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View Full Version : Need new HD for G4, 300gb, which one?


alaskastewart
Dec 23, 2004, 11:12 AM
So many choices of HDs. I'm considering buying a Maxor 300gb kit off of eBay, along with a Sonnet ATA serial drive to meet its speed. Is this the best route to go? If not, what are my options?

Thanks,
Alisa

keysersoze
Dec 23, 2004, 12:05 PM
So many choices of HDs. I'm considering buying a Maxor 300gb kit off of eBay, along with a Sonnet ATA serial drive to meet its speed. Is this the best route to go? If not, what are my options?

Thanks,
Alisa

What do you mean by a "Sonnet ATA seriel drive?" Do you mean a PCI controller card? Firmtek makes a SATA PCI card that is much cheaper than anything made by Sonnet. I think it's around $60 at OWC (macsales.com).

The Maxtor drive will be SATA then?

solvs
Dec 23, 2004, 02:28 PM
Depends on what machine you are using. You may not see any benefit to Serial ATA over standard Parallel, which I'm assuming you have since you mentioned the PCI card. My advice is to get a 300GB Seagate drive. They are faster than the Maxtors (even the one with 16MB), come with a 5 year warranty, and you can get a new IDE one from Newegg.com for less than you'd spend on eBay.

caveman_uk
Dec 23, 2004, 02:42 PM
I know everyone goes 'Don't buy brand X because they're unreliable' but from our recent experience at work I'd currently stay well away from anything made by Maxtor or Fujitsu. Seagate Barracuda's , though not the fastest drives around, are quiet and according to storage review are pretty reliable compard to other brands.

cubist
Dec 23, 2004, 03:28 PM
I think the reason he wants the Sonnet card is that the standard ATA ports won't go over 120GB. Going with Serial ATA (SATA) would let you use the drive in the future in a G5.

Mord
Dec 23, 2004, 07:00 PM
i would recommend seagate they are the best.

jaromski
Dec 23, 2004, 08:59 PM
i agree, seagate is the best. i just bought a seagate 200gb + firewire enclosure from newegg.com for cheap. it was around $138 total. 200gb/$138 = good value. plus seagate drives run quiet, cool, and have a 5-year warrranty.

hitachi and western digital both make a great drive, but honestly why bother they only have 3-year warranties. go for the seagate.

jaromski

jaromski
Dec 23, 2004, 09:02 PM
I think the reason he wants the Sonnet card is that the standard ATA ports won't go over 120GB. Going with Serial ATA (SATA) would let you use the drive in the future in a G5.

incorrect. this is a bios issue. i use the parallel ata 200gb disk under linux with no clipping (e.g. linux partition is full 200gb size) but maybe the mac doesn't support > 120gb in bios (e.g. firmware) if this is the case, for shame apple.

jaromski

Mord
Dec 23, 2004, 09:47 PM
on ata 66 it only supports 128GB unless you install this (http://www.speedtools.com/ATA6.shtml) then you can use big drives, the quicksilver g4's and up support big drives without the need of the software.

alaskastewart
Dec 23, 2004, 11:10 PM
Depends on what machine you are using. You may not see any benefit to Serial ATA over standard Parallel, which I'm assuming you have since you mentioned the PCI card. My advice is to get a 300GB Seagate drive. They are faster than the Maxtors (even the one with 16MB), come with a 5 year warranty, and you can get a new IDE one from Newegg.com for less than you'd spend on eBay.

I'm using the blue & white G4. Only reason I thought I needed a serial ATA card was because (and I could be wrong on this) I thought I would need some kind of port that my G4 did not have under the hood in order to support the size & speed of the new drive. I'll lok into the 300 GB Seagate.

Thanks for the input!

blackfox
Dec 23, 2004, 11:30 PM
I'm using the blue & white G4. Only reason I thought I needed a serial ATA card was because (and I could be wrong on this) I thought I would need some kind of port that my G4 did not have under the hood in order to support the size & speed of the new drive. I'll lok into the 300 GB Seagate.

