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Hardware recommendations--eSATA drives? RAID? cards?

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  • Hardware recommendations--eSATA drives? RAID? cards?

    Hi, All,

    I'm coming on board an HD project as an assistant editor--this is my first foray into HD. It's already been logged & captured on 2 Gtech drives (one configured RAID0, one RAID5) and there's just about 8TB of material in total.

    In order to migrate the project to my system, I'll need to invest in some hardware & I wanted to get some feedback from the 2-Pop Community on what might be best for the task. I'll need to use external drives because there are other projects that shouldn't be moved on my internal drives.

    Here's the info on the current system:
    Running OS 10.5.8
    2.66 GHz Dual Core Intel Xenon
    8GB Ram
    FCP 6.0.6

    Should I get an eSATA card and external drives? What brands/models are best? Or can I get away with Firewire 800 drives? I'm going to have to do this in duplicate, as I also need to upgrade the editor's system (which is identical to my own) so I need to think about what would be cost effective as well as functional.

    On a related note, would it be wise to upgrade to FCP7 at this juncture? I know that the rule of thumb is never to upgrade mid-project, but I know there were issues with scrubbing through audio when working in HD in 6.06 that have been addressed in 7. Since we're migrating the project anyway, I thought we might be able to get away with an upgrade without much more trouble. What do you think?

  • #2
    What flavor of HD are we talking about here? That will make all the difference in what you can or should consider. Let us know which codec(s) are used for the HD media files.



    • #3
      Hey, debe,

      Thanks for chiming in.

      The HD codec is DVCPRO HD 720p60 and the vid rate is 23.98 fps.


      • #4
        I have several colleagues who work on network series that use DVCPRo HD. They work exclusively off of FW800 drives when they offline. These are mostly cuts and dissolves and graphic supers. Not high-octane compositing.

        (Their onlines are another matter, and those are done in another suite that's running XRAID via fibre channel for media storage.)

        Proper eSATA would give you more "headroom", and will give you more real-time layers than FW800, but that's only a bonus if you need that.

        CalDigit gets high marks, and G-Tech used to be recommended often, but that was before the sale of the company. Folks are still waiting for the wrinkles to shake out from that...All I can say is my G-RAID w/ FW800 connection that was produced well before the sale has served me admirably.

        It's generally recommended to stay away from the "off the shelf" storage, like the MyBooks, etc., that you can pick up at any computer store for cheap.



        • #5
          Raid choices - Esata

          I've gone to RAID 1 for simple redundancy. But given your project size, perhaps you'd consider some other RAID level, maybe 5 for both redundancy and speed.

          I also have had good luck with G-Tech, but haven't bought their drives since the sale. I try to stay with enclosures that I can swap out drives easily. Whatever you get, you will fill quickly (G). Assume expansion and buy for it.

          Esata is always the better choice, unless you are mobile. Faster is better. I only use FW when I need to take something along in the field. But I try to minimize that.