RAID 5 controller or mobo with RAID 5?

I am going to build a PC for video editing and want to run RAID 5 with (4) 500gb hdd.

Should I get a mobo with built in RAID 5 support or get a RAID 5 controller?

Will a mobo with RAID 5 be as fast as a PCI-e x16 RAID 5 controller?

Also would love to hear suggestions on what mobo or controller you would go with.

Will have a Q6600
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  1. The controllers are faster because they do the leg work for figuring out the parity data. This is what gives raid 5 the ability to loose a disk and keep on going(but its at a slower speed in most cases). I can not recommend a controller. there are far better people here for that. but an offboard(PCI-E 4/8 in most cases) controller WILL be better.

    Onboard ones tend to use the CPU and that can take a fair bit of extra power away from lets say...ummmm...encoding and filtering video....so
  2. Awesome! Just talk to my buddy and he confirmed exactly what you said. Maybe I will post a question in the hdd section on what controller to get because I am lost.

    Thanks!
  3. When looking for a controller make sure that it has its own XOR processor and preferably its own RAM. By default anything from 3ware, Adaptec, Promise, Areca are great cards.
  4. yeah, since i do not use raid5. raid0 works just fine for me with onboard....

    this may give you some insite....damn i wish i had a PCI-E 4x slot...not all those 1x ones
    http://www.tomshardware.com/2006/12/13/pci-express-sata-raid-controllers-for-smb-servers/
    I kind of have a soft spot for Promise....
  5. Thanks for the link, great read.

    I think I am going to go with the Areca 1210 per chookman's suggestion.

    Now I am going to post one more stupid question about what mobo to buy. :D Then I will be ready to order my stuff!!!
  6. Another benefit of the external controller is that you can take it with you if your mainbord bites the dust or is getting upgraded. Mainboard RAIDs are often not compatible between each osser (=> reformat).
  7. cjp3 makes an EXCELLENT point. A big part of the reason to run RAID is data safety, so it's nice to be sure the whole RAID can be moved if needed.
    I've only used Promise RAID cards (and Adaptec controllers, but not RAID), and I never had a problem. That was years ago, but I'd still trust them.
  8. I'm not sure about this but I believe on-board do not have a battery so array rebuild may occur more often. I have an Asus P5W DH and I tried it with 3 HD. Once installing Vista or XP (forgot) I must have pressed the reset and that resulting rebuilding the array (was awfully slow and would have take days). I dropped it and went RAID-0.

    I believe RAID card have that battery and in that case, data are protected and will be written on next power on.

    Important, no matter what you choose:
    Backup: Me, I have external backup and on-line backup.
  9. LoneEagle said:
    I'm not sure about this but I believe on-board do not have a battery so array rebuild may occur more often. I have an Asus P5W DH and I tried it with 3 HD. Once installing Vista or XP (forgot) I must have pressed the reset and that resulting rebuilding the array (was awfully slow and would have take days). I dropped it and went RAID-0.

    I believe RAID card have that battery and in that case, data are protected and will be written on next power on.

    Important, no matter what you choose:
    Backup: Me, I have external backup and on-line backup.


    Most higher end RAID controllers have battery backups sold seperately... usually they are quite expensive, but i believe a UPS is a must... this way if your machine does loose power ups kicks in and shuts down the machine leaving your Array intact ;)

    Checkout SomeJoe's awesome UPS FAQ here:
    http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/248245-28-tomshardware
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