5 Replies Latest reply on May 2, 2012 7:10 PM by Harm Millaard

    Disk setup again

    dedekind7 Level 1

      Hi everyone,


      I'm asking about a suggestion for HDD setup for using Adobe Premiere Pro 5.5. I did look at some general guidelines on the adobe forums, but my question is not 100% answered in there.


      My specs right now are



      Asus P9X79 Pro

      eVGA Nvidia GTX 570 HD SC

      16 GB (4x4) G.Skill Ripjaws Z 1600

      PC Power & Cooling Silencer 760 W

      Antec 902v3

      x1 Crucial M4 SSD 128 GB, where I only put the OS and all my programs.

      x1 Hitachi 7200 RPM 2 TB SATA III HDD.


      Even though Adobe is installed on the SSD, it does all the work in the HDD (projects, exports, media, etc.). Apparently it's much better if I add another HDD to the system, which I am planning to do so. My very first option is to get an identical HDD drive as the Hitachi I already have. It just makes sense and it's a very good drive in my opinion.



      1) Would you advice to put these two HDDs in a RAID 0 array? (the guidelines mentioned above don't say so.. they only put RAID 0 starting from 3 work disks and not 2 as in my case).

      2) Either way, could there possibly be any difference if I plug these HDDs onto SATA II ports? Cache of the HDD is 64 mb if that's relevant. The thing is that my MB has 4 SATA III ports, 2 of them are Intel and 2 of them are Marvell (mobo is Asus P9X79 pro). One of the Intel ports has the SSD. So if I want the HDDs to be on SATA III ports I guess the best would be to put them in the Marvell ports (either in RAID 0 or not). But I heard these ports are not very reliable for some reason and have some issues, is this correct? If they do have issues then I'll just put them in SATA II. (maybe one in SATA II and the other in SATA III if they are not in RAID?)

      3) Do you really really recommend that I buy this second HDD? Or just one will be okay? For the moment we're working on small projects so the difference shouldn't be too noticeable, but on the long run I think it could be important, and I'd better buy it now to make sure I get the same drive in case I RAID 0-them. I'm kind of answering myself here, but any opinions are also welcome :)  We are editing almost every day of the week if that matters.




      PS: I posted the same question on tomshardware forums, so I apologize if you read it twice

        • 1. Re: Disk setup again
          RjL190365 Level 5

          Personally, I would not have picked the Antec Nine Hundred v3 case with a GPU above the plain, non-Ti GTX 560. This is because the GTX 570 HD is already 9 inches long, and if a hard disk is installed in one of the upper (or center) drive bays, the PCI-e power connectors will end up being located way too close to the hard drive and hard drive connectors for comfort.


          On the other hand, I would not recommend a RAID for the X79 platform unless you are willing to spend an extra $600 and up for a discrete hardware RAID controller card. This is because the Intel SATA controller now no longer has even firmware-assisted software RAID capability. Instead, RAID support on the native Intel ports is now entirely software-based using software that's also used with Intel's own workstation chipsets. And although the Marvell ports support RAID 0 or RAID 1, its performance will not be all that much faster in RAID 0 than a single disk does on the native Intel SATA controller in non-RAID mode.

          • 2. Re: Disk setup again
            dedekind7 Level 1



            Acutally my specs are already built. The VGA card is not that big and it fits perfectly on the case, and the drives also have plenty of space for the connectors. I managed to get a good cable management with everything going behind the motherboard tray and it's very nice and clean


            I could consider the RAID controller card but that would be in the future because of budget restrictions (in a few months perhaps, when I could also maybe get more disks). So for the moment.. putting the two disks in RAID 0 (SATA II) will not give any performance improvement over putting the two disks separately?

            • 3. Re: Disk setup again
              Harm Millaard Level 7

              A volume (whether that consists of a single disk or multiple disks in a raid configuration) is seen by Windows as a single volume and that single volume still is hampered by the half-duplex nature of the SATA connection. In your case, one SSD and one (raid0) or two volumes (single disks) will still have to adhere to the SATA half-duplex nature, but as single disks it allows reading from one volume and writing to the other volume at the same time. That is faster than waiting for the reading to finish (even though the reading is faster on a raided volume) and then starting writing on the same volume. I would suggest not using a raid with only two disks. Reading this answer, I realize this is not well explained, I find it hard to make an analogy, but consider it like a single street where traffic is allowed to flow in one direction only at a certain time. It does not really matter if that traffic can drive at 30 or 50 MPH on that single lane, because the lane is too short to notice that speed difference. Then the traffic direction is changed and the flow from the other side can start to move. That is the half duplex nature of SATA, but what happens when you have two lanes available for traffic (two volumes in Windows speak), each lane may be slower to move but the overall movement of cars is still faster than over a single lane.

              • 4. Re: Disk setup again
                dedekind7 Level 1

                Dear Harm, thanks a lot, that's very illustrative. This also disproves a previous though of mine, that in a RAID0 array, even if the two disks are considered as a single volume, you could have read/write at the same time.


                Anyway, I guess then that I'll just use the two disks as separate. Would it be better to plug them into SATA II ports or into SATA III (Marvell) ports?

                • 5. Re: Disk setup again
                  Harm Millaard Level 7

                  With single disks, you will not notice any difference in performance between SATA2 or SATA3 connections.