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Old Dec 14, 2012, 12:47 AM   #1
alphaod
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Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: 上海 (Shanghai)
RAID 5: 6x 2TB drives or 4x 4TB drives?

I'm adding a new karaoke system at home and I'm planning to use a RAID 5 to store the music videos required for the system. I have almost 10TB worth of videos.

There are two configurations I am considering:
1) 6x 2TB drives for 10TB total.
2) 4x 4TB drives for 12TB total.

With (1) I have higher throughput from the increase number of drives, the drives themselves are cheaper, but if I need to add more music, I need to add another drive to the RAID which I would want to avoid. I also need a chassis to support 6 drives and in the future 7 or 8 drives; I also would need a RAID controller with more ports for this. Price of this would be $1440.

With (2) I would have 2TB of free space to start which should be useful for expansion. I can get a slight cheaper RAID controller since I only need 4 ports right now. There is less drives so I don't need an enormous computer chassis for the build. The drawbacks I see is mainly the 4TB drive has crazy density which I find could be a problem. These disks are also very expensive right now, and a failure I imagine would take a very long time to rebuild. Performance will probably be lower due to few disks. Price of this system would be $1900 which is about $450 more than the former which I think would be the cost of two additional drives.

Being all videos, I don't think I need random performance which is why I don't think I should use SSDs (not to mention I would need some 22 of them which is very expensive, some $8800).

I guess I could use 5x 3TB disks, for $1700 which isn't much cheaper using a 4TB disk system which would use a cheaper RAID adapter.

Any thoughts on this?
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Last edited by alphaod; Dec 14, 2012 at 12:53 AM.
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