G-Technology vs LaCie for Thunderbolt HD ?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by mythos, Nov 12, 2013.

  1. mythos macrumors member

    Jul 16, 2002
    Los Angeles
    I'll be investing in one of the new Mac Pro's and obviously changing my current Mac Pro internal drive configuration to an external one.

    I'm going with Thunderbolt as I move a lot of data around with audio and video.

    I've narrowed down my two options (feel free to suggest others) to either a couple of G-Tech or a couple of LaCie drives, one in RAID 0 for speed and the other in RAID 1 for backup.For LaCie I'm looking at 2Big as I don't really want to have al my drives in one chassis just as extra safety in case the chassis fault.

    Does anyone have experience with the G-Tech or LaCie Thunderbolt drives and can make any suggestions ?
    - I had a couple of portable G-Drives a few years ago and both failed, and used a few LaCie drives a decade ago and wasn't impressed. Hoping that they're better now or if somebody can suggest alternatives.

    Any help appreciated, thanks in advance.

    (I regularly back my work onto a collection of bare large capacity HD's kept i my fire proof safe, along with a duplicate of each).
  2. g4cube macrumors 6502a

    Apr 22, 2003
    Both have a few different types of Thunderbolt drives, with LaCie having the broadest range.

    I have G-Tech G-RAID Thunderbolt, G-Dock ev, LaCie D2, LaCie 2big, LaCie 5big, LaCie Little Big Disk(models with SSD and HDD), and LaCie Rugged (models with SSD and HDD).

    All work well. The G-RAID and the 2big seem to be the most similar -- 2 drives inside a Thunderbolt chassis. The 2big and 5big have drives that are easily removed in drawers. The G-Raid is sealed.

    What I don't like about the G-RAID:
    - 2 drives inside sealed chassis; not removable unless disassembled
    - no SSD capability

    What I don't like about G-Dock ev:
    - at first look, the two drive modules seem to offer flexibility since they are easily removed and used as independent drive
    - drive modules can be docked for use with Thunderbolt, but when extracted can only be used when connected via USB 3.0; no independent connection to Thunderbolt for individual drive modules
    - no SSD capability
    --->>> two LaCie Thunderbolt Rugged Thunderbolt/USB drives can be had for less cost, and each drive can connect independently via Thunderbolt or USB 3.0; no need to insert into a Dock.

    What I don't like about G-Tech in general:
    - they seem to announce products, but take a real long time to actually make them available in the market. Perhaps they feel they are behind in the market and announce early before the products are ready to ship. For example the G-Dock was announced last April at NAB but did not ship until the summer. The G-Drive Pro was also announced last April, but to date has not shipped. Perhaps they announce thngs a bit too early before they are actually ready.

    Why I like the LaCie drives:
    - Rugged and Little Big Disk come in both SSD and HDD configurations
    - seems to have a model for every type of application; portable, desktop, large capacity
    - compatible with Mac OS X as well as Windows
    - lots of LaCie thunderbolt products in the Apple Store (online and at brick and mortar stores); seem to be available everywhere.

    The various LaCie drives give me the most flexibility.

    Reliability? Both brands seem OK to me, with no failures. I use with Macbook Pro, Macbook Air, and Mac mini on the Apple side, and with HP and Acer laptops on the Windows side. All equipped with Thunderbolt.

    As all Thunderbolt products must be certified, I don't expect any compatibility issues.

    Which brand is better? For me, it's LaCie.
  3. marzer macrumors 65816


    Nov 14, 2009
    I am using 2 of the LaCie Thunderbolt 2big 6TB disks, one in RAID1 for data and the other in RAID0 for backups. I have no experience with G-tech but had considered them before buying the LaCie. The deciding factor was the ease of accessing the LaCie's removable drives and the rugged chassis. Another feature I like are the fast Barracuda drives which run at 150Mbps. In RAID0 I can get up to 300Mbps. Before setting them up in the the final configuration, I set all 4 drives in a RAID0 for a blazing 600MBps! After 24/7 operation for 6 months without a glitch, I would recommend the LaCie Thunderbolt drives.
  4. MCAsan macrumors 601


    Jul 9, 2012
    The wife and I each have LaCie 2Big 6TB setup up as RAID 1 3TB mirrored. No problems at all. We each backup to our respective Time Capsules (she uses one of the new 3TB ones and I use the old 3TB one that has wifi turned off (so it is just a router with HD inside). That setup works well for us.
  5. mythos thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 16, 2002
    Los Angeles
    Thanks for the responses, particularly your detailed one g4cube.
    I missed the USB 3 only aspect of the extracted drives from the G-Dock ev, which is good to know as I had thought of getting a couple.

    The sealed nature of the G-Tech units is a factor and on reading the responses I'm inclined to just get 2-3 of the LaCie 2big drives for now.

