Media Storage RAID

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by tderemigis, Mar 15, 2008.

  1. tderemigis macrumors member

    Sep 28, 2006
    I have a new imac and a few external drives, but i am almost oout of space, so im looking at what otehr storage options i have. I think im interested in something like a RAID setup, but im not really sure what i need. I would like it to be pretty expandable for the future, and it would mainly be used for movies and tv shows. I have looked into UnRAID a little but im not really sure if thats what i want. It seems sorta like thats building another computer, and i kinda would like the imac to be the brains behind the operation.

    I guess im really open to any suggestions. What do most mac users use for large file storage/ backups?
  2. Malfoy macrumors 6502a


    Nov 1, 2005
    HD enclosures?

    There are stand alone raid enclosures (cant find a link anywhere though) but they are generally targeted for the video editing crowd so they arent very 'cheap'.

    All my back ups are on windows machines acting as file servers.
  3. hazybluedot macrumors newbie

    Feb 13, 2008
    I'm in the same boat

    I have recently been looking into this same question as I recently got an Apple TV and have been busy encoding my DVD collection, I'm running out of space on my 500Gb external drive quickly. I have a macbook pro and am considering getting an iMac within the next year. Basically that limits the options to Firewire or USB systems. The fancier, speedier RAID systems tend to be eSATA and depend on a PCI RAID card to actually do the work.

    A couple options that I have looked at are Lacie Biggest Quadra ( and Drobo ( I have not used either of these products, I'm still in the research phase. Drobo is interesting because it is *not* RAID as we know it, it is something "smarter" according to them. It seems to have some advantages over RAID systems but also some disadvantages, for one thing it is rather slow. However, if you just want an external enclosure to serve up iTunes files (that's all I need now, I'm not doing any HD video editing) then it is certainly fast enough. I'm certainly going to wait a bit and keep an eye on reviews as it is a relatively new product from a new company. Lacie is of course much more established and well known. I really like the look of G-technology drives but it seems that their 4 bay RAID enclosures are eSATA only and require the PCIe card to do RAID 5 (my understanding is that some PCMCIA or ExpressCard eSATA adapters will do RAID 0 or 1 but haven't seen one that will do 5)

    I'm definitely interested in other options, if anyone knows of any other good, simple solutions for a media RAID please add to the discussion. I'm looking for something that will do RAID 5 or equivalent and that is easy to expand in the future and not terribly expensive up front.

    Edit: I just discovered there are ExpressCard eSATA adapters that will handle RAID 5... too bad my aging MBP doesn't have expressCard.
  4. Townfan macrumors newbie

    Feb 29, 2008

    I've also been looking at this and as an entry-level raid system that is available in the UK (lot less choice) I have been looking at the Stardom SR3610-2S-WBC which is USB2 and Firewire 800. They also do a USB2 and eSata model which is cheaper. It was reviewed by MacUser and got good chops for performance against more expensive ones by WiebeTech (which looks remarkably similar) and Sonnet. Only Raid 0 and 1 or JBOD but I like that I would be able to use hot-pluggable bare drives, Hope this helps.
  5. prostuff1 macrumors 65816


    Jul 29, 2005
    Don't step into the kawoosh...
    I have been looking into a Raid like setup recently also.

    From what I have been reading The prebuilt boxes are not all that great and usually do not transfer files all that quickly.

    I have been doing research and have come to the conclusion that it is best to just build a server so that it is more expandable in the future. I think I am going to go the unraid route and build my own server. For home use the server does not need to be very powerful.

    My component list is changing all the time but I usually just check deals that are going on at sites like

    I am curently considering getting this processor and motherboard as the base of the system. I have the power supply and case already, so the only thing i really need that is left to buy is the board and processor.

    I would head over to AVS forum (the HTPC section) and do a search over there for Raid or something of the like. That should get you started.

    Hope that helps

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