Thanks for the input!Without commenting on your specific needs, has your machine been upgraded to a G4 via third-party? I believe all G4's from Apple have been grey. B&W's were G3's.

As to your problem, I believe B&W's are ATA66 and will need a solution (such as Hector provided) to use larger drive capacities...but I am hardly an expert on such matters.

BTW, nice to see another person from Portland! Yay NW!

solvs
Dec 24, 2004, 01:12 AM
You must have a B&W G3 upgraded to a G4. That has a ATA/33 I believe. Technically, Speedtools may work, but it'll be better to get a PCI card. You can go with a slightly cheaper IDE setup. Here's what you need:

Parallel ATA IDE PCI Card -
http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDesc.asp?description=16-123-110&depa=8

Seagate 300GB IDE hard drive (8ms seek time, 8MB buffer, 5 year warranty) -
http://www.newegg.com/app/ViewProductDesc.asp?description=22-148-067&depa=0

About $250 bucks total with shipping. RAM is cheap there too, but I think the G3s max out at 768MB (3x 256), but don't quote me on that. If you want a 200GB hard drive instead look around at someplace like Circuit City, CompUSA, Best Buy, Outpost/Fry's for a good deal on 200GB drives with rebates. Any old IDE drive will work (not Serial/ATA!). Just be sure to follow up with the rebates.

caveman_uk
Dec 24, 2004, 03:47 AM
incorrect. this is a bios issue. i use the parallel ata 200gb disk under linux with no clipping (e.g. linux partition is full 200gb size) but maybe the mac doesn't support > 120gb in bios (e.g. firmware) if this is the case, for shame apple.

jaromski
Depends on model.
Apple says (http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=86178) of the G4 machines only the MDD and xserves support large hard drives. However there are many reports of users with Quicksilvers and imac G4 machines getting their drives to work with no issues.

With a B&W you could well have problems and I'd either get a ATA or SATA PCI card. Some of the places I've looked at the SATA cards are currently cheaper :confused: . Be aware however that a single SATA card could use more bandwith than a standard PCI bus can offer so the PCI bus could hold back any potential speed advantage SATA may offer.

Rocksaurus
Dec 24, 2004, 04:34 AM
B&W G3's max out at 1 GB of RAM to clear that up. RAM is always good. Mmmm... RAM

CanadaRAM
Dec 24, 2004, 11:24 AM
To sum up:
For reasons of both speed and maximum disk size limits, the large drive options for a G3 tower/early G4 are

1) PCI IDE (ATA-100) interface card and internal Parallel ATA (IDE) hard drive
Pro: Inexpensive, fast
Con: Parallel IDE drive will not transfer natively to a G5. Could go into a FW case later however.

2) PCI SATA (SATA-150) interface card and internal Serial ATA hard drive
Pro: Marginally faster than Parallel ATA, drive can be transferred to a G5
Cons: Card is more expensive, drive is a bit more expensive. Drive will not fit into existing Firewire cases.

3) External Firewire case and Parallel ATA hard drive
Pro: Portable between machines. Can be turned off when not needed. Price about the same as the card+drive combos.
Con: FireWire 400 transfer speeds considerably slower than either internal solution.

4) Firewire 800 PCI interface card, Firewire 800 case and IDE hard drive
Pros: Portable and nearly as fast as an internal drive
Cons: Expensive

5) External case and Serial ATA hard drive coupled with a Serial ATA interface card.
Pro: Fastest external solution
Cons: Expensive, immature technology, no cabling standards established yet.

When purchasing drives, you may see the exact same drive model, one with a one year warranty and one with a three year warranty for $10 - $20 extra. Choose the longer warranty. Make sure you have the warranty terms in writing before purchasing.

The G3 B&W and G4 "Yikes" motheboard (PCI graphics) machines are limited to 256 Mb PC100 RAM modules (although you can install PC133 they must be 16-chip modules, generic PC133 8-chip units will not work).

Thanks
Trevor
CanadaRAM.com