Advice about external enclosure setup with eSata or USB 3.0

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by aiolos, Jun 24, 2010.

  1. aiolos macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2006
    #1
    Hey all,

    So I have a bunch of external drives, and am looking to transfer all my information to a single enclosure, and use the other drives as backups. I was originally considering RAID, but I'm not sure if I actually need it now. It would be a storage device, but I would be constantly accessing it to watch movies, edit videos, play music, etc. Since I would be transferring a lot with my OS disk, I wanted to have a fast transfer interface. I have a drive with FW800 and I love it. I know that eSata is a lot faster (sustained real transfer speeds of 200Mb/s as opposed to FW800's 80Mb/s) which would make transferring GB's of data much quicker. I was thinking of getting an eSata adapter for my MBP's ExpressCard/34 slot, but now I'm thinking of buying an enclosure with USB 3.0 that I can use as USB2.0 until I upgrade to a Mac with USB3.0.

    So I had two questions:

    1) If I have a non-RAID (JBOD or BIG) setup in a 2-bay external enclosure and I use eSata or USB 3.0, will I get those 200Mb/s transfer speed? Cause I've heard about you needing RAID to get those speeds.

    2) Can someone point me in the direction of a cheap 2-bay enclosure with USB 3.0 or a similar enclosure with eSata (that doesn't necessarily have RAID capability, as that always pushes the price way up).

    Note: I was planning to use two 2TB drives in the enclosure, so I need one that doesn't have a 2TB max capacity limit.

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #2
    Fastest HDs have around 110-120MB/s real world speeds so unless you RAID them, you will be fine with both, USB 3 and eSATA. Depends on what drives you get as those monsters like Caviar Black are noisy, hot and expensive so I would look at e.g. Caviar Green for storage purposes (gets around 80MB/s in real world)
     
  3. aiolos thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2006
    #3
    So if they're not RAID-ed, the best speeds I can get are 120MB/s?

    But if they are, can I get 200MB/s+ with eSata?
     
  4. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #4
    RAID 0 theoretically doubles the speed so yeah, if you get two 2TB Caviar Blacks for example, you should get +200MB/s. Keep in mid that RAID 0 = twice as big risk of data loss

    2x1TB Caviar Black performance in RAID 0
    2TB (non-RAID) Caviar Black benchmarks

    So single 2TB is about 20MB/s faster than 1TB so 2x2TB should get +200MB/s as average speed, even up to 250MB/s bursts
     
  5. aiolos thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2006
    #5
    Right, I know RAID0 is more risky, though like I said in my intro, I have a bunch of externals that would equal the 4TB I could have in RAID0, so I would have a backup for all the data.

    Question: In RAID0, if Drive A dies, I know I lose all my data, but if I get a new Drive A replaced under warranty, can I still use Drive B to create a new RAID0 4TB Partition that I could then re-transfer all the data to? I assume yes since Drive B is still functioning, albeit with a bunch of useless data on it.
     
  6. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #6
    Yes, as far as I know you can because the drive is functional but the array made of two drives is gone. Just zero erase it with Disk Utility as that is more secure for RAIDing
     
  7. aiolos thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2006
    #7
    So I think I'm going to skip RAID since I don't wanna spend as much as it would cost to get a lot of RAID0 setup (because RAID0 enclosures are quite expensive, as are drives like WD Caviar Black that'd I need to get the most out of RAID0). I'll just stick with a 2-bay JBOD enclosure.

    I was looking at this enclosure

    http://www.amazon.com/Macally-NSA2-S350U-Hi-Speed-External-Enclosure/dp/B001AVL9VM/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1277330171&sr=1-7

    but I'd really like one with FW800. Does anyone have any suggestions for a cheap 2-bay JBOD enclosure with FW800?
     
  8. philipma1957 macrumors 603

    philipma1957

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2010
    Location:
    Howell, New Jersey
    #8
    http://www.newegg.com/product/product.aspx?item=N82E16822110002


    http://www.amamax.com/sadimoms2bay.html in stock at this site.


    I have two of them in my mac mini setup. they will run raid0 they will raid JBOD.

    in raid0 a pair of 1tb drives gives a 2tb raid0.

    in JBOD you can have 2 2tb drives. they pull speeds in the 65MB/sec tops for fw800 80MB/sec is your max . built like a tank.

    not as fast as I want. once I started having big drives of 2tb I modded my mac mini to have a pair of esata cables. Now I get 95mb/sec with no raid or 150mb/sec with raid0. mac minis are limited to 150MB/sec

    very long thread below on my 2 drive mini mod that morphed into a 2 cable esata hack. this is a great mod for the 2009 mac mini server model.( the esata part that is)

    http://techtalk.parts-express.com/showthread.php?t=213477
     

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