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USB 3.0 vs. eSATA 3.0

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February 1, 2010 7:20:24 PM

What is the deal I have seen some articles that will state that USB 3.0 will kill all and some articles that say USB 3.0 is just as fast as eSATA 3.0.

I ordered a USB 3.0 1TB drive with PCI-e interface card but I also have an eSATA 3.0 port on my motherboard. I am confused. Anybody have any experience yet with both?

I am running Windows 7 64 bit BTW.

More about : usb esata

a b V Motherboard
February 1, 2010 7:38:23 PM

USB 3.0 has bandwidth of 5Gb/s
And eSATA 3.0? do you mean SATA 3.0 ??
SATA 3.0 has 6Gb/s of bandwidth

And why are you confused?
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February 1, 2010 9:11:33 PM

Hi Guys,

I looked at the useful description of eSATA on http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Serial_ATA.

z06psi, do you have a eSATA II 3.0 Gb/s port? This would be faster than a USB 2.0 but slower than your USB 3.0 as pointed out by P1n3apqlExpr.

Spotted this thread as I'm trying to decide between the Gigabyte GA-P55A-UD3R and the GA-P55A-UD3 board. As far as I can tell the only difference is that the UD3R has 2 eSATA II ports in addition to the 3 x USB 3.0 and 6 x USB 2.0 ports. Which from the sound of it will only be useful if I need a medium peed external storage. Is that right? Could you guys think of any other use or difference from your knowledge? I'm not that deep into this stuff.

Cheers,

SRBM

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a b V Motherboard
a c 415 G Storage
February 1, 2010 10:07:13 PM

USB has the advantage of longer cable lengths than are possible with eSATA. This is important if you have your system under a desk and want to allow enough slack in the cable so that you can slide the system out without having to disconnect the cables.

Both USB 3.0 and eSATA III are faster than any current hard drive (excluding SSDs) so it shouldn't matter much which one you use. But it's not too late for the jury to come back with a different verdict as early adopter adapter cards and drives start to be used.

Actually, ANY version of eSATA (1, 2 or 3) is faster than current hard drives, so it really doesn't matter which one you use. But USB 2.0 IS a bottleneck for any modern disk drive.
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February 1, 2010 11:43:55 PM

Thanks sminlal, that's useful to know.

I've discovered that the UD3R also supports 12 phase VRM unlike the UD3. That's probably enough extra functionality to warrant a few extra quid.
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February 1, 2010 11:53:06 PM

p1n3apqlexpr3ss said:
USB 3.0 has bandwidth of 5Gb/s
And eSATA 3.0? do you mean SATA 3.0 ??
SATA 3.0 has 6Gb/s of bandwidth

And why are you confused?



I thought SATA 3.0 was 3GBs and SATA 6.0 was 6GBs?

Anyways. The confusion lies in different people with different real world results or even opinions. I want to get a external for back ups that will be supported for the long haul and have good transfer speed. Will eSATA remain the standard for external and SATA for internal or will USB 3.0 be the standard for external?
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a b V Motherboard
February 2, 2010 12:00:04 AM

Its a bit weird actually
SATA - 1.5Gb
SATA 2 - 3Gb
SATA 3 - 6Gb
USB 2 - 480Mb
USB 3 - 5Gb

Hard to say right now what most companies will use in future, my guess would be USB3.0 however
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a c 221 V Motherboard
a c 122 G Storage
February 2, 2010 12:06:21 AM

Keep in mind that no USB 2 device ever approached a sustained 480 transfer speed which is why firewire 400 was so much faster. Haven't had a chance to see just what exactly USB's 5 GB rating actually delivers.
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a b V Motherboard
a c 415 G Storage
February 2, 2010 5:08:37 AM

> I thought SATA 3.0 was 3GBs and SATA 6.0 was 6GBs?

There's no such thing as "SATA 6.0"...

SATA Revision 1 = 1.5GBits/sec = 150MBytes/sec
SATA Revision 2 = 3GBits/sec = 300MBytes/sec
SATA Revision 3 = 6GBits/sec = 600MBytes/sec
see: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sata#Revisions


> Will eSATA remain the standard for external and SATA for internal or will USB 3.0 be the standard for external?

The market will ultimately decide, but I'd be very surprised if either one became obsolete in the next 5 years. I think both will co-exist for quite some time.
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April 4, 2010 3:09:03 PM

There are eSATA ports that combine with USB and work either as stand alone eSATA, USB 2.0, or eSATA with power from USB 2.0. They will probably do the same thing with USB 3.0, so the extra power from USB 3.0 might be able to power 3.5" drives.

My guess, however, is that eSATA will always be better, because no protocol conversion is necessary like with USB 3.0.

I also hope that USB 3.0 won't get an unfair advantage over eSATA like it did with Firewire 400 just because people think higher numbers mean better real world performance.
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a b V Motherboard
a c 127 G Storage
April 4, 2010 8:45:22 PM

Note that SATA 300MB/s = 300MB/s; it is 3.0Gigabit with 10/8-byte encoding; meaning you get 300MB/s throughput.

USB 3.0 is 4,8 gigabit; however due to overhead that does not translate in 480MB/s. And due to latency and added command overhead; the speeds may well be lower than with eSATA running at 3 gigabit. I think in reality you could get up to 300MB/s throughput with USB 3.0; but latency will be higher than eSATA.
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January 25, 2012 6:52:51 AM

p1n3apqlexpr3ss said:
Its a bit weird actually
SATA - 1.5Gb
SATA 2 - 3Gb
SATA 3 - 6Gb
USB 2 - 480Mb
USB 3 - 5Gb

Hard to say right now what most companies will use in future, my guess would be USB3.0 however


Theoretically, a SATA connection of equal bandwidth of that of a USB, would still outperform the USB drive.... The reason is simple...

eSATA and SATA (take v3.0/6GBPs in this example vs. USB3.0@5GBPs) drives do not need to do extra conversion sets when reading/writing xferring data. For this reason, eSATA will outperform USB because it does not need to convert data/instruction sets. An external HDD on an eSATA connection xfers the data straight, practically like it was an internal HDD, to the controller chip. A USB external HDD must translate from SATA (the actual HDD itself), into USB coding, which is then read by the USB controller. A USB drive has an extra 'stop' if you will, while an eSATA pipes straight into the system as if it was no different (for practical purposes) than a internal.

The one BIG advantage USB has over eSATA, is that USB generally will not require an external power supply when using a portable external HDD (based on 2.5" drives for example).

So if you are focused straight on performance, eSATA is the way to go IF you can accommodate it. eSATA eHDDs can also be had in general, for less than a USB 3.0 one.
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a b V Motherboard
January 27, 2012 10:48:26 AM

This topic has been closed by Mousemonkey
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