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Basic RAID for Final Cut Mac Pro System

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Dawn Fink
Basic RAID for Final Cut Mac Pro System
on Apr 10, 2010 at 6:06:47 am

Hello Creative Cow Smarties.

I am looking for the plain basics of benefit and setup for a RAID array for a Final Cut Studio. MAC Pro (8 Core 2.26 Intel Xeon) ODX 10.6.3. I understand RAID 5 is preferable for speed and tolerence, I am specificaly hunting for compatability setup or hardware recommendations.


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Bob Zelin
Re: Basic RAID for Final Cut Mac Pro System
on Apr 11, 2010 at 4:15:10 pm

Hi Dawn -
it's all based on your budget. You can go as cheap as a couple of SATA drives in your
MAC Pro, which you stripe RAID 0, or one of the fantastic drive arrays that you see
advertised right here, right on this page, on Creative Cow. Creative Cow has the BEST
companies advertising on it. In summary, when you look at the cheap stuff coming from ultra
deep discounters like Newegg or Other World Computing, they do not compare with ANY of the products advertised on Creative Cow. Which one is best - it's up to your budget. Everyone has their favorite - they all work. Creative Cow does not have any "lemon" advertisers that I am aware of.

But to be specific, as I look at the ads on Creative Cow right now, as I type this I see -
Maxx Digital
Cal Digit
Dulce Systems
and there are plenty of other great products, from companies like Sonnet, Firmtek, Active Storage,
and countless others. Just remember one thing - if you are a professional, and you base your decision on the cheapest thing you can find, you will ultimately lose your media on your drives, you client will be pissed off, and go away, and you will be out of business. Never buy cheap crap.

If you have no money, simply stick two bare SATA drives in your MAC Pro, stripe them together, and you can accomplish your job. Save your money, and when you can afford to buy a professional solution, buy one of the brands you see advertised on Creative Cow.

Bob Zelin

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Dawn Grrl
Re: Basic RAID for Final Cut Mac Pro System
on Apr 11, 2010 at 4:41:53 pm

Hi Bob,

Thanks for the response. I am really looking for something closer to "the best recommendations". I am writing an article for suggested setup specific to performance (not disregarding the best case scensrio RAID 5 for perf and fault tolerance)and was looking for some basic hardware recomendations that are specific to FCP. Thanks so much I will reference what I can find here.


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Martin Jordan
Re: Basic RAID for Final Cut Mac Pro System
on Apr 12, 2010 at 12:55:36 am

Well I can personally testify to the Dulce System unit for FCP setup. The reason this RAID is so good is their Transfer rate which is around 600mbps and in real time run "I think" like 14 layers (?) of video at that speed.

Check them out.

Bill is the owner and a real nice guy.

We have one of their 4tb tower RAIDs and it has been ultra reliable for the last 2 1/2 yrs.

Quad-Core, 2.93GHz, OS 10.6.2, 32GB Ram, 4TB RAID External, 4TB Internal, ATI Radeon HD 4870 graphics card, FCP Studio 7, AE 9.0.2, Boris BCC, FEC, CoreMelt 2, FxFactory Pro 2, idustrial revolution Volumetrix, Yanobox Motype, Squeeze for the Web, MacBook Pro (MBP) 2.6 GHz, Panasonic HPX300 Video Camera.
The entire Adobe Creative Suite 4, Design Premium.
Owner of Full Graphics Design Firm Houston, Tx 20 yrs.
Mac user since 1988.

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David Roth Weiss
Re: Basic RAID for Final Cut Mac Pro System
on Apr 12, 2010 at 6:59:40 pm


Check out my review of the new CalDigit HDPro2 at the link below, I think you'll find that from a performance, dependability, and support standpoint, it's one of the best RAID products on the market.

David Roth Weiss
David Weiss Productions, Inc.
Los Angeles


EPK Colorist - UP IN THE AIR - nominated for six academy awards

A forum host of Creative COW's Apple Final Cut Pro, Business & Marketing, Indie Film & Documentary, and Film History & Appreciations forums.

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Bob Zelin
Re: Basic RAID for Final Cut Mac Pro System
on Apr 15, 2010 at 4:31:20 am

Hi Dawn

if you are writing an article, and not buying a unit for yourself, it is irresponsible to say "Dulce Systems", or "Cal Digitl" or "Maxx Digital" is the best array to buy - you need to simply state that a hi end system will have a SAS/SATA Raid controller card that supports RAID 5 or RAID 6 to offer protection against failure. Many of these companies use the exact same components, so to refer to a single manufacturer does not accurately represent the way to get the "best" drive array.

If you do want to create a list for your article, simply use ALL the advertisers you see on Creative Cow, who in fact do make the best RAID arrays for a FCP system. Let me assure you, that Cal Digit, G Tech, Dulce, Maxx Digital, and all the others all work wonderfully. Want to make an accurate observation - state that the low end arrays that are purchased from ultra deep discounters on the web, that offer "RAID arrays" that cost $4oo are useless for professional applications.

Bob Zelin

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Kevin Paolillo
Re: Basic RAID for Final Cut Mac Pro System
on Aug 1, 2010 at 8:46:46 pm

I just stumbled on this thread, and I'm going to offer a different viewpoint, having purchased an all brand name solution and also using a modified approach on different systems. The "all in one brand name" approach may be the easiest solution, but I don't necessarily think it represents the best value/performance ratio. I won't name names, but rip open a few of these systems and you'll see the drives used in most of the advertised names are right off the shelf and are marked up 50-100% over what the EXACT same drive from a discounter costs. So I approach building a RAID the same way I approach buying a car. Pay for a quality engine, but be wary of overpriced options. In the case of a RAID, the engine is the controller card, the overpriced options are the number of drives and the size of the raid. I saved thousands buying a brand name controller, but buying (from a discounter) a drive housing and hard drives, being careful to match the drive specs, or better yet, purchasing the exact same drives for a 75% discount. At the very least, I'd check out the discounters when buying replacement/backup drives, because the one sure thing everybody will agree on is: drives fail. Having spare drives to swap in is a must. Buying them at a discount makes sense to me.

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Robert Broussard
Re: Basic RAID for Final Cut Mac Pro System
on Oct 6, 2010 at 10:12:44 pm

Kevin, I would like to hear more about the RAID you've built for yourself. Could send me a private message?


rjb_online *at* mac dot com

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Marcus Seeger
Re: Basic RAID for Final Cut Mac Pro System
on Apr 12, 2010 at 4:48:54 am

Hi Bob,
thats exactly what I just did with, for now...good tip

Couch Media
DSLR shooter MacPro 8 core 2.26, FCP 6.

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