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RAID 0 or not?

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Tom Thorpe
RAID 0 or not?
on Dec 3, 2015 at 9:30:52 am

Hi all,

I'm new here and didn't know where to post this, so I put it in "Storage" as well.

I have a "noob" question regarding media drives for FCPX.

My main business is audio recording and mixing, but more and more I'm doing small music video clips for my clients (mostly for YouTube and website use and occasionally DVD or Blu-Ray demo disks)

I've just upgraded my system to new Mac Pro 6core ("trashcan"), Pro Tools HDX and a 4-bay Thunderbolt drive case with 2xSamsung 850 Pro 2TB SSDs (for audio and video media), plus a 2TB and a 4TB conventional drives (backup audio and video respectively)

I'd like some opinions whether it's worth partitioning the SSDs in half and creating a 2TB RAID 0 for video (use 1TB for audio jobs and the remaining 1TB for sound sample libraries/PhotoShop cache)

Or is the SSD fast enough to use one for video and the other for everything else?

I generally shoot in full HD (with DSLRs) and have anything from 3 to 10 streams(angles)
Normally I convert the camera files to ProRes 422, plus Proxy files.

Thanks, guys..........


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Noah Kadner
Re: RAID 0 or not?
on Dec 3, 2015 at 3:00:42 pm

Best way to tell is test performance on your most complex project and see what works best. I would guess you'll need all the speed you can muster with that number of angles. Especially if you are using the DSLR camera formats and not proxies/optimized media.


FCP eXchange - FCPX Workshops

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Mark Suszko
Re: RAID 0 or not?
on Dec 3, 2015 at 3:27:01 pm

RAID 0 is fast but fragile, so you'll want to maintain strict discipline regarding the memory cards or drives in the cameras; that's your only backup if something in the RAID goes bad, and recovery of a huge project will be painful.

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Tim Jones
Re: RAID 0 or not?
on Dec 3, 2015 at 5:50:45 pm

You'll probably find the SSD's sufficient for HD video at the expected 450MB/sec each, but you don't need anywhere near that performance for the audio components, so I'd just place those assets onto your normal spinning disks. Of course, if there are 10 answers to this post, you'll see 15 different workflow suggestions :).

We use a lot of EVO 850's around here and they are wonderful for project content. If you stripe the two drives together as a single volume, you'll really be satisfied in your multiple-angle environment.

As an example of one of our setups -

If you have the budget, you might want to take a look at adding the ATTO ThunderStream SC4808 or the HighPoint RocketStor 6328 so that you can branch out into the more expandable SAS chassis options. One of our MP Canisters is connected via the RocketStor 6328 to one of our ArGest RackMOD 480 with eight 6TB drives striped and a SANS Digital TR4X with 4 EVO 850 1TB drives striped. The TR4X is daisy-chained off of the RackMOD so that only one port on the RS6328 is used for disk and the second port is used for our LTO-6 tape library.

Mike uses the SSD array for editing (FCP X and PP CC) and the 48TB array for ingest and storage of the GoPro and Canon DLSR media before backing up to LTO-6.

Tim Jones
CTO - TOLIS Group, Inc.
BRU ... because it's the RESTORE that matters!

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John Rofrano
Re: RAID 0 or not?
on Dec 5, 2015 at 5:58:39 pm
Last Edited By John Rofrano on Dec 5, 2015 at 6:01:10 pm

[Tom Thorpe] "I'd like some opinions whether it's worth partitioning the SSDs in half and creating a 2TB RAID 0 for video"
It sounds like you don't quite understand how RAID works. You can't partition a single drive into two and create a RAID 0 from the partitions. RAID works at the Device level (below any partitioning). The whole idea of a RAID is that you have physically separate drives with a separate set of heads (in the case of spinning media) or separate read/write access in the case of SSD. If you could split a single drive into two partitions and RAID them together (which you can't) it would not make them any faster because there is still only one physical device with one physical way to access it (i.e., the read/write heads could only be over one partition or the other at any given point in time instead of having two sets of physical heads that can be over both partitions at the same time thus increasing your throughput).

It sounds like you have the following configuration if I read your post correctly:

4-bay Thunderbolt case:
Bay 1: Samsung 850 Pro 2TB SSD
Bay 2: Samsung 850 Pro 2TB SSD
Bay 3: 2TB HDD
Bay 4: 4TB HDD

What you could do is RAID 0 the two Samsung 850 Pro 2TB SSD's into a single 4TB RAID 0. This would be twice as fast as the current SSDs alone. Then you could create a 2TB partition for audio and a 2TB partition for video from the single RAID 0. That entire RAID 0 could be backed up to the 4TB HDD leaving the 2TB HDD for stock media or anything else you want. You could partition the 4TB HDD the same as the RAID 0 to make backups easier at the partition level or you could skip the partitioning totally and just make an Audio folder and Video folder on the RAID 0. Partitioning would only server to limit your storage allocations so that the video files don't use up any of the audio files space and visa versa.

If you do choose to RAID 0, make sure you back up early and often as a single failure in either drive will lose the data on both. Personally I would have gone with a RAID 5 but you can't do that with only 2 disks of the same type.


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