This topic has probably been discussed before, but I've no luck in searching the old posts for it.
Anyway, I've read somewhere that special attention must be paid to how the connectors of the 80-wire IDE cables are attached (ie. black to the Master drive, grey to the Slave, and blue to the motherboard).
I've got an IDE cable with the middle (grey) connector attached to my HDD and the blue end to IDE1 of motherboard. The HDD is the only drive on IDE1. Will such connection degrade the performance of my HDD or cause any problem?
The connector intended for the motherboard must go to the motherboard. The reason for this is important is that a specific signal in the cable, not normally used by the host (mobo), is not connected to the mobo connector. This particulars signals behaviour during powerup makes it possible for the mobo to destinguish between a 40 and 80 wire cable and hence choose the correct transfer mode.
If you connect the cable incorrectly, the mobo may errouneosly detect it as a 40-wire cable and force a lower transfer mode.
I havent yet seen any motherboards that actually do this. In that case either way of connecting it is fine.