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iMac RAID....FW800 or Ethernet?

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Michael Griggs
iMac RAID....FW800 or Ethernet?
on Jun 10, 2011 at 2:23:03 am

It's time to expand the storage....I've read a lot from everybody, and it's all very helpful, but apparently I need more specific help.

First, my system specs.

late 2010 model iMac. 2.93 GHz i7 quad core. 12 GB ram. Broadcom 5764 Ethernet controller. Final Cut Studio 7.0.3
I edit multi-cam ProResLT footage of primarily weddings. Occasionally needing 3 to 4 streams of multiclip work for other projects.

Now, as much as I lament the lack of expandability of the iMac (a.k.a no PCI for me!!), I must live with what I have, and do the best I can. Thus, my connection options are FW 800 or Ethernet.

Now, I've read Walter Biscardi's testing on the same model iMac that I have (I think), and am aware that the Ethernet controller is NOT capable of Jumbo Frames. (As I understand it, these "Jumbo Frames" are necessary for real-time video work??) Is this a deal-breaker for me? Or are there alternatives?

Also, I have heard Bob Zelin talking about the cheap RAID "crap" that can be found at NewEgg or OWC is not worth using, and that when it comes to RAID arrays, you get what you pay for. With that as my mantra as I scour the net for RAID solutions, I feel that I am coming up short. It seems that in order to find a solution that uses FW or Ethernet, I must settle for the "not worth using"......


To summarize, my specific questions are:

1. Since I cannot install an internal RAID card, do the RAID controllers that come in an enclosure that uses FW800 or Ethernet even work (for Video)?

2. Should I go with FW800, or Ethernet?



I HAVE heard good things about Stardom and their SOHORAID. And i've found a 4-bay enclosure (the SR4-WBS2) that uses FW 800. I THINK it will do what I need, but I feel the need for reassurance :-)


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Alex Gerulaitis
Re: iMac RAID....FW800 or Ethernet?
on Jun 10, 2011 at 3:44:40 am

3-4 ProResLT streams at about 10MB/s each - you should be able to pull it off on a single FW800 external drive (current model, 7200rpm). Have you tried that? It's good for 70-75MB/s and this should be enough for 3-4 ProResLT streams.

That said, getting a 2-bay RAID0 or 4-bay RAID0/5 like with SR4 should help - even if not by much.

You are correct that while GigE offers potentially faster speeds than FW800, in reality it's rarely the case.

Alex (DV411)


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Michael Griggs
Re: iMac RAID....FW800 or Ethernet?
on Jun 10, 2011 at 10:33:55 am

yes, FW 800 has been fast enough for thus far. I actually have almost 6TB's in external FW HDD's already daisy chained together. And, while this has worked, I definitely need to move to a more efficient solution.


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Jon Schilling
Re: iMac RAID....FW800 or Ethernet?
on Jun 10, 2011 at 4:53:16 pm

Hey Michael,

We crunched the numbers here & with FW 800 & needing a decent amount of capacity, you might want to consider our SR5 which has RAID 6, protection in the event that 2 drives fail. SOHORAID SR5 & Alex at DV411 can hook you up.

Jonathan Schilling | Sales & Marketing Manager
RAIDON-USA Technology
STARDOM Storage by RAIDON since 2000
15356 East Valley Blvd., Suite B
City of Industry, CA 91746
Tel: 626-333-7888
http://www.stardom-usa.com

Jon Schilling COW LEADER - Stardom Storage Forum



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Michael Griggs
Re: iMac RAID....FW800 or Ethernet?
on Jun 10, 2011 at 4:57:19 pm

Thanks Jon. I was looking at that one too..... I am wondering though, what are the major differences between the SR5 and the SR4 that kicks the price up $1000? (besides the extra drive slot)

.....But if that would be easier to explain over the phone, let me know, and I'll give you a call. :-)


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Jon Schilling
Re: iMac RAID....FW800 or Ethernet?
on Jun 10, 2011 at 5:09:36 pm

Michael,

The bottom line between the 2 RAID products is data security. The Stardom SOHORAID SR5 with RAID 6 is the best fault tolerant product for your workflow. There's an LCD for RAID management and a wider variety of RAID levels over the SR4. You're welcome to call to talk to us more if you'd like.

Jonathan Schilling | Sales & Marketing Manager
RAIDON-USA Technology
STARDOM Storage by RAIDON since 2000
15356 East Valley Blvd., Suite B
City of Industry, CA 91746
Tel: 626-333-7888
http://www.stardom-usa.com

Jon Schilling COW LEADER - Stardom Storage Forum



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Andrew Stuckey
Re: iMac RAID....FW800 or Ethernet?
on Mar 18, 2012 at 12:06:48 pm

Bit late to the party Michael...

I am in the same boat with the same model iMac. Ahh, the joys of expandability on an imac with no Thunderbolt ;)

You've no doubt solved your storage issue by now. What did you end up going with?

For first time readers to this thread, I thought it was worth mentioning that it is possible to add an eSATA port to the 2010 iMac giving you potential speeds up to 3Gbps.

OWC offers eSATA Upgrade service which could be very useful. Probably only practical if you're in the US.


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