Value for money external drive solution

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by MyopicPaideia, Jun 17, 2014.

  1. MyopicPaideia macrumors 68000

    MyopicPaideia

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2011
    Location:
    Trollhättan, Sweden
    #1
    I have the Mac mini in my signature as a home desktop and am looking to install an external storage solution that is essentially plug and play. The primary (even sole) use of this solution is to house the family's iTunes media and iPhoto libraries for streaming to various Apple TV's and iDevices around the house using Home Sharing.

    I am looking for something with between 8-12 TB - and have no experience or expertise in what RAID or anything else means, thus my requirement for essentially a plug and play solution.

    Do I really need to go high end with a solution similar to G-Speed Studio's latest release or would something as simple as two of these OWC miniStack Maxes be sufficient for my requirements?

    Or would something more middle of the road be more appropriate? Any input or recommendations would be much appreciated! Will be in the 'States for 5 weeks starting in July and plan on making my purchase there.

    Very confused about what features are necessary for a good experience and what is something I won't even notice, and thus don't need. The Mac mini is only USB 2 enabled of course, but I do have a Thunderbolt enabled Macbook Air (the one in my signature) that is going to be replaced this fall when the new generation of laptops come out with Yosemite, which will probably replace the older Mac mini as the home desktop station.
     
  2. matreya macrumors 65816

    matreya

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    #2
    Is this 8-12TB important data? If so, you'll also want a storage solution for the backup.

    My suggestion is you get a pair of OWC Qx2s, one for your files, the 2nd for your backup. OWC offers them preconfigured as RAID5, which on it's own is not a backup, hence the suggestion you get a 2nd Qx2.

    The Qx2s come with FireWire, which will suit your older Mac Mini, plus if you want greater speed later on, you can connect the Qx2s to Thunderbolt via a Lacie (or similar) Thunderbolt-eSATA hub.

    http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/hard-drives/RAID/Desktop/
     
  3. rayyu882 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2010
    #3
    I'm in the same situation and looking hard at either OWC Qx2 12TB or the LaCie 5big 10TB Thunderbolt. I have a 2011 MacMini as the home sharing server that connected to 3 external HDs for iTunes library, iPhoto library and TimeMachine backup.

    Qx2 12TB looks like a cheaper solution, but since I don't have USB 3, the best I could do will be firewire 800 for 100mb/sec, LaCie 5big 10TB cost more and smaller overall capacity, but I can use thunderbolt for faster read/write speed. Anyone has other suggestions? I'm leaning towards LaCie because I kinda want thunderbolt connection.
     
  4. matreya macrumors 65816

    matreya

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    #4
    Bear in mind that a 12TB Qx2 in RAID5 mode comes down to 9TB total storage.

    The LaCie on the other hand is only JBOD, RAID0/1 in software (via Disk Utility). The newer Thunderbolt2 version offers RAID5, but it too will be ¾ of the 10TB as available disk space.
     
  5. MyopicPaideia thread starter macrumors 68000

    MyopicPaideia

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2011
    Location:
    Trollhättan, Sweden
    #5
    Thanks for your replies, Matreya. What is the significance of the different configurations? RAID 0/1/5 JBOD, etc? Have no clue.

    Would a NAS be an alternative here? The data would want to be backed up, but at the moment We have a little bit under 1TB to work with so a good chunk of our movie library is still waiting to get ripped from the BR physical copies, so the 8-12TB is more of a future proofing, there will be plenty of space for backup. I do also already have a 2TB Time Machine working as back up for all the computers in the house atm.
     
  6. matreya macrumors 65816

    matreya

    Joined:
    Nov 14, 2009
    #6
    RAID is explained here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RAID

    Essentially with RAID, you're creating a single volume from a set of disks. RAID 5 is a mode that includes redundancies so if one drive dies in a set, it can be rebuilt from the remaining members of that set. It does NOT equal having a proper backup.

    JBOD is just a bunch of disks, so each drive appears on your desktop as a separate volume.

    You already have the mac mini as a server, and it would do a better job than most NASes
     

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