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Opinions Wanted: My capture drive solution just got hosed

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Dave Gage
Opinions Wanted: My capture drive solution just got hosed
on Aug 25, 2010 at 10:34:18 pm

I don't have clients, I just do work for my own business with Final Cut and I'm "attempting" to NOT spend more money, but my original Capture/Backup strategy just fell apart.

I have:

-MBP (Late 2008)
-eSata ExpressCard
-2 x 1 TB Samsung Hard Drives
-OWC Mercury Elite-Al Pro 2-drive enclosure Quad Interface (eSata, FW800, etc.)

I originally planned on putting the two drives in the enclosure, connecting it to my MBP via the eSata ExpressCard and reading and writing to one drive (QuickBench Test- eSATA: Write- 103 MB/s, Read- 132 MB/s) and then using the second drive in the enclosure to manually back up to at the end of the session. This is plenty speed for my needs as I'm working in APR 422 (Standard) with AVCHD material and it gives me up to 6-7 simultaneous 422 streams--more than I will likely ever need for instructional video.

It turns out that this enclosure (with eSata) can't be set up with independent drives. The choices are: Spanning, Raid 0, and Raid 1 (the similar model without eSata can do independent drives, but it's only FW800).

I'd rather not buy additional drives or enclosures, but here are my choices:

1. Keep what I've got and set up the two 1 TB drives in a RAID 1 config. I haven't benchmarked this, so I don't know how much, if any, speed I would lose. This will give me instant backup which is nice.

2. Return the enclosure and get the Triple Interface version and then run my original scenario with FW800 and independent drives. I hate to waste the fact that I already have eSata connections available.

3. Buy one 500 GB drive ($65 at NewEgg.com) to match one I recently bought and put both in the enclosure and stripe it as RAID 0. Then, I'll need to come up with a backup strategy for this, although I will have two 1-TB drives available (and I do already own the OWC Voyager Hard Drive Dock w/eSata and FW800).

I've read in previous posts that most pros here don't recommend RAID 1 for video, although it appears a few like GrafixJoe do use it. A RAID 1 solution would my life less complicated at the moment though.

Sorry for the long post, I hope it made sense.

Thanks,
Dave


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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Opinions Wanted: My capture drive solution just got hosed
on Aug 25, 2010 at 10:45:48 pm

Single drives are amazingly fast these days. I'd try a raid 1 setup. I know a few people that capture direct to a 2 drive raid1 setup and it works just fine.

Setting your drives up raid1 will nuke all the content on there, so make sure it's all backed up.

Jeremy


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Dave Gage
Re: Opinions Wanted: My capture drive solution just got hosed
on Aug 26, 2010 at 12:56:10 am

Jeremy,

Since I've already got all the equipment, I've give it a shot tonight and set up the RAID 1 and run the benchmarking software. I had figured if I was to get into a RAID setup, I would pick up the highly recommended CalDigit VR (I didn't buy the current enclosure with RAID in mind), but as you said, the speed I should get with one drive and eSata will hopefully be sufficient for my low-end editing.

Thanks,
Dave


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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Opinions Wanted: My capture drive solution just got hosed
on Aug 26, 2010 at 1:10:23 am

The enclosure you have now won't do raid 1?


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Dave Gage
Re: Opinions Wanted: My capture drive solution just got hosed
on Aug 26, 2010 at 4:53:19 am

Jeremy,

It will do RAID 1, 0, and SPAN. I just downloaded the OWC RAID utility, ran it for RAID 1; opened Disk Utility, erased/reformatted to Mac OS Extended, and ran a few tests.

QuickBench 4.0 via eSata connection:

Write- 140 MB/s
Read- 137 MB/s

(When I previously tested a single 500 GB drive via eSata I got: Write- 103 MB/s, Read- 132 MB/s...so it seems to be doing good. But, the increase in speed might be connected to the greater cache size of the 1 TB drives also.)
--

I guess it's set up as RAID now. It shows up as a single icon on the desktop, but I don't know for sure if it's writing to both disks at once. Do you know if there is a way to check?

Thanks,
Dave


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Jeremy Garchow
Re: Opinions Wanted: My capture drive solution just got hosed
on Aug 26, 2010 at 4:58:30 pm

[Dave Gage] "Do you know if there is a way to check?"

In the disk utility, it should tell you. Also, you could pull a drive out and see. ;)

Jeremy


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Dave Gage
Re: Opinions Wanted: My capture drive solution just got hosed
on Aug 26, 2010 at 6:57:55 pm

Jeremy,

"In the disk utility, it should tell you. Also, you could pull a drive out and see. ;)"

Disk Utility, excellent. After 25 years with computers, this is my first time using a raid setup, so it hasn't come up before. I'll also yank the drives out later and throw them in the docking station, as I'm curious now.

Thanks for the suggestions,
Dave


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Stu Siegal
Re: Opinions Wanted: My capture drive solution just got hosed
on Aug 26, 2010 at 1:40:15 am

The most lo-fi yet reliable solution for your situation is a dock and raw drives.

I went with this one:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16817707170&cm_re=start...

Edit to one drive, back up to the other, connect via esata, pop sata drives in and out at your leisure, works like a charm.

http://www.verite-media.com


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Dave Gage
Re: Opinions Wanted: My capture drive solution just got hosed
on Aug 26, 2010 at 5:01:30 am

Stu,

Thanks for the link. I already own a similar dock-
http://eshop.macsales.com/item/Newer%20Technology/FWU2ES2HDK/

It does work quite nicely, but I've come to work on my laptop more and more in the master bedroom (coolest room in the house) on da bed and I was afraid of the HD dock falling over when I move, so I decided on a more traditional enclosure. I am already now a big fan of the raw drive and dock setup, it comes in handy for a bunch of situations.

Thanks again,
Dave


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