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Review: Can Command Queuing Turbo Charge SATA?

Last response: in Storage
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November 17, 2004 2:56:52 PM

In this review, the harddisks where not partitioned the same. Due to this, the small capacity design of the Raptors looks much faster, while it will never show that advantage when the critical files are positioned properly on the larger HDD.

For instance, when all disks would use a 30 GB partition, users can compare the fast part of each harddisk for speed, while the slow part of bigger harddisks can be used for storage.

Even if a user would use only the fast part, the bigger harddisk will still be cheaper and may be just as fast when you use the same capacity of it, because the inner tracks, which are slower, can then be left unused.

This is possible because the outer track of a 7200RPM/3.5" drive spins just as fast over the head as the outer track of a 10000RPM/2.5" drive. (Just try 2.5*10*3.14=3.5*7.2*3.14, it will not be exactly equal, but close enough to make my point)

Spin latency will still be higher for the large disk, but command queing and cache usage may reduce the meaning of this disadvantage.

The tranfer rate test allready shows that the fast part of the large drive is very close to the Raptor.

Besides, there are more differces between the Raptor 74 and the 36 than the size, making the comparision between the 74 with TCQ and the 36 without meaningless for measuring the TCQ impact. Just try one test with the 74 without TCQ to find out that it does not perform the same as a 36.
November 17, 2004 3:10:09 PM

If it makes that much of a difference, you could partition out 10 gigs of the 74 Gig Raptor, and then compare that to the 7200 drives. You dont have to partition to get all the larger drives, because the os and swap by default will be on the outer reaches of the drive, as long as it is not a packed formerly data drive 80% full.

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November 17, 2004 4:29:02 PM

The issue is not that the Raptor would not be fast enough, but rather to compare apples to apples, so to compare the 74 GB Raptor to the first 74 GB of larger drives. (or the first 10 GB of them if you like)

Especially because a 74 GB Raptor is much more expensive than a fast 160 GB harddrive, it should also be faster without an unfair advantage.
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