HighPoint RocketU USB 3.0 Host Adapter

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by TonyK, Dec 16, 2012.

  1. TonyK macrumors 6502a

    TonyK

    Joined:
    May 24, 2009
    #1
    Morning,

    Having just acquired a USB 3 external drive I find myself looking for a PCIe card with USB ports. I see OWC has one for $128 and reading a review based on the PC version I see the PC version can be had for under $90.

    Does anyone have experience or knowledge with this card?

    Here is the OWC Link: http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Highpoint%20Technologies/RUQUADUSB/

    Here is the link to the review on the PC version of the card: http://www.everythingusb.com/highpoint-rocketu-1144a-usb-3.0-pci-express-21274.html

    The drive is only to be used for TimeMachine backups and doing 500GB+ having a USB 3 port on my 2008 MacPro (3,1) would be very helpful.

    Don't care about the RAID features of the OS X version of the card. If I can save some $$$ and use the PC version of the card that would be great.

    Thanks,
     
  2. El Awesome macrumors 6502

    El Awesome

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2012
    Location:
    Zurich
    #2
    I have a WD FW800 external HDD, and I'm happy with it. Not that FW800 is as fast at USB3, not at all, but for Time Machine Backups it's more than fast enough. SInce TM does one big backup of all your data once and than only the stuff that is new, one backup takes about 10secs for me. Without any PCIe card.
     
  3. monokakata macrumors 68000

    monokakata

    Joined:
    May 8, 2008
    Location:
    Hilo, Hawai'i
    #3
    If you're on Mountain Lion, even the Mac version of the Highpoint card isn't going to work.

    CalDigit has a card that does work. I've been using one since July. It can be flaky but mostly it works, and it's OK under ML and earlier.

    Search on MR for threads about the CalDigit card.
     
  4. TonyK thread starter macrumors 6502a

    TonyK

    Joined:
    May 24, 2009
    #4
    Well crud. I am running 10.8.2 so I am out of luck.

    Why does it feel so difficult some days to get things done. :D

    Thanks for the info. What model of CalDigit are you using?
     
  5. monokakata macrumors 68000

    monokakata

    Joined:
    May 8, 2008
    Location:
    Hilo, Hawai'i
    #5
    This one:

    http://eshop.macsales.com/item/CalDigit/U3HOSTADPTR/

    You'll need to update the drivers from the CalDigit site.

    It works reliably with a Macally USB3 enclosure. It doesn't always want to connect to a Lexar card reader -- I have to unplug it and replug it, sometimes more than once.

    And on rare occasions it simply refuses to do anything, and I have to reboot.

    It's fast, no doubt about that.
     
  6. TonyK thread starter macrumors 6502a

    TonyK

    Joined:
    May 24, 2009
    #6
    Wonder how it would do with a WD 3TB MyBook external drive?

    Found one of the threads you mentioned earlier and it was very interesting. I just may opt to get a USB 2.0 4-port PCIe card instead.

    Thanks,
     
  7. theSeb macrumors 604

    theSeb

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2010
    Location:
    Poole, England
    #7
    There is another thing to consider here if you're just using the external drives primarily for Time Machine backups. I have noticed that Time Machine is not entirely disk bound so there comes a point when giving it faster storage will not actually improve the backup times. For example, if I backup to a Pegasus R4 via Thunderbolt from a SSD, the fastest sustained transfer speeds that I can see are around 60-90 MB/s. Which means that going from using FW800 to a single external hard drive over USB 3 will not give a great benefit, even for the first backup.
     
  8. monokakata macrumors 68000

    monokakata

    Joined:
    May 8, 2008
    Location:
    Hilo, Hawai'i
    #8
    I'll triple my sample size in the next few minutes. I have a Newer Technology ministack USB3 enclosure I've been meaning to put a spare drive into, and I have an Oyen Digital 2.5" USB3 enclosure that I can also drop a drive into and see how it all goes.

    Going from N=1 to N=3 will be good.
     
  9. monokakata macrumors 68000

    monokakata

    Joined:
    May 8, 2008
    Location:
    Hilo, Hawai'i
    #9
    I dropped a Hitachi 2 tb drive into the Newer Technology enclosure and it came up immediately. I transferred about 300 gb of image files (all about the same size, 40-50 mb) in three sessions and saw approximately 6 gb/minute, 7 gb/minute, and just under 6 gb/minute.

    BlackMagic speed test on that setup ran about 100 write and 112 read.

    The Oyen Digital enclosure with an Apple 750gb Toshiba wouldn't come up at all. I tried 2 different cables and both CalDigit ports. I used external power. Nothing. Then I took the enclosure and drive to an 2012 Air and it came up immediately.

    So . . . these are hardly lab tests, but I'd say they're a warning about compatibility. If you can return the CalDigit card, I'd say to go for it, and if your WD won't mount reliably, return the card.

    The CalDigit's problems with my Lexar reader and the Oyen Digital enclosure might have to do with the connector -- the other two enclosures have the full-sized connector, but the ones that connected unreliably or not at all have the mini connector.

    As for raw speed, I agree with theSeb, though -- that TM backups are a different animal. Even so, I switched the Newer Technology setup to FW800 and ran BlackMagic again -- I saw numbers in the high 60s, roughly 60% of what the same enclosure and drive showed under USB3.
     
  10. pyzon macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2008
    #10
  11. xgman macrumors 601

    xgman

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2007
    #11
    Avoid the Highpoint and get the caldigit. been there and done that.
     

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