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Advice on building my first RAID

COW Forums : DaVinci Resolve

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Chris JonesAdvice on building my first RAID
by on Mar 23, 2012 at 6:27:56 pm

About 6 months ago I got some great info in this forum on hardware for building my first RAID but got sidetracked and wasn't able to build at that time.

I'm ready to build now but want to check in to see if there is anything new on the market I should be looking at. Is Thunderbolt a possibility now on a 4,1 Mac Pro?

My budget is around $1,500-1,900.

This is what I'm thinking about getting:

Rocket Raid 2722
Sans Digital 8-Bay SAS/Sata enclosure
8 2TB HDs

If I do go with the 2722 card I have a question about how it might change my connectivity. To open a PCI slot I will have to pull out my eSATA card and it looks like the 2722 has 2 ports - neither of which are eSATA.

I have 12TB of DPX files I will be working with so I'd like to still be able to move files from my back-up drives using the eSATA. I'm not Hardware savvy enough to know if I use the 2722 if I will then have to go back to using Firewire 800. Can I use 1 of the 2 ports on the 2722 to connect to other drives and have transfer speeds that match eSATA?

Thanking in advance for any help!


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Robert HoullahanRe: Advice on building my first RAID
by on Mar 23, 2012 at 9:03:41 pm

Enterprise drives alone are going to run $1500.00 not including enclosure or card. Do you have a eSata enclosure now? port multiplier? I think Sonnett tech has a Thunderbolt adapter but anything Thunderblt is going to break your bank right now.

-Rob-

Robert Houllahan
Director / Colorist
Cinelab Inc.
http://www.cinelab.com

MAHC-PRO 6-Core 3X GTX285 20Tb SAS Wave Panel Panny 11UK SDI Plasma.


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Chris JonesRe: Advice on building my first RAID
by on Mar 23, 2012 at 10:05:21 pm

[Robert Houllahan] "Do you have a eSata enclosure now?"

I have 2 copies of the film's DPX files (24TB total) on Western Digital 1.5TB internal drives and used a eSATA dock: Voyager Q Quad Interface.

I have to be very careful with them, but so far it has worked very well and it saved a lot of money at a time when I was spending a lot on scanning.

I'm also starting to look into the more expensive setup you recommended 6 months ago - if it's possible to put together a scaled down version.

The ATTO R680 sounds reliable. I only have 1 free PCI slot though (after I remove the eSATA card) so I can't use a multiplier. Do I need a multiplier with the R680? By the way... what exactly does a multiplier do? :)

Would something like this be possible?

R680 $1000.00
8 Disk Enclosure $500.00
4 2TB drives $800.00 (to start)

Thanks again for your help!


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Robert HoullahanRe: Advice on building my first RAID
by on Mar 24, 2012 at 2:27:58 am

The 680 is a great card But I don;t know if you really need it for a 8-bay box. Highpoint has some newer SAS cards I would look at which might allow you to stretch the budget a bit and fill the casr with drives.

-Rob-

Robert Houllahan
Director / Colorist
Cinelab Inc.
http://www.cinelab.com

MAHC-PRO 6-Core 3X GTX285 20Tb SAS Wave Panel Panny 11UK SDI Plasma.


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Margus VollRe: Advice on building my first RAID
by on Mar 24, 2012 at 8:52:05 am

Have you went here:

http://forums.creativecow.net/raid

Bob is good with these things.

He is also very direct if the idea is bad or does not work.

--

Margus

http://iconstudios.eu


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Paul ProvostRe: Advice on building my first RAID
by on Mar 24, 2012 at 6:58:26 am

The rr 2722 comes bundled with the sans dig 8 bay and cables at newegg.com, cheap.
Both ports on the card go to the enclosure, So you are left with fw800 for backup. Bummer.
You will easily get 650mb+ read/write with 8 - 7200rpm drives In raid 5 (I have this setup and it is fast for the money)
No tbolt on Mac pro.

http://www.postandbeam.tv
grade and finish @ post + beam
http://www.facebook.com/pages/post-beam/137967176232067


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Chris JonesRe: Advice on building my first RAID
by on Mar 24, 2012 at 10:20:48 am

I had been leaning toward the Highpoint 2722 setup but after discovering the RAID forum on Creative Cow yesterday and reading through it a bit - I found a lot of dissatisfaction with the Highpoint product.

"I won't contribute to the many Rocketraid trials & tribulations (except to say we would never have made it to orbit with this rocket)"

"Highpoint has no support and a confusing web interface which you're aware of already."

"You have already seen what happens when you stick with the Highpoint."

Since I've never set up a RAID before and my budget forces me to set it up myself, I'm a bit nervous to start with something which might prove problematic.

I did call both Highpoint and ATTO to see what the tech support was like; there was no question that ATTO would be able to help me out if I ran into problems. Highpoint I'm not so sure.

I'll post over in the Cow's RAID area but if anyone else here has anything good to say about the Highpoint setup I'd be interested to hear since I'll be using it with Resolve and people here understand my needs.

Thanks again!


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David Roth WeissRe: Advice on building my first RAID
by on Mar 24, 2012 at 7:14:00 pm

[Chris Jones] "Since I've never set up a RAID before and my budget forces me to set it up myself, I'm a bit nervous to start with something which might prove problematic. "

You should be nervous Chris.

