, it allows the phy to switch between "1" and "-1" much faster than it could switch between "1" (on) and "almost 0" (mostly off) without signal degradation due to capacitance or EMI, combined with 8b/10b encoding which also reduces capacitance and EMI problems by ensuring "neutral disparity" wich prevents voltage from building up on the lines and semi-randomizes the EMI so it does not form patterns that would broadcast strong signals.

So, if you were to send 255, 0, 170, 85 it would look like this coming across an 8bit parrallel interface (note that the dash is just signifying that the next bit is the reference clock):

11111111-0
00000000-1
10101010-0
01010101-1

or like this across Fibre Channel serial (note that the spaces are logical space that the 8b/10b decoder detects after the fact, they are not actually there):
1
0
1
0
1
1

0
0
0
1

0
1
1
0
0
0

1
0
1
1

0
1
0
1
0
1

1
0
1
0

1
0
1
0
1
0

0
1
0
1

And in SATA replace the 0s with -1s (which represent 0s bascially).

As you can see you don't get 8 Ones in a row for 255 nor do you get 8 Zeros in a row for 0. If you did the reciever on the other end of the line would have no idea what was going on and probably attempt to reset the phy. From those two examples you may notice that if we lived in a perfect world without EMI or capacitance parallel would be the faster way to transmit data and if we were in a perfect world we wouldn't need a reference clock either as both transmitter and reciever would always stay synchronized. But electricity is a cruel mistress and we must apease her if we want to go faster.

And yes, I did just manually look up those values in my 8b/10b encoding table and type them out xD They should be 100% accurate if you want to check them. I even manually mantained neutral disparity for the first two bytes. Let me know if I screwed up though ;) 

But anyway, for every 8bits of data it's turned into 10 bits to send it down the line. So 1.5gigabits/s = 150megabytes/s data throughput. Also note that these are approximate "rounded" values of what a perfect SATA host and device would be running at. The actual values are a little different, and in the real world the devices will normally run a little fast or slow anyway. Just remember 150mBps and 300mBps and you'll be fine.
January 16, 2007 10:20:40 PM

That's tight. Thx for the info.
January 16, 2007 10:35:39 PM

Quote:

NCQ can matter and is a subset feature of SATA 300

Actually, and I really hate to point this out as I fear it will encourage people to call things "SATA II"... NCQ is a subset of SATA II, so is 3gbps (commonly called SATA 300, which although not official is a completely transparent, accurate, and self-expanitory name that I rather like).

Now that we've gotten that out of the way, let us never speak of SATA II again.

Also, raid arrays increase random access times in some situations. Essentailly the very fastest you can get your data is how long it takes the slowest drive to fetch it. The impact this has on performance varys by stripe size, file size, drive, controller, and application and is generally small to zero. For a single user non-multi-tasking environment adding more drives will generally add latency, but will still improve bandwidth (up to the max the controller and system can support). Stripped raid arrays really start to shine when you have multiple outstanding requests with NCQ or TCQ which. Minimal latencies will still go up, but average and maximum latencies will go down drastically.

Other than that you were more or less right about everything you said and I didn't think you were too horribly arrogant about it but you might want to tone it down a smidge until you attain omnipotence ;) 

Come on guys, the op said he needed fast HDs for "online gaming". That statement begs to be corrected. I'm not really a fan of "spend more money so you can brag about it and don't have to do research" enthusiast DIY computing. If "I" wants to be a snobbish pric that's his problem. If he's wrong about something just call him on it. If someone says something dumb and he points it out... well, isn't that what we should all be doing so we can grow and maintain accuracy as a community?
January 16, 2007 11:32:45 PM

Since everyone's replying to this thread, it looks like a good place to ask a question I haven't been able to get clarified for a while.

If I install my OS on a raptor and my games on a seagate 7200.10 320 GB SATA 2 will I notice any diminished performance when playing them?
January 16, 2007 11:38:12 PM

As opposed to installing the games on the Raptor? Perhaps a little performance degradation. Put the games on the Raptor and your page file on the Seagate...just my opinion.
January 16, 2007 11:50:45 PM

It would only be a 74 GB raptor, so I could only put a few games on it along with Windows before reaching the 75% mark. If it would make a big performance difference I could just move games back and forth between the drives I guess.
January 17, 2007 12:19:21 AM

uhm, windows installation is 4gb roughly

how many friggin games you got that could fill 70Gigs?
January 17, 2007 1:04:26 PM

Quote:
Just for sake of acuracy, I don't know about SATAs, but I know that 1 byte = 8 bits

Consequently, using this factor 8
1.5Gb/s should be 188 MB/s
3.0Gb/s should be 375 MB/s


Unfortunately, it's not that simple.