    A little annoying as I'd like to wait to see what both companies offer to go with the new Mac Pro and Thunderbolt 2, but that's probably months away at least, and I should buy something by the end of the year to take advantage of a tax write-off - but hardly a problem to stress over (smile).
  6. apple_iBoy macrumors 6502a

    Oct 28, 2003
    Philadelphia, PA
    I am also in the market for a Thunderbolt drive for a new iMac. I am considering just getting an enclosure to use with the existing drives I have in my Mac Pro. I'm looking at some products by DataTale and Drobo, although they all a little more than I'm hoping to spend. Maybe some Black Friday sales will ease the pain?
  7. g4cube macrumors 6502a

    Apr 22, 2003
    For HDD based multi-drive chassis, you'd need to have 6 or more drives before being able to take advantage of the additional performance of Thunderbolt 2.

    Might make a difference with 2 or more SSD drives, but not HDD.

    Get that tax break from Uncle Sam this year before the Feds try to take away your deductions next year to pay down the deficit and debt. :D

    Anyway, you'll need more storage next year anyway.
  8. MrTed macrumors member

    Oct 18, 2006
    Paris, France
  9. g4cube macrumors 6502a

    Apr 22, 2003
    Both make some noise:
    - the ticking noise of the 7200 RPM drives; G-Tech uses Hitachi; LaCie uses Seagate
    - both have fans

    Noise is a relative thing. What is quiet to some is too noisy for others.

    For both of mine, the drives and fans are much quieter than the fans that kick on with my Macbook Air and Macbook Pro Retina, when either are doing some serious transcoding; the CPU is quite busy and getting quite warm with the decodes/encodes.

    For browsing, playing videos/MP3s, or general word processing, Thunderbolt is overkill. System and drives aren't being taxed at all.
  10. Macminimaster macrumors newbie

    Jun 24, 2014
    I am also considering buying either a G-tech or Lacie external drive for video-editing. I am working on an Macbook at the moment, but am thinking about switching to either a new Imac or a Macmini (with a seperate screen).

    Obviously the consideration lies in the price, an Imac for around 1299, a Macmini for only 599. Spending my money on a Macmini gives me considerable financial room to invest in a reliable and fast RAID-system external harddrive.

    Does anyone has experience in working from your external harddrive as a video-editor (with FCPX for example?) while using a Macmini? And where are the bottle-necks in comparison to an Imac?

  11. matreya macrumors 65816


    Nov 14, 2009
    If you're going with RAID hard drives, then bear in mind that if the data is important you'll want yet another hard drive to backup important files to.

    RAID1 will give you redundancy, but it's not a backup, plus speed will be no better than the speed of a regular hard drive.

    RAID0 will give you double the speed of a regular hard drive, but it means that if any single hard drive in the RAID0 set fails, you lose the entire amount of data on the RAID.
  12. driftless macrumors 65816


    Sep 2, 2011
    I have been a G-Tech user for a while, no experience with LaCie. I am looking at G-Tech's new G-SPEED Studio and G-RAID Studio for editing and back-up. Since the Studio has removable drives I can store the drives in the safety deposit box in addition to my cloud and TM backups.
  13. danny_w macrumors 601

    Mar 8, 2005
    Austin, TX
    I used to have a G-Drive and loved it but I bought a G-RAID that was DOA so I shy away from them now. I even bought it after reading numerous horror stories about how unreliable they are, so it was my fault really. I think G-Tech used to be a good company but not anymore based on the reviews. Anyway I have 2 CalDigit T3 boxes now, one with 3 1TB drives in RAID0 and one with 2 3TB drives in RAID1 as a backup + a 4TB drive for Time Machine. These are SW RAID only, but CalDigit is coming out with a T4 which has HW RAID. I can highly recommend their products.
  14. g4cube macrumors 6502a

    Apr 22, 2003
    According to comments made by their booth staff at NAB in April, the T4 does not have hardware RAID. It is in-house developed software RAID. To date, not yet shipping, so won't know for sure until it is actually available.
  15. thedeske macrumors 6502a

    Feb 17, 2013
    I thought they were going to license Soft Raid 5?
    It's still in beta I think.
  16. g4cube macrumors 6502a

    Apr 22, 2003
    OWC/Macsales.com is the one licensing SoftRAID, which is still in beta. Contact www.softraid.com for info to see if you can be added to their beta tester list.

    CalDigit is not using SoftRAID; they have developed their own software driver which was demonstrated at NAB, but the T4 that uses it is not shipping yet. Still must pass Thunderbolt certification. http://www.caldigit.com/T4/ you can ask to be placed on their waiting list.

    LaCie has started shipping the 20TB config of its 5big with Thunderbolt2 and hardware RAID-5. https://www.lacie.com/us/products/product.htm?id=10623
  17. thedeske macrumors 6502a

    Feb 17, 2013
    Ahh, you're right. Sorry bout that. Brain Snooze ;)
  18. driftless macrumors 65816


    Sep 2, 2011
    The new 20TB LaCie looks nice and it is well priced.

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