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SATA 2 vs. SATA 3 cable

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December 10, 2010 7:23:41 AM

Hi
Building my new PC I've looking at two sets of SATA cables.
One said "SATA 2.0 3 GB/S" and the other said "SATA 3.0 6 GB/s".
But looking at the cables and the connectors they looked quite the same.
So my question is :
Are there any real differencies between a SATA 2 and a SATA 3 cable ?

More about : sata sata cable

a b B Homebuilt system
December 10, 2010 4:23:59 PM

Yes, there is a real difference, it's the data transfer speed. SATA 3 has the potential to double the speed of SATA 2. Like malmental posted, the cables can be used interchangably. Here are the possible scenarios you'll encounter:

1. Device and mobo support SATA 2 - use of a SATA 3 cable will not get you the 6GB/s due to physical limitations of device and mobo.
2.Device and mobo support SATA 3 - use of a SATA 2 cable will not get you the 6GB/s due to physical limitation of the cable.
3. Device supports SATA 3, but mobo supports SATA 2 - using either SATA 2 or 3 cable will result in 3GB/s.
4. Device supports SATA 2, but mobo supports SATA 3 - using either cable will result in 3GB/s.
5. Device and mobo support SATA 3 - use of SATA 2 cable will result in 3GB/s
6. Device and mobo support SATA 3 - using a SATA 3 cable will get you the 6GB/s
a b B Homebuilt system
December 10, 2010 4:36:12 PM

Indeed, the speed difference is in the interface not the cable. My post above was to clarify to the OP that the cable doesn't matter, as there is a confusion as to what cable to use (meaning there is an apparent choice). My apologies if my explantion made you more confused. I guess it would have helped if I stated this first...
Related resources
January 13, 2011 11:56:02 AM

T_T said:
Indeed, the speed difference is in the interface not the cable. My post above was to clarify to the OP that the cable doesn't matter, as there is a confusion as to what cable to use (meaning there is an apparent choice). My apologies if my explantion made you more confused. I guess it would have helped if I stated this first...


But if I was reading the previous post correctly, it is implied that the cable will make a difference:

Quote:
Device and mobo support SATA 3 - use of SATA 2 cable will result in 3GB/s
a b B Homebuilt system
January 13, 2011 3:20:33 PM

Yes, I "implied" that because you posted your cables have SATA 2 and 3, respectively. Although the speed is in the interface, I drew out the scenarios for you. I apologize for the confusion. Just know that no matter what the cable shows, the device determines the speed.
January 13, 2011 5:51:19 PM

I didn't make the initial post, but the responses did help me realize that even though the ports are SATA 3, I can still use my SATA 2 gear in the - I was freaking out that I only had 4 SATA 2 ports on my board!
April 14, 2011 8:42:25 PM

The Sata 3 spec has tighter tolerances so it is VERY possible that some cables (that were only tested to the Sata 2 spec) will not meet the Sata 3 spec. What drive/controller and what motherboard you are using can also have some effect on this. To be sure I would ONLY use a cable labelled as Sata 3 if you want to be running at Sata 3 speeds.

This is what the upgrade guide basically says.

Page 5.
http://www.serialata.org/documents/SATA-6-Gbs-The-Path-...
June 2, 2011 7:57:44 AM

http://www.serialata.org/documents/SATA-6-Gbs-The-Path-...[/quotemsg]

That is a very useful link. Two key points come from it.

1. A cable which truly met the SATA 2.6 standard would work fine at 6 Giga Bits ( Sata 3.0 ) but one that worked fine at 3 Giga Bits but did not really meet the 2.6 standard might fail at 6 Giga Bytes.

2. Longer SATA 2.6 cables approaching the length limit of the standard are more likely not to work at 6 Giga Bytes than SATA 2.6 cables half as long.

mustardman_20 said:
The Sata 3 spec has tighter tolerances so it is VERY possible that some cables (that were only tested to the Sata 2 spec) will not meet the Sata 3 spec. What drive/controller and what motherboard you are using can also have some effect on this. To be sure I would ONLY use a cable labelled as Sata 3 if you want to be running at Sata 3 speeds.

This is what the upgrade guide basically says.

Page 5.
http://www.serialata.org/documents/SATA-6-Gbs-The-Path-...

August 30, 2011 12:13:38 AM



That is a very useful link. Two key points come from it.