SATA uses a transmission/encoding scheme called 8B/10B. It means that for every 8 bits of user data to be transmitted, 10 bits are actually transferred down the wire. This is done to maintain synchronous clocking of the receiver and transmitter, and as a weak form of error control.

Thus, the SATA150 raw signalling rate is 1.5 Gb/sec, resulting in a user data transmission rate of 150 MB/sec. This "mega" is the 10^6 definition, so if you want to express it in operating system terms of 2^20, it is 143 MiB/sec.

The SATA300 raw signalling rate is 3.0 Gb/sec, resulting in a user data transmission rate of 300 MB/sec, or 286.1 MiB/sec.

Thanks for the clarification, that is very interesting
January 17, 2007 1:56:59 PM

Quote:
uhm, windows installation is 4gb roughly

how many friggin games you got that could fill 70Gigs?


Uhmmm, I just installed MS Flight Sim 10.x. It's 13.5GB installed. I hope this doesn't become a trend...
January 17, 2007 2:03:28 PM

a bit of an extreme example. most games i have are between 1-4 gigs.

unfortunately it is a bit of a trend. as data capacity increases the content in the games increases as well.
January 17, 2007 2:20:32 PM

Quote:

NCQ can matter and is a subset feature of SATA 300

Actually, and I really hate to point this out as I fear it will encourage people to call things "SATA II"... NCQ is a subset of SATA II, so is 3gbps (commonly called SATA 300, which although not official is a completely transparent, accurate, and self-expanitory name that I rather like).

Now that we've gotten that out of the way, let us never speak of SATA II again.

...etc., etc., etc...

Other than that you were more or less right about everything you said and I didn't think you were too horribly arrogant about it but you might want to tone it down a smidge until you attain omnipotence ;) 

Come on guys, the op said he needed fast HDs for "online gaming". That statement begs to be corrected. I'm not really a fan of "spend more money so you can brag about it and don't have to do research" enthusiast DIY computing. If "I" wants to be a snobbish pric that's his problem. If he's wrong about something just call him on it. If someone says something dumb and he points it out... well, isn't that what we should all be doing so we can grow and maintain accuracy as a community?

Hi Y'all. Getting a bit off the OP's topic hitha.
Matters on rudeness & condescending technical know-how issues for the Know-It-Alls (K.I.A.'s).


I come from the BBS days, (post-internet days). I've been working with & building my own PC's for the corporate world for a bit over 15yrs now in the U.S.
At the beginning, my first 5-8 yrs I was arrogant, in knowing that I knew more about PC/Networking related subjects, (i.e.: BANYAN, Novell, Windows For Work Groups, MS LAN-MAN, IBM's OS/2 era, ARCNET, THICK ETHERNET, LANtastic, WINDOWS 2.0, etc.) than those in my circle.
I, too, was a bit arrogant and snobbish about it all.
I had to learn my lesson the hard way. I was called on it a few times & embarrassed in front of others. Trust me this haunts you later on in the corporate world.
Like fine wine, age and experience has made me and makes "most" us better people as we get older & wiser. Spending 4-5 years in a martial arts dojo helps a lot, too. We also get a sense of humility.

I've been cruising & perusing the articles on Tom's Hardware since their inception. I sit back & watch what goes on around here & occasionally lend my input wherever there is an answer I can tackle even at the expense of sounding stupid hoping that if I'm incorrect on something someone somewhere can correct my information in the attempt to aide my knowledge with out making me feel like I shouldn't have crawled out of my shell in the 1st place. I also learn a lot from other's because I will never profess to know everything. I profess to know more, but not all, than some around me on certain topics, but there are the "I's" in the world that I, We, can still learn from if only they could/would stop every once in a while, learn from their mistakes, arrogance and "intelligent stupidity", step back, take a deep breath & just help those in need, instead of giving their assistance & while doing so beating the lazy information seeker with a belt. This is sort of like parents beating their kids & saying "THIS WILL HURT ME MORE THAN IT'LL HURT YOU, BUT IT'S FOR YOUR OWN GOOD & PROTECTION".

My point is, if you can help do so without making an arse of yourself & without looking for browny points. Just help out those less technically inclined to use a search engine or the lazy. Otherwise you should start your own " Tim Allen's Hardware Guide" site/forum & your page should read "FOR MEMBERS ONLY WITH NO STUPID QUESTIONS ALLOWED". See how many will flock over there for information.

-Nuff Said...
...now back into my shell I go.
!