The 9000 series from 3Ware stands out mostly because of its consistently good performance, and because it came in just below the even more flexible BC4000 from Broadcom/Raidcore in our test comparison . 3Ware relies on its own XOR unit, 128 MB cache memory, optional battery backup unit and numerous software features. The overall result is a product that comes in only slightly behind more expensive SCSI models, if at all.
As early as about a year ago, we received the first RAIDCore controller. Even then, it made a splash with functionality as yet unseen. Today, RAIDCore belongs to Broadcom, and offers a number of PCI-X devices that all function based on software. They do not have their own caches; however, up to four 8 channel controllers can be used simultaneously , and arrays can be generated as desired.
|3Ware 9500||Areca ARC-1120||Broadcom/Raidcore BC4000|
|Interface||64 Bit PCI 2.2||PCI-X 133 MHz||PCI-X 133 MHz|
|XOR-Unit||3Ware||i80332||From System Processor|
|Cache||128 MB ECC||128 MB ECC||None|
|Ports||4, 8, 12x SATA||8, 12, 16x SATA II||4, 8x SATA|
|Format||Full Structure Height||Half (8 Ports), Full Structure Height (12, 16 Ports)||Half Structure Height|
|RAID-Modes||0, 1, 1+0, 5, 50, JBOD||0, 1, 0+1, 3, 5, 6, JBOD||0, 1, 1+N, 10, 10+N, 5, 50, JBOD|
|RAID Level Migration||Downgrading only||Downgrading only||Yes|
|Multi-Adapter||Yes||Yes||Yes, inclusive Adapter Spanning|
|Online Capacity Expansion||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Multiple RAID Arrays||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Time Delayed drive starts||Yes||No||Yes|