1. A cable which truly met the SATA 2.6 standard would work fine at 6 Giga Bits ( Sata 3.0 ) but one that worked fine at 3 Giga Bits but did not really meet the 2.6 standard might fail at 6 Giga Bytes.

2. Longer SATA 2.6 cables approaching the length limit of the standard are more likely not to work at 6 Giga Bytes than SATA 2.6 cables half as long. said:


That is a very useful link. Two key points come from it.

1. A cable which truly met the SATA 2.6 standard would work fine at 6 Giga Bits ( Sata 3.0 ) but one that worked fine at 3 Giga Bits but did not really meet the 2.6 standard might fail at 6 Giga Bytes.

2. Longer SATA 2.6 cables approaching the length limit of the standard are more likely not to work at 6 Giga Bytes than SATA 2.6 cables half as long.



I agree. Some cheap cables could not work. This is a quote from the document:

Quote:

Problems may be related to the use of cables made from marginal materials that
perform at the edges of SATA 3Gb/s tolerances, which could become a failure point at the faster 6Gb/s signal rates. SATAIO therefore recommends that only high quality
cables and connectors be utilized for SATA 6Gb/s.



October 19, 2011 8:27:31 PM

This message comes from Serial ATA site.
9: Does SATA 6Gb/s require different connectors and cables to support the higher
transfer speed?
A9: The same cables and connectors used for current SATA 1.5 and SATA 3.0 Gb/s
implementations can be used to connect SATA 6Gb/s devices, although SATA-IO recommends
quality components be selected to ensure data integrity and robust operation at the faster SATA
6Gb/s transfer rate. Keeping the existing SATA connector form factor enables SATA 6Gb/s to
be designed into the same cost-conscious hardware architectures while minimizing
infrastructure changes.


It would be nice if someone could test a sata II and sata III cables with sata III hardware and see if there is any advantage.
March 21, 2012 2:35:02 AM

Hey, um according to what I heard from this youtube video, Sata cables are exactly the same (sata2 and sata3) so right now, my current judgement is that your SATA 2 and SATA 3 cables will be completely the same so all you have to worry if they work or they are defective. Here is the link. This video is basically a guy from NCIX doing a SATA cable experiment.



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CAevDkRvyok&feature=plcp...
May 16, 2012 8:49:50 PM

All the doubts around the marketing hype created by so-called SATA 3.0 Cables should be cleared after reading this:

Is Your SATA Cable Slowing Down Your Data Transfers? Max PC Investigates - http://www.maximumpc.com/article/features/your_sata_cable_slowing_down_your_data_transfers_max_pc_investigates

What did they find? - Quote from the article below:

Quote:
Let’s first say that when we started this, we were absolutely sure we’d see a difference. Afterall, moving to an authentic SATA 6Gb/s cable cleared up our problems the first time right? Wrong. As we worked our way through the first few cables, we began to realize that the SATA I/O did its work when it first put together the Serial ATA spec for cables. There is virtually no difference between a brand-new SATA 6Gb/s marked cable made this year and one produced nearly eight years ago as far as performance goes. Expensive cable, cheap cable; long cable, short cable—none of it seemingly made a real difference. If anything, the minor variances in performance can be attributed to variances in the benchmark or the SSD.
November 9, 2012 6:53:51 PM


The easy way to say this is your connection speed will be the lessor of the device or the cable.

If you want a 6GB/s connection you need a III device AND cable. If you want to make any use of it, you'll need a RAID or SSSD, because no single drive will saturate a 3GB/s connection.
March 2, 2013 5:28:28 PM

mumbo_jumbo said:
The easy way to say this is your connection speed will be the lessor of the device or the cable.

If you want a 6GB/s connection you need a III device AND cable. If you want to make any use of it, you'll need a RAID or SSSD, because no single drive will saturate a 3GB/s connection.

Sorry, but to be honest, that's a rather stupid conclusion based on everything discussed here.
March 12, 2013 9:57:24 AM

hpmoon said:
mumbo_jumbo said:
The easy way to say this is your connection speed will be the lessor of the device or the cable.

If you want a 6GB/s connection you need a III device AND cable. If you want to make any use of it, you'll need a RAID or SSSD, because no single drive will saturate a 3GB/s connection.

Sorry, but to be honest, that's a rather stupid conclusion based on everything discussed here.



lol +1

!