Sonnet E4P w/ optical drive

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by dulcimer47, Dec 6, 2010.

  1. dulcimer47 macrumors newbie

    Oct 21, 2008
    Does anyone have experience with the Sonnet Tempo E4P eSATA card? Specifically, I'm trying to determine if the card supports connections to SATA optical drives or just SATA hard drives.

  2. yoink macrumors member


    Feb 17, 2008
    Montreal, Quebec
    A very good question.

    We have a Mac Pro with an E2P and a newer Mac Pro with an E4P. The E4P is a great card but very finicky regarding what it's attached to. For example, it doesn't work with JMicron eSata/USB chipset-based enclosures. The kind folks at Sonnet told us that while a solution should be released by the end of the year it wasn't a supported configuration currently. They should definitely be able to answer your question.

    While it may not be what you want to hear, Sonnet Tech's customer support line is manned by real folks who can probably give you the exact answer you require.
  3. dulcimer47 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 21, 2008
    For anyone interested...

    ...response from Sonnet tech support...

    No it doesn't. For a SATA card to be able to support optical drives of any kind, it has to have the ATAPI command set built into it and the Marvell 7042 chipset we're using in the E4P does not have it.

    Not sure what SATA chipset has support for that. There has to be one out there since the last two Mac Pro machines have SATA optical drives in them. Not sure what Apple is using on their motherboards.

    Sonnet Customer Service
  4. nanofrog macrumors G4

    May 6, 2008
    It's part of the I/O Controller Hub (aka ICH10) made by Intel. But you won't find it on a separate card (ICH = SATA + Ethernet + USB in one chip).

    But there are other chips from companies like Marvel (for example, the 88SE6130 is a 3.0Gb/s part that will run optical disks).

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