1. Welcome to the new MacRumors forums. See our announcement and read our FAQ

What is the best HDD for my new Drobo 2nd gen

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by CorMac22, Jul 31, 2011.

  1. macrumors newbie


  2. macrumors newbie

    I have been using the WD20EARS drives in both of my Drobos for almost a year. I have only have had one fail in that time. Compared to about three failures when I was using similarly priced Seagate drives. And the one WD20EARS that did fail was replaced by WD under warranty.
  3. macrumors newbie


    And what about the noise? Are they silent or like an average HDD
  4. macrumors G5



    I'd give the Samsung a wide berth....Noisy and slow IMO. WD fast, smooth and quiet....But if you want ultra speed... WD do the Raptor range...Super quick :)
  5. macrumors newbie


    Sorry but what is the meaning of "a wide berth"? :)

    Besides, the fast series of WD have no use because the Drobo is too slow for it. Even if the Drobo was faster it didn't matter because FireWire's limit is 100 MB/s and even 1 WD green can get that speed. So I'll stay with the cheaper series :)
  6. macrumors 6502a


    You'd be wasted looking specifically for quiet drives for your Drobo, when the fan comes on it'll drown out the sound of any drives.

    Drobos are not known for being fast either so its going to be a bottleneck for ANY drive you buy. The fastest i've ever gotten out of mine was 30MB/s over Firewire and about 25MB/s over USB2)

    I'd go for the Cavier Greens.

    Hope thats helps (from the owner of the same Drobo loaded with 4 2TB Cavier Greens! ;) )
  7. macrumors newbie


    Is it that bad with the fan? :confused: damn it :)
    I know that they're not fast, I read about it ;)
    Which Caviar Greens do you have?
  8. macrumors 6502a


    the model i use is WD20EADS

    I've had four second gen Drobos and yeah these things are quite noisey when the fan comes on (even if well ventilated!)

    I'll be honest they're alot noisier than i was expecting before i got one, so loud i even measured them (about 55-60 Decibels at a distance of 2 feet)
  9. macrumors newbie


    That's indeed very noisy.
    I bought The WD 20EARS but after i bought them i saw that the WD 20 EURS was 24/7 qualified and that the Samsung also was very good and very low in price. That's why i started this topic, too know what you guys thought. I can bring them back to the store, but if I made the right choise I'll keep these.

    Is there anything specific that i should do when opening the antistatic bag of the HDD? And do i need to download any new firmware for the HDD's? The date on the drives says 2 july so I don't think that i need to do anything with the firmware right?
  10. macrumors 6502

    When I first bought my Drobo, I had Seagates, all of which turned out to have defective firmware. Even with the correct firmware, their life wasn't great. I've been running four 2TB Caviar Greens for the last year without any trouble. The Green is as fast as the Drobo can take in terms of data flow, and (as Paulywauly observes) the fan is noisier than the drives. Happily, the Green runs pretty cool, so the fan doesn't come on all that often.

    You should not need new firmware with that recent a manufacturing date, and there are no special care requirements once you open the bag. Reasonable care to avoid high static is all that's required.

    Drobo is promising before the end of the year an upgrade to their firmware to allow 3TB drives on this model.
  11. macrumors regular

    My drobo is pretty quiet. Granted, not always accessing it, but it does have my itunes library and iphoto library on it.

    I'm also using the WD Greens.
  12. macrumors newbie


    Glad to hear that I made a good choise in picking these HDD's :)
    The work can begin :D Dusting off my room, reading the Drobo manual, copying everything from my two external drives to the drobo, setting up my new Mini, and maybe a clean install of SL on the iMac.

    *note to myself: buy less stuff! :D
  13. macrumors newbie


    I have another question. In the manual they say that if you don't use the Drobo for a longer amount of time you should turn it of by setting it too standby, unplug the date cable and the power cord.

    But what is a longer amount of time? And why do you need to pull the date cable and power cord out, is putting it in standby not enough?

    Or is it not possible to turn it back on via Drobo Dashboard when it was in stanby?
  14. macrumors 6502a


    thats a good question. Basically you can't bring it out of standby officially without a restart, or unplugging it and plugging it back in.