You're dealing hardware that will be at the very heart of your day to day editing operations, and you want it perform in a manner that will provide virtually mission-critical protection, but you're trying to avoid paying the toll to get there.

If you're a professional working with 12Tb of DPX files, you should be charging enough to completely pay for a "proper" professional RAID solution with just 2 to 3 weeks of paid work. If you're not able to fund such a purchase with the work you're doing and the rates you're charging, you have only two alternatives:

1) Raise your rates.
2) Consider a less expensive attached storage solution (not RAID-5).

A properly working hardware-based RAID-5 is terrific, because it will offer vast amounts of storage, high throughput, and some peace of mind. But, having all three of the above comes at a price, and it's the peace of mind that you will lose if you cheap out, either by going it alone, or by buying cheap components, or both.

So, ultimately you're going to have to make a decision to choose what's most important to you: is it storage space and storage speed (throughput), or the peace of mind that only a proper RAID-5 can provide? Only you can answer that question...

David Roth Weiss
ProMax Systems
Burbank
DRW@ProMax.com
http://www.ProMax.com
Sales | Integration | Support


David is a Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Apple Final Cut Pro forum.


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Chris JonesRe: Advice on building my first RAID
by on Mar 24, 2012 at 9:02:05 pm

Thanks for the good advice. Unfortunately I'm not getting paid for what I'm doing (it would be nice). I'm working on my own 16mm feature so It's all coming out of my pocket.

Right now I'm just paying to learn... down the road of course hopefully it will pay off :)


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David Roth WeissRe: Advice on building my first RAID
by on Mar 25, 2012 at 4:58:37 pm

Well, in that case, you might want to consider saving your dough by going with a RAID-0 solution, and using cheap firewire drives as backup, keeping in mind that
RAID-5 still requires backup.

So, in your situation, there's no real advantage to paying extra bucks for RAID-5 that's not going to give you the real peace of mind you deserve, which really only comes at a price.

Make sense?

David Roth Weiss
ProMax Systems
Burbank
DRW@ProMax.com
http://www.ProMax.com
Sales | Integration | Support


David is a Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Apple Final Cut Pro forum.


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Margus VollRe: Advice on building my first RAID
by on Mar 26, 2012 at 12:18:07 pm

Yes have really big drive that can hold all your raid 0 in time machine and your half way.

If needed have Backblaze as your offline backup. Ok it makes only 21 gigs a day and cost 5 dollars a month but it helps if your time machine fails.

--

Margus

http://iconstudios.eu


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Chris JonesRe: Advice on building my first RAID
by on Mar 26, 2012 at 3:50:22 pm

I didn't realize there was a price difference between RAID-0 and RAID-5

My main use for the RAID will be so that I can use DPX files in Resolve - I'd like to have the freedom to learn and be creative and push Resolve's capabilities as far as I can.

I was less worried about back up since I was planning on backing up often.

My larger concerns have been the challenge figuring out what to buy, since all the hardware and terminology is new to me. Then being able to set it up - meaning whichever products I buy, have good tech support, so when I do inevitably run into a wall I have somewhere to call.

Also I like the idea of buying a solid card, so I have the option of expanding to a larger setup down the line.

Right now the ATTO R680 + ProAvio EditBOX Desktop 4-Drive Mini SAS ($395) + (4) 2TB 6 Gb/s Enterprise Drives seems like a good option - but there might be better options.

The bottom line is it's just a new area for me. If I was building a new computer I'd know what parts I needed, how to figure out which parts were compatible, and where to buy the parts.

With the RAID, I'm not even sure what a multiplier does... or if I need one.

The 2722 Highpoint + Sans Digital 8 disk still sounds great to me, but I called Highpoint to ask a few questions and there is a major language issue there - so tech support might be difficult. ATTO on the other hand was able to answer my questions and I feel confident they would be able to help me set up if I needed it. The R680 manual looked pretty good too.

So that's where I am. Thanks again for all the suggestions! I'm getting there, slowly but surely.

And if you have suggestions on setups I have not thought of that would be great!


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David Roth WeissRe: Advice on building my first RAID
by on Mar 27, 2012 at 2:55:38 pm

[Chris Jones] "My main use for the RAID will be so that I can use DPX files in Resolve - I'd like to have the freedom to learn and be creative and push Resolve's capabilities as far as I can."

In that case, go with storage space and throughput, but leave the RAID-5 behind for later or next time.

RAID-5 via hardware is really the only way to fly, software RAID-5 is not nearly as reliable and thus makes it almost a total waste, as it will not deliver peace of mind.

RAID-5 done properly also takes you from the realm of $250 controller cards into the realm of $1000 to $1200 controller cards. So, if you are going to skimp anywhere, let it be on the false peace of mind of an inexpensive RAID-5, and put your $$$ where they count, in space and throughput, with RAID-0.

David Roth Weiss
ProMax Systems
Burbank
DRW@ProMax.com
http://www.ProMax.com
Sales | Integration | Support


David is a Creative COW contributing editor and a forum host of the Apple Final Cut Pro forum.


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