MP 3,1 Controller - SATA III Compatible?

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by Michael73, Oct 11, 2010.

  1. Michael73 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2007
    #1
    This weekend I starting getting the clicking sound of death from my boot drive. Today I ran out and got a Western Digital Caviar Black 2TB HDD that is SATA/300 drive. Are the higher read/write speeds supported by the MP 3,1 controller?

    As I write this, I've got CCC cloning the entire drive and praying that it doesn't fail mid-copy.
     
  2. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

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    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #2
    The X58 chipset used in Mac Pro supports only SATA 3Gb/s (also known as SATA II). However, the controller is not the bottleneck, a single hard drive cannot achieve +150MB/s (1.2Gb/s) sustained bandwidth. With SSD, you could easily max out the SATA 3Gb/s but with normal HDs you cannot. There are SATA 6Gb/s PCIe cards though
     
  3. Transporteur macrumors 68030

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    Nov 30, 2008
    Location:
    UK
    #3
    Even if you've bought a SATA III (6GB/s) drive, it will be compatible with your Mac Pro as SATA is fully backwards compatible.

    But it seems more like you've bought a normal SATA II (3Gb/s) drive.
     
  4. Michael73 thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Feb 27, 2007
    #4
    I got a new WD2001FASS which has a dual processor and claims a 6Gb/s transfer speeds. It is, in fact a SATA III drive.


    There's quite a comprehensive review here. The conclusion says that their tests came mighty close but admittedly, it's not as fast as an SSD drive as noted in subsequent paragraphs:

     
  5. fensterbme macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2010
    Location:
    Columbus, OH
    #5
    Who Exactly is Claiming 6Gb/s Transfer Speeds?

    Regardless of it's a SATAII or a SATAIII Western Digital isn't claiming 6Gb/s transfer speeds, as that would be laughably incorrect.

    SATAIII has a theoretical max transfer throughput of 6Gb/s, but nobody is claiming to actually be able to move that much data through a SATAIII connection from any kind of normal spindle based hard drive.

    ... I use those same drives in my 2010 Hex Core Mac Pro in software based RAID stripe sets. They are great drives as long as you are fine with not running them in any kind of hardware RAID configuration, as if you were wanting hardware RAID you'd want the Western Digital RE4 2TB drives.
     
  6. nanofrog macrumors G4

    Joined:
    May 6, 2008
    #6
    It's fast (can do 140MB/s), but it's not a 6.0Gb/s compliant drive. WD's Specifications sheet clearly states 3.0GB/s (first spec listed in fact), which is more than sufficient (real world throughputs top out at ~270 - 275MB/s for 3.0Gb/s ports).

    So the super simple answer is, it will work just fine in your system, so there's nothing to worry about. It's not going to bottleneck on the SATA port you attach it to. :)
     
  7. goMac macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2004
    #7
    Dual processor does not mean 6Gb/s. That would be absolutely silly, an extra processor does not magically make the drive spin faster.

    It does mean that there is less of an overhead to get the data onto the bus.

    As far as I can tell, no where does WD claim the drive can push 6Gb/s, because again, that would be a ridiculous claim.
     
  8. Hellhammer Moderator

    Hellhammer

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
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    Finland
    #8
    That's exactly what I said. I haven't seen a single mechanical hard drive achieving +150MB/s sustained bandwidth. 3TBs that are out soon may but SATA 3Gb/s can still deliver nearly twice as fast speed (~280MB/s in real world).
     

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