    The easiest way round this i found was using Disc Utility. Even when in standby it appears in there as an unmounted volume, just select your Drobo volume in there and mount it :)
  15. macrumors 6502


    I have four WD20EARS drives in my Drobo v2. There's no real need to use anything above a 5400rpm drive because the read/write speeds are slow regardless. They'll produce less head than a higher-speed drive, and the fan will run less. I haven't found mine to be absurdley noisy...around 25dB (as measured by my iPhone) when the drive is feeding media to my Mac mini. The only time it got noisy was when one of the original Hitachi drives I was using started to go bad.
  16. macrumors 6502

    A longer period would be several days. The Drobo does not really go 100% off as long as it's plugged in. With an earlier generation of iMac and OS X (Leopard, I think), my Drobo not only prevented the computer from going to sleep but also the Drobo would restart after a few minutes, and I expect the instruction about unplugging the data cord dates back to then. I have not had those problems with Snow Leopard or Lion. The Drobo dashboard does not restart the Drobo, oddly enough; it can only put it in standby.
  17. macrumors newbie


    So when using Snow Leopard and Lion the mac goes to sleep after the time that is set by the user? Does the Drobo give an error like 'drive was not unmounted correctly"when the Mac goes to sleep or wakes up? Do the drives keep spinning all the time or does the Mac set them to idle after an amount of time?

    About the standy, do you ever put it in standby? Cause i download almost every day something and watch almost every day if not every day, so I don't need to put in standby, or do I?
  18. macrumors newbie

    Drobo and 3 TB drives?

    I'm planning on getting a Mac Mini in October to use as an HTPC. From what I've read so far here and elsewhere, I'm leaning towards getting a Drobo to store all the Blu-ray rips and other media files.

    For those that have a 5-bay+ version (i.e., for those whose Drobo's currently support drives larger than 2 TB), what kind of luck have you had with 3 TB drives? I was looking at a WD 3 TB on Amazon, but I read a review that stated the drive was only showing up as having less than 1 TB of space on the reviewer's Mac. Had something to do with it being used as an external device as opposed to an internal one.

    Also, for all Drobo users out there, are you generally happy with how they perform playing movies on your connected Mac? How about streaming to other devices?
  19. macrumors newbie


    If someone can answer those question, I would be grateful :)
    I also liked to know what would be the best thing to do in this situation: I have aprox 1.4 TB on data saved to my 2x500 GB external drives + on my iMac which I want to put on the Drobo. I have bought 4x2TB drives. Should I put in 2 HDD's which is currently enough for my data or do I need to put in 3 or 4 HDD's for better performance?
  20. Wavell, Aug 6, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2011

    macrumors regular

    Hi :)


    • when your mac goes to sleep, the Drobo will too - it automatically goes into sleep mode if it can't detect anything "awake" that's connected to it (either via USB or firewire).
    • The drives don't spin all the time. If your mac is controlling them and (I believe) you have energy saver settings to put the drives to sleep when possible.. then they'll sleep when your mac is on if it's not using them. The Drobo also has its own built in software that will also put the drives to sleep if they can't detect anything needing them too.
    • Pretty much 100% of the time, you can leave your Drobo to just "do its thing".. it's a data robot and looks after itself :)

    ooh one more thing (see what I did there ? ;) )..If your Drobo is connected directly to your mac (firewire / USB) then you won't see any messages about missing hardware when it boots up, your mac will see your Drobo as another hard drive. no mounting required :)
  21. macrumors regular

    I'd put in 3 as a minimum, it gives greater resilience to failure :)
  22. CorMac22, Aug 11, 2011
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2011

    macrumors newbie


    Thanks Wavell:) and yes, i saw what you did there :cool:

    So if i'm reading your reply correctly and to be sure, what you're saying is that i can leave my drobo on all the time?

    When you activate the option in energy saver to put drives in sleep mode when possible.... Is that necassary? Cause you're saying that the Drobo does it by itself.

    And wouldn't it be better if the Mac and Drobo didn't do it, cause i've heard that it is better for a hard drive to run all the time instead of spinning on and off x times a day.

Share This Page