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Windows 7: SATA III Controller Card

25 Jan 2011   #11
seekermeister

W7x64 Pro, SuSe 12.1/** W7 x64 Pro, XP MCE
 
 

Sometimes, thinking just isn't enough, if the data a person is given isn't true and complete. There remains one aspect to this puzzle that I have not dealt with. The SATA III is backwards compatible with SATA II motherboards, and even SATA I MBs, if jumped. For this to be true, the hard drive must sense what it is connected to, and adjust it's output accordingly. I was thinking that this may be the reason for the similarity of the benches...that the SATA III is being throttled.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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25 Jan 2011   #12
seekermeister

W7x64 Pro, SuSe 12.1/** W7 x64 Pro, XP MCE
 
 

I Googled this bench on the fAEX, which is a lot better than what I got. Wonder why?

PC Perspective - Western Digital SATA 6Gb/sec 1TB Caviar Black (WD1002FAEX) Review
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Jan 2011   #13
GeneO

Windows 10 Pro. EFI boot partition, full EFI boot
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by seekermeister View Post
While I understand that a SATA III drive will not use all of the bandwidth available on SATA III, and probably neither on SATA II, I would hope that there would be some improvement, otherwise labeling a hard drive as being SATA III would be nothing more than a hoax. As things are, I'm only getting the performance shown in the first screenshot. The second screenshot is on a similar drive which is only SATA II with a 32MB cache. Hard to tell the difference, isn't it? I would think that with a new controller, that it would bench better than that:
I wouldn't say it is a hoax. The manufacturers have to move forward with standards for the future.

My SATA II Black 1TB does better than that (108 MB/s with HDTune) on SATA II controller. I looked up the WDC spec sheet and your SATA III Black 1TB and my SATA II Black 1TB have the same maximum transfer rate - !26 MB/s. So I think, yeah, maybe your problem might be the controller or drivers, but I don't think SATA III vs SATA II. My WDC Green 2TB SATA II on eSATA peaks at 120 MB/s on HDTune.


What drivers - AMD or Windows? IDE or AHCI?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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25 Jan 2011   #14
seekermeister

W7x64 Pro, SuSe 12.1/** W7 x64 Pro, XP MCE
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by GeneO View Post
I wouldn't say it is a hoax. The manufacturers have to move forward with standards for the future.

My SATA II Black 1TB does better than that (108 MB/s with HDTune) on SATA II controller. I looked up the WDC spec sheet and your SATA III Black 1TB and my SATA II Black 1TB have the same maximum transfer rate - !26 MB/s. So I think, yeah, maybe your problem might be the controller or drivers, but I don't think SATA III vs SATA II. My WDC Green 2TB SATA II on eSATA peaks at 120 MB/s on HDTune.


What drivers - AMD or Windows? IDE or AHCI?
The FAEX runs on a SIIG 3132 controller card (SIIG driver) plugged into an Asus A8N32-SLI Deluxe, and the FALS runs on internally on an Asus A8N-SLI, both with an nForce 4 controllers. They are SATA drives, so I guess that would make them AHCI.

EDIT: As far as the manufacturers moving forward with the standards of the future, I think that they are marking time in lock step to the beat of "God Save The King/Queen", waving a flag with skull and crossbones.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Jan 2011   #15
GeneO

Windows 10 Pro. EFI boot partition, full EFI boot
 
 

Your SATA drive can run in IDE or AHCI mode. I expect it is running IDE if you haven't explicitly set it up to AHCI in the BIOS. No matter then.

Your SIG 3132 is going to limit your rate. It is a SATA II controller with a single PCI-e 1.0 lane that can only do, at best, 125 MB/s transfers. So I would guess 90 MB/s is on par.

Your SIIG controller is your bottleneck.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Jan 2011   #16
seekermeister

W7x64 Pro, SuSe 12.1/** W7 x64 Pro, XP MCE
 
 

I've gone through the BIOS settings, and there is nothing that specifically mentions AHCI. I vaguely remember reading something that said that ACHI was automatically enabled, either with RAID enable or disabled...I can't remember which. Since I don't run RAID, whatever is left is the only option available.

