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Sata III worth it now?

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June 1, 2010 8:45:42 PM

Should I wait for the refresh of motherboards supporting Sata III over the summer? Would Sata III hard drives make its appearance within the next 2 years? Or can I proceed to build a computer without worries of Sata III coming in next fall?

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June 1, 2010 11:17:46 PM

There are already SATA 6Gb/s drives out. You can get the Seagate Barracuda XT 2TB or the Western Digital Caviar Black FAEX.

Some newer drives are going to make an appearence by the end of the year, perhaps 3TB drives.

To be honest you would probably get little to no gain for SATA 6GB/s since it is kinda overkill. The fastest HDD for sustained read is only 150mb/s
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June 1, 2010 11:34:44 PM

I see, thanks. Would you know possibly when HDD would catch up? Or would only SSD be the 'new' mainstream in future years, when their price lowers and support for SATA 3 is perfected?
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a b V Motherboard
a c 348 G Storage
June 2, 2010 2:39:49 AM

For HDD internal mechanisms to speed up enough to match the 6 Gb/s max data transfer rate, they would have to go at least four times their current speeds. That means 4+ times on rotation rate, head movement speed, everything. Now consider that on rotation rate the common drives now go 7200 rpm, the "high speed" velociraptors go 10,000 rpm, and there are a few super-speed SCSI units still around that can run at 15,000. It has been this way for almost a decade. Care to project when these mechanisms will achieve over a four times speed-up? Most people think never. Those speeds will be available from entirely different systems that do NOT depend on mechanical motion, such as the SSD's now in the market.

A SATA 6Gb/s mobo make sense becasue it can use any such new faster devices. A SATA 6 Gb/s HDD is ONLY capable of communicating with the mobo controller that fast (max) but will never actually deliver sustained data transfer close to that. The best one might hope for in future HDD's would be to get close to the communication speed capabilities of the SATA II (3 Gb/s) system. So that leads to the question, how much price premium is it worth to buy a SATA 6 Gb/s HDD instead of a SATA II unit? Right now in my view, zero. How long to wait for mechanical HDD's that fast? Don't wait at all!
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a b G Storage
June 2, 2010 3:44:05 AM

Excellent summary, Paperdoc!


MRFS
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June 2, 2010 11:44:39 PM

Thanks for the thorough reply :)  I'll save my money and upgrade if their is a revolutionary miracle in the future.
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June 3, 2010 12:02:49 AM

Best answer selected by hobbes203.
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