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Craig Alan
firewire 800 bug?
on Aug 29, 2010 at 7:03:31 am

I use an OWC esata external 2 TB raid with a tempo sata Pro expresscard/34 and a Mac Book Pro. But I will be using Imacs to teach students this fall and have ordered a bunch of g-raid 2TB raids. My plan was to capture student footage as Apple pro res 422 for them using a teacher computer and/or ki pro to copy tapes as pro res files. But I am concerned about the 2 Tb raids if the following proves true. It would seem to also influence the choice of many to use Imacs as primary or secondary choices for FCS editing.

Do you agree with the following observation/advice?

http://diglloyd.com/

http://macperformanceguide.com/Reviews-eSATA-MBPCore_i7-FW800.html

Firewire 800 is slow at best
Firewire 800 is slow even when it runs optimally. The problem is, it doesn’t run optimally in a variety of circumstances.
For example, there exists a long-standing bug (for years), in which Firewire 800 performance shows severe impairment with volumes > 1 TB in size, though certain units like the Guardian Maximus evade this bug for unknown reasons.
It is steer manure that Apple has done nothing about it for 3-4 years— it’s misfeasance, especially given that the Mac Pro has five Firewire 800 ports (MacBook Pro has just one). I first reported the problem in 2006, and it also occurs in other circumstances as well, such as connecting more than one device. Bottom line is that verifying performance with DiskTester is your smart move— don’t assume.
There is a workaround: for any drive over 1TB, use partitions no larger than 1TB each. The first partition will yield the fastest part of the drive, the next partition the next fastest, etc.

OSX 10.5.7; MAC Book PRO (EARLY 2008); Camcorders: Sony Z7U, Canon HV30, Sony vx2000/PD170, Canon xl2; Pana, Sony, and Canon consumer cams; FCP certified; write professionally for a variety of media; teach video production in L.A.


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Shane Ross
Re: firewire 800 bug?
on Aug 29, 2010 at 10:26:08 am

What "bug?" FW800 has a 800mbps limit. Thus why it is called FW800. That translates to 85MB/s there abouts. In all my testing, I have found this to be true. Most recently with two drives:

http://lfhd.net/2010/08/28/review-caldigit-vr-mini/

http://lfhd.net/2010/08/28/review-istoragepro-pocket-ii/

FW800 on both of these topped out at 84MB/s. As did it with the G-RAID3 powred drive..and Regular Caldigit VR:

http://lfhd.net/2009/03/22/g-raid3-vs-caldigit-vr/

FW800 tops out at 800Mbps...this is known. What are they saying it is SUPPOSED to be? (well, the SECOND link actually goes into this. That first link has nothing at all do to with hard drives or connection types. It's a photography site) Comparable to eSATA? HARDLY! eSATA has 3Gbps transfer speeds. The connections are different, and eSATA is faster. So why are they comparing FW800 to eSATA with the intention of saying that FW800 should be AS FAST? I don't get it. It is widely accepted that they aren't comparable...that eSATA is faster.

So I fail to see what BUG they are referring to. And 85MB/s...BTW, is fast enough for 2 streams of ProRes 422. One of ProRes HQ. If you want faster, go eSATA.

Shane



GETTING ORGANIZED WITH FINAL CUT PRO DVD...don't miss it.
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Shane Ross
Re: firewire 800 bug?
on Aug 29, 2010 at 10:42:49 am

OH, I see...a bug where if the drive is over 1TB, it runs slower? Well, I just ran the AJA test on my G-Raid 500GB model, and what did I get? 62MB/s Write and 81MB/s Read. Same as I was getting with 2TB and 1TB models. And 640GB with that iStoragePro drive.

So...what bug?

Shane



GETTING ORGANIZED WITH FINAL CUT PRO DVD...don't miss it.
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Craig Alan
Re: firewire 800 bug?
on Aug 29, 2010 at 5:03:58 pm

Thanks Shane.

That's all I was asking -- Will the 2 TB G-raids be much slower than the 1TB drive or smaller? I did notice that he didn't actually show test results comparing < and > 1 TB drives. Comparing it to esata or internal drives is not relevant. Sharing the bus with other devices or drives is not relevant. Just wanted to know if I would need to use his workaround of partitioning the 2 TB raids into 1 TB partitions. I'll use the AJA test when I get back to school and set up the Imacs.

He seems to have a close relationship with OWC in their VAR Mac configurations so I thought that gave him a good deal of validity. Strange, I thought, that no one else mentions the over 1 TB firewire bug. He also mentioned that some drives don’t have the bug so maybe it’s a firmware issue? Maybe certain bridges don’t support over 1 TB?

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/650738-REG/G_Technology_GR4_2000_2TB_...

G-Technology 2TB G-Raid3 Quad Interface External Hard Drive Array are the drives I ordered. Is this the same as the ones you tested?

OSX 10.5.7; MAC Book PRO (EARLY 2008); Camcorders: Sony Z7U, Canon HV30, Sony vx2000/PD170, Canon xl2; Pana, Sony, and Canon consumer cams; FCP certified; write professionally for a variety of media; teach video production in L.A.


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John Fishback
Re: firewire 800 bug?
on Aug 29, 2010 at 3:03:05 pm

The fact that Macs have one hardware controller for multiple FW ports (and the issues that creates) has also been known for years. If you need multiple FW devices to play nicely with each other you need another FW i/o - either in a card slot or express card. As Shane has pointed out, FW800 will be fine for ProRes. If you need more than two streams to play at once, use ProResLT or proxy.

John

MacPro 8-core 2.8GHz 8 GB RAM OS 10.5.8 QT7.6.4 Kona 3 Dual Cinema 23 ATI Radeon HD 3870, 24" TV-Logic Monitor, ATTO ExpressSAS R380 RAID Adapter, PDE enclosure with 8-drive 6TB RAID 5
FCS 3 (FCP 7.0.2, Motion 4.0.2, Comp 3.5.2, DVDSP 4.2.2, Color 1.5.2)

Pro Tools HD w SYNC IO & 192 Digital I/O, Yamaha DM1000, Millennia Media HV-3C, Neumann U87, Schoeps Mk41 mics, Genelec Monitors, PrimaLT ISDN


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Steve Eisen
Re: firewire 800 bug?
on Aug 29, 2010 at 4:05:20 pm

Craig

You want eSata on your iMac? OWC has a solution for you. Check out their site for more details.

Steve Eisen
Eisen Video Productions
Vice President
Chicago Final Cut Pro Users Group


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Craig Alan
Re: firewire 800 bug?
on Aug 29, 2010 at 5:14:37 pm

Thanks Steve. Well aware of this add on. Debating it for myself as I'm looking for a new desktop. Don't think I can find school funding to ship 10 Imacs to OWC for this. Would consider it if it was a DIY and didn't violate Applecare warranty. OWC will substitute their warranty for applecare if you have this BTO on a new Imac. Not sure what happens on an older model that is still under applecare. My guess is they will honor it.

OSX 10.5.7; MAC Book PRO (EARLY 2008); Camcorders: Sony Z7U, Canon HV30, Sony vx2000/PD170, Canon xl2; Pana, Sony, and Canon consumer cams; FCP certified; write professionally for a variety of media; teach video production in L.A.


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