The SIIG controller is what I have been talking about replacing anyway, regardless of the reason why, however that will not improve the bench on the drives connected directly to the motherboard. Perhaps that couldn't anyway, because they are all SATA II drives...except one on which I run W7 on my secondary rig. it is plugged in internally so I'm not sure what to do with it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Jan 2011   #17
GeneO

Windows 10 Pro. EFI boot partition, full EFI boot
 
 

With disk drives SATA II or SATA III don;t matter. The current disk drive technology (besides SSD) cannot saturate a SATA II interface.

If you replace the card, you'll likely only gain 10-20 MB/s more over what you got on any HDD (regardless of SATA II or SATA III drive or interface). To get that, you will likely need a 4-lane PCI-e card. So you will need a 4-lane slot and the card will not be as cheap as the SIIG.

Your best bet for performance is to use the MB SATA ports for the drives you want high performance on. It is SATA II, but you will *not* get higher performance with a SATA III controller from any of today's HDD, including the 6Gb/s drive you have. Only from SSD drives.

Look at it this way. SATA II = 3 Gbits/s = 375 MB/s throughput (reading and writing simultaneously) = 187 MB/s read or write. Your FAEX can only sustain 126 MB/s which is well under this. The only place 6Gb/s can help is with bursts to the cache on the disk (this is why they doubled the cache size from 32 to 64MB on the FAEX). This will give some performance improvement but not much IMO.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Jan 2011   #18
seekermeister

W7x64 Pro, SuSe 12.1/** W7 x64 Pro, XP MCE
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by tw33k View Post
I have an ASUS U3S6 that my C300 ran off (past tense because flashing the BIOS made it un-bootable) Read speeds were def higher on the card but I gotta say, overall, I can't tell any difference now I'm running it off a SATA 2 port.
EDIT: I posted some benches here (SATA 2) Show us your SSD performance
I was curious about your Asus controller, so I found this:

ASUS U3S6 PCI Express Expansion Card - 2x USB 3.0, 2x SATA-6G at TigerDirect.com

But, it is not totally clear that this card is eSATA or internal? The compatibility list doesn't include my motherboards, and that is the crux of my original question...is any SATA III eSATA controller compatible with my motherboards?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Jan 2011   #19
seekermeister

W7x64 Pro, SuSe 12.1/** W7 x64 Pro, XP MCE
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by GeneO View Post
With disk drives SATA II or SATA III don;t matter. The current disk drive technology (besides SSD) cannot saturate a SATA II interface.

If you replace the card, you'll likely only gain 10-20 MB/s more over what you got on any HDD (regardless of SATA II or SATA III drive or interface). To get that, you will likely need a 4-lane PCI-e card. So you will need a 4-lane slot and the card will not be as cheap as the SIIG.

Your best bet for performance is to use the MB SATA ports for the drives you want high performance on. It is SATA II, but you will *not* get higher performance with a SATA III controller from any of today's HDD, including the 6Gb/s drive you have. Only from SSD drives.

Look at it this way. SATA II = 3 Gbits/s = 375 MB/s throughput (reading and writing simultaneously) = 187 MB/s read or write. Your FAEX can only sustain 126 MB/s which is well under this. The only place 6Gb/s can help is with bursts to the cache on the disk (this is why they doubled the cache size from 32 to 64MB on the FAEX). This will give some performance improvement but not much IMO.
You don't quite seem to understand what I'm looking for. I have not, nor do not expect to saturate the bandwidth of any SATA category. I realize that it is difficult for a person with of the SSD paradigm to consider a few MBs of speed to be an improvement, but I am not of that mindset. Even an additional 20MBs of speed would be better than I have.

The other half of the question, that I have tried to address in another thread, is if there is an affordable SATA III hard drive that would be capable of better performance than mine?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Jan 2011   #20
GeneO

Windows 10 Pro. EFI boot partition, full EFI boot
 
 

It's basically what ASUS put on their motherboards before Sandy Bridge with its native SATA III support. It looks like it has two USB-3.0 and 2 internal SATA ports with the Marvell chipset and a PCI-e bridge - just like my P7P55D-E Pro motherboard.

I have two SATA II drives plugged into the Marvell SATA III ports. The Marvel is eh so-so. I am about to switch them back to my Intel SATA II ports as a BIOS upgrade on the Marvell seems to have decreased performance slightly (at least on my SATA II drive - and I can't undo the BIOS upgrade).

You won't see much difference I am afraid, but I can see you are bound and determined
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 SATA III Controller Card




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